As scientific research supporting the efficacy of Forskolin has continued to pile up over the past decade or so, there now exists a mountain of evidence that showcases the medicinal use of the coleus forskohlii plant derivative for a variety of different reasons.
In its essence, Forskolin is a compound that is derived from the root of a plant that comes from the same family tree as that of mint. The root has been used historically as part of various Ayurvedic medicines and is known to provide its users with a host of benefits due to its cAMP (cyclic AMP) effects which can result in desired effects such as:
- Enhancement of a person’s overall well-being.
- Improved heart health.
- Reduction in one’s blood pressure levels.
- Enhanced blood circulation.
- Faster and more efficient weight loss via the elimination of excess fat.
- Increase in an individual’s overall lean mass.
Recent medical studies have also suggested that Forskolin might be a natural alternative to standard pharmaceuticals that are routinely given to people suffering from asthma. In regards to the matter, individuals who were administered forskolin in place of steroid inhalers have shown reduced asthmatic episodes (that too with fewer overall side effects). This is all due to its ability to act as a natural controlling and regulating activator of an enzyme by the name of adenylate cyclase, which is associated with glycogen and lipid metabolism functions.
Because cAMP is closely related with ATP, or adenosine triphosphate, it has a direct connection with the following:
- reducing inflammation and blood pressure
- lung health
- helps platelet aggregation prevention
- activating cellular adenylate cyclase which stimulates fat burning weight loss hormones
Lastly, while forskolin is widely recognized as being a completely natural and safe supplement (i.e. when it is taken in controlled doses), there are people who have reported experiencing certain side effects from the use of this medicinal compound. Some common side effects that have been reported in medical literature in relation to forskolin include:
- Erratic heartbeat and circulatory function
- Sweating and general restlessness.
- A sudden decrease in blood pressure.
It is also recommended that forskolin be avoided completely by women who are either pregnant or breastfeeding young infants.
In an effort to review the best forskolin brands and pure coleus forskohlii extract supplements today, we researched the top 11 products to buy today.
The Top 10 Best Forskolin Supplements Available Today
Every company listed in our best forskolin supplements list was investigated thoroughly. Between checking for quality sourced ingredients, transparency supplement facts labeling, and third party testing of its formula, all of these forskolin brands met the criteria for supplying you with a pure coleus forskohlii product.
Let's jump right into reviewing the top 10 best forskolin supplement brands in 2023:
Wolfson Berg Forskolin 250
Many of our readers may already be aware of this product. This is because Wolfson Berg Forskolin is widely considered to be one of the best forskolin supplements on the market today. The product has been designed to aid users with a host of natural benefits such as:
- Enhanced metabolic activity
- Natural loss of excessive fat
- Fast results within short periods.
The active ingredient in Wolfson Berg’s above-mentioned product has been extracted from the root of a plant called Coleus Forskohlii. It contains a highly potent and concentrated serving (over 250mg) of forskolin per dose — which is known to be extremely and clinically useful for a wide array of medicinal purposes as per several different research studies.
BioSchwartz Forskolin Weight Loss
BioSchwartz is another popular brand that offers people with a highly effective treatment method for weight loss. The company’s forskolin supplement is encased in veggie caps and comes laden with a solid dose of 500 mg of the ingredient per serving.
The product is currently available in two bottle sizes — 60 and 120 capsules — with bulk purchases being available to users at substantially cheaper rates (thanks to the company’s discount pricing scheme).
Some key information related to the product:
- The active blend used in BioSchwart’s supplement has been extracted from the Coleus Forskohlii plant with a 20% standardized forskolin extract.
- The supplement has been tested by third-party labs and verified for its purity, potency and overall efficacy.
- It is completely natural and created in a facility that is GMP-approved.
- The product does not contain any fillers, additives, or harmful chemicals.
Zenvita Formulas Forskolin Ultra
Zenvita is a forskolin extract that is meant to serve a number of key purposes such as breaking down a person’s stored fat content, boosting an individual’s metabolism as well as enhancing the body’s natural thermogenesis process.
From a technical standpoint, Zenvita comes packed with Coleus Forskohlii root extract that is 40% standardized. Not only that, each capsule comes laden with a 300 mg dose of the aforementioned active ingredient. Additionally, the supplement does not contain any additives/ artificial agents and has been devised in a US-based facility (that is GMP-approved).
