The modern world is an open source which provides us with a lot of comfort and leisure. Although these current advancements have made our lives easier, the sedentary lifestyle has made us prone to a lot of diseases, the most common being obesity. The most common causes of weight gain are lack of physical activities and unhealthy eating patterns. Obesity immensely increases the risk of developing many chronic diseases such as heart and respiratory diseases and diabetes, later in life.
It is easy to prevent obesity by adopting a certain lifestyle. According to the Ayurveda, weight loss is a slow process involving occasional fasting, a nutritious diet, and medicinal herbs like Guggul. Guggul or commiphora wighti is a small shrub native to the semi-arid parts of northern India. When it comes to weight loss, guggul is so sought after that it has now been classified as an endangered plant species.
Obtained from sap of the tree, the gum resin, guggul has been a very prominent part of the Ayurveda and has been in use from the last 2,000 years, helping with weight loss and diseases related to obesity like diabetes and hyperlipidemia.
Various studies throughout the world demonstrate how shuddha guggul helps in potential weight reduction. According to the reports, Guggul reduces the formation of new fat cells, effectively kills the old ones and helps breaking down the fat cells, thereby preventing them from accumulating. Also, its heating and post-digestive effects collectively eliminate fat and improve metabolism within adipose tissue. All these processes collectively lead to weight loss.
The resin extract of Guggul contains a plant steroid called guggulsterone. Guggulsterone contains certain lipid lowering properties, thereby enabling weight management. Guggul has traditionally been used to manage cholesterol levels and is backed by scientific reports. Guggulsterone does not facilitate the synthesis of cholesterol and helps in converting cholesterol into bile acid and excreting the excess through feces.
Stimulating the thyroid is another of guggul’s trait which helps in the reduction of body fat. Guggul is responsible for producing 2 thyroid hormones namely, T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine). These hormones are thermogenic in nature, i.e. producing heat and facilitate the burning of stored fat. Besides, they are also responsible for speeding up the process of protein synthesis and carbohydrate metabolism.
Apart from weight loss, guggul has other benefits as well. It rejuvenates and detoxifies the body, helps in purifying blood, reduces joint pain, and improves metabolism and immune system.