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.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 The most important facts
- 3 The Best Hoodia: Our Picks
- 4 Buying and evaluation criteria for Hoodia
- 5 Guide: Frequently asked questions about Hoodia answered in detail
- 5.1 What is Hoodia anyway?
- 5.2 How do the ingredients of Hoodia work?
- 5.3 When and for whom is it useful to take Hoodia?
- 5.4 What are the side effects of taking Hoodia products?
- 5.5 How much do Hoodia products cost?
- 5.6 What types of Hoodia products are there?
- 5.7 What are the alternatives to Hoodia?
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.
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.
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?
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.
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?
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?
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:
- High blood pressure
- Eating disorders (anorexia, bulimia etc.)
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?
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.
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?
- 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?
- 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.
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.
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.
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.
What are the alternatives to Hoodia?
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 is known worldwide for its appetite-suppressing effect. The active ingredient capsaicin contained in chilli stimulates the metabolism and accelerates fat burning.
The less the body is used to the hot chillies, the more effective they can be.
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 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
Übersicht über Hoodia
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.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, International affairs
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
The National Institutes of Health, The Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS): Dietary Supplements for Weight Loss, Fact Sheet for Health Professionals