Last updated: August 10, 2021

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You want to finally get rid of those extra kilos and have already tried everything possible, but nothing works? You've heard that Hoodia helps you lose weight because this plant creates a feeling of satiety?

But you are not yet convinced of the effect and would like to learn more about the intake, the scientific background, the mode of action and the possible side effects of Hoodia products? Then you've come to the right place.

With our Hoodia test 2021 we want to bring light into the darkness. To make your purchase decision as easy as possible, we have summarised and listed the most important information about the plant itself, its effects and the decisive purchase criteria.




The most important facts

  • Hoodia is a South African plant that belongs to the succulent family and can easily be mistaken for a cactus. For several decades, the plant has been said to have an appetite-suppressing effect, which is why it is increasingly offered as a food supplement.
  • Hoodia is usually available as a powder or in capsule form. But sprays and patches with Hoodia are also becoming increasingly popular. Since these preparations are not approved in Germany, you can only order all hoodia products online.
  • So far, no conclusive scientific studies or investigations have been able to prove the effect of the hoodia plant.

The Best Hoodia: Our Picks

Buying and evaluation criteria for Hoodia

When buying Hoodia, you can look at various aspects, such as:

By making the right choice for you, you ensure that you are not adding anything to your body that it doesn't need or that could even harm it.

Mode of administration

The way you take Hoodia is one of the most important things you should consider when making your purchase decision. The following points list the different product forms in which Hoodia is offered:

  • Capsules: Hoodia capsules can be taken anytime and anywhere. This form is therefore ideal for people who travel a lot.
  • Powder: The powder is simply dissolved in water and drunk about an hour before the next meal. If you don't like the bitter taste of the hoodia plant, you can simply dissolve the powder in a more flavourful liquid of your choice.
  • Spray: The spray is simply held in front of your mouth and squeezed a few times just before the next meal.
  • Patch: Patches containing Hoodia extract are applied to a hairless and clean area of the body and should be changed every 24 hours. The patch allows the ingredients to pass directly through the skin into the bloodstream.

Package size

Hoodia in capsule form is often available in larger stock packs, which in turn has a positive effect on the price of a daily dose. However, if you want to try the product first, you should start with a smaller pack size to test the product tolerance.

Hoodia capsule packs usually contain between 30 and 100 capsules, which is enough for about 10 days to a month, depending on the recommended intake.

Hoodia powder is also often sold in 50 to 200 gram quantities, which can last for several weeks and sometimes several months.

When buying the pack, always consider the shelf life of the products.

If you plan to take the products irregularly, a large pack is not suitable for your type of use, as the product may expire.

Duration and dosage

So far, there is no reliable information on the recommended duration of use of Hoodia products. On the one hand, this is because there have not yet been any conclusive studies that have investigated this over a longer period of time. On the other hand, the different products can vary greatly in their Hoodia concentration, which is why the general effectiveness is very difficult to assess.

The same applies to the dosage of the preparations. There are currently no fixed and official guidelines for a healthy and correct dosage that you can follow.

Many products, such as capsules, have a concentration of 200 - 400 milligrams per capsule, so that you get about 700 - 1100 milligrams of Hoodia per day.

Compatibility with other supplements

The interaction and side effects of hoodia with other medications cannot be determined at this time, as there are no conclusive clinical studies or investigations and the individual hoodia products can differ greatly from one another in their composition.(1)

However, a 2011 study showed that intestinal transport of P57 was induced by P-glycoprotein and multidrug resistance proteins MRP1 / MRP2. In addition, P57 showed weak inhibition of the liver cytochrome P450 3A4 enzyme.(2)

As you can see, it is important to consult with a doctor and to monitor the intake closely.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about Hoodia answered in detail

In order to inform you comprehensively about the effectiveness of the Hoodia plant and to give you an understanding of the current state of science, we have summarised all the important information in the following sections.

What is Hoodia anyway?

Hoodia, also called Hoodia Gordonii, is a South African plant that belongs to the succulent family of plants. The plant has thorns, but no leaves, which makes the Hoodia look very much like a cactus. Under optimal conditions, Hoodia plants can live up to 15 years and grow up to one metre tall. (3) .

