Garcinia Cambogia Side Effects

Garcinia Cambogia Side Effects

Garcinia Cambogia made its grand entrance into the weight loss supplement field after Dr. Oz showered it with accolades in late 2012. We initially sought reviews on the product in January 2013, and the response has been mixed. Here we take a closer look at some of the known and rumored side effects of garcinia cambogia.

Sponsored links

This article is a supplement to our first article on garcinia cambogia from January 2013. Be sure to also read our recap of the first year of Garcinia Cambogia in the spotlight with our article entitled Garcinia Cambogia Craze: Product Survives One Year of Scams, Complaints, and Bad Reviews.

The first list below contains some of the more commonly-known side effects of garcinia cambogia. These are the more serious – and likely – of the possible side effects.

Possible Side Effects

According to WebMD, possible side effects include:

  • Digestive tract discomfort
  • Headache
  • Nausea

Livestrong provides a more extensive list of possible side effects, which include:

  • Allergic reaction (skin rash, hives, chest tightness, wheezing, swelling)
  • Diarrhea
  • Lower Blood sugar levels
  • Headaches
  • Intestinal pain
  • Nausea
  • Testicular shrinkage (extremely high doses, according to one study)
  • Vomiting

Healthline points out that that garcinia is “well tolerated for up to 12 weeks in available human trials.”  It also lists possible side effects and warnings:

  • Lower blood sugar levels
  • Rhabdomyolysis, a
  • To be avoided by those with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and those with a history of sensitivity to garcinia.

A study published in the Journal of Medical Toxicology in April 2014 investigates the possibility of serotonin toxicity.

Sponsored Links

Additional (Anecdotal) Side Effects

The following list of side effects is based on anecdotal reports. There may be some overlap with the list above, and some of these side effects may decrease over time or with a smaller dosage:

  • Cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Gas
  • Increased hunger
  • Restlessness
  • Sleeplessness

Keep in mind that if you take more than the suggested dosage, the risk of unwanted effects will increase.

Bottom Line

You may or may not experience any of the side effects listed above if you take garcinia cambogia. If you have any pre-existing health conditions (especially diabetes), you should check with your doctor before using it. The most common negative comment we’ve heard about garcinia cambogia is simply that it “does nothing” at all.

Have you experienced any side effects not listed above? Let us hear from you in the comments below.

Please see our first post on garcinia cambogia which includes dozens of user comments.

  • Rosa Strydom

    I’m not saying the pills can’t have side affects, but all these comments can have many factors. One, you bought the wrong/fake pills. Unfortunately, with all the sudden heat around the product, there are scamming companies taking advantage. Make sure you’re not being scammed!
    Two, maybe you’re allergic? It’s really best that everyone contact their doctors before buying any pills.
    And three, when you say increased or non-decreased hunger…
    This happened to me, too, but now, in week three, my (unnecessary) cravings have gone. (AND I’M EVEN ON MY PERIOD! ?) Then again, I did start putting Apple Cider Vinegar in the water I use to drink the pills with since Sunday, because a lot of people have said they only get results then, but I know ACV couldn’t have done any of this on it’s own in regards to me losing weight and cravings, because I have tried it alone before.
    Maybe you should also try adding ACV? Just for a few days to check it out. Warning, though, the ACV makes me dizzy (the pill never did, by the way) until I finally eat the meal I drank the pill for, so keep that in mind. If pushing through or ACV doesn’t work either, though, I can only suggest looking at different Garcinia pills or just stepping away. Maybe it just doesn’t work for everyone?

    Anyways! I am not a doctor, but I thought I should give some input about my experience so far.

  • Rosa Strydom

    Maybe you’re buying the wrong Garcinia? A lot of scamming companies are robbing people blind with fake product. This happened to me.

  • Rosa Strydom

    Omg, same thing is happening to me, and I’m a huge glutton! I’m glad I’m not the only one and I’m not going crazy! ?

  • Rosa Strydom

    Same thing happened to me, but now I’m in week three and, suddenly, my hunger is almost completely gone. (I did start putting Apple Cider Vinegar in the water I drink the pill with this week, tho, so it could be the combination, because just taking ACV didn’t work for me before.) I had a serious and dangerous overeating habit – not unhealthy food, just too much – because I kept craving food 24/7, even when my stomach was bulging, so I thought this would be perfect. Thus, you could imagine the disapointment I felt. Now, though, I feel almost… normal. I only crave food when my stomach is actually empty, like I’m not hungry, but I just know I need food. It’s amazing. Maybe pushing through is all you need to do?