Vitamin Bounty Pure Forskolin
Another popular forskolin supplement that has gained quite a lot of popularity over the past year, is Vitamin Bounty’s Pure Forskolin. Each cap of the product comes replete with a 500 mg dose of the active agent, thereby allowing users to extract maximum benefits in the shortest period.
Some of the core benefits of the supplement include:
- The formula helps suppress an individual’s appetite.
- It helps in boosting a person’s serotonin levels
- It allows users to lose excessive fat content from the problem areas of their bodies.
Lastly, it bears mentioning that Vitamin Bounty’s forskolin extract is 20% standardized and has been lab-tested for its overall efficacy, quality, and purity. Not only that, the product is made entirely in the United States.
DACHA LivePure Max Strength Forskolin
DACHA’s forskolin formula is quite intense, with the company packing a 500mg dose of the compound in each capsule. As per the product bottle, the supplement seeks to assist individuals with a variety of health-related issues such as:
- Weight loss
- Metabolic functionality
- Appetite suppression
- Enhanced overall strength
Additionally, it should also be pointed out that the Coleus Forskohlii content in DACHA’s supplement is sourced entirely from India. The packaging and production, however, is done in a USA-based medical facility. Lastly, DACHA claims that their product contains no additives and is comprised only of natural ingredients.
Nature’s Branch Premium Forskolin
Nature’s Branch is a popular brand that released its Forskolin supplement just last year. The product contains a blend of forskolin and certain other active ingredients that have been scientifically shown to provide users with a host of health benefits.
Some key facts about the product:
- Each capsule of the supplement contains 300mg of forskolin that is 40% standardized.
- The formula works equally well for men as well as women and created using all-natural ingredients.
- Each bottle contains 60 capsules. Users are required to take 1 cap per day.
- The supplement does not contain of any artificial fillers or chemicals.
- The supplement is made in the USA and tested by a third-party lab to ensure its quality/potency.
Huntington Labs Forskolin
Huntington Labs’ latest supplement is an all-new remedy that seeks to help people with things like weight loss, poor metabolism, erratic blood pressure. Additionally, the product is completely natural and comes encased in a veg capsule that contains no additives or artificial fillers.
In regards to the compositional formula used by Huntington Labs, each pill contains a sizable 250 mg dose of Forskolin that is 20% standardized. Lastly, all of the production and packaging is made in a USA-based GMP-approved facility.
Evolved Advantage Forskolin
Evolved Advantage’s forskolin supplement may come packaged in a bottle that is quite plain-looking and bland, however, the pills do come replete with everything a person may be looking for from such a product. For starters, each cap contains a 250 mg dose of concentrated forskolin that is 20% standardized. While a single pill a day should be more than enough for newbies, experienced users can take up to two caps a day.
Arazo Nutrition Forskolin
Arazo is a potent forskolin formula that is quite effective and efficacious in its overall utility. Each capsule contains forskolin that is 20% standardized and comes packed in a veggie capsule. Other key details worth pointing out:
- The supplement’s active agent was made in a GMP approved facility.
- All Azaro Nutrition products have been verified and tested by a third-party auditor.
Krazitron Premium Forskolin
Krazitron’s forskolin blend contains a heavy 500 mg dose of the active ingredient — thus, new users can cut the cap into two to be on the safe side. Additionally, it bears mentioning that the product’s core formula is comprised of natural Coleus Forskohlii that contains 20% standardized Forskolin. Other details worth noting:
- The forskolin contained in the supplement has been formulated in the United States (in a GMP certified lab).
- The veggie caps that are used to seal the active ingredients in the product do not contain any silicon dioxide.
How to Choose the Best Supplement for Yourself
When choosing a forskolin supplement, the first thing to consider is the dose being taken. In this regard, it is recommended that an adult user starts by taking between 250-300 mg caps per day and then assess their body’s reaction to the forskolin. Alternatively, individuals who feel that they might require a higher dose can choose to take two pills.
It is also important to remember that some forskolin supplements (such as the ones released by California Products and aSquared Nutrition) contain silicon dioxide, a chemical agent that is not healthy for humans for long-term supplementation. Thus, it is best to consider staying away from such products.
