• Seven benefits of psyllium

    From 5@21:1/5 to All on Wed Jul 4 07:52:35 2018

    Seven benefits of psyllium
    Published Mon 31 Jul 2017 By Arlene Semeco, MS, RD

    Table of contents

    Psyllium is a type of fiber commonly used as a gentle, bulk-forming laxative.

    Being a soluble fiber, psyllium is able to pass through your digestive system without being completely broken down or absorbed.

    Instead, it absorbs water and becomes a viscous compound that benefits constipation, diarrhea, blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol and weight loss.

    This article tells you all you need to know about psyllium, including 7 ways it can benefit your health.

    What Is Psyllium?
    psyllium seeds
    Psyllium is a soluble fiber derived from the seeds of Plantago ovata, an herb mainly grown in India (1).

    It's used as a dietary supplement and is usually found in the form of husk, granules, capsules or powder. However, it can also be obtained through fortified breakfast cereals and baked goods (2).

    Psyllium husk is the main active ingredient in Metamucil, a fiber supplement often used to reduce constipation.

    Because of its excellent water solubility, psyllium can absorb water and become a thick, viscous compound that resists digestion in the small intestine.

    Its resistance to digestion allows it to help regulate high cholesterol, triglycerides and blood sugar levels. It can also aid weight management and relieve diarrhea and constipation (2, 3, 4).

    Moreover, unlike some other potent sources of fiber, psyllium is well tolerated (4).

    Psyllium can be found in various forms and has many health benefits.

    1. Psyllium Relieves Constipation
    Psyllium is used as a bulk-forming laxative. It works by increasing stool size and therefore helps relieve constipation (5, 6).

    Initially, it works by binding to partially digested food that's passing from the stomach into the small intestine.

    Treating Plaque Psoriasis
    Learn About a Treatment Option Now. See Before & After Pictures. Treating-Psoriasis.com/Pictures
    It then helps with the absorption of water, which increases the size and moisture of stools. The end product is bigger and more easily passable stools (3, 7, 8).

    One study found that psyllium had a greater effect than wheat bran on the moisture, total weight and texture of stools (9).

    Another study showed that taking 5.1 grams twice a day for two weeks significantly increased the water content and weight of stools, as well as the total number of bowel movements, in 170 individuals with chronic constipation (10).

    For these reasons, taking psyllium supplements promotes regularity.

    Bottom Line: Psyllium is known as a bulk-forming laxative that helps relieve constipation and promote regularity.

    2. It May Help Treat Diarrhea
    Psyllium has also been shown to relieve diarrhea (2, 11, 12, 13).

    It does this by acting as a water-absorbing agent, which can increase stool thickness and slow down its passage through the colon.

    One study showed psyllium husk significantly decreased diarrhea in 30 cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy (14).

    Another study treated eight people who had lactulose-induced diarrhea with 3.5 grams, three times daily. Doing so increased their stomach emptying time from 69 to 87 minutes, which meant fewer bowel movements (15).

    So psyllium can both prevent constipation and reduce diarrhea, effectively helping to normalize your bowel movements if you are having problems.

    Bottom Line: Psyllium can help treat diarrhea by increasing stool size and slowing its passage through the intestinal tract.

    3. It Can Lower Blood Sugar Levels
    Fiber supplementation has been shown to control glycemic response to a meal and reduce insulin and blood sugar levels. This is particularly the case with water-soluble fibers like psyllium (16, 17, 18, 19, 20).

    In fact, psyllium works better than other fibers like bran. This is because its gel-forming fibers can slow down the digestion of food, which helps regulate blood sugar levels (21, 22).

    One study treated 56 diabetic men with 5.1 grams of psyllium twice per day for eight weeks. It reduced their daily blood sugar levels by 11% (23).

    In another study in people with type 2 diabetes, a higher daily dose (five grams consumed three times per day) for six weeks resulted in a 29% reduction in blood sugar levels within the first two weeks (19).

    Because psyllium is able to slow down the digestion of food, it's recommended to take it with food, rather than on its own, so it has a greater effect on your blood sugar levels (22).

    It seems that a daily dose of at least 10.2 grams can promote lower blood sugar levels (23, 24, 25).

    Bottom Line: Psyllium is able to delay food digestion, which helps regulate blood sugar levels. A daily dose of 10.2 grams ingested with meals appears to significantly affect blood sugar levels.

    4. It May Boost Satiety and Aid Weight Loss
    Scales, a Fork, a Knife and a Measuring Tape

    Fibers like psyllium that form viscous compounds can help control appetite and aid weight loss (20, 26, 27, 28).

    One study had 12 healthy participants consume 10.8 grams of psyllium immediately before a meal.

    They experienced significantly delayed stomach emptying from the third hour after the meal and prolonged sensations of satiety six hours after the meal (29).

    Another study explored the effects of two, 20-gram doses in 17 healthy participants. One dose was consumed three hours before a meal, while the other dose was consumed immediately before a meal.

    The results indicated increased feelings of fullness one hour after the meal and reduced total fat intake during the day, compared to the placebo (30).

    However, studies investigating a direct relationship between psyllium and weight loss seem to show mixed results.

    One study found that 16 weeks of a calorie-restricted diet paired with three grams of psyllium either twice or three times daily resulted in an average weight loss of 9.9 pounds (4.52 kg) and 10.12 pounds (4.60 kg), respectively (31).

