When 2 women in my practice brought in the same supplement this week stating “Dr. Oz says it burns fat and increases your metabolism” so can I take this? Is it safe?
I instantly went into research mode. Since I had never heard of Garcina cambogia (GC), I had to turn to reviews and studies. As with all nutritional products I hold off on recommendations until I have thoroughly researched even if Dr. Oz states it’s golden.
According to Consumerlab.com, an impartial group of biochemists who review supplements and safety:
“Hydroxycitric acid (HCA), a derivative of citric acid, is found primarily in a small, sweet, purple fruit called the Malabar tamarind or, as it is most commonly called, Garcinia cambogia. Test tube and animal research suggests that HCA may be helpful in weight loss because of its effects on metabolism. However, studies in humans have found mixed results.”
The largest search engine for medical research known as pubmed.com, shows 89 studies that looked at GC for weight/fat loss and satiety in animals and humans. Results were mixed and one in the Journal of Obesity reported “to date, there is little clinical evidence to support its use.”
Richard Mattes, MPH, R.D., distinguished professor of foods and nutrition at Purdue University, studies the affect of different variables on appetite. His research is solid and consistently shows that protein and solid foods (versus liquids) increase satiety. His study on GC quoted “no satiety effect, or change in caloric intake or effect on weight.”
Since one of my clients had tried it for a few weeks and saw no change except for increased constipation, I looked at various sites for side effects. Pages of comments on WebMD show numerous reviewers had experienced bloating, constipation, stomach pains, and headaches after taking it for just two days. It’s astounding it is even being considered or advocated by Dr. Oz.
So should you take GC for weight loss? Not unless you want to be constipated, bloated and at an increased risk for headaches. If something seems too good to be true, it usually is.
The old adage of mindful and balanced eating, exercise and lifestyle may seem boring but at least you know your digestion process will be more peaceful than with GC.