Garcinia Cambogia, a small, pumpkin-shaped fruit, also known as Brindleberry and Malabar Tamarind, is traditionally used to maintain healthy weight and metabolism in adults (except pregnant and breastfeeding women). Though native to Indonesia, it is also grown in India, Southeast Asia, and West and Central Africa. It has long been used in traditional South Asian dishes, including curries and chutneys. Many also use the fruit for curing fish and preservation.
Adding this ingredient to meals is considered to be effective in making meals more “filling.” In some villages in Malaysia, garcinia is used to make a soup that is eaten before meals for weight loss because of garcinia’s appetite-blocking abilities.
How Does Garcina Cambogia Work?
An ingredient from the rind of the fruit, hydroxycitric acid (HCA) is thought to aid weight loss by doing two things: it can help to block fat, and it suppresses your appetite.
HCA is thought to block fat by inhibiting a key enzyme that your body needs to make fat from carbohydrates: citrate lyase. Usually carbohydrates or sugars that are not used immediately or stored in other forms are converted into fats. When HCA inhibits citrate lyase, the fat-making process is halted and the production of LDL (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides decrease.
HCA seems to suppress appetite by increasing serotonin levels. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter in your brain that makes you feel good. It’s a target of many antidepressant medications. Having low levels of serotonin may make you feel depressed or anxious; it drives many people into emotional or reactive eating. By increasing serotonin levels, HCA improves mood and suppresses the drive to react to stressful situations with food. As you eat less, your body senses this and it releases stored fat in your fat cells.
Please note Garcinia should not be taken by pregnant or breastfeeding women, as not enough research has been undertaken with these participants. As with all weight loss supplements, if you have any existing medical conditions please consult a health professional before taking garcinia cambogia.