Garcinia Cambogia, the Superfood that will help you lose weight
When you have a health problem, it’s wise to seek out all the solutions within your reach. Medicinal plants whose efficacy is backed by studies offer a natural and effective remedy for certain complaints. These days, many people find that superfoods and phytotherapy provide the support they need and more, especially in a society that is becoming increasingly obesogenic.
It’s true, there are so many different options for tackling obesity, including diet control, physical exercise, lifestyle changes, prescription medications and weight loss surgery (1). But the reality is that several clinical and epidemiological studies have shown that maintaining body weight and lifestyle changes over the long-term is a big challenge (2).
In fact, many people who are obese understandably become frustrated during the difficult and seemingly endless lifestyle changes designed to help them to lose weight and avoid regaining it (3). Complementary strategies to facilitate and support healthy weight loss could make people who are overweight more confident in achieving their goals, and motivate them to change their lifestyle habits.
And the thing is, obesity is serious. The World Health Organization (WHO) has defined it as one of the “epidemics of the 21st century”. In its 2016 report (4), WHO produced worrying data that showed that 39% of the world’s adult population was overweight and around 13% was obese.
This is not question of appearances (although losing a few kilos is always nice), but about the fact that this chronic disease is associated with other significant risk factors, such as cardiovascular and joint problems, and certain forms of cancer (5).
It’s time to “check the scales”. Knowing that many people throw in the towel when they see that they only lost just a few grams after all their hard work and willpower in getting their diet under control, medicinal plants can be an invaluable tool to ensure your efforts see faster and better results.
Today it’s the turn of one of the plants most frequently used as a weight loss aid, garcinia, also known as malabar tamarind (Garcinia cambogia).
Let this Superfood help you
The rind and fruit of Garcinia cambogia have traditionally been used as flavourings in food dishes due to their strong, bitter taste. Additional botanical uses include traditional use as a digestive and to treat intestinal complaints, intestinal parasites and rheumatism (6), although this small fruit is currently most widely used as a weight control supplement**. Studies have found that its extracts and hydroxycitric acid (HCA), its main active ingredient, had a slimming effect, including a reduction in food intake** (regulation of satiety) and a decrease in lipogenesis** (7) (8), as well as a decrease in visceral fat (9).
How does this plant work?
The fruit of this plant has high hydroxycitric acid (HCA) content. Studies show that HCA inhibits lipogenesis** (the endogenous synthesis of fatty acids) by inhibiting the conversion of glucose into lipids. This active principle present in Garcinia inhibits the action of ATP citrate lyase*, an enzyme specifically required for the first step in the lipogenesis process (10). So when you eat a food rich in carbohydrates (such as pasta, bread or sugars) and you don’t burn these carbohydrates, the excess glucose will end up accumulating as fat in the adipose tissue. And this is where the HCA comes in, by inhibiting lipogenesis.
As an example of its efficacy, a recent study (11) carried out on 214 overweight or obese subjects who were given garcinia (extract standardised to contain 52.4% HCA), together with glucomannan, over 6 months showed that this herbal combination resulted in weight loss (14-16%), a reduction in fat mass (7-12%) and visceral fat (9-15%) as well as an improvement in blood lipid and glucose profiles compared to basal levels. In addition, the weight loss was independent of gender, age, and the presence of co-morbidities such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes or dyslipidemias, and there were no reported adverse effects of this treatment.
I’m on a weight-loss diet but "i'm starving"
If you’ve ever decided to go on a slimming diet, you may have uttered the phrase: “I'm starving”. Very often, the caloric restriction necessary to promote the loss of accumulated body fat entails caloric restrictions that translate to small portions of food on your plate, leaving you with a voracious hunger. Don't worry if this is true for you, because, in addition to the important benefit of reducing fat synthesis, studies show that HCA decreases appetite and promotes effective and safe weight loss**(12). The extracts produced from Garcinia cambogia, particularly if their main active principle (hydroxycitric acid) standardised, could be an exceptional ally for “big eaters” who need extra help to control their appetite** and also for people who are overweight, associated with high levels of total cholesterol and LDL (13) (14).
An extract standardised to contain 60% HCA
When selecting quality food supplements to help you achieve your goals, it is important to seek out garcinia extracts that have been standardised. And since studies show that hydroxycitric acid (HCA) is the key component in reducing the accumulation of fat and controlling appetite**, supplements with a standardised content of this active ingredient are the wise choice.
