is the scientific name for a cactus-like plant that grows in South Africa. It is used as an herbal supplement and is usually marketed as a weight-loss product. There are actually several different varieties of hoodia plants, but only Hoodia gordonii
has shown promise as a weight-loss aid.
(Click Hoodia Uses for more information on what it is used for.)
Because Hoodia gordonii
has not been adequately studied, it is not known if it may cause bothersome or serious side effects.
(Click Hoodia Side Effects to learn more, including potentially serious side effects that you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
is one of many herbal medicines that claim to help with weight loss (see Weight Loss Pills)
. Currently, it is thought that its active ingredient is a compound known as p57. It has been speculated that p57 works in the brain to give people a sense of being full. This helps to suppress the appetite.