Is Garcinia Cambogia Safe? Things You Need to Know

Photo of garcinia cambogia

Before you take any supplement, it’s important to know if it’s safe. As the popularity of garcinia cambogia grows, you might be left asking yourself the question “is garcinia cambogia safe?” Like most supplements on the market, garcinia cambogia is not monitored by the FDA, so it is vital that you get the supplement from a reputable company that rigorously tests their products for purity and consistency.

There are many companies that do not use pure garcinia cambogia or have been caught using inconsistent amounts or producing supplements that are less than pure. Sometimes, like in the case of many popular weight loss drugs, the garcinia cambogia is mixed with damaging chemicals such as sibutramine, which was removed from the market for causing stroke, liver damage, stroke, and heart failure.

These mixes are often are dangerous and not very effective. You should always research the company you are getting supplements from to be sure that they have a reliable reputation.

What Is Garcinia Cambogia?

What exactly is garcinia cambogia? It is very important that you know what you are putting in your body before you even investigate the question is garcinia cambogia safe. Garcinia cambogia, also known as Malibar tamarind, is a fruit from Southeast Asia and India. It is also known by these names:

  • Garcinia gummi-cutta
  • Red mango
  • Pot tamarind
  • Brindle berry
  • Brindle berry
  • Brindle berry

Each of these names are referring to the same tree or fruit.

It looks similar to a pumpkin with multiple lobes and comes in a range of colors, such as green, yellow, and red. Although many people now use it for its alleged weight loss properties, it was originally coveted for its rind which is used to make a variety of curries and other Indian cuisines. Both the fruit and the rind are sour tasting without proper preparation. It generally ranges in size between a tomato and a grapefruit depending on the location it’s grown in, soil, and other factors.

In recent years, this fruit has been gaining popularity as a weight loss supplement because it contains hydroxycitric acid in its rind. Some of the more recent studies show this chemical has the potential to stop the enzyme that converts sugar to body fat in humans as well as laboratory rats. This brings us to the question of is garcinia cambogia safe for weight loss.

Is Garcinia Cambogia Safe for Weight loss?

The studies on garcinia cambogia completed in the last several years indicate that there are very few side effects when it is taken according to the dosage directions. The majority of the issues come in when you take more than the recommended amounts. The recommended dosages range depending on the strength and purity of the garcinia cambogia. The average range is between 900 and 1,500 milligrams.

If you are considering the question “is garcinia cambogia safe for weight loss”, there are a few side effects that you should be aware of. These side effects are:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Diarrhea
  • Fogginess in thinking
Lady checking her belly for weight loss

image via Pexels

Along with these relatively minor there has been evidence that it can cause seizures, jaundice, heart failure, low blood sugar, and liver damage in a very few people. These severe side effects often present when someone is taking larger than recommended dosages of garcinia cambogia, the supplement is mixed with other drugs, or in those who are allergic to garcinia cambogia.

If you are on medication, have a serious illness, or are pregnant or nursing, you should speak to your doctor about taking any supplement, including garcinia cambogia. Overall, garcinia cambogia is as safe as any other weight loss medication, but you do have to be aware of both side effects and contraindications with other drugs.

10 Things You Need to Know about Garcinia Cambogia

Does Garcinia Cambogia Help You Lose Weight?

There are conflicting studies on whether garcinia cambogia helps you lose weight. Allegedly it can work as an appetite suppressant and inhibit your body’s ability to convert sugar to fat. The truth is many people experience at least short term weight loss, but there are also many who do not. When deciding on a weight loss supplement it is important to research what is and is not effective for you. Everyone’s body is different and everyone will react to supplements, weight loss products, and other dietary aids in different ways. Some try it and find that it is highly effective.

Garcinia Cambogia Is Not Regulated by the Food and Drug Administration

Like most supplements of this nature, garcinia cambogia is not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. This is not a bad thing. The majority of the diet supplements and vitamins on the market are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. This does not mean that garcinia cambogia was not rigorously studied and tested for its effectiveness. It is also why it is important to find a reputable company that manufactures pure garcinia cambogia rather than one that is likely to use additives or less than stellar business practices.

Garcinia Cambogia Can Interfere with Some Medications

When considering the question is garcinia cambogia safe, it is important to keep the medications that you are already on in mind and consult a doctor to find out if it is safe. A few of the medications it interacts with are:

  • Potassium
  • Iron
  • Calcium
  • Statins (medications to reduce cholesterol)
  • Statins (medications to reduce cholesterol)
  • Coumadin
  • Warfarin
  • Singulair
  • Montelukast

These medications may be less effective when you are taking garcinia cambogia. In these cases, only a doctor can answer the question “is garcinia cambogia safe?”

Garcinia Cambogia Is Available in a Variety of Forms

Garcinia cambogia is available in caplet, capsule, tea, and liquid forms. Each of these forms may contain different amounts of this supplement. When you purchase garcinia cambogia, it is important to check the packaging to make sure you are getting the correct dosage rather than a lower or higher amount. Most companies will openly state the actual amount of garcinia cambogia in each form.

How Do You Take Garcinia Cambogia?

You normally take garcinia cambogia on an empty stomach if you are using it for dieting. Most companies recommend taking it around 1/2 hour before a meal to achieve the full effect. When taking this supplement, it is important to drink hydrating liquids to combat the possibility of dehydration.

Does Garcinia Cambogia Enhance Your Mood?

Some studies show an increase in serotonin in your bloodstream. This is a neurotransmitter that causes feelings of calm, peace, and happiness. When taken correctly, it may reduce stress and thereby reduce stress eating. Stress eating is one of the largest causes for emotional weight gain.

What Parts of the Fruit Are Used?

For the dietary supplement form of garcinia cambogia, most companies use the rind. This is the part of fruit that contains the active chemical hydroxy citric acid. This chemical is responsible for both the increase in serotonin and appetite suppression. Although the fruit is sometimes useful in cooking, it is normally the thick rind that is consumed as a supplement or spice.

More Research on Garcinia Cambogia Is Being Conducted

A variety of agencies and companies are currently researching garcinia cambogia and all of its potential uses. These uses include stews, curries, preserving foods, as a weight loss drug, and as a mild antidepressant. As research continues, it is likely more uses will be discovered. So far garcinia cambogia has proven to be a very versatile supplement.

Does Garcinia Cambogia Work?

Some studies show that garcinia cambogia has a citrate lyase inhibitor in it. This causes carbs that are consumed to be converted to energy instead of fat. Without its interference with citrate lyase, the carbs would be converted to fat for storage. This causes you to lose weight, or at the very least,stops you from gaining more weight. When used in combination with a healthy diet and exercise, garcinia cambogia makes weight loss easier.

Is Garcinia Cambogia Safe?

With a few rare exceptions, the answer to “is garcinia cambogia safe” is yes. As with any supplement, there may be some people who do not react well to it, but these cases are uncommon. Millions of people are already taking garcinia cambogia with no ill effects or severe side effects.


Garcinia cambogia, like its counterparts, is a safe way to suppress your appetite and improve your mood. Although some studies are inconclusive, many modern studies show that when combined with proper diet and exercise, this supplement can help you lose weight and feel healthier. 

With millions of people taking garcinia cambogia, it is safe to say that it works as a dietary supplement and a way to help you lose weight. Please remember that, as with all supplements, you should always take the recommended dosage and seek advice from a doctor if you are on medication or are pregnant or nursing. If other supplements have not worked for you, garcinia cambogia in the right dosages may be the best weight loss supplement for you.


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