Psyllium Husk: More than just an effective natural laxative


Last Updated July 18th, 2019

What is psyllium husk?

Psyllium husk is a fiber from the husks (seed coat) of the plant Plantago ovate. It mainly grows in India. It is a fiber and acts as a bulking laxative (a substance that promotes better bowel movements). It triggers the muscular movement in the intestine to enable bowel evacuation. It is commercially sold in the name of Isabgol in India. It can either be in the form of a capsule, husk, or in the powder form.

The fiber is resistant in nature (it passes via the digestive system in its intact form and does not get absorbed by the body). It is used to treat conditions like diarrhea, high blood sugar levels,  constipation, high blood pressure, weight gain, and also for high cholesterol

Prebiotics are substances that promote the growth and development of good bacteria in the digestive tract and psyllium husk is an example of this. This good bacteria help in healthy digestion or nutrient absorption, a healthy bowel evacuation and also in the fight against other infectious microbes. When you mix psyllium husk in water or other liquids, it will swell up.

How can psyllium husk benefit you?

Used to treat constipation as well as diarrhea

Firstly, it binds to the incompletely digested food as it enters the small intestine for nutrient absorption. It then pulls the water in, and this phenomenon helps in stool bulking and stool moistening. Eventually, an individual will be able to pass his bowels with ease.

Psyllium husk makes the stool soft without causing any flatulence. It stimulates bowel evacuation regularly and improves overall digestive health. Apart from treating constipation, you must be wondering that it may be problematic for coping up with diarrhea, right? That is not true. Because of its bulking ability, it helps the solidification of stools and its slow passage from the intestine.

In diarrhea, the stools become watery. So psyllium husk makes the stool sticky, increases stool thickness and thus enables slow evacuation of the stools. Psyllium husk works both ways: cures constipation and also lowers the intensity of diarrhea.

Psyllium husk lowers the blood sugar levels

Diabetes is a condition of high blood glucose levels. This can be either due to insufficient insulin secretion or due to insulin resistance. The moment you consume food, the blood sugar levels increase. The insulin (a hormone) gets secreted to convert the excess blood glucose levels to a storage form. Psyllium husk reduces both the blood sugar levels and also the insulin levels. This is because of its water-absorbing properties that enable slow digestion and thus, regulates the blood sugar levels.

Because of the reduction in the digestion speed, even the carbohydrates get digested at a slower rate. That is why blood sugar levels do not spike up. It is advisable for you to consume it along with your food rather than consuming it separately.

You tend to feel full and this will help in weight loss

Psyllium husk absorbs water.  This will make you feel full. Your appetite will reduce of course. Also, there are reports that the inclusion of a fiber-rich diet along with the consumption of psyllium husk showed a great reduction in weight and amount of body fat. There are some studies which don’t show any bodyweight reduction with psyllium husk. More research is required.

Lower your cholesterol levels

The artery is a blood capillary that conveys oxygenated blood from the heart to the rest of the body. The foods we consume contain cholesterol and these get converted to lipoproteins (lipids that are bound to proteins). These lipoproteins are divided into two kinds: low-density lipoproteins (LDL or the “bad cholesterol”), and high-density lipoproteins (HDL, the “good cholesterol”).

The LDL is bad because it is small enough to stick to the walls of the artery. This will narrow down the passage of blood or even block it resulting in increased blood pressure and this can cause a heart attack or a stroke (brain damage dues to blockage or intervention of the blood flow to the brain). On the other hand, the HDL pulls LDL along with it (about 1/3rd of the LDL gets taken by HDL) and thus prevents the LDL from sticking and building up plaque.

There are reports that suggest that the bile acid production increased and this reduced the LDL levels. Now, what is bile acid? It is a product produced by the liver from the cholesterol we consume. The bile acid is transported to the intestine for digestion. After digestion, these used bile acids are returned back and this causes a build-up of cholesterol (in addition to the food intake).

The fibers of psyllium husk bind to the bile acids and post-digestion, the recycling of this bile acid gets disabled. The fibers, upon binding to the bile acid, promote the excretion of the used bile acid. So, the liver will have to produce fresh bile acid from the cholesterol. That is why cholesterol levels decrease. Psyllium can also help in increasing the good cholesterol levels.

Psyllium husk for a healthy heart

The World Health Organization reported about 12.8% of the worldwide deaths can be linked to hypertension (high blood pressure). When there is a high salt intake, the cells tend to lose out their water content as the concentration of the salt outside the cell is more than what is inside the cell. The water from these cells gets extruded out into the blood. This will increase the blood volume and thus, increases the blood pressure. Psyllium husk absorbs the water and tends to swell up. This decreases the blood volume thereby showing a decrease in the blood pressure.

