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Sunday, December 18, 2005

Is Hoodia The Magic Weight Loss Drug We've All Been Waiting For? Doctor Fitness Weighs In...

On November 21, 2004 Lesley Stahl of "60 Minutes" did a segment on a bitter tasting cactus-like plant from South Africa called Hoodia. The reason why Hoodia received this amazing attention was because of its potential on weight loss. No, it doesn't melt fat away or get rid of toxic chemicals that build up in the body or any other bogus weight loss claim.

South African scientists discovered that it contained a previously unknown molecule, which they named P57 which affected the part of the brain, the hypothalamus, to profoundly curb hunger.

How is the research on this product and where can you get it? Studies are spotty at best, but what little research is out there, shows promise. However, If you are looking to purchase it over the internet, you better think twice! A report from the British Broadcasting Corporation, which sent a correspondent to the Kalahari Desert, the only place in the world where Hoodia grows, to cover the Hoodia story. As part of his research, the reporter had the leading brand of Hoodia gordonii available on the internet tested: it contained no discernible Hoodia.

The BBC correspondent reported that he tried the real thing in the Kalahari – he ate a piece of Hoodia about the size of half a banana. He said the plant had an unpleasant taste, but he wasn’t hungry for dinner that day or breakfast the next morning. Later, he ate lunch but without much appetite or pleasure. He reported that his appetite returned about 24 hours after eating Hoodia. Lesley Stahl from 60 minutes had a very similar experience.

The bottom line on Hoodia right now is that it is too early to tell if it is safe. It seems that if you can somehow find the real plant that it may curb your appetite. But can it be processed into a supplement that is available at your health food store or even better from an internet email ad right now. I doubt it!!!

Here's why i doubt it. The pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, which had teamed up with a British company Phytopharm, and funded much of the research, dropped out of trying to make a weight loss drug from Hoodia.

Now why would a huge corporation like Pfizer stop trying to make a miracle weight loss drug if they really could? They have the expertise and the R&D budgets right. They can't do it but some guy selling supplements out of his basement can? I don't think so. Stay tuned for more info on Hoodia!

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