  • Inspire Me

    I am halfway into taking my 2nd bottle but no serious weightloss has happened. It does curb my appetite when taking with raw apple cider vinegar and honey but it doesn’t give me additional energy. For the record I am a 5’5 woman and weight 139 lbs trying to get back down to 118-120. I had gained weight due to CFS/ME (diagnosed). Garcinia cambogia makes me sweat though so maybe it is increasing thermogenesis to a small degree. It also caused minor headaches and hypoglycemia attacks, which I am prone to already. I am taking the 95% HCA pure garcinia cambogia capsules. 2 in the morning and sometimes 2 in late afternoon but no more than 4 per day as recommended. I will finish my 3 bottles and will not likely repurchase again.

  • Beth Diamante Suchisa

    I took these GC and man they are the worst! Always gave me hunger pains and lowered my energy so much! I had to constantly eat and eat. I took this only for 3 days I thought I’ll just give it some time but man! This can’t go on, I am always distracted by hunger.

  • Brithney Greene

    I took this for the past three days just one pill before eating twice a day and I have had the worse stomach pain and nausea I almost went to the ER cause the pains felt like I had ulsurs or something was gonna bust I won’t be taking this anymore and yes it was the pills because I hadn’t had any pains in my stomach till the first day I took them

    • Laurie

      This was my exact reaction after taking them! I truly thought I was going to die!!!! I am skeptical of the celebrity claims!!!

  • Suzanne

    I just ordered a trial of this product from an ad I saw on the Internet. I am usually so careful about supplements, why I wasn’t with this is beyond me. I tookthe two capsules as directed with a lot of water. For the first twelve hours I was very full feeling, by the time I went to bed I was having severe abdominal cramping. It has now been 48 hours since the initial dose and I am still doubled over in pain. I have not taken anymore, and will not be. I am very worried, as I don’t have health insurance. Could it be that this product will end up in a huge class action law suit? Please do not take this supplement without being under the care of a doctor. I am severly regreting trying Cambogia Garcinia.

  • Michele

    I’m on day 4 and I love how my appetite is curbed but my head pounds, I’m dizzy and nauseous all the time especially when sitting, and when walking I probably look drunk so I’m not sure if I should continue and hope it’s just my body adjusting??

  • Lisa Danielle

    Constantly now for 3 days. It’s progressed for the past week.

  • Lisa Danielle

    Horrible heart burn that lasts all day and night, lower back pain, stomach cramps, and a constant feeling that I have over eaten to the point of food coming up into my throat (even when only eating one small meal a day). I can’t eat because of the discomfort from the heartburn. I’ve never had heartburn except for during my 3rd trimester of pregnancy. This is ridiculous!

  • jamee buttholes

    I literally took this for like 3 days and couldn’t get past the nausea and feeling horrible and weak, it’s been four months and I still am vomitting every single day. Still am weak, still doing bad. I DO NOT recommend this at all. It seems to have quite the permanent side effects.

    • Sandy

      I’ve taken this product for 1 week now and I’m tired and sleepy all the time. It’s hard to get out of bed and get my day started along with feeling emotional. This is the 3rd day without it and I’m finally getting some energy back.

  • Rachel

    Extreme fatigue

  • Elle Te

    Exactly the same effects! Anxiety was the word I was looking for on my review. I don’t have any emotional lows usually.
    I am fine – I just had to make sure I took both in a day as it seems to react badly with only one dose. Like it imbalances the process.
    I do forget completely to take them and there’s no emotional effect. The effect of lack of hunger lasts for days after, even without dosing.

  • Elle Te


  • Elle Te

    I’ve lost weight over one month, have incredible energy, relentlessly focused, can’t sleep sometimes, experience nausea if I haven’t had enough liquid to dilute it & have just now rejected it and thrown up when taken with lemon & honey tea.

  • John Baker

    Side effects or not, there’s so such thing as a weight loss pill. Testimonials not withstanding, none of them have been proven to work as claimed.