A great prebiotic agent

Prebiotic substances are indigestible entities that are vital for the growth and development of the gut bacteria. Psyllium husk is a resistant fiber. A portion of this fiber gets fermented by the intestinal bacteria and this results in the production of volatile fatty acids (or short chain fatty acids). They help in better microbial development. A good gut microbial population means good digestion and good immunity.

You should also know that this kind of fiber gets fermented or processed more leisurely than the others and that is why the incidence of gastric or any other digestive uneasiness is disabled. A treatment with psyllium husk for 4 months minimized the digestive discomforts by 69% in patients with ulcerative colitis.

Other inflammations in the digestive systems can also be used in treating conditions like Crohn’s disease (inflammation in the digestive tract lining) as well. Studies also show that a combination of psyllium husk and probiotics (like yogurt & kefir) is also very useful to treat such conditions.

Is it safe to consume psyllium husk?

Yes, it is. Psyllium husk is non-toxic. Upon taking about 10 g thrice a day  may cause bloating or gas or stomach cramps in some. About a tablespoon of this husk (5 to 10 grams) is taken with 8 ounces of water. This must be done a minimum of one time in a day. The functions of other drugs can get interrupted by psyllium husk. That is why it must not be consumed with other medicines.

  • Those who are sensitive to fiber might show an allergic response. The following uncommon effects might occur:
  • Itching
  • Skin Rashes
  • Swelling of tongue, face or throat
  • Dizziness

If at all you observe the following responses, seek medical help immediately.

  • Vomiting
  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty to breathe
  • Difficulty to swallow

If you do notice side effects other than these, contact your doctor immediately.

Other sources of resistant fiber

There are many food sources of this resistant fiber that also is a good prebiotic.

Psyllium Husk in a nutshell

Psyllium husk is a non-toxic bulk-forming laxative. It slows down the digestion but also provides more room for fermentation to produce products that enhance the growth of the good bacteria in the gut. It is available everywhere and must not be overdone. It not just regularizes your bowels but also helps you reduce your cravings and also minimizes the accumulation of bad cholesterol in the body. Psyllium husk is another remarkable example of a plant-based product and the benefits rendered by it with contentment.

More than any supplements, there are lifestyle changes you can include to help yourself free off any constipation problems. Indulge in an exercise regime for at least 30 minutes every day. Drinking sufficient water and consume a balanced diet that contains fibers as well. If at all there is a need for psyllium husk supplements, make sure you do not take any medications with it and consult the doctor first.


TL;DR?

 

Display this infographic on your website

Want to live a healthy lifestyle?

Subscribe to free FactDr newsletters.

REVAMP YOUR

If you're enjoying our website, we promise you'll absolutely love our new posts. Be the first one to get a copy!

Get factually correct, actionable tips delivered straight to your inbox once a week.

I want the latest scoop on :

We hate spam too. We will never share your email address with anyone. If you change your mind later, you can unsubscribe with just one click

By clicking Subscribe, I agree to the FactDr Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of FactDr subscriptions at any time.

 

 

 

