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Cissus Quadrangularis is a perennial plant that belongs to the grape family. It is believed to be native to either Sri Lanka or India but is also found within Arabia, Southeast Asia, and Africa. It has also been imported to the southern United States and Brazil.
What Exactly is Cissus Quadrangularis?
As mentioned, this plant is part of the grape family, sometimes referred to as Devil’s Backbone, Hadjod, or Veldt Grape. It reaches a height of 1.5 m and has long been used for its medicinal properties. Within Ayurvedic medicine, Cissus Quadrangularis has been used to heal injured tendons, bones, and ligaments.
Within Siddha medicine, it’s viewed as a natural pain killer and tonic, as well as a healer from broken bones. Today, it’s currently used by athletes as well, based on exercise-related joint pain. When studying rats, it appeared to be an effective painkiller.
Although few human studies have been conducted, one study focused on athletes and yielding positive effects. Those who took Cissus Quadrangularis experienced a reduction in joint pain by a third. This could be promising for athletes, as most joint health supplements do not report much athlete-based evidence, as most research is conducted on people with osteoarthritis.
Benefits of Cissus Quadrangularis
Cissus Quadrangularis is best known for its potential ability to heal broken bones faster than normal. When studying dogs, it was proven that Cissus Quadrangularis offered healing effects. One group of dogs were given Cissus Quadrangularis while the other were given a placebo. After 21 days, those who were given a placebo had not healed, yet those who ingested Cissus Quadrangularis had healed completely.
A similar study was conducted in rats, as those who were given Cissus Quadrangularis healed 50 percent faster. While studying these effects, researchers believe that Cissus Quadrangularis may help increase the uptake of calcium. This makes sense, as calcium is one of the key nutrients that’s required for optimal bone strength. There’s also evidence suggesting that Cissus Quadrangularis taken every day could reduce the risk of fracturing a bone by up to 40 percent.
There’s also some evidence supporting the notion that Cissus Quadrangularis may contribute to weight-loss.
When combined with an exercise and balanced diet plan, Cissus Quadrangularis could promote a reduction in weight and burn fat. Within one study, a group was given Cissus Quadrangularis, while another group was given a placebo.
Those who took Cissus Quadrangularis lost 187 percent more weight in comparison to the placebo group. Researchers believe that this supplement can help burn fat, reduce appetite, and increase lean muscle mass. Since lean muscle mass supports a higher metabolism, you can burn more calories, even at rest.
In another study, three groups were studied. The first was given a placebo, the second was given cissus quadrangularis and the third was given Cissus Quadrangularis while following a diet plan. After eight weeks, it was found that both groups taking Cissus Quadrangularis lost a significant amount of weight. They also were able to reduce their blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglycerides, while better balancing their blood sugar.
Speaking of blood sugar, cissus quadrangularis could help reduce the risk of diabetes, particularly type II. Over the past few years, the number of individuals with type II diabetes has skyrocketed. This has a lot to do with our current lifestyles and poor diet choices. Since cissus quadrangularis helps control one’s blood sugar, it can also reduce one’s risk of becoming pre-diabetic and then developing type II diabetes. Type II diabetes is highly correlated with obesity so cissus quadrangularis’s weight-loss effects would also be beneficial.
Cissus quadrangularis is also packed with vitamin C, making it a natural antioxidant. In turn, this helps fight inflammation, reducing swelling, pain, and other associated health complications. Many health experts in the field have compared cissus quadrangularis to the same pain-relieving effects as aspirin.
What are the Potential Side Effects?
Since cissus quadrangularis is an all-natural supplement, it’s considered to be highly safe and side effects are rare. Within clinical studies, most participants did not experience any adverse effects at all. For those who did report side effects, they were mild in nature and included flatulence, headaches, and nausea.
Do not take if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, as there’s not enough information and research to confirm whether this is safe or not. Like most supplements, it may interfere with certain medications. Please discuss proper dosing with your doctor before taking cissus quadrangularis.
If you’re diabetic, speak with your doctor before taking cissus quadrangularis. Since it naturally lowers blood sugar, taking cissus quadrangularis along with your regular diabetic medications could cause your blood sugar to dip too low.
How Much Should I Take?
The correct dosage will really depend on what you’re taking it for. If you’re taking cissus quadrangularis for fitness purposes or weight-loss, your doses should be within the 600 to 1000 mg range, twice daily.
Start with a lower dose and see how your body reacts, you can always increase your dosage over time. For this purpose, taking cissus quadrangularis 30 minutes before a meal will help you control your appetite and control the amount of sugar and fat your body stores.
In extreme cases, when individual tear tendons or fracture a bone, they typically take doses around 2000 mg. You can source capsules that offer 500 to 800 mg of extract per capsule, taking 2-3 times daily.