The growth of hoodia begins with the formation of a stem, which can develop up to 50 branches that branch out at the base. The branches can reach a diameter of up to 5 centimetres. In August, the flowers are formed, with each plant producing between 1 and 4 flowers with 5 petals each.

Visually, these flowers also resemble petunias. Later, in October, the plant forms seed capsules. After the capsules have opened, the seeds are dispersed by the wind.

Hoodia-1

Thanks to its appearance, the hoodia plant is often mistaken for a cactus. In fact, however, Hoodia is a South African succulent and belongs to the silk plant family.
(Image source: Du Preez/ 123rf.com)

The hoodia plant is an endangered species, which is why it has been protected for several years. Wild plants may therefore not be harvested and processed for the production of food supplements. Due to the rapid growth of plants cultivated in plantations, they may have different or fewer ingredients than naturally grown hoodia plants.

How do the ingredients of Hoodia work?

Hoodia contains various glycosides, including the oxypregnan glycoside P57. This P57, it is believed, acts similarly to glucose and tricks the brain into thinking that the blood sugar level is sufficiently high. The consequence is the suppression of the feeling of hunger, which in turn promotes weight loss.(4, 5, 6)

Due to its reputed mode of action, Hoodia has been offered and advertised for several years as a component of dietary supplements and diet pills.

These supplements are said to help increase the feeling of satiety, reduce calorie intake and thus achieve faster weight loss.

However, other ingredients in Hoodia supplements vary from supplement to supplement.

Although there are initial scientific studies that examine the weight-reducing effect of the hoodia plant and also confirm it in part(7), these are not sufficient to prove the effect beyond doubt.

When and for whom is it useful to take Hoodia?

In general, food supplements that are to be used for weight reduction are suitable for overweight people who want to accelerate and support their weight loss process.

However, there are no studies on the Hoodia plant that have sufficiently investigated and proven the effect and long-term consequences.

The intake and dosage of the preparation should therefore be discussed with a doctor.

Especially if one of the following diseases is present, consultation with a doctor is indispensable:

  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Eating disorders (anorexia, bulimia etc.)
  • Allergies

It is also not advisable to take hoodia preparations if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, or if you are breastfeeding.

What are the side effects of taking Hoodia products?

Currently, there are no officially approved products, which is why the amounts of active ingredients in the various Hoodia supplements can vary greatly or sometimes even be completely absent.

For this reason, the side effects of Hoodia preparations could not be sufficiently researched, which is why there is no official data on possible side effects.

Initial statements about hoodia side effects are largely based on the experiences of consumers.

In a 2011 study, participants reported nausea, vomiting and skin problems. Their high blood pressure, pulse and heart rates were also significantly higher.(8)

Another study from 2014 shows that Hoodia Gordonii seems to have the desired effect on appetite and weight loss.

However, this effect appears to be partly a secondary symptom of the severe side effects associated with consuming the high doses required to achieve a therapeutic clinical effect.(9)

How much do Hoodia products cost?

The prices of Hoodia products can vary widely and depend on the following factors:

  • Manufacturer
  • Concentration of Hoodia
  • Product type
  • Other ingredients

In addition, Hoodia preparations are not officially approved in Germany, which is why you have to rely on online retailers in this country. However, it should be noted that products from the internet are not subject to tested quality standards and often counterfeit products are sold that contain no Hoodia or less Hoodia.(10)

In principle, you can go by the fact that powder is the cheaper option in comparison. However, you should bear in mind that the concentration of Hoodia in the product (e.g. in capsules) can vary greatly depending on the product and manufacturer, and this has a significant impact on the price.

In the following table you will find a list of the price ranges for individual products.

Type Price per pack (€) Price per daily dose (€)
Spray ca. 25 - 50 ca. 2 - 8
Capsules ca. 45 - 70 ca. 2 - 5
Patches ca. 20 ca. 0.5 - 1
Powder ca. 12 - 40 ca. 0.10 - 1

In the end, it is up to you to decide how much you want to spend on Hoodia.

