Garcinia Cambogia Extract: Does It Work For Weight Loss
When you combine the ever increasing risk of obesity to the busy lives of Americans, you can see why people are looking for answers on how to cut on weight. The market today is saturated by supplements and “miracle drugs” that claim to help you shed weight fast. Dr. Oz and many like him have recommended the use of the garcinia cambogia extract, but does it work? And is it even safe to use?
So, What Is Garcinia Cambogia?
It is a citrus fruit grown in India and other parts of Southeast Asia. Extracts from the fruit rind, hydrochloric acid (HCA) has been historically used for cooking, but also to lower cholesterol and for weight loss.
Garcinia cambogia can be purchased online or in most drug stores, in the form of powder or pills. At times the extract is included in snack bars. Recommended doses for each day range between 250 and 1,000 mg.
What Does the Extract Supposedly Do?
Experts say that the organic acid HCA works by making a person feel full, suppressing the appetite and affecting metabolism. It is suggested to also help lower cholesterol.
However, scientific studies on the effectiveness of the extract still remains unclear. Older studies noted the extract to no more effective for weight loss than a mere placebo (fake pill). Other recent studies on HCA concluded that there wasn’t substantial evidence showing the effectiveness and safety for long-term use.
Who Should Use Garcinia Cambogia?
Since it is a natural supplement, there’s a limited number of people that should avoid taking it. However, until more studies have been undertaken, professionals in the medical and scientific field recommend the following people to avoid it, or use under medical supervision:
• Those taking blood sugar affecting medications should use under medical supervision
• Patients with high blood sugar (diabetes) or low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) shouldn’t take the supplement.
• Patients with history or at risk of a potentially fatal condition that involves the degeneration of skeletal muscles (rhabdomyolysis) should the supplement under the medical supervision.
• Patients on statins, should practice extreme caution because a combination of these medications may induce the risk of rhabdomyolysis
• Patients suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia shouldn’t use garcinia cambogia because of the risk of developing acetylcholine in the brain.
• People that are pregnant, trying to conceive or breast feeding shouldn’t take the supplement until there’s more scientific evidence.
Side Effects of Garcinia Cambogia
Since it’s composed of natural ingredients, garcinia cambogia generally has mild side effects. These include upset stomach, diarrhea, dry mouth and dizziness. The supplement may also react to certain medications. A pharmacist or doctor may tell whether it’s safe or not to use HCA alongside your medication. Keep in mind that all dietary supplements need to be studied and approved by the FDA before they are allowed to enter the market.
• A natural supplement that’s based on fruit extracts used for centuries
• Helps suppress cravings for carbohydrates/salt/sugar
• Can promote weight loss, and best used with healthy diet and some exercise
• No nasty side effects like headaches or nausea
• Endorsed by the medical profession, celebrities and models
• Relatively cheaper when compared to other supplements
• There have been reports of some people seeing minimal results in their attempts to lose weight
• Some people have reported not experiencing any results at all. When purchasing these supplements, make sure they contain atleast 50 percent HCA
• They cannot be used by people with blood sugar conditions
Renowned medical practitioner Dr. Oz came under criticism for endorsing “miracle” weight loss products on his television show. These claims got in trouble with the Senate Committee on Data Security, Insurance, Product Safety and Consumer Protection. Before adding any dietary supplements to your weight loss regimen, be sure to discuss it with a medical practitioner. He or she will be in the best position to determine whether the product is harmful or it is worth trying out.
The FDA recommends people to practice extreme caution when using any products that claim to offer quick fixes, promise rapid weight loss results and use the phrase natural all too often. “Natural” doesn’t always translate to safe. Many toxic plants out there are natural and may cause serious consequences. Based on the FDA – any product, whether man-made or natural with the ability to work like a drug has the potential to cause side effects.
Remember that, diet, exercise and behavior change are the only tested and tested methods of losing weight. According to the CDC, individuals who limit weight loss to half a kilogram or a kilogram a week are likely to keep it away.
To successfully lose weight, one must take in less calories than those burnt. The CDC recommends reducing calorie intake by anywhere between 500 and 1000 a day as well as 60 to 90 minutes of exercise during the week.
Scientists, health experts and doctors have shown that garcinia cambogia can help you lose weight after studies of its composition and how it works. This serves as the most authoritative of studies done so far on the supplement for weight loss.
It goes without mention that if you take garcinia HCA supplements alone will not help your cause of losing those extra pounds. But when you take them in combination with regular exercise and well balanced healthy diet, studies seem promising. Recent studies done on volunteers on HCA supplements, subjects lost four pounds each month.