Objective: This study examined the effect of forskolin on body composition, testosterone, metabolic rate, and blood pressure in overweight and obese (BMI ≥ 26 kg/m2) men.
Research Methods and Procedure: Thirty subjects (forskolin, n = 15; placebo, n = 15) were studied in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study for 12 weeks.
Results: Forskolin was shown to elicit favorable changes in body composition by significantly decreasing body fat percentage (BF%) and fat mass (FM) as determined by DXA compared with the placebo group (p ≤ 0.05). Additionally, forskolin administration resulted in a change in bone mass for the 12-week trial compared with the placebo group (p ≤ 0.05). There was a trend toward a significant increase for lean body mass in the forskolin group compared with the placebo group (p = 0.097). Serum free testosterone levels were significantly increased in the forskolin group compared with the placebo group (p ≤ 0.05). The actual change in serum total testosterone concentration was not significantly different among groups, but it increased 16.77 ± 33.77% in the forskolin group compared with a decrease of 1.08 ± 18.35% in the placebo group.
Discussion: Oral ingestion of forskolin (250 mg of 10% forskolin extract twice a day) for a 12-week period was shown to favorably alter body composition while concurrently increasing bone mass and serum free testosterone levels in overweight and obese men. The results indicate that forskolin is a possible therapeutic agent for the management and treatment of obesity.