Hoodia is a rare plant that resembles a cactus and grows mainly in the areas around the Kalahari Desert in South Africa. Because hoodia is protected by conservation laws in Namibia and South Africa, a special permit is required before individuals can grow, harvest, or export the plant to any other country. Finding products that contain genuine hoodia can be a very hard task. Only the aerial stem of the hoodia plant actually contains the P57 compound, and this is the active ingredient that causes appetite suppression. If a product does not contain this compound then it will not be effective in weight loss. If you buy hoodia online, ensure that the company has the appropriate certificates guaranteeing the purity, and that the hoodia was cultivated legally. This will help to ensure that you buy higher quality products which work more affectively. As hoodia is such a rare plant that only grows in very specific climates, you will find that prices tend to by quite high. There have been efforts to cultivate hoodia in China, Mexico and the United States, but these efforts proved fruitless. You will also see that most products contain manufactured metabolic boosters which increase the rate of your metabolism. Genuine hoodia is a completely natural herbal product and has no known side effects. Consumers should be aware that some less reputable companies have actually faked their CITES certificates. Original certificates should not appear to be altered, and will not have any sections or words crossed out. You should always zoom in when checking certificates to read the dates and other fine print. The certificate should also be displayed in part of the website that is easy to find. A lot of Internet sites are just marketing pages; they give consumers little information about the product, and will usually make outlandish and exaggerated claims about being the best product on the market. These cheap products are unlikely to actually contain real hoodia. Remember that genuine hoodia gordonii is rare, and therefore genuine products will be a lot more expensive than the cheaper products containing fake hoodia. It’s important to bear in mind that there is no such thing as a miracle weight loss pill. If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is, so be vigilant. The most effective way to lose weight is to supplement any products with a healthy and balanced diet, as well as a regular exercise routine. Pure hoodia is great at repressing your appetite, but if you become totally dependent on these pills for weight loss, you are unlikely to achieve your weight loss goals. A great resource is the hoodiagordonii. This agency monitors and authenticates hoodia products in the global market. The site also features a hall of fame and hall of shame section, which lists the very best products, as well as those which you should avoid at all costs.