Caralluma fimbriata is an edible cactus, used by tribal Indians to suppress hunger and enhance endurance. The effect of Caralluma extract was assessed in overweight individuals by a placebo controlled randomized trial. Fifty adult men and women (25-60 years) with a body mass index (BMI) greater than 25 kg/m2 were randomly assigned into a placebo or experimental group; the latter received 1 g of Caralluma extract per day for 60 days. All subjects were given standard advice regarding a weight reducing diet and physical activity. At the end of 30 and 60 days of intervention, blood glucose and lipids, anthropometric measurements, dietary intake and assessment of appetite was performed. Waist circumference and hunger levels over the observation period showed a significant decline in the experimental group when compared to the placebo group. While there was a trend towards a greater decrease in body weight, body mass index, hip circumference, body fat and energy intake between assessment time points in the experimental group, these were not significantly different between experimental and placebo groups. Caralluma extract appears to suppress appetite, and reduce waist circumference when compared to placebo over a 2 month period.