The Properties of the South African Hoodia Cactus

by : Joan Masterson

The South African Hoodia Cactus is known by many different names in the Western world but the san Bushmen still call it by the name familiar to them, Xshoba or Xhooba. Besides using this Hoodia Gordonii for appetite and thirst suppressants the San Bushmen also used it to heal minor ailments and even infections. In the Western world the scientific label is Hoodia Gordonii. In reality the plant where Hoodia is derived from is actually a succulent but many people wrongly name this species of plants cactus rather than the correct name; succulent. This particular succulent or cactus-like plant only grows in the Kalahari Desert in Southern Africa.

The South African Hoodia cactus is a beautiful plant. The cactus flowers are a pale purple in appearance and appear only after the plant reaches full maturity. However, growing this particular cactus on a commercial basis is fraught with problems.

Temperature and desert dryness are conditions that are not easily imitated artificially and furthermore it can take many years for the plant to reach maturity as well before it can be used in any effective form. At present there are limited quantities of this wild plant and these are fiercely protected by the South African government from harvesting by unscrupulous companies. Naturally this makes real certified Hoodia very expensive. The original company that initially purchased the rights to Hoodia cactus namely Phytopharm, currently has commercial plantations growing in South Africa, but will not have any products from them for at least a few years yet to come.

This should not leave you under the false impression that there are no other types of Hoodia available already used in many other products. However; only Hoodia Gordonii from this region in South Africa is believed to contain the natural appetite suppressant that works for diet formulas on the market at present. There are many copies and counterfeit products which will not work although they are sworn to be the real product. This is the reason that some people imply that the real does not work; a statement that is entirely untrue.

The diet & wellness industry is an ever-growing market all over the world with obesity an increasing disease particularly in the modernized Western world. To cater for this, new products diet methods and formulas are continuously being researched and perfected. The hugely popular product that has caught everyone's attention is certainly Hoodia Gordonii which is being hailed as the current weight loss miracle.

Unfortunately 80 percent are inferior counterfeits and these are tarnishing the reputation of the real Hoodia Gordonii. When buying Hoodia, make sure that you are buying from an accredited dealer.