How Do I Buy Pure Hoodia?

hoodia pills
Emilio Ereza/Age Fotostock/Getty Images

Q: How in the world do I go about finding a product that really does contain 100% hoodia? I have been researching this for months but do not want to keep wasting my money on these so called "100% Pure Hoodia" pills. Thank you for any and all advice you can give.



Hoodia gordonii is a herbal weight loss supplement sold in health food stores and online. Unfortunately, there are widespread reports that most hoodia products are counterfeit or have been adulterated.

If you search online for hoodia, you'll find hundreds of companies selling hoodia and cautioning you not to buy the competitor's useless hoodia pills.

Counterfeit and adulterated hoodia products exist because the supply is scarce. Hoodia is a plant that is difficult to grow and takes four to five years in a very hot environment to mature.

Also, the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species (an international agreement between governments to ensure that harvest operations and trade of wild plant and animal specimens doesn't threaten their survival) imposed trade controls on hoodia in October 2004. In order to be legal, hoodia must be grown or collected with a permit. But some sources say that some hoodia companies use counterfeit or stolen certificates.

Another major problem is that it's impossible to know if a hoodia product contains pure hoodia and the purported active ingredient.

According to, an independent lab in White Plains, New York, there are no definitive, established tests for judging the quality of hoodia products at this time. does not test hoodia products for that reason.

Even when companies can produce a certificate, some companies may have submitted a genuine sample of hoodia to the lab to obtain the seal of authenticity and then used adulterated hoodia in the production run.

Nutritional supplement companies might not even be aware that they are using fake or adulterated hoodia because they do not submit their hoodia for independent testing.

It's important to keep in mind that supplements haven't been tested for safety and dietary supplements are largely unregulated. In some cases, the product may deliver doses that differ from the specified amount for each herb. In other cases, the product may be contaminated with other substances such as metals. Also, the safety of supplements in pregnant women, nursing mothers, children, and those with medical conditions or who are taking medications has not been established. You can get further tips on using supplements here.

Due to the limited safety information, it's too soon to recommend hoodia for any condition. It's also important to note that self-treating a condition and avoiding or delaying standard care may have serious consequences. If you're considering using hoodia, make sure to consult your physician first.



Phytopharm. 23 Oct 2006. <>. "African Plant May Help Fight Fat." CBS News. 21 Nov 2004 <>.

Adams, Mike. "Hoodia update: Counterfeit rate reaches 80 percent, but genuine hoodia is still available." News Target. 28 August 2006. <>

Disclaimer: The information contained on this site is intended for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for advice, diagnosis or treatment by a licensed physician. It is not meant to cover all possible precautions, drug interactions, circumstances or adverse effects. You should seek prompt medical care for any health issues and consult your doctor before using alternative medicine or making a change to your regimen.

Continue Reading