Many proponents for the weight loss supplement suggest that this herb can help the body reduce fat in a number of ways. The familiar claim is shared by many other supplements that fail to offer results. In addition, some may not be safe to take.
The problem with many weight loss supplements is that they tend to work on the nervous system and the heart rather than in the digestive system. People naturally burn more calories as their heart rates increase and their nervous systems work in overdrive. Does hoodia for weight loss work in the same way as potentially harmful weight reduction pills?
What is Hoodia?
Hoodia is a naturally occurring plant that is similar to a cactus. The plant grows in southern Africa’s Kalahari Desert, making it among the most exotic weight loss ingredients on the planet. The plant can be expensive to obtain because conservation laws protect the plants from excessive harvesting. Despite this, San speaking tribes have been harvesting and using the plant for hundreds of years, according to Case Western Reserve University.
Surprisingly, the plant may be difficult to harvest, but this hasn’t stopped companies from adopting this weight loss component into their supplements. The plant goes by a number of different names:
- Kalahari cactus
- Hoodia goronii
Uses of Hoodia
Kalahari Bushmen have used the flowering cactus plant for many generations. The plant is edible and it is effective in reducing thirst and hunger for anyone eating it. Hoodia is ideal for the desert environment because it quells hunger and thirst while the Bushmen embark on extensive hunts.
It is those very hunger and thirst-quelling properties that make hoodia a great supplement for weight loss. The weight loss product is available in a number of different forms, including liquids and supplemental capsules.
How to Take Hoodia for Weight Loss
The different forms of hoodia allow consumers to use the weight reduction product in various ways. Options include:
- Liquid extract
- Chewable tablets
Products that use hoodia as an ingredient commonly merge the plant component with other mineral or herbs. Green tea extract with hoodia is a very popular combination.
Human trials have been conducted concerning the use of hoodia for weight loss, with results being achieved with loss of adipose fat. The first of this type of study was conducted in Leicester, England, by a company known as Phytopharm. Subjects were given either a placebo or hoodia, and those who received the hoodia reduced their daily food intake by 1000 calories – without being instructed to do so, and without even realizing that they had done so, and of course, this caused them to lose a substantial amount of weight.
Scientists have not determined the exact mechanism whereby hoodia might suppress appetite. A glycoside commonly called P57, which may have central nervous system activity , is widely believed to be the main active ingredient, although not all researchers agree [16,182].
Can Hoodia Promote Weight Loss?
Fat is nothing more than stored energy, and when people take in fewer calories than they use, the body has to go to its stored energy for fuel. Products like hoodia can be beneficial because they help people reduce their appetites, leading to less caloric intake.
The problem that many dieters face is the tendency to eat when they are not hungry. When this pattern of behavior occurs, appetite reduction does little good. In addition, there are no clinical studies to support the claims that hoodia actually works.
According to Case Western Reserve University, case studies have proven that hoodia does in fact promote weight loss. This is because the plant has a way of copying the effect that glucose has on the nerve cells in the brain, which in effect tells us that we are full, even if we actually are not. The molecule within the plant that achieves this effect is known as P57 in the scientific world.
The lack of studies also applies to the plant component’s potential side effects. Many claim that the products have no side effects, but it is important to make a distinction between having no side effects and having no known side effects.
Hoodia has not been evaluated by the FDA, and many products go unregulated. In fact, many items that claim to contain the plant component actually have no hoodia in them. Therefore, it is essential that you fully research any supplement that you plan to take before doing so.
Additionally, taking hoodia without making any other dietary changes will not help you to lose weight. According to a report at Natural News, if you consume carbohydrates, you will not notice any decrease in your appetite even if you are taking a hoodia product. You will only notice a difference in your appetite if you are also avoiding bad carbohydrates as well.
Resources: www.drweil.com, www.herbalhealer.com