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OVER THE LAST year, Hoodia gordonii has become a very popular natural
supplement for those trying to lose weight. For many people, managing their
weight is an ongoing life challenge. We are all aware of the physical and
emotional health risks associated with being overweight, such as diabetes,
heart disease, lethargy, low self-esteem and depression.
Along with a balanced diet and a regular exercise program, many people
experience dramatically improved results in their weight-loss efforts with the
proper use of Hoodia gordonii. Benefits they experience include:
• A reduction in appetite
• Loss of pounds and excess body fat
• Heightened energy levels
What is Hoodia gordonii?
Hoodia gordonii comes from a leafy and spiny succulent plant native to
the Kalahari Desert in southern Africa. It is often confused with a cactus plant
because they look quite similar. According to folklore, the hoodia plant has
been used for centuries by the San Bushmen to help them stave off hunger
during hunting expeditions and nomadic cycles. The Hoodia gordonii plant is
difficult to grow due to its four- to five-year maturation rate and southern
Africa’s extremely hot growing conditions.
The chemical component in hoodia is a substance known as P57. This
substance interacts with the brain’s hypothalamus to trigger a full and satiated
feeling. Hoodia has also been found to reduce cravings and appetite. Research
conducted in 1997 by scientists in South Africa’s national laboratory found that
individuals using hoodia had a significant daily caloric reduction—by as much
as 1,000 calories per day. Further, participants who were given hoodia experienced body-fat reduction as compared to those in the study using the placebo.
Words of wisdom when using Hoodia gordonii
First and foremost, all situations that involve taking a pill, powder or liquid
supplement to aid in weight loss require prior consultation with a medical professional. With reduced food consumption, there is a challenge of maintaining
a well-balanced diet combining a full array of proteins, carbohydrates and
antioxidants. In order to achieve any kind of successful and healthy weight
loss, a well-balanced diet is crucial.
To enhance weight-loss efforts, Hoodia gordonii should be used in a
liquid form because the absorption rates in liquid supplements versus pills
have been shown to be 30 to 50 percent higher. The vast majority of naturopaths