Garcinia Cambogia: 'Miracle' Weight Loss Cure Could Be Dangerous Scam

Garcinia cambogia is being touted as a miracle cure that helps people double or even triple their weight loss results, but critics say the hot diet trend is just the latest in a line of scams being oversold to consumers.

Garcinia cambogia is a small fruit shaped like a pumpkin that is grown across India, Southeast Asia, and Africa. It has been a staple in Southeast Asian dishes like curry and chutney.

The natural extract of the plant, hydroxycitric acid (HCA), is said to have an appetite-blocking ability, and experts believe it has the ability to speed up the weight loss process enormously. In fact, one study found that people taking HCA, along with proper diet and exercise, were able to lose an average of average of four pounds a month.

HCA works by inhibiting an enzyme that the body uses to make fat from carbohydrates, and also increases serotonin levels so people are not as prone to emotional or reactive eating.

Garcinia cambogia has become a wildly popular weight loss approach, shooting to the top of internet search trends in the past few days. In the past, it was promoted by television's Dr. Oz, and sold by countless outlets, but many consumers found the "miracle" cure is too good to be true.

Livescience noted that the evidence for garcinia cambogia comes from three medical studies, two of which were inconclusive at best. In fact, a 2005 study from the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology found some dangerous results.

"Researchers tested a high dose of garcinia cambogia extract on obese male rats. The good news? The rats lost weight! The bad news? Extremely high doses seemed to cause testicular atrophy and toxicity. Yikes!"
Other critics say that garcinia cambogia is the latest in a line of supposed "miracle" cures, like acai berries and green tea extract.

It's not just the effectiveness that worries some people. The consumer complaint site ScamBook is also filled with reports of consumers who were scammed by companies claiming to sell Garcinia cambogia, but not delivering.

Have you tried Garcinia cambogia or any other "miracle" weight-loss products? What were your results? Share you comments below this article.