    Furthermore, another study showed that psyllium supplementation on its own, as well as paired with a fiber-rich diet, resulted in a significant reduction of weight, body mass index and percentage of body fat (32).

    In contrast, other studies did not report significant effects on body weight (19, 33).

    Bottom Line: Psyllium aids appetite control by slowing down stomach emptying and reducing appetite. Decreased appetite and calorie intake may support weight loss.

    5. It Can Also Lower Cholesterol Levels
    Psyllium is able to bind to fat and bile acids, which promotes their excretion from your body.

    In the process of replacing these lost bile acids, the liver uses cholesterol to produce more. As a result, blood cholesterol levels decrease (34).

    One study reported an increase in bile acid synthesis and lowered LDL ("bad") cholesterol in 20 individuals treated with 15 grams of psyllium daily for 40 days (34).

    In another study, 47 healthy participants experienced a 6% reduction in LDL cholesterol after taking 6 grams each day for six weeks (33).

    Furthermore, psyllium can help increase HDL ("good") cholesterol levels (18, 19).

    For instance, taking 5.1 grams twice a day for eight weeks resulted in a decrease in total and LDL cholesterol, as well as an increase in HDL levels in 49 patients with type 2 diabetes (18).

    Lastly, one study treated 125 type 2 diabetics with 5-gram doses of psyllium three times a day for six weeks. Participants experienced increases in HDL cholesterol up to 45.7% (19).

    Interestingly, a review of 21 studies reported that reductions in total and LDL cholesterol are dose dependent. This means greater results were observed with treatments of 20.4 grams of psyllium per day than 3 grams per day (35).

    Bottom Line: Psyllium can lower total cholesterol levels by promoting the removal of bile acids from the body. It has been shown to lower LDL cholesterol and increase HDL cholesterol significantly.

    6. It Seems to Be Good for Your Heart
    Adding water-soluble fibers like psyllium to your diet might reduce blood triglycerides, blood pressure and the risk of heart disease (36, 37).

    One study confirmed that 5 grams of psyllium three times daily for six weeks reduced triglycerides by 26%, compared to the placebo (19).

    Moreover, in 40 patients with type 2 diabetes, triglyceride levels were significantly reduced after two months of treatment with psyllium fiber (36).

    Furthermore, a diet with an additional 12 grams of fiber from psyllium supplementation reduced systolic blood pressure by 5.9 mmHg in 36 people with high blood pressure (38).

    Lastly, another study in obese individuals showed that a 7-gram daily dose for 12 weeks led to a seven percent decrease in blood pressure in the first six weeks of treatment (39).

    Bottom Line: Regular intake of psyllium fiber has been linked to reduced blood pressure, lowered triglycerides levels and reduced risk of heart disease.

    7. It Has Prebiotic Effects
    Prebiotics are non-digestible compounds that nourish intestinal bacteria and help them grow. Psyllium is considered to have prebiotic effects (40, 41).

    Although psyllium is somewhat resistant to fermentation, a small portion of psyllium fibers can be fermented by intestinal bacteria. This fermentation can produce short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), which have been linked to health benefits (3, 42, 43, 44).

    One study showed that 10 grams twice a day for 12 months increased the production of the SCFA butyrate (45).

    Also, because it ferments more slowly than other fibers, it doesn't increase gas and digestive discomfort.

    In fact, treatment with psyllium for four months helped reduce digestive symptoms by 69% in patients with ulcerative colitis (UC) (46).

    Furthermore, a combination of psyllium and probiotics seems to be particularly effective at treating ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease (47, 48).

    Bottom Line: Psyllium is considered a prebiotic fiber. It can promote short-chain fatty acid production and decrease digestive discomfort in patients with ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease.

    Psyllium appears to be well tolerated by most people.

    Doses of 5-10 grams taken three times per day are not linked to serious side effects. However, some cramping, gas or bloating may occur (19, 49, 50).

    Also, psyllium could delay the absorption of certain medications. Therefore, it's not recommended to take it with any other medicines.

    Although uncommon, some allergic reactions like rashes, itching or trouble breathing can result from ingesting or handling psyllium (51, 52).

    Bottom Line: Psyllium does not seem to have many side effects and is well tolerated. However, some allergic reactions may occur in those sensitive to fiber.

    Psyllium can be consumed in doses of 5-10 grams with meals, at least once per day.

    However, when it comes to fiber, more is not always better. The benefits seen in most studies are linked with intakes of 3-20.4 grams per day, and taking more may cause digestive problems (35).

    It is important to take it with water and then drink water regularly throughout the day.

    As a bulk laxative supplement, 5 grams with a glass of water three times per day is often recommended as a starting point. This can be gradually increased, as tolerated.

    It depends on the product how many grams are contained in a teaspoon or tablespoon, but a tablespoon is often recommended as a serving for psyllium husk.

    It is best if you follow the dosage instructions on the packaging.

    Bottom Line: It is recommended to start psyllium supplementation with 5-gram doses three times a day. Make sure to follow the dosage instructions.

    Psyllium is commonly used as a laxative. However, it can also relieve diarrhea and help reduce triglycerides, cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure levels.

    This fiber supplement can be included in your nutrition regimen and consumed regularly as part of a healthy diet.

    If you want to buy psyllium, then there is an excellent selection online with thousands of customer reviews.

    We picked linked items based on the quality of products, and list the pros and cons of each to help you determine which will work best for you. We partner with some of the companies that sell these products, which means Healthline UK and our partners may
    receive a portion of revenues if you make a purchase using a link(s) above.