  • Zaki De Luca

    Hello Fay can I contact you? About Garcina pills
    [email protected]

  • BottomFlower

    I lost weight but I’m getting severe burning leg and foot cramps. Feels like hot lava. Scary. I’m throwing them in the trash. This was my 2nd bottle and I took a break in between and I only got the cramps while taking these pills. My belly has gone down a lot and I’m sad I am going to have to quit taking these. Not worth the pain. (I exercise 3x a week and I took the pills as directed, no more than 2 per day)

  • John Hamilton

    Just started yesterday – no obvious side effects so far other than a large bowel movement! As someone else said, part of this is mental, try not to worry too much about every little twinge you have. It’s quite normal to feel a bit queezy after taking many medications – you must follow instructions properly as well. When you take tablets, make sure you drink plenty of water with them, and don’t leave it too long to eat either. I HAVE to take many medications every day which cause many of the side effects people mention and more. You just need to stick with it and not let negativity get to you. Of course if you have any serious reactions after taking one – and I don’t men feeling a bit queezy or sick – then stop taking them and get help. I also suspect that many of us will not be getting the genuine article, so be careful to get from reputable sellers.

  • Leesa

    I have had such bad edema for 2 weeks with no idea the cause. Last night ankles tripled in size I couldn’t get my shoe on to work n the pain awful. The hospital told me n that I have an infection and the retention was for so long it started to seep leading to sepsis and cellulitis. I can’t think of any changes besides starting to take GC but any Web page mentioning it cannot be found. I have hep c so this is kinda a big deal. Does anyone know about causing retention?

  • Mary

    I started taking gc about 2 weeks ago, at this point, I have not noticed any weight loss. I have noticed a slight increase in bowl movement, in a good way (not diarrhea). But the most bizarre side effect, is that instead of giving me energy, it makes me very sleepy within an hour of taking it! So I’ve decided since I’ve paid for them, I’ll just take them at night as a sleep aid, which is great for me since I sometimes have difficulty falling asleep! (With any luck, I’ll lose weight while I sleep, though I’m not expecting it.)

  • Rene Griesel

    I must say that I am also experiencing the same symptoms of the severe kidney pain and the pain shooting through my left leg. I lost 2kg the first week but nothing ever since. I paid R550.00 for this and it’s sad to throw it away. I am also using the liver detox.

  • Kristina

    I took garcinia cambogia for a while, but did not lose any weight. It has been over a month since I stopped and I still have rumbling, gassy guts, fluid excretion with flatulence and soft thin unnatural (for me) bowels. I used to use the toilet 1 – 2 times a day for movements. Now it is 5 – 8. I’m wondering if this will ever pass.

  • keyna

    Doesnt sound like a side effect. It sounds like you had the flu.

    • John Baker

      For over 10 days?

  • Kelly

    I started the Garcinia cambogia Patch 6 days ago. I have been in pain thinking I had a kidney stone or a sciatic nerve issue or a pulled muscle . My kidneys hurt and than it turned into massive leg pain. The pain throbbed threw my left leg. I just took off the patch . Waste of money. This stuff is bad for you

  • Cesare

    Hi, yes I have used for few days and I ended in ambulance because I fainted on the train on my way back from the city. I stopped taking them, but after a week I thought that the cause could be something also and I had one more, result I was shopping and I fainted again. (Back in an ambulance)
    I though I was wrong about the GC and a month after I had one more, result I ended in emergence hospital because I fainted again.
    Could not believe how this tablets can be sold in the market when people are having to risk that much.
    They should be taken out from the market.

    • fa statet

      I have been experiencing the same symptoms. How long did it take for yours to go away? I feel so disappointed and discouraged with the dizziness. I feel like I’m going to faint multiple times a day.

  • dee1980

    Before these pills I was a very active person. Ran everyday. Watched what I ate. I only took these pills 1x a day for a week. So far all I do is eat. To a point where I cant stop. My body feels gross. Im so completely exausted to a point where my eyes are closing by themselves. Yesterday. I went to breakfast. Got home and I felt like someone was drilling holes into both sides of my stomach. I swear I could have rolled over and died. Im so tossing these. Worst mistake of my life.

    • Kisha

      I have been taking this product for 2 weekes and all I do is he also really a waste of time

  • Wilkinsons

    I’ve been taking Garcinia Max 3500g now for 4 days (today will be my 5th day), recommended dosage is 3 per day. I’ve had no side-effects. I have insomnia and had restless nights every night but have been sleeping very well since taking these capsule although I have changed my diet and now have a fitness regime. I never exercised and I ‘was’ a stress eater. The same day I started taking these capsules I purchased a Fitbit Flex, which I keep on my wrist 24/7, which tracks my sleeping habits, my calorie intake, my steps, my water intake and much more. In the last 4 days I have lost 2kgs while eating healthy, I feel great and have more energy

  • Maggie

    I’ve been taking GC for about 3 weeks and started getting the bumps and itching right away on my back. It did not occur to me what was causing it. I’ve been very emotional, as well.