While most forskolin-based supplements contain a certain amount of the Coleus Forskohlii, the product in question must possess a minimum of 20% standardized forskolin. Lastly, users should also ensure that the supplement they are looking to purchase has been tested by a third-party lab for purity.
What Benefits Does Forskolin Offer?
There are more than a handful of studies regarding forskolin supplementation. We reviewed the research and broke them down all into easy to understand concepts and bullet point benefits. For those looking to analyze the medical literature of all the scientific studies on forskolin use, here are seven studies worthy of a second look:
Study 1: Obese Men's Hormonal Adaptations and Body Composition
Study 2: Coleus Forskohlii Supplement Effects in Overweight Women
Study 3: Forskolin's interaction with cAMP as well as free fatty acid levels
Study 4: Topical forskolin tanning lotion for skin protection and defense
Study 5: forskolin's clinical efficacy for helping hypertension
Study 6: Chronic Forskolin use for oxidative stress and glycemia
Study 7: The effects on blood glucose levels for diabetics and insulin releasing activity
Now, let's break down all of the known health benefits of forskolin extract.
As most of our readers are probably already aware of, forskolin is most commonly used for weight loss and fat elimination purposes. On the subject, it bears mentioning that the compound has been used for centuries in Ayurveda (and other eastern forms of medicine) for its weight loss properties.
From a technical standpoint, a study conducted recently showed that 30 obese men who were administered 250 mg of forskolin (twice a day) for 90 days showed a significant increase in weight loss when compared to those individuals who had not been given the supplement.
Recent studies have shown that regular intake of forskolin can help in the release of testosterone, a male hormone that is useful in regulating the fat composition of an individual.
Forskolin is known to help increase the lean body mass content of an individual without any apparent side effects. To elaborate on the matter, we can see that in a study where a group of men were prescribed a 250 mg dose of forskolin for 12 weeks showed an increase in their lean muscle levels. With that being said, it should be pointed out that for optimal results, the intake of forskolin-based supplements should be complemented by a regular exercise regime as well as a healthy diet.
Weight Gain Prevention
As per a recent research study, regular intake of forskolin can help men and women avoid putting on excessive weight. In this regard, clinical trials have shown that women who were administered 250 mg of forskolin twice a day for 12 weeks displayed significantly reduced levels of weight increase when compared to women who did not take the supplement.
Blood Pressure Control
Regular use of forskolin helps in regulating an individual's blood pressure levels. On this subject, it bears pointing out that many ancient herbal treatment methods have made use of the compound to improve a person's heart health. Not only that, a study published by the NCBI showed that out of a group of patients who were given forskolin supplements for a certain period, more than 75% of the individuals showed signs of reduced blood pressure. However, the participants of the study were all people above the age of 60, so the exact effects of forskolin on the younger aged people is still not clear.
Lastly, it is not recommended that forskolin be used as a first-line treatment method for high blood pressure. Additionally, the supplement should not be used to replace standard medication (such as beta-blockers) unless ordered by a physician.
Blood Sugar Maintenance
Diabetic patients may benefit from forskolin since the compound is known to help regulate an individual’s blood sugar levels. On the subject, our readers need to remember that people who suffer from elevated blood sugar for extended periods may end up suffering from organ/nerve damage.
As per a recent study, rats that were given a regular dose of forskolin showed lower fasting blood sugar levels. Not only that, but they also exhibited a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. With that being said, there needs to be more research done to understand the role that forskolin plays concerning humans suffering from diabetes.
Asthma Attack Prevention
Daily intake of forskolin supplements can help reduce the chances of a person suffering from asthma attacks. For those of our readers who may not be aware of what asthma is, it is a condition that causes an individual’s lungs to become inflamed, thereby leading the person to suffer from severe breathing difficulties. The problem is usually treated through the use of steroid inhalers.
Research studies that have been carried out in relation to the matter have indicated that forskolin may help in alleviating the symptoms that are commonly associated with asthma.