Related Posts

Trending Topics

anal sex
Anal Sex : Tips from experts on how to be kinky yet safe Whether it irks you or stokes your fantasies, anal sex has always been an intriguing…
Female Masturbation: Tips on how to turn up the heat during a solo mission As a female, do you find yourself constantly wondering as to what is the best…
Clitoris: Why is it called the gateway to toe-curling female orgasms? The word clitoris comes from the Greek word kleitoris or “little hill.”  Many compare the…
Find the G spot: The top sex positions that guarantee an orgasm There has been a long debate as to whether the G-spot actually exists as a…
diverticulitis diet
Diverticulitis diet: The right way to eat if you suffer from the disease Are you suffering from diverticultis but clueless about your diet ? Read this complete plan…
Penis pump: Pump your way out of erectile dysfunction One of the options to treat erectile dysfunction is by the use of a penis…
passion fruit juice
Passion fruit: How one exotic fruit can help you fight infections and cancer! Passion fruit: Why does this exotic fruit have such an enticing name? And how can…
Maltitol: Things you must know about this artificial sweetener Sugar alcohols are produced by fruits and vegetables. Maltitol is an artificially produced sugar alcohol…
Top 6 remedies to treat a razor burn at home Symptoms of razor burn include bumps on the skin, redness, and irritation of the skin.…
occupational hazards types
Occupational Hazards: How to vouch for your health at your workplace Occupational hazards affect millions worldwide. Chemical spills, faulty wires, deadly pathogen, and work-stress can happen…
Tamarind: The top health benefits of this staple Asian ingredient Did you know this sweet and sour pulpy fruit does more than just add a…
Chromium Picolinate: An essential mineral supplement for faster weight loss Did you know that about 1.6 million deaths were directly linked to diabetes globally? How…
waterchestnut
Water Chestnuts: The tastiest ways to include this healthy tuber in your diet Water chestnut is not a nut after all. It is a tuber (much like the…
hidden benefits walking
9 benefits of walking we bet you didn’t know! Did you know walking can be the miracle pill for eternal youth? Everyone knows walking…
liver detox facts
7 liver detox facts and why ignoring these could kill you! Are you taking care of this organ that handles over 500 different vital functions in…
TBHQ: A carcinogen lingering in your child’s favorite snacks TBHQ - Why you should shun the practice of eating instant noodles or microwave popcorn…
The real reason why you shouldn’t be eating ramen noodles Instant ramen noodles might be your go-to snack for your hunger pangs. But with each…
Piaget stages: Do they accurately describe the way the human brain develops?  A common assumption was that children are less competent thinkers as compared to adults, but…
eating disorder anorexia
Eating Disorders: Lifestyle choice or a psychological condition? Is eating disorder just a harmless bad habit? Or does it represent grim psychological disorders?…
dance health benefits
5 unbelievable effects of dance on your overall health! You enjoy dancing, but did you know what else it does to your body? Dancing…
Lectin: The common link of proteins between peas and people Lectins are a type of protein that are found majorly in legumes. Most people are…
The science behind daith piercing: Can it really cure migraine? Since the ear has several pressure points, it is believed that daith piercing activates the…
Jicama: A fiber-rich tuber for your weight loss goals Pronouced as HEE-kah-ma, Jicama is the "new kid on the block" that has taken the…
The most effective tips on how to stay awake at work Do you often find yourself snoozing off at your work desk? This might be a…
The most effective tips on how to stay awake at work Do you often find yourself snoozing off at your work desk? This might be a…
V for Vagina: How well do you know this extraordinary part of the female anatomy? Vagina - a simple part of the human anatomy that has often created a feeling…
Milk Thistle skin
Milk Thistle: Find possible cures for fatal diseases in these purple blooms Milk thistle is well-known for treating liver conditions. However, did you know that it comes…
BRAT Diet: What is the right way to follow this diarrhea-relieving diet? BRAT diet, a simple diet consisting of just bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast, can help…
vital organ diseases
Common diseases that could cripple your vital organs Brain, heart, kidney, lungs, and liver - these vital organs are indeed vital for your…
sleep deprivation
Don’t let your sleep deficit grow into memory loss or heart attack Why is sleep important for us? How could sleep deprivation harm you? We bet you…
nutritional yeast bread
Nutritional Yeast : How can a fungi culture be good for your body? Nutritional yeast: How a simple culture of fungi can transform your skin, digestion, immunity ,…
Juice Plus: Can you really replace actual fruits with pills?  Juice Plus supplements intend to fill nutritional gaps present in our daily diet. But how…
Orgasms: How to perfect the art of achieving intense bursts of pleasure (every time!) Orgasms are dependent not just on the sexual activity but on your partner as well.…
magnesium test
Magnesium Test The magnesium test is a blood test that is generally prsecribed when an individual starts…
oral hygiene tips
6 shocking consequences of bad oral hygiene (and how to avoid them) Did you know bad breath is not just turning off, but also harms your body…
GM Diet: The fastest way to lose weight or yet another hoax diet? General Motors started this trend of extreme dieting for 7 straight days to ensure its…