  • Jane Jensen Mazurs

    I started taking the suggested dose of the capsules for one bottle and saw no weight loss. I then took 2 capsules 2 times a day and developed a rash/redness in the urinary area, but I then lost weight 5 lbs in a week. Although i haven’t been drinking enough water. I’m going to try drinking more water and go back to the recommended directions, to see if the rash improves. I think my urine is concentrated with the fruit acid and causing my urinary area discomfort.

  • Fay Council

    Please be careful, don’t allow it to do to you, what it done to me.

  • Fay Council

    I took the GC to lose weight for a church event. After taking them for a few days, I noticed I started itching on my back and my husband noticed these bumps everywhere on my back, i was having really bad sweats, real bad cramps and I also started having heart palpitations. I even noticed that my mobility in my body had decreased to the point to where I began to crawl up the stairs. Of course by now, I had stopped taking the pills. This was in March, 2013. In July,2013 I went to ER because of the bumps and found out that I had had a heart attack. I ended up having a double by pass. I am a 50 yr old and had no prior health problems. Please beware.

  • Lindsay

    Don’t worry, it will go away. I have similar problems, and I can see after 2 days that these pills are no good for me! Don’t psyche yourself out though, you’ll get better!

  • Cfender

    I took one of these capsules on a Monday, I started having light cramps which rapidly increased to excruciating pain, nausea, sweating and diarrhea. I have only taken the one pill and I’m on day 4 of not being able to eat anything. Ofcorse I have lost 4 lbs in 4 days but this is not healthy. Going to have my liver enzymes checked. Please don’t take this product!

    • Fay Council

      How are you feeling now?

      • Zaki De Luca

        These pills have been the most dangerous I took after 1 week I’m sick dizziness you head high blood pressure I went to the emergency room heart problems did not buy are very danger for your heathy And now even after 2 weeks without taking any, I am still having severe headaches and nausea, still feel weak and horrible everyday. Dianne I feel lake you please contact me

        [email protected]

    • Julie Brashears

      I took almost a whole bottle 2 a day for about a month. I woke up at 2 am one morning and was sick for
      10 straight days, in bed or on the toilet with a bucket. All day and night. Thought I was going to die.
      Went to the hospital. They treated me for food poisoning. But i think it was this. Nobody else got sick. This was the only thing I could think of that made me so I’ll.
      The discharge was Neon yellow flem no food or anything. I lost 15 pounds in 10 days. I also have Lupus.
      Its only been a few days now that i feel better. Still get nauseated cramps and slite headache.
      I will not try them again!

  • Lesley gascoyne

    I’ve been taking theses for 4 days now with the detox plus, I am so desperate just to loose a stone,
    My metabolism doesn’t work properly so no diet helps me to loose weight but I don’t gain it either.
    I have had chronic dioreah for 4 days I feel like my stomach has been ripped apart I eat then 10 min later I have chronich stomach cramps and if we go has made me very sore and uncomfortable
    I eat healthy work 110 hours a week and I’m allways on my feet racing about
    Going to give it a week to see if it helps me

  • gillian

    Been taking Garcinia 50pc HCA for 4 days. Experienced headaches and severe constipation. Also makes me hungry yet I have previously not been having food cravings since I have been on a low carbon diet. After reading these comments I am throwing my bottle of garcinia into the Bin!

  • Autumn

    I’ve been taking the Garcina in the form of NOW brand Super Citrimax. I’ve been taking it for six weeks and I’ve lost 14 lbs so far. I have been taking two capsules an hour before each meal and it has literally stopped all my cravings. I was such a sugaraholic prior to trying the Garcina and now, no cravings for any kind of junk food at all. NONE! Plus, it controls my appetite like you would not believe. I have to remember to eat now. I am rarely ever hungry any more, which makes it’s real easy to make healthier choices when I do eat. I did experience some constipation after a few weeks but drinking extra water seems to have fixed that. I can hardly believe the results I’m seeing. I am 56 yrs old and have osteoarthritis in my knees and spine, so I’m not able to exercise daily. All I have been able to do is take this supplement and hope for the best so that I can lose enough weight to begin exercising again.

  • Sarah

    Thanks so much for all the input! I have been researching and trying to see which brand to buy and also whether or not these capsules had any side effects whatsoever but couldn’t find anything. There are a lot of mix reviews on here so my only question is what brands did you guys purchase? Cause there are lots of cheap and fake ones out there and which brand is the best?

