Garcinia cambogia and weight loss

The use of garcinia cambogia has been growing rapidly in the United States due to the desire of people to lose weight. The United States has the most obese population in the world, and many Americans would love to find “magic bullets” for weight loss. However, the cornerstone to good health is wise food selection and exercise. If these are coupled with good ergogenic (metabolic enhancing) products, then success at maintaining proper weight is more likely to be long lasting because it will become a lifestyle.

Unlike appetite suppressant drugs, garcinia has no CNS stimulant activity. Preliminary research indicates that it may modulate blood fat levels and have a positive effect on energy and metabolism

The appetite-suppressant mechanism of garcinia is thought to be due in part to the production of glycogen in the liver and small intestine. The conversion of carbohydrates to fat requires the enzyme, adenosine triphosphate citrate lyase. Garcinia temporarily inhibits this enzyme. At the same time, the liver produces more glycogen and this sends a satiety signal to the brain. Obese individuals have less glycogen storage and more triglyceride storage than thin individuals. The storage mechanism for glycogen in the peripheral muscle tissue is thought to be defective in obese and patients with Type 2 diabetes.

Studies have reported that individuals using garcinia, combined with niacin-bound chromium and a reduction in dietary fats, had three times the weight loss of those on diet alone. Obesity is often seen in individuals with diets high in refined foods and saturated fat. In one study, the acute and chronic effects of (-)-hydroxycitric acid (HCA) on energy metabolism was studied in laboratory animals. The results suggested that chronic administration of HCA may promote lipid oxidation and spare carbohydrate utilization at rest and during physical activity.

A double-blind, placebo-controlled parallel group study in 89 mildly overweight female subjects tested the effectiveness of HCA in weight loss. Forty-two participants ingested 400-mg caplets of garcinia 30-60 min prior to meals for a total dose of 2.4 g/day (equivalent to 1.2 g/day of HCA), with forty-seven participants ingesting placebos. The HCA treatment group did not exhibit better dietary compliance, significant appetite changes, an increase in energy intake or weight change. Another recent study reported no benefits in the management of obesity in human subjects when given 1500mg garcinia per day.