What’s in common with tapeworms, arsenic, vinegar, and twinkies? They were all used as aids for weight loss. The recent weight-loss craze is a complement made from an exotic fruit, garcinia cambogia. But misinformation and hype fill the internet and television.
Let’s look at the facts about cambogia garcinia.
1. In Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and sections of Africa, Garcinia cambogia is cultivated.
2. It is no longer called garcinia cambogia technically. A fresh proper name is given to the tree: Garcinia gummi-gutta.
3. Other names for this are red mango, tamarind malabar, tamarind pot, brindal berry, gambooge, and oil tree kokum.
4. The garcinia cambogia fruit appears to be a multilobed pumpkin and is generally green, purple, or red.
5. It’s normally the size of a large tomato but can grow to grapefruit size.
6. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the seeds have a 30 percent fat content. The seeds are sometimes used as a substitute for ghee, clarified butter that’s a common ingredient in Indian food.
7. After it’s sun-dried and smoked, the blackened fruit, called kodampoli, gives a tart, smoky flavor to curries. It’s most common in fish curry.
8. The sour flesh of the garcinia cambogia will pucker your lips. It’s often pickled and used as a condiment.
9. Its biggest claim to fame is that extract supplements can help speed up weight loss, reduce appetite, and boost exercise endurance.
10. A number of health claims are made about garcinia cambogia extract. Among the conditions people use it for are diabetes, cancer, ulcers, diarrhea, and constipation.
11. A 2011 research reviewTrusted Source showed that it can cause short-term weight loss, but the effect was small and the studies were flawed.
12. Garcinia cambogia contains a compound called hydroxycitric acid (HCA) that may inhibit an enzyme that helps your body store fat. Theoretically, the fat would instead be burned as calories.
13. The first rigorous research on the effectiveness of garcinia cambogia was conducted in 1998. The studyTrusted Source concluded that it doesn’t perform any better than a placebo when it comes to helping you lose weight.
14. Allegedly, garcinia cambogia can increase the levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin, a feel-good messenger in your body. This may enhance your mood and reduce stress-related eating.
15. In 2012, pop television doctor Mehmet Oz announced to his audience that garcinia cambogia is a revolutionary fat buster. The show’s graphics read: “No Exercise. No Diet. No Effort.”
16. A studyTrusted Source from Japan found that rats fed high doses of garcinia cambogia lost significant fat. However, the high doses also caused testicular atrophy.
17. Other health problems associated with Hydroxycut included seizures, cardiovascular disorders, and rhabdomyolysis. However, because Hydroxycut contains many ingredients, it’s difficult to pinpoint the cause.
18. Garcinia cambogia can be found in Hydroxycut. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA)issued a consumer warning in 2009 cautioning consumers to immediately stop using Hydroxycut products after reports of jaundice and extreme liver damage in people who used Hydroxycut surfaced.
19. Garcinia cambogia is available in capsules, tablets, powders, and liquids. Capsules should be taken on an empty stomach, 30 minutes to an hour before a meal.
20. In June 2014, Dr. Oz was chided for making unwarranted claims about garcinia cambogia and other products in an appearance before the Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, Insurance, and Data Security.
21. According to ConsumerLab.com, many garcinia cambogia supplements don’t contain the amount of garcinia cambogia listed on the label. Instead, they found the doses were either too low or too high. If you take the capsules, buy a reputable brand and make sure they contain at least 50 percent HCA.
22. When it comes to a recommended dose, most sources provide the recommended dose of HCA rather than garcinia cambogia itself. According to ConsumerLab.com, the recommended dose of garcinia cambogia is 900 mg to 1,500 mg of HCA a day. This is consistent with doses used in a number of studies.
23. Most garcinia cambogia supplements also contain other ingredients, some of which might not be listed.
24. Side effects of garcinia cambogia may include headache, nausea, dizziness, and dry mouth.