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Glucomannan is a kind of polysacharride, that is actually classified as a fiber. This substance is found in the root of the konjac plant and is used in foods as thickening additive and an emulsifier. It has long been used in Asian countries as a dietary fiber.
Recently, glucomannan has also been used as a natural remedy to lower cholesterol and reduce risk of type 2 diabetes, because of its effects on blood sugar and because of its fiber content, it is often used as an antidote for constipation. Glucomannan's magic comes from its great water absorbency potential. The substance can absorb up to 50 times its weight in water, lending itself to expand in the digestive tract and promote a feeling of fullness.
In addition to being added as a food thickener and in dietary supplements, glucomannan is also the main ingredient of the new popularized zero calorie noodle.
While there has been some clinical evidence to support glucomannan's health benefits, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved any product containing glucomannan for the treatment of diabetes, high cholesterol or weight loss. In fact, several companies that distribute products containing glucomannan have received disciplinary action by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for making misleading statements in regards to glucomannan's health benefits.
The health concerns come from glucomannan's ability to induce the gagging reflex or in serious cases, incite choking. Glucomannan is typically found in a tablet form or in a food product like no-calorie noodles.
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- Some evidence to support a few of the purported health benefits of glucomannan
- Substance is associated with side effects, such as blockage of the throat and choking, blockage of the esophagus or intestine
- FTC has already cracked down on false advertising made by glucomannan distributors
- Health Canada, the country's national health board, warned against the possible side effects of using glucomannan
Glucomannan contains the fibers of the konjac plant.ADMINISTRATION
Glucomannan tablets are typically found in 500 mg dosages. They are taken to relieve constipation and suppress appetite.
If Glucomannan is taken, it should always be consumed with at least eight ounces of water and should never be taken before going to bed, because of its choking potential.DIET and EXERCISE
There are no specific diet or exercise instructions with taking glucomannan, unless the individual is following a specific diet plan. But because of its ability to suppress appetite and make you feel full longer, you are expected to eat less while using this product.CONCLUSION
Even though it comes from a natural plant and it has been touted by Dr. Oz as his best diet pill source, caution must be exercised before taking glucomannan, a fiber substance that is used in foods and diet products.
While there is no question that glucomannan will make you feel full longer because of its high water absorbency rate, the substance has received enough slaps on the hand by national health agencies to warrant serious concerns.
If you have one of the conditions that glucomannan has claimed to treat, like type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, constipation or a high BMI, do speak with your medical doctor first before purchasing any glucomannan product.Common Misspellings
glucomanan, glocoman, glucoman, gluconamm, glcumannan, glucoman, konjac,