Garcinia cambogia is one of the numerous “hot” diet ingredients surfacing within the last few years, gaining much of its popularity from exposure by “Dr. Oz” on daytime TV. Although this ingredient is still commonly used, many have begun to doubt its effectiveness beyond rats where it actually has strong science behind it.
What it does
Garcinia cambogia is used as an appetite suppressant in dietary supplements, however human studies have found it to be unsuccessful in this endeavor at best. In addition to not helping human subjects to eat less, it has also not shown the ability to significantly reduce body weight.
How it works
Garcinia cambogia is traditionally standardized for its (-)-hydroxycitric acid content. This active compound has shown the ability to inhibit the citric acid lyase enzyme which actively synthesizes fatty acids. Rodent studies show inhibiting this enzyme significantly reduces food intake and as a result body weight.
One theory for why this compound showed extreme promise in rats but not in humans is a result of the fact that humans synthesize fatty acids at a much smaller rate than rats, resulting in the fewer benefits from the ingredient. This compound is a prime example of something looking great on paper, but failing to produce in the real world.
Suggested dosing of garcinia cambogia is 500mg of the standardized (-)-hydroxycitric acid approximately 30-60 minutes prior to a meal. Maximum dosing would be 500mg 3-4x/day.