    Soluble and insoluble fiber: What is the difference?

    Thirteen home remedies for constipation

    How much fiber should I eat per day?

    Is coconut oil a laxative?

    How to use Epsom salt for constipation relief


    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
    * Origin: fsxNet Usenet Gateway (21:1/5)
  • From 5@21:1/5 to All on Wed Jul 4 08:09:07 2018
    Natural Substances
    Home » Natural Substances » https://www.selfhacked.com/blog/psyllium-husk/

    9 Benefits of Psyllium Husk + Side Effects & Weight Loss
    Print Friendly, PDF & Email
    Psyllium husk is a soluble fiber best known for its ability to treat constipation. But, what other contributions can it make to our health, and is it truly harmless? Read on to discover the other fascinating benefits and side effects of psyllium husk.


    Mechanism of Action
    Health Benefits of Psyllium Husk
    1) Psyllium Husk Treats Constipation
    2) Psyllium Husk May Relieve Diarrhea
    3) Psyllium Husk May Lower Blood Sugar Levels
    4) Psyllium Husk May Aid in Weight Loss
    5) Psyllium Husk May Lower Cholesterol
    6) Psyllium Husk May Decrease Blood Pressure
    7) Psyllium Husk May Treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Ulcerative Colitis
    8) Psyllium Husk May Be Anti-Amoebic
    9) Psyllium Husk May Prevent Colon Cancer
    Side Effects
    Limitations and Caveats
    Drug Interactions
    Natural Sources (or Forms of Supplementation)
    User Experiences
    Health Tools I Wish I Had When I Was Sick
    Share this:

    Psyllium is a robust herb that grows around the world but is most commonly found in India, which remains the largest producer of psyllium husk today. It is also referred to as Isabghol (Ispaghol in Pakistan), derived from the Sanskrit words “asp” and
    “ghol,” together meaning “horse flower.” The whole seed has been used in traditional Iranian medicine for hundreds of years.

    The inner seed contains many starches and fatty acids, making it an excellent natural additive for animal feed. The outer coat (the husk) is ground down into mucilage, a term describing clear, colorless, gelatinous dietary fiber that confers the majority
    of health benefits in both humans and animals [R].

    Not only does it have health benefits, but its gel-like character makes it a popular addition to foods to produce desired thickening and texture [R].

    Psyllium husk is largely composed of carbohydrates (85%), with the remainder consisting of fats, plant ash, and protein [R].

    The carbohydrate portion contains twice as much insoluble fiber (cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin) as soluble, both of which are essential to the benefits provided by psyllium husk.

    Soluble fiber: The gel-like material that easily absorbs water, which then causes it to expand
    Insoluble fiber: Consists of the non-digestible, water-resistant plant matter [R]
    Mechanism of Action
    The dry, fibrous content of psyllium husk draws water into the gut by pulling water from high- to low-moisture environments.

    The soluble portion easily absorbs water, causing it to expand in the gut. This has the dual effect of softening the stool and physically stimulating gut transport.
    The insoluble fiber is not water absorbent but still helps draw water into the gut and physically stimulates gut flow. It also adds bulk, contributing to a larger, more firm stool.
    This is the mechanism that psyllium husk is best known for. However, it also binds to muscarinic and 5-HT4 receptors, which would contribute even more to the laxative effect described above.

    It may also block calcium channels while activating the NO-cGMP pathway, with the combined effect of decreased gut stimulation. This may explain its paradoxical ability to treat constipation and diarrhea alike [R].

    Health Benefits of Psyllium Husk
    1) Psyllium Husk Treats Constipation
    Adding psyllium husk to your diet is proven to reduce constipation by drawing in and absorbing water as it passes through the gut. This causes the stool to soften and expand, making it simultaneously easier to move while stimulating normal gut flow [R, R]

    In multiple small human studies (following up to 15 patients in one study), psyllium husk significantly decreased stool transit time and increased both bulk weight and relative stool softness [R, R, R].

    This was achieved without disrupting nutrient absorption [R].

    Furthermore, in a multi-site DB-RCT involving 170 patients, psyllium was more superior in softening stool and treating chronic constipation than docusate sodium (a stool softener commonly used in healthcare settings) [R].

    A study in rats found that psyllium was more effective than cellulose (insoluble fiber found in most plants) in creating stool moisture, likely due to its soluble fiber content that resists fermentation [R].

    2) Psyllium Husk May Relieve Diarrhea
    Psyllium husk may also relieve diarrhea, which may seem strange considering its long-proven role in reducing constipation [R].

    In 2 human studies (with as many as 39 subjects), psyllium husk increased stool transit time and improved the consistency of the stool in patients with diarrhea. In the same studies, patients with constipation had decreased transit time [R, R].

    While the mechanism for controlling diarrhea is less understood, this study in living mice (in addition to rabbit/pig guts) may shed some light:

    Psyllium husk treated constipation in mice. But, it also stimulated muscarinic and 5-HT4 receptors of the gut, which would complement the physical stimulation it produces.
    When psyllium husk was given to mice with diarrhea, transit time was slowed and stool consistency improved. Receptor pathways were changed in these mice as well, specifically blocking calcium ion channels and activation of the NO-cGMP pathways, which
    would combine to inhibit gut flow [R].
    With that information in mind, it may help to think of psyllium husk as a “regulatory” fiber rather than strictly anti-diarrheal or anti-constipation. This makes it an excellent option for patients with irritable bowel syndrome, who often have
    diarrhea and constipation.