Pumpkin Seeds: Why pumpkins are more than just for pies! Pumpkins have been long associated with Halloween carvings and delicious pies. But did you know…
CLA: A breakthrough weight loss supplement with minimal side effects Tried every weight loss supplement in the market with no substantial gain? Why not try…
Stye : The best natural home remedies to ease the pain Styes developing inside the eyelid tend to be more painful whereas external styes are less…
General adaptation syndrome: Understanding stress, one step at a time The struggle of the body to produce hormones during a stressful situation is the main…
Improve sex life
9 best tips from around the world for better sex life How can the pungent-smelling garlic pack in a punch to your libido? How could something…
Chlorella: Therapeutic powers of the billion-year-old algae now within your reach Chlorella - A billion year old nutrient-rich algae that can potentially ward off cancers and…
ashwagandha brain
Ashwagandha: The best-kept secret of Ayurveda now revealed! Ashwagandha literally means "smell of horse". Don't get bogged down by that one tiny detail…
green poop causes
Green poop : What are the reasons and how can you correct it Ever sneak a peek down the toilet only to shockingly find green poop? Why does…
human growth hormone
Human Growth Hormone (HGH) Test The HGH or human growth hormone test is a measure of GH or growth hormone…
social media adddiction
Your health in the age of Social Media: Why is digital detox a necessity? Did you know that more than 400 million people are dangerously addicted to social media?…
yoga health benefits
How to practice yoga for astounding health benefits Can a 5000-year-old system be the ultimate body healer? Did you know yoga can make…
Jackfruit: Slice your way into higher immunity, better digestion, & more… Native to the South East Asia, the jackfruit is a fruit brimming with thousands of…
How do neutrophils protect you from fatal bacterial attacks? During an infection, certain enzymes alert the mature neutrophils.  Neutrophils then travel through the bloodstream…
What is the average penis size and why should you care? Scientifically speaking, the average size of the penis depends on numerous factors such as genes,…
ketoacidosis diabetes
HB1Ac Test HB1Ac test is an important blood test that is used to measure the levels of…
hidden causes obesity
8 hidden causes of obesity you probably didn’t know! Did you know that around 2 billion people worldwide are either overweight or obese? Are…
lifestyle diseases
The Big 5 lifestyle diseases: How your everyday living might be killing you You'd be shocked to know how unhealthy and potentially fatal your everyday routine could be.…
low fodmap plan
Troubled with IBS? Here’s a complete roadmap to the low FODMAP diet Leaky & inflammatory gut troubling you? No medicine bringing you relief from the pain? Why…
kefir bottle
Kefir: Top reasons why this probiotic drink should be consumed by you Yet another remarkable fermented food, kefir is a much healthier version of yogurt. These chewy…
stevia side effects
Stevia: A healthy sugar substitute or yet another risky additive? Stevia is a plant native to South America.  It has been used as a natural…
Did you know drinking alkaline water could be the healthier choice for you? Ever wondered how safe is your drinking water in terms of pH? Recent studies have…
Love tea, hate tannins? Rooibos tea is just what you need The market is brimming with a multitude of herbal teas. But what makes rooibos tea…
Aphrodisiacs
Aphrodisiacs: These are the best foods to get you in the right mood While wine and chocolates have forever been associated with romance, there are several other aphrodisiac…
Carb Cycling: Weighing the pros vs the cons of this diet routine Completely discarding carbs from your life will do you more harm than good. Read more…
Experts reveal the safest ways to perform an enema at home The idea of pushing some up your rectal area might make you queasy but an…
Hydroquinone: Is it the best topical treatment for hyperpigmentation? Darkening of the skin due to high melanin levels is called hyperpigmentation.  Hydroquinone interferes with melanin…
Quinine: How gin and tonic came to be known as a potent health elixir The discovery of quinine-containing tree bark is sometimes considered the most serendipitous medical discovery of…
about mediterranean diet
Why you should be adopting a Mediterranean style of diet today Ever wondered why the Mediterranean diet is so healthy? One simple solution to lowering risk…
bananas exercise
10 health reasons why you should go “bananas” over bananas! Bananas:The world's most popular fruit comes with a host of unbelievable health benefits. Find out…
Moringa drink
Moringa: This could be the most nutrient-dense food known to us! Moringa is a lush green tree brimming with over 90 essential nutrients required for a…
Salt dangers
Sodium chloride: The wonders and dangers of the simple table salt Sodium chloride is a salt containing sodium and chlorine ions at a 1:1 ratio. It…
What is the right way to take a pregnancy test? A pregnancy test is undertaken to determine if you have conceived. A home pregnancy test…
Balneotherapy jacuzzi
5 things you didn’t know about balneotherapy and how you can do it at home Sauna baths have been popular since a long time. But how much more beneficial can…
autoimmune diseases facts
Autoimmune Diseases: Find out if your body is attacking you right now Did you know your body can harm itself? What are autoimmune diseases and why does…
Dragon Fruit – Blessing from Nature’s Basket The dragon fruit is packed with nutrients and yet low on calories and is the…
Amaranth: Why is this native Peruvian grain called the “crop of the future”? Full of healthy high proteins and gluten-free, the grain, Amaranth, the tasty and ancient pseudo…
