the most important information I should know about
Hoodia? Do not take Hoodia without first talking to your
doctor if you have diabetes or if you are taking a
medicine to control your blood sugar levels, have any
heart problems or take any heart medicines, have a
bleeding or blood clotting disorder or are taking a
medicine to increase or decrease the clotting of your
blood such as aspirin, warfarin (Coumadin), or heparin,
have anorexia, bulimia or any other eating disorder.
You may not be able to take Hoodia, or you may require
special monitoring during treatment if you have any of
the conditions or are taking any of the medicines listed
Hoodia has not been evaluated by the FDA for safety,
effectiveness, or purity. All potential
risks and/ or advantages of Hoodia may not be known.
Additionally, there are no regulated manufacturing
standards in place for these compounds. There have been
instances where herbal/ health supplements have been
sold which were contaminated with toxic metals or other
drugs. Herbal/ health supplements should be purchased
from a reliable source to minimize the risk of
What is Hoodia?
Hoodia gordonii is a cactus-like succulent plant, native
to the Kalahari Desert in Southern Africa. Hoodia has
received a lot of publicity in recent times for its
natural appetite suppressant properties.
How does Hoodia work?
The appetite suppressant effects of Hoodia were first
observed in 1937 by a Dutch anthropologist studying the
primitive San Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert. It was
noticed that the nomadic Bushmen, (who call it Xhoba)
ate the stem of the Hoodia plant to stave off hunger
during long hunting trips in the sparsely vegetated
area. The active ingredient in Hoodia is the
appetite-suppressing molecule, P57, which is licensed to
the British pharmaceutical company Phytopharm who are
researching its potential as an anti-obesity drug.
Scientists from Phytopharm say P57 acts on the brain in
a manner similar to glucose. It tricks the brain into
thinking you are full even when you have not eaten,
reduces interest in food and delays the time before
hunger sets in.
Who should not take Hoodia?
Do not take Hoodia without first talking to your doctor
if you have diabetes, heart disease or high blood
a bleeding or blood clotting disorder, anorexia, bulimia
or any other eating disorder.
Talk to your doctor before taking Hoodia if you have any
other medical conditions, allergies (especially to
plants), or if you take other medicines or herbal/
health supplements. Do not take Hoodia without first
talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or could
become pregnant. Do not take Hoodia without first
talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
There is no information available regarding the use of
Hoodia by children. Do not give any herbal/ health
supplement to a child without first talking to the
How should I take Hoodia?
The use of Hoodia in cultural and traditional settings
may differ from concepts accepted by current Western
medicine. When considering the use of herbal
supplements, consultation with a primary health care
professional is advisable. Additionally, consultation
with a practitioner trained in the uses of herbal/
health supplements may be beneficial, and coordination
of treatment among all health care providers involved
may be advantageous. Take Hoodia as directed on the
package or as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or
other health care provider. Store Hoodia as directed on
What happens if I miss a dose of Hoodia?
No information is available regarding a missed dose of
Hoodia. Consult your doctor, pharmacist, or health care
provider if you require further information.
What happens if I overdose with Hoodia?
Seek emergency medical attention.
What should I avoid while taking Hoodia?
There are no known restrictions on food, beverages, or
activity while taking Hoodia, unless otherwise directed
by your health care provider.
What are the possible side effects of Hoodia?
Hoodia is not a stimulant, and has no known side
Hoodia appears to be safe for most people although
further scientific studies are required to establish the
safety profile of Hoodia extract. Talk to your doctor
about any side effect that you develop.
What other drugs will affect Hoodia?
While there are no known interactions between Hoodia and
other medicines, it is recommended you talk to your
doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider before
taking any prescription or over-the-counter medicines or
other herbal/ health supplements.
Hoodia, The New Weight Loss Miracle?
Sampling the Kalahari cactus diet Tom Mangold, BBC Two
Correspondent, May 30, 2003 African Plant May Help Fight
Fat, CBS News, November 21, 2004 Consumer Alert: Hoodia
weight loss pills scam exposed by independent
investigation News Target, March 26, 2005 Diet Pill
Supplement Scam: Two-Thirds of Hoodia Gordonii Pills
Sold In the United States Are Counterfeit News Target,
August 30, 2005 Hoodia fraud: Counterfeit Hoodia weight
loss pills dominate the market News Target February 21,