    A randomized controlled pilot study evaluated psyllium husk in 60 cancer patients with radiation-induced diarrhea, showing a decrease in both the incidence of diarrhea and the severity of symptoms [R].

    Sometimes diarrhea is an unavoidable side-effect of another medication. Patients with liver failure may have a liver-caused brain injury, where ammonia builds up in the blood and causes altered mental status. This is treated with lactulose, which can
    cause significant amounts of diarrhea [R].

    A randomized crossover study of 8 patients showed that psyllium husk delayed stomach emptying and reduced the speed of gut transit, possibly due to the poor fermentation of psyllium husk compared to other fibers [R].

    3) Psyllium Husk May Lower Blood Sugar Levels

    Multiple types of fiber have the ability to curb your blood sugar [R].

    In multiple double- and single-blind RCTs (with as many as 125 subjects), psyllium husk significantly reduced both fasting and after-meal blood sugar levels, reduced insulin spikes, and decreased the absorption of glucose, with a reduction in HbA1c [R, R,
    R, R, R, R].

    Similar results were seen in a meta-analysis of 7 studies of 378 patients, including 3 that were randomized and blinded [R].

    In a small DB-RCT of 49 patients, psyllium husk not only improved fasting blood sugar and HbA1c levels but enhanced patient tolerance to metformin (a very common oral medication for treating type 2 diabetes) [R].

    It is important to note that these results were achieved when psyllium husk was consumed with meals.

    4) Psyllium Husk May Aid in Weight Loss

    Psyllium husk may be able to help with weight loss by increasing fullness [R].

    In a 200-subject DB-RCT, consuming psyllium husk with meals increased fullness and reduced subjective appetite sensation, resulting in weight loss (approximately 10 lbs.) [R].

    The mechanism behind this may be explained by a small RCT of 12 patients that found that psyllium delayed stomach emptying, which likely contributes to the increased fullness and reduced appetite [R].

    Another triple-blind study of 17 females revealed the same changes in fullness and appetite and found that subjects inherently reduced their daily fat intake [R].

    Not only is psyllium husk associated with weight loss, but another double-blind RCT study of 72 patients showed that it reduced BMI and total body fat percentage. The study does note that while this was achieved with psyllium husk alone, combining it
    with a healthy diet produced superior results [R].

    5) Psyllium Husk May Lower Cholesterol
    Taking psyllium husk could improve your overall cholesterol profile [R].

    Two RCTs (including a double-blind of 25 subjects) found lower levels of total and LDL cholesterol, with an increase in HDL [R, R].

    This was observed again in a meta-analysis (21 RCTs and total of 1,030 subjects), though it noted the reduction in total cholesterol occurred faster than the drop in LDL. It also indicated that the effects may be dose- and timing-dependent [R].

    The impact of psyllium husk on cholesterol may be explained in part by a small RCT of 20 subjects, which found lowered LDL levels and increased bile acid production after psyllium treatment [R].

    Bile acid production and subsequent excretion is a primary method of eliminating blood cholesterol [R].

    A small single-blind RCT studied the effects of psyllium husk in 45 teenage males at risk for developing metabolic syndrome. Not only did they observe an improvement in their cholesterol profiles, but there was an improvement in overall body composition/
    distribution of body fat [R].

    6) Psyllium Husk May Decrease Blood Pressure

    Psyllium husk might help you treat high blood pressure. One small RCT of 36 subjects showed that eating fiber and protein provided additive reductions in systolic pressure, averaging 5.9 mmHg with both. These findings were independent of age, gender,
    weight change, alcohol intake, or urinary sodium/potassium [R].

    A study in rats prone to salt-driven hypertension found smaller increases in pressure when psyllium husk was added to the diet and proposed that this was due to the psyllium causing increased fecal excretion of sodium [R].

    Although this was a rat study, this is an important consideration as patients with heart failure are highly sensitive to dietary sodium, often ending up in the emergency department after a holiday. This increase is correlated to overeating during the
    holiday, emotional stress, and reduced exercise. While attention to diet is the best intervention, psyllium husk may curb some of the short-term damage [R].

    A separate SB-RCT following 72 healthy people on a regular diet compared fiber and healthy diet separately against placebo for 12 weeks. It showed that psyllium husk alone initially lowered systolic and diastolic pressures but the effect did not last for
    the full 12 weeks, whereas healthy diet alone had lasting effects and created larger improvements in blood pressure [R].

    Given the data, psyllium husk may have an adjunctive role in treating high blood pressure, but more studies are needed.

    7) Psyllium Husk May Treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Ulcerative Colitis

    We know psyllium husk has a role in treating both diarrhea and constipation, as previously stated. These are also symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and ulcerative colitis [R].

    One RCT of 28 subjects looked specifically at whether psyllium husk plays a role in patients with irritable bowel syndrome, discovering that psyllium husk eliminated symptoms and further showing that stopping psyllium husk causes a relapse [R].

    A placebo-controlled trial of 29 subjects with ulcerative colitis in remission found superior control of gut symptoms using psyllium husk vs. placebo. Four patients were unable to finish the trial due to relapse, noting that three were in the placebo
    category [R].

    8) Psyllium Husk May Be Anti-Amoebic
    Interestingly, psyllium husk may help fight amoebic infections. A study in cells found that a water- and petroleum-based husk extract inhibited 3 Entamoeba species, including histolytica, which causes a wide array of symptoms in humans. The petroleum-
    based extract showed much greater inhibition of growth [R].