  • Sabrina

    I started taking these just after new years (I thought they could be a resolution cheat). After about a week, I was feeling totally drained and dizzy all the time, but I was seeing some amazing results, so I just reduced the dose a little and kept taking them. About four days into the second week I was in the shower and fainted. Luckily, I didn’t injure myself, but I did stop taking them immediately. About a week after stopping with GC, I started to feel more energetic and normal again. Don’t take these; they’re a mess.

  • sonya fox

    I have had the same thing happen to me. Only after one day, feeling nausea and very dizzy when I woke up in the morning. I had to go back to bed. Will persevere with the product for another day….if still the same I will give it away. Shame because it is very expensive!!

  • Cam

    I just took my first garcinia cambogia pill today (about 10:15a) by 10:45a, I had a terrible stomach pains in the core of my abdomen. I then ran to the bathroom thinking that my breakfast may have caused the reaction (which by the way was one egg and one piece of wheat toast) but when I finished, i suddenly had to vomit. I have been in the bed, trying to recoup. I’ve never had a reaction like that with any diet pill I’ve ever used. I’m done with these pills.

  • Ana

    I started these 15 days ago. Using the GNC ones. The first week was ok, but after the second week, I began to feel nauseous. Yesterday I started to vomit, it has been really bad. It feels like there is something stuck in my throat and I have read that it can sometimes cause throat inflammation which is probably what I have.
    I stopped them immediately after the vomiting began. However a day later, I am still vomiting every couple of hours. Have no appetite at all & I feel listless, have no energy whatsoever, feel depressed and am afraid that I may have damaged my liver.
    Please do not take these pills.

  • Leslie

    I been taking GC for a week i have been going through it I have heart palpitations,anxiety ,caugh,stomach cramps and headaches I’ve been of the pill for 2days and still exsperiencing side affects hope it go away soon

    • Fay Council

      You may want to check those heart palpitations it. I had them too and I had a heart attack. Please check it out!!!!

  • Andi

    I’ve been on GC for 1.5 weeks. The last few days I have been experiencing a mild to moderate headache, tension in my neck, lack of energy, and for a few hours after I take a dose, I feel “cracked out”. I seem to be more irritable too. I am drinking plenty of water and getting adequate sleep. I thought I was experiencing eye strain, but I have taken all of the necessary precautions to avoid that. I’m stopping this drug today. I’m an RN, and know better than to stay on it with these symptoms.

  • Be

    I experienced no weight loss. Took this supplement for 3-4 months. Recently I’ve gained weight. I cannot lose it and now I’m hungry all the time. Not sure if stopping will make it worse. I think it hurt my metabolism some how.

    • Fay Council

      When I was admitted in the hospital, I had little to no metabolism. Get checked out..

  • Sofia

    I have been taking Garcinia Cambogia for over a week now almost 2 and I have not lost any weight. However, on the bottle it advises to use 2 pills 1 – 2 hours before meals for weight loss and 1 pill 1 – 2 hours before meals for satiety dosage. My interest was not to lose weight but surpress my appetite or control my cravings. I have noticed I am kind of “bloated” and yes gas-y. I am assuming this is normal as fruit can do this to me.

    Another thing I also noticed is that I only eat 1 core meal a day and for the remainder of my day I may eat a banana or a cheese strings (that’s all!). Anyone else experience the same?

    I would still recommend this product to many people; but first consult a professional about your health.


  • yahi

    I’ve been taking CG for two weeks. I have noticed a change on my belly and also the back of my legs. The bottle says 3000mg per day so I take 4 to 6 500mg daily. 1 before bedtime with no food. Now for side effect I’ve been getting slight headaches aside from my migraines. Ive been getting Migraines since I was a kid, so it might sound crazy but I tell that the CG is adding the extra. On my second week, at like around four in the morning, I started getting nausea it was bad but I figured it was because I wasnt drinking as much water. Its been three days and I still feeling the same just not as bad. I’m going to start taking the CG again, now that I let my body rest a little but this time I’m going to drink lot and lots of water… Lol

  • cherie

    I’ve been taking pure GC. 6 a day (the recommended dose) 200 mg. No head aches or discomfort. No rash. I did poop a lot but seemingly healthy poops. I feel I eat when stressed. So I’m not sure whether my increased hunger is circumstancial or not. I feel lighter and slimmer in just a week. I’ve lost a couple pounds. We’ll see. I believe it will work.


More in Health

Celebrating the weird and fake since 2008.

Copyright © 2008-2016, Inc. Theme by MVP Themes, powered by Wordpress.