A recent study has shown that Forskolin can assist in the reduction of various symptoms related to glaucoma. In its most basic sense, Glaucoma is a medical condition wherein pressure builds up behind a person’s eye — thereby increasing the chance of their optic nerve being damaged permanently. In this regard, forskolin may be an effective treatment method to help reduce some of this excessive pressure. The supplement can be taken orally or as eye drops and has significantly fewer side effects when compared to many first-line treatment methods (such as blockers and prostaglandin).
Treatment of Cardiomyopathy
A study has demonstrated that Forskolin can help in the alleviation of symptoms related to cardiomyopathy. Cardiomyopathy is a medical issue wherein the patient’s heart muscles become inflamed, thin or stiff — thereby increasing the individual’s chances of suffering from cardiac failure. The condition, if left unattended, can result in a person suffering from permanent internal damage.
With that being said, forskolin should never be combined with conventional heart medication (such as calcium channel blockers) since it can result in a drastic lowering of one’s blood pressure levels.
A regular intake of forskolin can help reduce the chances of brain inflammation as well as other neurological issues such as Alzheimer's disease. In this regard, a couple of studies have shown that forskolin has the potential to help reduce inflammation in patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. This can not only help alleviate some of the physical symptoms of the degenerative disease but also may make it easier for patients to lead a normal life.
Forskolin has been touted by a few medical studies to possess certain anti-tumor properties. Technically speaking, the compound helps stimulate the metabolic activity of protein phosphatase 2 — a substance that is known to help prevent the spreading of certain types of cancer cells.
A study has shown that forskolin may slow down the growth of rectal cancer by staving off certain cell formations that are commonly found in issues related to multiple myeloma.
An unusual benefit of forskolin is its potential to give people a more tanned appearance. This is because the compound is known to help in the possible production of melanin — a molecule that is responsible for the creation of dark skin pigments.
With that being said, it is still not clear if forskolin can cause skin damage when taken for extended periods of time.
Possible Side Effects of Forskolin
A couple of studies have mentioned that excessive intake of forskolin may cause users to develop an irregular heartbeat. Thus, in case a person notices any change in their cardiovascular functionality after they start taking the supplement, they should either discontinue using the product or contact their GP.
As mentioned earlier, forskolin is known to interfere with several medications that are commonly used by people for things like high/low blood pressure, neurological conditions, glaucoma, etc.
Blood Pressure Drop
Forskolin has been shown to decrease a person’s blood pressure quite drastically within hours of ingestion. Thus, for people suffering from low BP, it is best to avoid this supplement altogether.
Some common side effects that are commonly observed when a person uses forskolin supplements include throat irritation, coughing, itching.
A few people have reported certain eye-related issues (such as irritation, stinging and sensitivity) after using forskolin injections.
Expectant mothers or women who are actively breastfeeding their children should not make use of forskolin — since it is known to cause certain side effects in their bodies.
Increased Recovery Times
Doctors recommend that people who may be having surgery or individuals who are recovering (post-op) should not make use of forskolin since it could affect their blood pressure levels adversely.
A number of studies carried out on lab rats (and other animals) have shown that the Coleus forskohlii extract has the ability to increase the level of different harmful proteins in their livers — which may or may not cause damage to one’s body in the long run.
No Long-Term Study Data Available
As things stand, there is not a lot of substantial medical data available to establish the long-term safety of forskolin. Thus, for individuals planning to use the compound for extended periods, it is best to start with smaller doses, and as always before taking any supplement, make sure to consult with your own healthcare physician beforehand.
What is the Safest Dosage Amount for Forskolin?
As is already clear by now, forskolin can be used for a wide array of medical reasons. Thus, the recommended dose usually depends on why the supplement is being taken. Additionally, the concentration of forskolin varies from product to product, thus it is best to check the purity of ingredients before buying a particular brand.
Concerning weight loss, forskolin pills of around 500 mg should be ingested. Similarly, when used for asthma-related purposes, the doses can be lowered substantially. However, all of this depends upon the prescription handed out by one’s doctor or personal physician.
Certain Facts to bear in Mind About Forskolin
(i) Side Effects: As outlined in an earlier section, regular intake of forskolin can result in various side effects including:
- Increased heart activity and pulse rate
- Reduced blood pressure levels
(ii) No Long Term Studies Available: Even though many people have been making use of forskolin for years now, there is very little medical evidence to suggest that the supplement is completely safe for long term use.
