Hoodia, the spammers new craze
Lately my mailbox is flooded by spam about an African plant called Hoodia (Hoodia Gordonii). I’m sure you’ve had your share too.
It is marketed as a weight-loss medicine, and the buzz about it is huge. I decided to find out some facts about the spammers latest craze.
It turns out that this plant is protected by national conservation laws of South Africa and Namibia, as it is very rare. It’s a stem succulent of about 1 meter that grows in the Namib desert, from Namibia to southern Angola, according to information at Wikipedia.
Furthermore, Wikipedia states:
“Recently nutritional supplement companies have marketed Hoodia extracts claiming that it can lower blood pressure and reduce the appetite. However, only a single scientific study has been done and no broad double-blind scientific trials have been performed to investigate the safety of Hoodia as a nutritional supplement.”
Some information indicate that bushmen have used Hoodia as a way of not getting hungry when on long trips where they might not find a lot of food.
The molecule P57 is thought to be responsible for this ability. However, according to hoodiascam.com, it is not possible to isolate this molecule.
What’s even more interesting is that dried Hoodia has not been proven effectful as a diet medicine. Only the fresh Hoodia has this effect.
The pills that the spammers are advertising are based on dried, powdered hoodia. Therefor there is reason to believe they are as effectful to take as eating mints.
I’ll keep filtering those messages to the Trash can.