- Caralluma is a succulent plant (cactus) from India. In India it grows wild and is often used as a border in gardens and as a roadside shrub. It is also found in the wild in Africa, Saudi Arabia, Canary Islands, Afghanistan, and Southern Europe.
- Traditionally, Indian tribes chewed chunks of caralluma to keep from being hungry during a long hunt.
- These days, a solution that contains chemicals taken from the plant (extract) is used to decrease appetite for weight loss.
- It is also used to quench thirst and to increase endurance.
- In foods in India, caralluma is cooked as a vegetable and is used in preserves such as chutneys and pickles. It is also eaten raw.
- Chemicals contained in the caralluma plant are thought to decrease appetite.
- Caralluma seems to be safe for most people when 500 mg of the extract is taken twice daily for up to 60 days.
- The long-term safety is not known.
- Caralluma might cause some mild side effects such as stomach upset, intestinal gas, constipation, and stomach pain. These side effects usually go away after a week of use.
- Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of caralluma during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Source: WebMD, “Caralluma Fimbriata”, web article, www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements