Does Forskolin Aid in Weight Loss

With the number of obese people in the world nearly tripled since 1975, there is an upsurge in the supplements aiding weight loss. One of the many supplements is Forskolin which is claimed to increase metabolism and burn fat, not muscle. So let us examine the Forskolin aid in Weight Loss.

What is Its Origin?


Forskolin is an extract from the Indian Coleus plant, which belongs to the mint family. It has been used in the traditional medicinal systems to treat digestive disorders like stomach ache, gastric and intestinal spasm; skin problems like burns, wounds, allergies; infections like syphilis and ringworm; heart, blood and circulation conditions.

How does it work?

Forskolin increases the production of cyclic AMP(cAMP), a second messenger used for intracellular transduction. cAMP causes an increase in hormone-sensitive lipase which burns fat. It also seems to stimulate the thyroid hormone which aids in burning fat.

Picture: How Forskolin works
How Forskolin works


There have been two studies conducted on the effects of forskolin on humans. The first study, published in the journal Obesity Research in 2005, was a randomised placebo-controlled double-blind trial of Forskolin. Each group consisted of 15 obese or overweight men and the study was conducted over a period of 12 weeks. The results indicated that forskolin led to a significant decrease in body fat percentage and fat mass. There was also an increase in testosterone levels.

The second study, conducted on 23 mildly overweight women, was also a double-blind trial. The results, however, showed that forskolin did not promote weight loss but helped mitigate weight gain.

Both the studies were conducted on healthy people and there is no research available on the effects of forskolin on people with medical conditions. Further, the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database lists forskolin as “possibly safe”.Therefore, there is no conclusive evidence of forskolin on weight loss and it’s safety for human consumption.

Does Forskolin Aid in Weight Loss?

Though forskolin has been used to treat various medical conditions, the effectiveness of this supplement has not yet been firmly established by the scientific community. It is advised to use Forskolin after proper verification by scientific methods.Instead people should stick to the old, yet relevant methods of proper diet and exercise to reduce weight.



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