    9) Psyllium Husk May Prevent Colon Cancer

    In a study of rats exposed to a known colon carcinogen (cancer-causing chemical), psyllium husk strongly reduced the incidence of tumors, compared to cellulose and control [R].

    Side Effects
    Overall, psyllium husk is associated with very few side effects. The most common finding is some mild, temporary gut discomfort [R, R, R, R].

    However, there are several case reports that you should know about.

    Two studies found a total of 11 nurses with occupational asthma linked to psyllium exposure:
    One looked at 5 nurses who had symptoms after preparing psyllium husk solutions for patients. They had all tested positive for IgE antibodies to psyllium, and inhalation challenges produced symptoms in all of them. One patient had reactive airway closure
    and required 3 hours of assisted ventilation [R].
    The other study looked to see if nurses with known exposure reactions could have a reaction to ingestion. All 6 developed airway symptoms, one requiring urgent intervention [R].
    One case study of a 40-year-old woman who had been taking a psyllium-containing laxative for 2 years found that the woman developed a whole-body itching (pruritic) rash, sparing only her face. The symptoms resolved when psyllium was stopped and started
    again with an oral challenge. She was IgE positive for psyllium antibodies. She underwent sensitization therapy to allow her to continue using the laxative. It is important to note that her sensitivity was protein-based and likely due to inner seed
    exposure, rather than the husk [R].
    One case study of a patient on oral lithium (a medication used to treat bipolar disorder) experienced a drop in blood lithium levels while taking psyllium husk, which returned to normal after cessation of psyllium [R].
    Four patients developed small bowel obstruction after psyllium was used as an oral contrast agent for CT or MRI scans. The takeaway was that caution must be used when considering psyllium husk in anyone with suspected bowel strictures or active
    inflammation [R].
    Limitations and Caveats
    Most of the studies were done in humans and even include meta-analyses, but overall the sample sizes in these studies were small and sometimes limited by gender or other restrictions. Care should thus be taken when considering psyllium husk therapy (as
    you should with any supplement).

    Drug Interactions
    As mentioned above, there is a case report of psyllium interfering with lithium absorption [R].

    It may also delay digoxin (a common heart failure medication) absorption, but is unlikely to prevent it or cause any clinically significant effect [R].

    The LexiComp Drug Interactions used by physicians to screen for drug interactions gives psyllium/digoxin a B risk rating, meaning they may interact with each other but no action is needed as there is little concerning evidence [R].

    Other sources suggest that psyllium may interfere with the absorption of tricyclic antidepressants (amitriptyline, doxepin, imipramine), seizure medications (carbamazepine), bile acid sequestrants (cholestyramine, colestipol), and a variety of diabetes
    medications. However, there is no evidence of this.

    Natural Sources (or Forms of Supplementation)
    Psyllium husk is sold over the counter in the whole form, granulated, encapsulated, or powdered. Because it lacks a distinct flavor, functions as a food thickener, and stores easily, psyllium has been fortified into many food products, especially ice
    cream and high-fiber cereals [R].

    The Lexicomp drug database recommends the following dosages:

    For constipation: 2.5 to 30 g/day in divided doses (In children age 6 to 11 years old: 1.25 to 15 g/day in divided doses).
    For reduction of coronary heart disease: At least 10.2 g/day (translates to at least 7g soluble fiber/day)
    For adjunctive therapy of type 2 diabetes: 6.8 to 13.6 g/day split between 2 doses
    For irritable bowel syndrome: 10 g/day over 1 or 2 doses [R]
    User Experiences
    Regarding bagged, whole husks:

    People find that mixing whole husks in liquid produces a thick, grainy substance that is difficult to consume unless they finish it quickly. However, they say it is less likely to get stuck in your teeth and on the glass than the powder.
    A user who added it to their cooking found the husks much more palatable, especially in gluten-free cooking or on a dry cereal with fruit.
    Multiple users endorse improvement in their stool form with whole husks, requiring less toilet paper.
    Regarding psyllium capsules:

    Users generally find the capsules easy to use and work with compared to the bagged whole husks or powder, especially when trying to make a drink.
    People appreciate the lack of artificial sweeteners.
    Again, users state that psyllium capsules support their stool regularity. Regarding bagged, powdered psyllium husk:

    Many users add a spoonful to their water or on food to get their daily fiber intake.
    One user compared it to Metamucil in effectiveness but appreciated the lack of sugar in the psyllium powder.
    Multiple users say they dislike the texture it produces when mixed in liquids and must be consumed quickly, with one person describing it as “a raw egg texture.”
    Another user stated appreciated that it had no foul taste and wasn’t too bulky, adding it to their hot cereal in the morning.
    Users state that the powder is helpful in maintaining bowel regularity. Summary: Psyllium can be difficult to consume in a drink, and if you choose to do so, people recommend drinking it quickly before it thickens. Alternatively, have it over food that takes well to thickening (oatmeal, for example). Experiences with
    encapsulated psyllium seem to be positive overall.

    Health Tools I Wish I Had When I Was Sick
    At SelfHacked, it’s our goal to offer our readers all the tools possible to get optimally healthy. When I was struggling with chronic health issues I felt stuck because I didn’t have any tools to help me get better. I had to spend literally thousands
    of hours trying to read through studies on pubmed to figure out how the body worked and how to fix it.