What types of Hoodia products are there?

Basically, you can distinguish between the following types of Hoodia:

  • Hoodia Powder
  • Hoodia Capsules

Hoodia products are also available in other forms, such as patches with Hoodia extract or sometimes as a spray, however the above mentioned product forms are the most popular.

The different types of products have different advantages and disadvantages. Which form is right for you depends on a number of factors, such as the price and how you prefer to take the product.

Hoodia powder

When dissolved in water, Hoodia powder allows the ingredients to be absorbed directly into the body. Due to its composition, the powder simplifies a dosage that you can vary and thus adapt to your personal needs.

The bitter taste of the hoodia plant can be unpalatable for many people and thus discourage consumption. The powder form allows it to be mixed with other drinks or foods to mask the bitterness.

Advantages
  • Direct absorption of the ingredients
  • Simple and individual dosage
  • The bitter taste can be concealed if desired
  • Less expensive than other product forms
Disadvantages
  • Inconvenient to take on the go
  • Can only be ordered online

Hoodia capsules

Hoodia in capsule form is easy and quick to take wherever you are. So if you mainly want to take hoodia products on the go, capsules are the ideal choice.

Also, because the contents of the capsule are coated, the capsule does not have a taste of its own, so you are not directly exposed to the bitter taste of the hoodia plant.

Hoodia-2

Thanks to the capsule form, you can avoid the bitter taste of Hoodia. In addition, you can save a lot of money on larger stock packs!
(Image source: Bruno / Germany Pixabay)

The hoodia plant in capsule format is usually available in very large storage packs, which means you are covered for several weeks, if not months.

However, if you have difficulty swallowing tablets and/or capsules, this type of product may not be suitable for you.

Advantages
  • No direct contact with the bitter taste of the hoodia plant
  • Convenient and easy to take from anywhere
  • Cheaper compared to other product forms
  • Stock packs available for several months
Disadvantages
  • Not suitable for people who have difficulty swallowing tablets
  • Can only be ordered online

What are the alternatives to Hoodia?

If you are reluctant to order food supplements from the internet, you can also use alternatives. Several plants are now known to have an appetite-suppressing effect.

Spirulina algae

Spirulina is said to have a similar effect as the hoodia plant. Due to the high protein content of spirulina and its ability to expand in water, the alga is said to have an appetite-suppressing effect.

Chilli

Chilli is known worldwide for its appetite-suppressing effect. The active ingredient capsaicin contained in chilli stimulates the metabolism and accelerates fat burning.

Hoodia-3

The capsaicin contained in chilli and cayenne pepper accelerates fat burning and supports the metabolism.
(Image source: Barragan/ 123rf.com)

The less the body is used to the hot chillies, the more effective they can be.

Cayenne

As in the chilli pepper, the active ingredient capsaicin is also contained in cayenne pepper and thus promotes fat burning and a faster metabolism.

Ginger

Ginger also has an appetite-suppressing effect on our body and can satisfy our appetite for sweet and savoury foods. And on top of that, ginger is extremely healthy.

Especially in the coming cold autumn and winter months, ginger is the ideal natural appetite suppressant when prepared as a tea. You simply have to peel a piece of ginger and cut it into thin pieces and finally infuse it with hot water.

Image source: lalalulustock/ 123rf.com

References (10)

1. Übersicht über Hoodia
Source

2. Madgula VL, Avula B, Pawar RS, Shukla YJ, Khan IA, Walker LA, Khan SI. In vitro metabolic stability and intestinal transport of P57AS3 (P57) from Hoodia gordonii and its interaction with drug metabolizing enzymes. Planta Med. 2008 Aug;74(10):1269-75. doi: 10.1055/s-2008-1074580. Epub 2008 Jul 8. PMID: 18612942.
Source

3. U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, International affairs
Source

4. MacLean DB, Luo LG. Increased ATP content/production in the hypothalamus may be a signal for energy-sensing of satiety: studies of the anorectic mechanism of a plant steroidal glycoside. Brain Res. 2004 Sep 10;1020(1-2):1-11. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2004.04.041. PMID: 15312781.
Source

