22 June 2012

Hoodia Diet Pills

Hoodia is a weight loss supplement that is derived from the Hoodia gordonii a leafless succulent plant (not a cactus) from South Africa. While there are more than thirteen different types the Hoodia gordonii is the only one that contains the active ingredient a steroidal glycoside that is been called “p57.”

Does Hoodia Gordonii Really Work?

In spite of its reputation, there are no published randomized controlled trials in humans to show Hoodia is safe or effective in pill form.

One study published in the September 2004 issue of Brain Research found that injections of p57 into the appetite center of rat brains resulted in altered levels of ATP, an energy molecule that may affect hunger. The animals receiving the P57 injections also ate less than rats that received placebo injections. However, this was an animal study and injections in the brain are different from oral consumption, so it cannot be used to show that oral hoodia can suppress appetite in humans.

The manufacturer Phytopharm cites a clinical trial involving 18 human volunteers that found hoodia consumption reduced food intake by about 1000 calories per day compared to a placebo group. Although intriguing, the study wasn’t published or subjected to a peer-review process, so the quality of the study cannot be evaluated.

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