    That’s why I decided to create tools that will help others cut down the guesswork:

    Lab Test Analyzer – a software tool that will analyze your labs and tell you what the optimal values are for each marker — as well as provide you with actionable tips and personalized health and lifestyle recommendations to help you get there.
    SelfDecode – a software tool that will help you analyze your genetic data from companies such as 23andme and ancestry. You will learn how your health is being impacted by your genes, and how to use this knowledge to your advantage.
    SelfHacked Secrets – an ebook where we examine and explain the biggest overlooked environmental factors that cause disease. This ebook is a great place to start your journey if you want to learn the essential steps to optimizing your health.
    SelfHacked Elimination Diet course – a video course that will help you figure out which diet works best for you
    Selfhacked Inflammation course – a video course on inflammation and how to bring it down
    Biohacking insomnia – an ebook on how to get great sleep
    Lectin Avoidance Cookbook – an e-cookbook for people with food sensitivities BrainGauge – a device that detects subtle brain changes and allows you to test what’s working for you
    SelfHacked VIP – an area where you can ask me (Joe) questions about health topics.
    Share this:
    96Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)96Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)1Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window)1More
    FDA Compliance
    The information on this website has not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration or any other medical body. We do not aim to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. Information is shared for educational purposes only. You must
    consult your doctor before acting on any content on this website, especially if you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition.

    1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (8 votes, average: 4.88 out of 5)
    SHARE 0
    TWEET 0

    CHRISTY clock icon Submitted June 16, 2018 12:16PM
    There is a paleo cauliflower bread recipe that uses this as an ingredient, do any of the health benefits change when baked?

    reply icon REPLY

    MARJ DAVIS clock icon Submitted June 2, 2018 12:56PM
    My package warned about people with swallowing issues not using the product. Brand is NOW Healthy Foods purchased at Sprouts.

    reply icon REPLY

    HUDDA clock icon Submitted April 22, 2018 03:13PM
    I find it good mix with powdered herbs.

    reply icon REPLY

    PETER clock icon Submitted April 7, 2018 04:19PM
    I had terrible allergic reactions to a high quality psyllium. It caused psychological distress and extreme nausea as it passed through my small intestine. And then I had a stroke-like episode where the side of my face became partially numb with some
    other symptoms.

    reply icon REPLY

    JEFF THRASHER clock icon Submitted March 30, 2018 09:01PM
    Add 1 TBLS Psyllium to Juice with 1 TSP of black Seed Oil EVERYDAY FOR YEARS…ALL GOOD 😉

    reply icon REPLY

    VAIOLETT clock icon Submitted March 26, 2018 12:25AM
    drinking water with psyllium can be unpleasant, but I found a method quite comfortable and pleasant ..
    I combine in 300 / 400ml of water or coconut milk 2 x tablespoons of cocoa, stevia to taste, plus 2 large spoons of psyllium husks, mix everything in a blende I put this liquid in wide glasses .. In this way, I I have a pudding, which I consume in the
    day ..

    reply icon REPLY

    NANCY B. clock icon Submitted March 25, 2018 11:02AM
    One thing that wasn’t mentioned is that people with achalasia or other esophageal motility problems should avoid psyllium. In these people it has the potential to remain in the esophagus, swell, block the bronchial passage and could cause death by
    asphyxiation! Therefore, if a person has swallowing issues, they should be aware of this possible reaction!!!!!

    reply icon REPLY

    RANDA L clock icon Submitted March 25, 2018 03:03PM
    Hi Nancy B,

    Do you have a reference for this? If you do, I will add it as this is important information to include. Thanks!

    reply icon REPLY
    Leave a Reply


    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
    * Origin: fsxNet Usenet Gateway (21:1/5)
  • From 5@21:1/5 to All on Wed Jul 4 08:29:24 2018
    Fiber Provides Food to Your Gut Microbes That They Ferment to Shape Your DNA
    March 30, 2015 | 324,340 views

    Story at-a-glance
    Genetic material from microbes appears to have slipped into the human DNA, and may have played a role in diversifying our DNA
    One of the best ways to improve your gut health is via your diet. Fermented foods are ideal, but dietary fiber is also important. Some microbes ferment fiber, and the byproducts nourish your colon
    Some of these fermentation byproducts also help calibrate your immune system, thereby preventing inflammatory disorders such as asthma and Crohn’s disease
    By Dr. Mercola

    Your body is a complex ecosystem made up of more than 100 trillion bacteria, fungi, viruses, and protozoa, collectively referred to as your microbiome, which must be properly balanced and cared for if you want to maintain good health.

    These microbes are so numerous they actually outnumber the cells in your body 10 to one. With such a high prevalence of microbes in your system, it seems reasonable to suspect that they're of some major importance.

    And indeed, recent years have brought a scientific flurry of information demonstrating just how crucial your microbiome is to everything from genetic expression, immune function, body weight and composition, to mental health, memory, and the prevention
    of numerous diseases, from diabetes to cancer.

    For example, in one study,1 DNA analysis of diseased sections of intestine removed from patients suffering from Crohn's disease revealed that one particular bacterium, Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, was lower than normal.

    While researchers have linked the overabundance of specific bacteria to various diseases, this finding suggests certain anti-inflammatory microbes may be actively involved in preventing certain disease states and when they're lacking, you end up losing
    this protection.

    Recent research also suggests that genes from microbes have become incorporated into human DNA, including some genes that help your immune system defend itself against infections.

