History of Hoodia Gordonii As a Weight Loss
People who are a fan of diet pills will have
heard of the recently discovered effects of Hoodia
gordonii. Hoodia gordonii is an herb found to
reduce appetite resulting to weight loss. It has
only been popularized recently due to the ban
against the diet herb ephedra, which has known
to have side effects on its users. And with society
dictating that thin is beautiful, everyone is
more than welcome to accept a new and thought
to be safer diet pill in the market.
Hoodia gordonii is a cactus-like plant found
in the deserts of Namibia, Angola, Botswana, and
South Africa. It largely resembles a cactus but
it isn't really one. Studies show that this succulent
plant was being consumed by the San Bushmen of
the Kalahari Desert to ward off hunger and thirst
during extended periods of hunting. It was known
that they would cut off the stem and eat the bitter
plant while on a hunting trip. The purple flowers
of the hoodia gordonii will take five years before
it appears and only then can it be harvested.
There are several varieties of hoodia but only
the hoodia gordonii variety is known to have the
active ingredient called "p57", also
known as steroidal glycoside. The first company
to license p57 was Phytopharm and has spent over
$20 million dollars in hoodia research. Pfizer,
a pharmaceutical giant, recognized the potential
of hoodia in the market and asked Phytopharm to
allow them to sublicense the rights to develop
p57 for commercial production.
Hoodia gordonii gained popularity after a TV
correspondent Leslie Stahl traveled all the way
to Africa to try hoodia. They hired a local Bushman
to track down some hoodia and she tried it for
herself. After eating the plant, Stahl has reported
that she lost the desired to eat or drink for
the rest of the day. She didn't feel any immediate
side-effects as well.
At present, hoodia gordonii is sold in powder,
capsule, liquid or tea form that can be found
online and in the local health stores. It is also
an ingredient in popular diet pills. Albeit popular,
there are no published results of controlled trials
that the herb is safe to take in pill form. Hoodia
gordonii works by altering the ATP levels so that
a person will no longer feel hungry or thirsty.
Although hoodia gordonii is a relatively safe
pill to take, its side effects are not known.
It may not have side effects on the San Bushmen
but that is because they are not taking any other
type of medications unlike the populace today.
Studies have not been made as to the interaction
of the herb to other drugs. The intake of the
herb can also be dangerous for those who have
diabetes because with the hunger mechanism turned-off,
blood sugar can get really low.
As with other supplements, it is wise to verify
the product before actually using it. With the
many suppliers of hoodia gordonii in the Internet,
it is best to be cautious and do a thorough comparison
of hoodia products before buying one.