5. Tucci SA. Phytochemicals in the Control of Human Appetite and Body Weight. Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2010;3(3):748-763. Published 2010 Mar 22. doi:10.3390/ph3030748
Source

6. Vermaak I, Hamman JH, Viljoen AM. Hoodia gordonii: an up-to-date review of a commercially important anti-obesity plant. Planta Med. 2011 Jul;77(11):1149-60. doi: 10.1055/s-0030-1250643. Epub 2011 Jan 21. PMID: 21259185.
Source

7. S. Jain, S.N. Singh, Metabolic effect of short term administration of Hoodia gordonii, an herbal appetite suppressant, South African Journal of Botany, Volume 86, 2013, Pages 51-55, ISSN 0254-6299, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2013.02.002.
Source

8. Blom WA, Abrahamse SL, Bradford R, Duchateau GS, Theis W, Orsi A, Ward CL, Mela DJ. Effects of 15-d repeated consumption of Hoodia gordonii purified extract on safety, ad libitum energy intake, and body weight in healthy, overweight women: a randomized controlled trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Nov;94(5):1171-81. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.111.020321. Epub 2011 Oct 12. PMID: 21993434.
Source

9. Smith C, Krygsman A. Hoodia gordonii: to eat, or not to eat. J Ethnopharmacol. 2014 Sep 11;155(2):987-91. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2014.06.033. Epub 2014 Jun 21. PMID: 24955559.
Source

10. The National Institutes of Health, The Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS): Dietary Supplements for Weight Loss, Fact Sheet for Health Professionals
Source

Why you can trust me?

The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
Übersicht über Hoodia
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Madgula VL, Avula B, Pawar RS, Shukla YJ, Khan IA, Walker LA, Khan SI. In vitro metabolic stability and intestinal transport of P57AS3 (P57) from Hoodia gordonii and its interaction with drug metabolizing enzymes. Planta Med. 2008 Aug;74(10):1269-75. doi: 10.1055/s-2008-1074580. Epub 2008 Jul 8. PMID: 18612942.
Go to source
Artikel einer Behörde des US-Innenministeriums
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, International affairs
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Studie
MacLean DB, Luo LG. Increased ATP content/production in the hypothalamus may be a signal for energy-sensing of satiety: studies of the anorectic mechanism of a plant steroidal glycoside. Brain Res. 2004 Sep 10;1020(1-2):1-11. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2004.04.041. PMID: 15312781.
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Tucci SA. Phytochemicals in the Control of Human Appetite and Body Weight. Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2010;3(3):748-763. Published 2010 Mar 22. doi:10.3390/ph3030748
Go to source
Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Vermaak I, Hamman JH, Viljoen AM. Hoodia gordonii: an up-to-date review of a commercially important anti-obesity plant. Planta Med. 2011 Jul;77(11):1149-60. doi: 10.1055/s-0030-1250643. Epub 2011 Jan 21. PMID: 21259185.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Studie
S. Jain, S.N. Singh, Metabolic effect of short term administration of Hoodia gordonii, an herbal appetite suppressant, South African Journal of Botany, Volume 86, 2013, Pages 51-55, ISSN 0254-6299, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2013.02.002.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Studie
Blom WA, Abrahamse SL, Bradford R, Duchateau GS, Theis W, Orsi A, Ward CL, Mela DJ. Effects of 15-d repeated consumption of Hoodia gordonii purified extract on safety, ad libitum energy intake, and body weight in healthy, overweight women: a randomized controlled trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Nov;94(5):1171-81. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.111.020321. Epub 2011 Oct 12. PMID: 21993434.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Rezension
Smith C, Krygsman A. Hoodia gordonii: to eat, or not to eat. J Ethnopharmacol. 2014 Sep 11;155(2):987-91. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2014.06.033. Epub 2014 Jun 21. PMID: 24955559.
Go to source
Wissenschaftliche Übersicht
The National Institutes of Health, The Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS): Dietary Supplements for Weight Loss, Fact Sheet for Health Professionals
Go to source
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