    Modern Diseases Linked to Alterations in Intestinal Microflora
    The composition of the human microbiome varies from person to person based on factors such as diet, health history, geographic location, and even ancestry, and it's readily influenced by diet, chemical exposures, hygiene, and other environmental factors.

    In fact, it's become increasingly clear that destroying your gut flora with antibiotics and pharmaceutical drugs, harsh environmental chemicals, and toxic foods is a primary factor in rising disease rates.

    The reason for this is because your gut is actually the proverbial gatekeeper for your inflammatory response, and inflammation tends to be a hallmark of most chronic diseases.

    The inflammatory response starts in your gut and then travels to your brain, which subsequently sends signals to the rest of your body in a complex feedback loop. It isn't important that you understand all of the physiology here, but the take-away
    message is that your gut flora's influence is far from local. It significantly affects and controls the health of your entire body.

    Microbial Genes Are Passed from Parent to Child
    It's important to realize that the foundation of a person'sgut flora is laid from birth. Just like other genetic information, microbes (and their genetic material) are passed on from parent to child.

    A baby basically "inherits" the microbiome from its mother as it passes through the birth canal (provided it's a vaginal birth). This is why it's so important to address your gut health before, during, and after pregnancy.

    Microbes are also passed between mother and child via breast milk and close body contact in general. As noted in a recent article by Scientific American,2 all of these transfers are crucial for the child's health, but can easily be circumvented by
    medical interventions and modern "conveniences":

    "Because the critical issue is the intergenerational transfer of microbes and its timed assembly, three periods are relevant: before pregnancy, during pregnancy and in the child's early life.

    For all three periods, antibiotic use is relevant because it may directly change maternal microbes prior to transfer or the child's microbes afterward.

    Elective cesarean sections mean that the child misses the birth canal transit, and antibacterials in soaps and foods directly affect microbiota composition.

    Infant formulas have not been constructed with the benefit of millions of years of mammalian evolution, because breast milk contains nutrients that specifically select for the growth of preferred coevolved organisms and inhibit opportunists and pathogens.

    Unfriendly (or lacking) flora can predispose babies to Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS), which can raise the child's risk of any number of health problems, including autism and autoimmune disorders.

    Babies who develop abnormal gut flora are left with compromised immune systems, which may turn out to be a crucial factor when it comes to vaccine-induced damage.

    As explained by Dr. Campbell-McBride, vaccinations were originally developed for children with healthy immune systems, and children with abnormal gut flora and therefore compromised immunity are not suitable candidates for our current vaccine schedule as
    they're more prone to being harmed. To learn more about this, please see this previous article.

    Microbe Genes Found in Human DNA
    Some of the latest research3 in this arena reveals that bacteria, fungi, and viruses may be part of the "missing link" in the progress of humans. As noted in a report by CNN:4

    "Though most of our genes come from primate ancestors, many of them slipped into our DNA from microbes living in our bodies, says British researcher Alastair Crisp. It's called horizontal gene transfer...

    Bacteria slip genes to each other, and it helps them evolve. And scientists have seen insects pick up bacterial genes that allow them to digest certain foods... Humans may have as many as hundreds of so-called foreign genes they picked up from microbes."

    The human genome consists of about 23,000 genes, whereas the combined genetic material of your microbiome is somewhere between 2-20 million. According to the researchers, these extra genes may have played a role in helping to diversify our own DNA.

    In this study,5 researchers at the University of Cambridge identified 128 "foreign" genes in the human genome, including the gene that determines your blood type (A, B, or O). This gene, and others—including some that help your immune system defend
    itself against infections—appear to have been transferred into the human gene pool from microbes.

    Microbes That Ferment Fiber Are Important for Health
    One of the quickest and easiest ways to improve your gut health is via your diet, as the microbes in your body consume the same foods you do. The beneficial ones tend to feed on foods that are known to benefit health, and vice versa. Sugar, for example,
    is a preferred food source for fungi that produce yeast infections and sinusitis, whereas healthy probiotic-rich foods like fermented vegetables boost populations of health-promoting bacteria, thereby disallowing potentially pathogenic colonies from
    taking over.

    Fiber is also important for a healthy microbiome. Some of the microbes in your gut specialize in fermenting soluble fiber found in legumes, fruits, and vegetables, and the byproducts of this fermenting activity help nourish the cells lining your colon.
    Some of these fermentation byproducts also help calibrate your immune system, thereby preventing inflammatory disorders such as Crohn's disease and asthma.6,7

    Treg Cells More Fiber

    Source: Illustration by AXS Biomedical Animation Studio; Source: "Feed Your Tregs More Fiber," by Julia Bollrath and Fiona Powrie, In Science, Vol. 341; August 2, 2013.8

    Your intestine harbors over 500 different species of microbes, and research suggests virtually all of these have the ability to affect your health in one way or another, although we still do not fully understand all the mechanisms and pathways by which
    they do so. It is a quickly evolving field however, and we're learning more with each passing year. For example, research published a couple of years ago show that common bacterial metabolites—short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs)—selectively expand
    regulatory T cells called Tregs, which are critical for regulating intestinal inflammation.9

    According to one of these studies:10 "Treg cells suppress the responses of other immune cells, including those that promote inflammation. This finding provides a new link between bacterial products and a major anti-inflammatory pathway in the gut." Other
    research11,12 has linked Tregs—which are fed by dietary fiber—to the prevention and reversal of metabolic syndrome, in part by stimulating oxidative metabolism in your liver and adipose tissue.