The Garcinia produced by the Anastore laboratory is a prime example. In 2 capsules per day, it gives you 800 mg dry extract of Garcinia cambogia, standardised to contain 60% HCA, i.e. 480 mg of this active “hunger fighter”** and lipogenesis controller**.
Taking two capsules daily with main meals and a glass of water can help your body to:
- Reduce body weight in a healthy way, while decreasing fat storage. **
- Reduce the feeling of hunger. **
- Help reduce the size of the portions you usually eat. This is especially useful for “big eaters” who find it hard to feel full and tend to serve themselves large plates of food.**
- Help you avoid the temptation of unhealthy snacking by increasing the feeling of fullness. **
- Control cholesterol and keep blood glucose levels stable.
All in a natural supplement: in addition to its exceptional standardised HCA content (minimum of 60% HCA guaranteed), this supplement comes in a plant-based capsule, is BPA free and not irradiated.
CAUTION: follow the recommended dosage. Not recommended for children, pregnant women and nursing mothers. If receiving medical treatment or taking medication, consult your doctor. Food supplements can never replace a balanced and varied diet. But they are especially helpful if your health goal is to lose weight in a healthy way. Let garcinia to help you in this important task, but don't forget to eat healthily and do a form of exercise suitable for your individual physical condition.
- Update on Treatment Strategies for Obesity, Holly R. Wyatt, published online 2013 Feb 26 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3615205/
- Weight-loss maintenance for 10 years in the National Weight Control Registry. Thomas JG, Bond DS, Phelan S, Hill JO, Wing RR. 2014 Jan, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24355667
- Improving long-term weight loss maintenance: can we do it? Bray GA, Wadden TA. 2015 Jan, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25504330
- Obesidad y sobrepeso, Organización Mundial de la Salud, 16 de febrero de 2018, https://www.who.int/es/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/obesity-and-overweight
- Overweight, obesity, and mortality from cancer in a prospectively studied cohort of U.S. adults. Calle EE, Rodriguez C, Walker-Thurmond K, Thun MJ, 2003 Apr 24 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12711737/
- Rasha HM, Salha A, Thanai A, Zahar A (2015) The Biological Importance Of Garcinia Cambogia: A review. J Nutr Food Sci S5: 004. doi:10.4172/2155-9600.S5-004
- Natural Dietary and Herbal Products in Anti-Obesity Treatment. Sun NN, Wu TY, Chau CF. 2016 Oct 11, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27727194
- A comprehensive scientific overview of Garcinia cambogia. Semwal RB, Semwal DK, Vermaak I, Viljoen A. 2015 Apr, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25732350
- Effects of garcinia cambogia (Hydroxycitric Acid) on visceral fat accumulation: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Hayamizu K, Ishii Y, Kaneko I, Shen M, Okuhara Y, Shigematsu N, Tomi H, Furuse M, Yoshino G, Shimasaki H. 2003 Sep, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24944404
- Evaluation of the safety and efficacy of hydroxycitric acid or Garcinia cambogia extracts in humans. Márquez F, Babio N, Bulló M, Salas-Salvadó J. 2012, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22530711/
- Long-term effects of Garcinia cambogia/Glucomannan on weight loss in people with obesity, PLIN4, FTO and Trp64Arg polymorphisms. Andrea Maia-Landim, Juan M. Ramírez, Carolina Lancho, María S. Poblador and José L. Lancho, Published online 2018 Jan 24, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5781311/
- Effects of a natural extract of (-)-hydroxycitric acid (HCA-SX) and a combination of HCA-SX plus niacin-bound chromium and Gymnema sylvestre extract on weight loss. Preuss HG, Bagchi D, Bagchi M, Rao CV, Dey DK, Satyanarayana S., 2004 May, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15056124/
- Evaluation of the pharmacotherapeutic efficacy of Garcinia cambogia plus Amorphophallus konjac for the treatment of obesity. Vasques CA, Rossetto S, Halmenschlager G, Linden R, Heckler E, Fernandez MS, Alonso JL., 2008 Sep, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18729243/
- The Effect Of Garcinia Cambogia As Coadjuvant In The Weight Loss Process. Fassina P, Scherer Adami F, Terezinha Zani V, Kasper Machado IC, Garavaglia J, Quevedo Grave MT, Ramos R, Morelo Dal Bosco S. 2015 Dec 1, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26667686
* HCA is an inhibitor of ATP-citrate lyase, which is involved in fatty acid synthesis
** HCA suppresses the lipogenesis and their accumulating in the body, food intake, and induced weight loss