Ultimate Herbals Guide: Hoodia

Ultimate Herbals Guide: Hoodia

Hoodia: Your Herb Guide

What is Hoodia?

This Herb Guide provides everything you need to know about the herb hoodia- it’s common names, how and why it’s used, whether it works and what it works for best, research conducted, whether it’s safe to use and the potential side effects and cautions.

Hoodia is a flowering, cactus-like plant native to the Kalahari Desert in southern Africa. Its harvest is protected by conservation laws.

Common Names – Hoodia, Kalahari Cactus, Xhoba

Latin Name - Hoodia Gordonii

What is Hoodia used for?
  • Kalahari Bushmen have traditionally eaten hoodia stems to reduce their hunger and thirst during long hunts.
  • Today, hoodia is marketed as an appetite suppressant for weight loss.
How is Hoodia used?
  • Dried extracts of hoodia stems and roots are used to make capsules, powders, and chewable tablets. Hoodia can also be used in liquid extracts and teas.
  • Hoodia products often contain other herbs or minerals, such as green tea or chromium picolinate.

What the Science Says

Has Hoodia been scientifically proven to work?

There is no reliable scientific evidence to support hoodia’s use. No studies of usage of the herb hoodia in people have been published.

Side Effects and Cautions

Is Hoodia safe to use and what should I be careful of while taking it?
  • Hoodia’s safety is unknown. Its potential risks, side effects, and interactions with medicines and other supplements have not been studied.
  • The quality of hoodia products varies widely. News reports suggest that some products sold as hoodia do not contain any hoodia.
  • Tell your health care providers about any complementary and alternative practices you use. Give them a full picture of what you do to manage your health. This will help ensure coordinated and safe care.

Content Created/Medically Reviewed by our Expert Doctors