(iii) Ingestion Routes: While forskolin is generally taken orally by most users, the supplement is also routinely prescribed as an inhaler for those individuals suffering from asthma. Additionally, in certain cases that are related to glaucoma and cardiomyopathy, the supplement can also be injected into an individual’s circulatory system.
(iv) Medicine Compatibility: Forskolin is best taken separately — i.e. it should not be used in conjunction with other medicines such as Warfarin since it can interfere with the way it works.
(v) Maximum dosage: While most studies suggest that 50mg of forskolin per day can be ingested by an individual without any apparent side effects, it is also possible to take higher concentrations — depending upon the severity of a person's medical condition.
(vi) Weight Loss: As mentioned previously, there is little to no evidence to support that forskolin is useful for weight loss related purposes. However, studies have shown that the compound can help a person reduce their body’s excessive fat content in a totally natural manner.
(vii) Liver Damage: A small number of research studies have shown that forskolin may hold the potential to damage a person’s liver. However, these findings were related to lab animals and not humans.
(viii) Discomfort: Some people have reported experiencing a host of side effects such as hot flushes, erratic hearing functions, respiratory tract irritation, coughing, etc as a result of ingesting forskolin on a daily basis.
(ix) Negative Reactions: Individuals making use of blood thinners and other antiplatelet medicines should avoid using forskolin since the supplement is known to interfere with the working of these drugs.
(x) Time of intake: Forskolin is best taken early in the morning on an empty stomach or 30-45 minutes before a meal.
(xi) Nausea: Some people who have used forskolin in the past have reported experiencing nausea, headaches, lightheadedness as a result of ingesting the supplement.
(xii) Thyroid: Forskolin should be avoided by people taking thyroid medication since the compound is known to help stimulate the production of the thyroid hormone.
(xiii) HIV-related benefits: One study has shown that forskolin (when taken regularly) may help in reducing the activity of various proteins that are created by the HIV virus.
(xiv) Healing benefits: Forskolin is known to help speed up the process of wound healing.
(xv) Extraction process: Typically forskolin is extracted from the root of a plant called Coleus Forskohlii that is naturally found across various parts of SouthEast Asia (especially India, Nepal). The plant belongs to the mint family and has been used in traditional medicine preparations for thousands of years.
(xvi) Maximum Dosage: While it is possible to take extremely large doses of forskolin without experiencing any immediate medical repercussions, it is best not to exceed a daily maximum intake of 500 mg. Additionally, it bears mentioning that doses of 1000mg or more have been clinically shown to cause side effects such as diarrhea.
(xvii) Appetite: As far as animal studies go, forskolin has been shown to successfully decrease their appetite levels. This is because the compound is known to alter the levels of several key enzymes linked to the pancreas — which leads to a direct reduction in the volume of food consumed by the animal in question.
Frequently Asked Questions About Forskolin
Q: What is forskolin?
A: Forskolin is a chemical found in the root of the Coleus forskohlii plant. Forskolin extract has been used for centuries as an herbal remedy for various ailments. In recent years, forskolin has also become a popular diet pill ingredient.
Q: What are the dangers of taking forskolin?
A: Forskolin has been well-tolerated in most studies performed to date, and there’s limited evidence connecting forskolin to adverse side effects in healthy adults.
Q: Is forskolin good for weight loss?
A: Forskolin has gained hype in recent years as a weight loss supplement. One study showed that individuals increased lean mass by 30% after taking forskolin supplements. Other studies have connected forskolin to other weight loss benefits. Overall, however, there have been no large scale studies verifying the weight loss effects of forskolin in humans.
Q: What is forskolin used for?
A: Forskolin has traditionally been used as a natural remedy for asthma. It has also played a role in ancient Indian (Ayurvedic) medicine. Today, forskolin is commonly found in diet pills.
Q: Where does forskolin come from?
A: Forskolin comes from the root of a plant in the mint family (the Coleus forskohlii plant). That plant grows naturally in Nepal, India, and Thailand.
Q: What is the best forskolin for weight loss?
