The Benefits of Garcinia | Garcinia for Weight Loss
Garcinia extract is the new weight loss supplement that has recently been a hot topic in the supplement market, but the question is- What does it actually do? And does it really work?
Check out this article to find out the benefits of garcinia and the effect of garcinia for weight loss.
What is Garcinia?
Garcinia cambogia is a plant, also known as Garcinia gummi-gutta or “monkey fruit”, whereby species include evergreen trees and shrubs, saptrees and mangosteens. The fruit of the Garcinia cambogia is a berry that is used within many different cuisines for its flavour.
What Are the Benefits of Garcinia?
Garcinia can offer several nutritional benefits, whereby its composition is rich in calcium, phosphorus, iron, thiamine, rinboflavin and niacin. Additionally, in the skin of the fruit, there is a large amount of a natural substance called Hydroxycitric Acid (HCA). Hydroxycitric acid, is the active ingredient that is contained in the herbal supplement Garcinia cambogia, which acts to competitively inhibit the extramitochondrial enzyme adenosine triphosphate–citrate. This citrate cleavage enzyme plays an essential role in lipogenesis inhibition which gives rise to garcinias main benefit- weight loss.
Garcinia and Weight Loss
Garcinia has been claimed in a range of scientific studies to help lower body weight and reduce fat mass in humans.
For example, recently, the effect of garcinia supplements and HCA on weight loss was assessed in a meta analysis by Onakpoya et al. (2010). This meta analysis:
– Included only randomised, double blind, placebo-controlled studies (the most accurate type of studies)
– Assessed 23 different relevant articles and 12 different clinical trials with 706 participants.
With the 12 clinical trials the effect of HCA on both normal and overweight participants was investigated, measuring outcomes including visceral fat, body weight, satiety, food intake, fat composition, BMI, waist to hip ratio and cholesterol. Through combining the results from all 12 studies this meta analysis was able to conclude that HCA present in garcinia can promote weight loss and lead to a reduction in body fat when compared to a placebo.
When it comes to how garcinia can promote weight loss there are several plausible explainations. Firstly this natural substance can help to inhibit the lipogenesis process which can lead to a reduction in the storage of fat, whereby according to some studies in rats, it can inhibit a fat producing enzyme called Citrate Lyase, making it more difficult for the body to produce fat out of carbohydrates. What’s more, garcinia has also been thought to increase saitey and reduce hunger cravings and food intake, which has been highlighted by other studies in animals showing increased levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin. This could theoretically lead to reduced appetite and cravings. Because developing research suggests that garcinia might prevent fat storage and control appetite, it is often contained in appetite suppressants such as Hydroxycut, Leptoprin or XanGo.
Garcinia and Antioxidant, Anti-Inflammatory Properties.
Within Garcinia phytochemistry and pharmacology there is a history of antiinflammatory properties, whereby components within garcinia have been used in the treatment of skin infections and wounds. Not only this, but garcinol that is formed from garcinia fruit has been shown using electron spin resonance to possess radical scavenging properties. For example in a study by Yamaguchi et al. (2000) it was thus confirmed that this garcinia derivative could act as a potent free radical scavenger, able to scavenge both hydrophilic and hydrophobic harmful and reactive oxygen species. Not only this, but orally administered garcinol has been shown in rats to prevent acute ulceration in rats caused by radical formation. These results suggested garcinol might have potential as a free radical scavenger and clinical application as an anti-ulcer drug.
How Much Garcinia Should I Take?
Garcinia capsules and tablets can be taken throughout the day whereby, within several different studies and clinical trials the dosage of garcinia has varied from 1,500 to 4,667 mg/day, the equivalent hydroxycitric acid (HCA) dose in the trials ranging from 900 to 2,800 mg/day .
Side Effects of Garcinia
Garcinia is known to be safe, however like many new supplements the long term side effects are unknown. Short term side effects that may occur as a result of garcinia include nausea, digestive tract discomfort, and headaches.
Take Home Message
Overall Garcinia- more specifically the HCA found in this dietary supplement has been shown to reduce fat composition, hunger and weight loss in both human and animal studies. The exact mechanism is not fully understood but is likely to be caused by a combination of physiological effects. Studies that have investigated the effects of garcinia as a supplement indicate that this natural weight loss remedy can be consumed as part of any balanced weight loss diet to help aid results. However, the results of garcinia are based on short term results and the long term last impact impact on weight loss is still not fully understood.