Losing weight has become a common ordeal many people have to deal with. As a way of helping people achieve this goal in a shorter time, many weight lose supplements have been brought on board. This include forskolin and many others.

Many people plan and even start on weight loss strategies, such as regular exercise and healthy eating. Unfortunately, most of them give up and quit because they are not seeing the results. In this world of fast-pacing lifestyle, many people want quick results, and that applies to weight loss. That’s why there are many dietary supplements and herbal medicines to help people lose weight faster. Forskolin being one of them, is a natural plant compound and has been marketed as one of the best weight loss supplements. This article is a review of forskolin. Read on to learn more about it.

What Is Forskolin?

Forskolin is a compound and plant supplement obtained from the root of Indian coleus. Also known as Coleus forskohlii, the Indian coleus, is a member of the mint family that grows largely in Nepal, Thailand, and partly in India. The coleus plant has been used for a long time in the Ayurvedic medicine – the Indian oldest method of treatment emphasizing on the prevention of diseases. In ancient times and traditional medicine, forskolin and the coleus plant were used to improve overall health and physical wellness. Forskolin was also used to treat respiratory problems, like asthma and breathing disorders. During those days, the local people obtained the root of coleus plant and boiled it into tea that they drunk to promote wellness. While it has reigned in the Ayurveda, forskolin is marketed today as a weight loss supplement. It was popularized by the Dr. Oz Show where it featured for the first time on-air.

Mode of Action of Action of Forskolin on Weight Loss

Makers of forskolin say that it is just the best weight loss supplement you need to use. Researchers have dug deeper to look at its effects on fat metabolism. It is claimed that forskolin promotes weight loss by stimulating your body to release lipase and adenylate cyclase, which are enzymes that move fats out of fat cells. In other words, they release stored fatty acids from the body’s cells. When the fatty acids have been released and they are free in the tissues, they can be easily metabolized or burned into energy.

When the fatty acids are burned by your body, it helps reduce the total amount of fat without affecting the lean muscles mass. Unfortunately, this claim is not in line with the fact that for fats to be burnt effectively, a calorie deficit program must be implemented. In other words, the number of calories burnt must be more than that consumed through foods and drinks. If this won’t happen, it will be hard to lose weight. So, even if it is true that that forskolin can increase the rate at which your body burns fat, it is not convincing without a calorie deficit diet and regular exercise. In fact, most weight loss supplements work with a calorie deficit diet by suppressing appetite, reducing the rate and efficiency of digestion, and increasing the rate of metabolism. Unfortunately, this is not the case with forskolin as it does none of the above.

Study results on forskolin supporting weight loss are conflicting and mixed. One study conducted on overweight and obese men indicated that forskolin supplement lowered their body fat percentage, however, the impact on total body weight was little. The supplement also stimulated the body to release more testosterone. Concentrated levels of testosterone in the blood have been associated with reduced total body weight and sustained weight loss. Another study yielded a conflicting result. Overweight women were given 250 mg of forskolin twice per day for 90 days. The study indicated that forskolin didn’t help them lose weight. However, it thwarted additional weight gain while on the supplement. Therefore, celebrating forskolin as an effective solution to weight loss is just too early. In as much as studies indicate that forskolin may thwart weight gain and increase the levels of testosterone in men, it is not a perfect remedy to weight loss as it has been claimed by supplement distributors and television shows.

Other Potential Uses of Forskolin

The Indian Coleus plant has been part of the traditional Ayurvedic medicine, where it was used to treat digestive issues like constipation, heart disease, and respiratory problems like asthma and bronchitis. Likewise, forskolin supplements can help treat asthma by soothing and widening respiratory tissues, reducing the risk of osteoporosis by increasing bone mineral density, and maintaining lean muscle mass by increasing testosterone production. Animal and lab studies indicate that the supplement may also help treat glaucoma, certain types of cancer, reducing blood pressure, and managing congestive heart failure.

Dosage of Forskolin Supplement

Taking too much of anything may be harmful, and taking below the recommended dose may be ineffective. It is thus important to take the right dose of this supplement to optimize its function. The makers of forskolin supplement recommend that you need to take 100-250 mg Coleus forskohlii (10% forskolin) two times a day.

Side Effects and Benefits

Those using weight loss supplements are well aware of the warnings associated with side effects. However, that is not the case with forskolin supplement. The supplement itself has been consistently shown to be safe and there is no recorded side effect. While most weight loss supplements interact with cardiovascular system elevating blood pressure, forskolin’s metabolism in the body seems not to interact with the cardiovascular system. However, it will still help to be cautious enough, especially when you are using medications that thin the blood or reduce blood pressure. This is because manufacturers of weight loss supplements may hide harmful ingredients used in the supplement. Those with kidney disease or hypotension may also need to proceed with precaution.


Forskolin is a weight loss supplement obtained from the roots of the Indian coleus plant. It was used in the traditional Ayurveda to cure asthma and constipation. Studies indicate that it stimulates the body to burn fat and boost testosterone levels. While this may help maintain lean muscle mass, no study has shown that forskolin can help with weight loss.

Ksenia Sobchak, BA (Hons) Fashion Communication: Fashion Journalism, Central Saint Martins

Ksenia Sobchak enjoys blogging on fashion, style, lifestyle, love and CBD areas. Prior to becoming a blogger, Ksenia worked for a renowned fashion brand. Ksenia is a contributing author to leading fashion, lifestyle and CBD magazines and blogs. You can bump into Ksenia at her favourite cafe in South Kensington where she has written most blogs. Ksenia is a staunch advocate of CBD and its benefits to people. Ksenia is also on the panel of CBD reviewers at CBD Life Mag and Chill Hempire. Her favourite form of CBD are CBD gummies and CBD tinctures. Ksenia is a regular contributor at leading fashion, lifestyle as well as CBD magazines and blogs.

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