A plant that can turn off your hunger
If you haven't heard of Hoodia yet, you soon will because it is being touted as the new miracle supplement for safe, effective weight loss. Hoodia gordonii, (Hoodia) is the botanical name for a cactus like plant that grows in Southern Africa. Scientists have recently isolated several compounds in this amazing plant that are responsible for dramatic weight loss. This all-natural appetite suppressant is also being applauded for containing no dangerous stimulants that caused adverse side effects associated with weight loss products of the last decade.
Hoodia is a Succulent botanical and is part of the Genus: Trichocaulon and belongs to the Family Name: Asclepiadaceae. There are approximately twenty plants within the Hoodia genus family, however, Hoodia Gordonii is the unique plant that South African San bushmen have used for generations to endure long hunting expeditions.
Hoodia Gordonii is a leafless spiny succulent plant ( not a cactus ) with fleshly finger-like stems. Rows of thorns are present along the stems, bearing flesh coloured flowers. Hoodia Gordonii grows naturally in the harsh desert conditions of South Africa. Now Hoodia Gordonii has been found in the semi-deserts of Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, Angola, the Republic of South Africa, and now found in some other arid regions of South American Nations such as Chili, Peru and some regions of West China including Gansu, Sichuan and Shanxi.
Hoodia gordonii today
To be eligible for export to the USA and all other nations, Hoodia farmers must obtain a C.I.T.E.S. certificate which is issued on a per export-shipment basis.
The Hoodia Gordonii plant originated in the southwestern part of Africa and grows best in the semi-arid areas of South Africa primarily the Kalahari. In its native habitat it is extremely difficulty to identify because it looks similar to succulents of the same family of which there are many. Only an experienced botanist or as the case in South Africa with Hoodia Gordonii a San people can identify the plant prior to it's blooming.
Are all Hoodia products the same?
Hoodia Gordonii is a plant - a leafless succulent. Not a Cactus nor a Herb. In South Africa Hoodia Gordonii is classified as a foodstuff, which is testimony to how safe the product really is.
Certainly any hoodia company out there that's selling an honest product is conducting a variety of testing, trying to find out who has counterfeit products and who has real products and trying to inform and educate their own customers about the fact that they have the real thing. But, as always, test results offered by companies who have financial interest in proving their product to be genuine simply don't carry the same weight as independent test results from an unbiased third company.
So buying hoodia is very difficult. It's expensive. And, naturally, there are a lot of fakes on the market. Even now, there are only a few hundred acres of hoodia growing on commercial farms, and the plant is highly susceptible to being wiped out by rather mysterious conditions.
All this means that if hoodia really catches on with the public -- the supply will be even tighter for many years. Prices are going to go up, and eventually, only the wealthy may be able to afford the pills necessary to lose weight.