Garcinia cambogia, also called brindleberry among many other names, is a plant that grows in tropical regions like Indonesia and India and is believed to help assist in weight loss. It’s fruit looks like a small pumpkin and can be green or yellow in color. Garcinia cambogia contains a compound called hydroxycitric acid (HCA), which can be extracted and used in weight loss supplements.1 Hydroxycitric acid is similar chemically to citric acid found in fruits like oranges and lemons.2
Garcinia Cambogia Uses and Health Benefits
Garcinia cambogia is praised for its medicinal uses thanks to the HCA present in the fruit. While more research is certainly needed, this compound is believed to have its fair share of medicinal benefits. Among them, it’s said to reduce appetite and hunger, promote fat burning, and boost energy, which can all help in losing weight.3 What’s more, the garcinia cambogia herb may be useful in reducing the carbohydrate to fat conversion by inhibiting certain enzymes.2 Other garcinia cambogia benefits include that it helps keep blood sugar within normal ranges when fasting.3 Other possible garcinia cambogia uses include for:
- Cardiovascular Disease - Garcinia cambogia may help reduce cardiovascular disease risk in patients who use it as a weight loss supplement.
- Diabetes - It’s believed that garcinia cambogia may help diabetes patients, but it’s important to talk to your doctor before starting on an herbal garcinia cambogia diet.
- Kidney Cancer (Renal Cell Carcinoma) - Garcinia cambogia is thought to help with certain types of cancer like renal cell carcinoma, although more research is needed.
Garcinia Cambogia Side Effects and Precautions
Garcinia cambogia side effects are rare, but it’s important to proceed with caution when taking the herb since more research is needed on how it affects humans. In rare cases, allergic reaction may occur, which can result in rash, hives, congestion, and a swollen tongue or mouth.1 In other cases, headaches, nausea, and upset stomach have occurred.1
Avoid taking garcinia cambogia home remedies if you are pregnant, nursing, or have dementia. Children should not take garcinia cambogia supplements as it is not known how it affects them. Be careful when taking garcinia cambogia for diabetes, and be sure to talk to your doctor first.1 Discuss any other herbs or medications you’re taking with your care provider to ensure they won’t interact with the herb.