    Are You Getting Enough High-Quality Fiber?
    Dietary guidelines call for 20-30 grams of fiber per day. I believe an ideal amount for most adults is around 32 grams daily. Most people, however, get only half that, or less. Many whole foods, especially fruits and vegetables, naturally contain
    bothsoluble and insoluble fiber. This is ideal, as both help feed the microorganisms living in your gut. The same cannot be said for grains (including whole grains) and processed foods, as the carbohydrates found in both can serve as fodder for
    microorganisms that tend to be detrimental rather than beneficial to your health.

    Gliadin and lectins in grains may also increase intestinal permeability or leaky gut syndrome. So, to maximize your health benefits, focus on eating more vegetables, nuts, and seeds. The following is a small sampling of foods that contain high levels of
    soluble and insoluble fiber.

    Psyllium seed husk, flax, and chia seeds
    Vegetables such as broccoli and Brussels sprouts
    Root vegetables and tubers, including onions, sweet potatoes, and jicama Almonds
    Green beans
    A simple tip to increase the amount of fiber and biodense nutrients in your diet would be to add sunflower sprouts to your meal. They work great in salads but can also be added to virtually any dish to radically improve its nutrition. Organic whole husk
    psyllium is another effective option. Taking it three times a day could add as much as 18 grams of dietary fiber (soluble and insoluble) to your diet. Opting for an organic version of psyllium will prevent exposure to pesticides, herbicides, and chemical
    fertilizers, as conventional psyllium is a very heavily sprayed crop. I also recommend choosing one that does not contain additives or sweeteners, as these tend to have a detrimental effect on your microbiome.

    Optimizing Your Microbiome May Be One of Your Most Important Disease Prevention Strategies
    Optimizing your gut flora may be one of the most important things you can do for your health, and the good news is that this isn't very difficult. However, you do need to take proactive steps. To optimize your microbiome both inside and out, consider the
    following recommendations:

    Eat plenty of fermented foods.Healthy choices include lassi, fermented grass-fed organic milk such as kefir, natto (fermented soy), and fermented vegetables. If you ferment your own, consider using a special starter culture that has been optimized with
    bacterial strains that produce high levels of vitamin K2. This is an inexpensive way to optimize your K2, which is particularly important if you're taking a vitamin D3 supplement.
    Antibiotics, unless absolutely necessary (and when you do, make sure to reseed your gut with fermented foods and/or a probiotic supplement). And while some researchers are looking into methods that might help ameliorate the destruction of beneficial
    bacteria by antibiotics,13,14 your best bet is likely always going to be reseeding your gut with probiotics from fermented and cultured foods and/or a high-quality probiotic supplement.
    Take a probiotic supplement. Although I'm not a major proponent of taking many supplements (as I believe the majority of your nutrients need to come from food), probiotics is an exception if you don't eat fermented foods on a regular basis
    Conventionally raised meats and other animal products, as CAFO animals are routinely fed low-dose antibiotics, plus genetically engineered grains, which have also been implicated in the destruction of gut flora.
    Boost your soluble and insoluble fiber intake, focusing on vegetables, nuts, and seeds, including sprouted seeds.
    Chlorinated and/or fluoridated water.
    Get your hands dirty in the garden. Germ-free living may not be in your best interest, as the loss of healthy bacteria can have wide-ranging influence on your mental, emotional, and physical health. According to the hygiene hypothesis, exposure to
    bacteria and viruses can serve as "natural vaccines" that strengthen your immune system and provide long-lasting immunity against disease. Getting your hands dirty in the garden can help reacquaint your immune system with beneficial microorganisms on the
    plants and in the soil.
    Processed foods. Excessive sugars, along with otherwise "dead" nutrients, feed pathogenic bacteria. Food emulsifiers such as polysorbate 80, lecithin, carrageenan, polyglycerols, and xanthan gum also appear to have an adverse effect on your gut flora.15

    Unless 100% organic, they may also contain GMOs that tend to be heavily contaminated with pesticides such as glyphosate.
    Open your windows. For the vast majority of human history the outside was always part of the inside, and at no moment during our day were we ever really separated from nature. Today, we spend 90 percent of our lives indoors. And, although keeping the
    outside out does have its advantages it has also changed the microbiome of your home. Research16 shows that opening a window and increasing natural airflow can improve the diversity and health of the microbes in your home, which in turn benefit you.
    Agricultural chemicals, glyphosate (Roundup) in particular.
    Wash your dishes by hand instead of in the dishwasher. Recent research has shown that washing your dishes by hand leaves more bacteria on the dishes than dishwashers do, and that eating off these less-than-sterile dishes may actually decrease your risk
    of allergies by stimulating your immune system.
    Antibacterial soap, as they too kill off both good and bad bacteria, and contribute to the development of antibiotic-resistance.

    [+]Sources and References
    Most Popular
    1 Why Intermittent Fasting Is More Effective Combined With Ketogenic Diet 2 Remediation Tips From an EMF Expert
    3 Organic Food - Hype or Hope?
    4 For Optimal Brain and Nervous System Health, You Need to Exercise Your Leg Muscles
    5 Autophagy Finally Considered for Disease Treatment
    You Might Also Like
    How Your Gut Flora Influences Your Health
    How to Easily and Inexpensively Ferment Your Own Vegetables
    Eating Grains Can "Tear Holes" in Your Gut


    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
    * Origin: fsxNet Usenet Gateway (21:1/5)