Fruits can have amazing powers. The vitamins and nutrients that they are filled with can help prevent cancer and slow aging by stopping free radicals, can cure the common cold with their vitamin C, can help reduce LDL cholesterol with fiber and so many other things. It is possible that fruit can even help cure diseases and disorders that we do not even know about yet. Garcinia Cambogia, a relatively small fruit that looks suspiciously like a pumpkin, is a newish discovery that is said to help something that everyone wants help with—weight loss.
Apparently, the garcinia cambogia fruit contains something called hydroxycitric acid—a form of HCA. At the moment, HCA is a very popular ingredient in weight loss supplements because of its supposed appetite suppressing and fat burning qualities. So let us take a moment to explore these claims and how, scientifically, they might or might not be possible.
Your body is a complex piece of work. It creates things called enzymes, which are proteins that break down foods and nutrients. One of these enzymes, citrate lyase, breaks down carbohydrates. If you have consumed too many carbohydrates (more than your body needs) then the enzyme citrate lyase will break them down and turn them into fat. When you are trying to lose weight, more fat is the last thing you need and that is where garcinia cambogia comes in to play. Garcinia cambogia blocks the ability of your body to produce the enzyme citrate lyase so that the extra carbohydrates you eat can not be broken down and turned into fats. It is thought that the body then treats the carbohydrates as it normally would and burns them quickly. If this is true, it means that your body would use up the extra calories you consume, preventing you from gaining weight.
Another way garcinia cambogia is supposed to help is by suppressing your appetite. Of course, this could be because your body has all the additional carbohydrates to content with. Unfortunately, studies do not yet indicate what might be behind the appetite suppressant capabilities.
The Journal of the American Medical Association once completed a study with the garcinia cambogia extract hydroxycitric acid that did not show any improved dieting results after dieting with the garcinia cambogia. In the study they also increased the fiber intake of the participants, so it is unknown if that played some role in the study participant’s inability to digest it properly.
Other than studies on mice, there is no real evidence that the claims made on the supplement bottles that contain garcinia cambogia are true. The Food and Drug Administration has not opined on the use of the supplement, as it often doesn’t. It is unknown whether there are any long or short term side effects after or while using garcinia cambogia. In addition, if garcinia cambogia does suppress appetite and burn fat, there is probably a minimum amount that must be taken in a consistent basis. Until more research is done, it is impossible to know whether or not the weight loss supplements currently on the market and containing garcinia cambogia comply with these minimums.
If you have decided to try garcinia cambogia, it might be a good idea to consult your primary care physician before you do so. It is important to find out whether or not a supplement could cause harm to you or interfere with drugs you are already taking before you begin to take the supplement. Even though there are few, if any, clinical trials done, your primary care physician may have some information that you are not familiar with that can help you make an informed decision.