A: In one major study on forskolin and weight loss, 30 overweight and obese men took 250mg of Coleus forskolin extract (10% forskolin) twice a day for 12 weeks. The forskolin group lost significantly more fat than the placebo group, although total weight did not change. This is one of the few major studies investigating forskolin and weight loss in humans.
Q: Does Dr Oz endorse forskolin?
A: Forskolin skyrocketed in popularity after being featured on an episode of The Dr. Oz Show in January 2014. However, Dr. Oz does not officially endorse any specific forskolin supplements.
Q: Is forskolin an appetite suppressant?
A: There have been no major studies connecting forskolin to appetite suppression.
Q: Does forskolin cause diarrhea?
A: You can find colloquial reports online linking forskolin extract to diarrhea, although there’s no widespread scientific evidence supporting this effect. Diarrhea seems relatively common among individuals taking forskolin supplements for the first time, although normal bowel movements generally resume several days after first taking forskolin supplements.
Q: Is forskolin a stimulant?
A: No, forskolin is not a traditional stimulant. However, forskolin does seem to stimulate the release of stored fat from fat cells.
Q: How long does it take for forskolin to work?
A: Most studies on forskolin run from 4 to 12 weeks.
Q: What diet pills are the best?
A: Diet pills work best when they suppress appetite or increase fat burning. However, there’s no single “magic diet pill”, and people lose weight in different ways.
Q: What drugs interact with forskolin?
A: Forskolin is known to increase the effects of blood thinners (anticoagulant drugs), which is why you may not want to take forskolin prior to undergoing surgery. There’s some evidence that forskolin causes low blood pressure, which is why you may not want to take forskolin if you are already taking high blood pressure medication.
Q: Is forskolin bad for your liver?
A: It’s unclear if forskolin is bad for your liver, although some studies have indicated that forskolin is bad for your kidneys.
Q: Where to buy forskolin?
A: You can buy forskolin supplements online or in-store through supplement retailers, Amazon, etc.
Q: Does forskolin work?
A: Some small studies have connected forskolin to weight loss and other health benefits. However, large scale human studies on forskolin remain rare.
Q: How does forskolin raise levels of cyclic AMP (cAMP)?
A: Forskolin activates the enzyme adenylyl cyclase and increases intracellular levels of cAMP. cAMP is an important cell messenger. Biochemistry researchers commonly use forskolin to raise levels of cyclic AMP when researching cell physiology.
Q: Can I take forskolin while pregnant?
A: Clinical studies on forskolin have not connected forskolin to adverse effects in pregnant women. However, it’s still a good idea to consult your physician before taking forskolin or any other substance during pregnancy.
Q: What does standardization percentage mean? What’s a good standardization percentage?
A: Most forskolin product labels indicate the standardization percentage. A supplement might contain 300mg of Coleus forskohlii extract, for example, standardized to 40% forskolin. That means 40% of the formula (120mg) consists of the active ingredient, forskolin.
Q: Is forskolin guaranteed to make me lose weight?
A: There’s no significant clinical evidence connecting forskolin to weight loss, although some small studies have suggested that forskolin can positively impact body composition and increase lean muscle mass.
Q: Is forskolin vegan?
A: Forskolin is a plant-derived extract. When taken on its own, forskolin should be vegan and vegetarian friendly. However, some supplement manufacturers package forskolin into gelatin (pork-derived) capsules, so check the label to make sure.
Q: What’s the best dose of forskolin?
A: Most studies on forskolin have used a dose of 250mg to 500mg per day.
Final Word on Natural Forskolin Supplementation
Ever since Dr. Oz broke the news about forskolin being a weight loss catalyst on the Doctor Oz show back in 2013, the herbal extract has been hailed as a miracle fat burning substance. During his show on ‘rapid belly melt‘ where he introduced the term bellfie (a belly selfie), forskolin has been one of the most popular, best selling weight loss ingredients on the market. Since then, fast forward to 2023 and forskolin is still a wildly successful herbal extract ingredient that is found in hundreds of supplements all over the world.
With history on its side, carrying a host of beneficial effects as well as a ‘No Observed Adverse Effect Level (NOAEL) status, forskolin is one of the best choices to start supplementing with in 2023 and beyond. Just make sure you find a reputable company who ensures quality, potency and purity of its forskolin extract.