chia seeds weight loss
Chia seeds: How to consume this staple Aztec food to get a leaner body Chia seeds: What is the actual reason for its sudden popularity? Why are celebrities swearing…
erectile dysfunction treatment
Erectile Dysfunction: Effective tips to help you get back on charge Erectile dysfunction is a common male sexual dysfunction. Don't stress out. Just follow these amazing…
How chlorophyll is more than just a green pigment meant for photosynthesis Cholorphyll - you must know the usual function of this chemical in plants. But did…
Pescatarian Diet 101: What are the inherent health advantages of this diet? People opt to become a pescatarian in order to enrich their bodies with the essential…
Is bronchitis contagious? And how to prevent this infection? It is acute bronchitis that is contagious which means you can contract it from another…
shakeology woman
Meal replacement or protein drink? Learn all about Shakeology and its claims Shakeology from Beachbody claims to be the most suitable shake that can aid in weight…
lose weight fast
12 easy and instant steps to successful weight loss Do you want to lose weight without losing your mind? Does weight loss always mean…
collagen benefits skin
Collagen: Get age-defying skin and faster hair growth with this miracle protein Collagen – Wrinkle-free skin, stronger nails, and thicker locks – now you have more reasons…
Isagenix diet
Isagenix Diet: Do you really need liquid meal replacements to lose weight? Isagenix Diet - What are liquid meal replacements and why is the world going ga-ga…
Horny Goat Weed: Can it improve libido in human beings too? This plant got its name as Horny Goat Weed when one of the goats feeding…
Cayenne: The remarkable benefits of these red hot chili peppers These may make you rush for a glass of water, but cayenne pepper is actually…
Trisodium Phosphate: How a paint thinner made its way into your breakfast Ever thought how toxic chemicals find their way into our foods? How can they harm…
Psyllium Husk: More than just an effective natural laxative Psyllium husk, or isabgol, is a popular natural laxative . But did you in addition…
Experts reveal, how long does marijuana actually stay in your system… Weed or marijuana is one of the most widely abused recreational drug. But did you…
Eustachian Tube : Functions and top home remedies to prevent its infection Pressure equalization, mucus drainage and protecting the middle ear from bacteria and viruses are the…
How accurate is the hair follicle drug test? Hair follicle drug test is one of the best ways to identify drug use in…
Appendix pain: Recent findings on this not-so vestigial organ The exact function of the appendix is still not clear. Some consider it as an…
TRX: Why is this total resistance workout the best choice for your body? TRX or total resistance exercise is a form of exercise where suspension belts are used…
Poop chart: Top things you didn’t you your poop could reveal about you Bristol poop chart was designed during the 1990s in order to help doctors identify various…
6 arguments in favour of glucosamine and where can you find it Studies have shown that glucosamine works by preventing the breakdown of cartilage of the joints.…
serum zinc test
Serum Zinc Test The serum zinc test is a blood test performed to assess the zinc level in…
SHBG test
Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) Test SHBG is an important sex hormone that is linked to testosterone in men and estrogen…
free thyroxine ft4
Free thyroxine test (FT4) The FT4 or free thyroxine test is a blood test used to detect the level…
17 OH Progesterone test The 17 OH progesterone test is a simple blood test that is mainly used to…
c peptide test
C-Peptide test C-peptide is a blood or urine test which is used to monitor and assess the…
nature health benefits
Green Healing: The amazing health benefits of being in nature You have no idea what sitting in a closed room does to your body and…
stress depressed anxiety
Are you depressed or just stressed? Know when to see a doctor Why are some people more anxious than others? Is being depressed the same as feeling…
fitness routine fun
10 fantastic ways to make your fitness routine more fun! Are you too bored to exercise? Do you avoid gym cause it's too monotonous? Looking…
alcohol toxic
7 startling facts that will make you quit alcohol today Does drinking really make you friendly and happy? How many calories does a can of…
eating myths debunked
8 ‘healthy eating’ myths you believed until now Is a zero-carb diet really healthy for you? Are organic products worth their cost? Did…
acne removal tips
Anatomy of acne: 7 instant steps to kiss those zits goodbye Blackheads, whiteheads, or pimples-call them what you may. Acne is never good news.Did you know…
MANUKA HONEY child
Manuka Honey: What is it and why should you choose this over regular honey? Manuka honey is a specific type of honey produced by honey bees that collect nectar…
boost immunity tips
Step up your defence: 15 proven tips on how to boost your immunity Want to naturally build up a stronger immunity? Tired of frequent colds and runny nose?You…
improve digestion weight loss
Power up your gut: 8 proven steps on how to improve your digestion Did you know you have a colony of bacteria in your gut that help you…
antibiotic resistance
Antibiotic Resistance: How common diseases become deadly Can a cold kill you? How important is to get a flu shot? Why do…
Silicon Dioxide: How can a component of sand be essential to your wellbeing? Silicon is one of the most abundant elements in the nature. Find out how silicon…
Shilajit: A miracle Himalayan herb for an active and happy life The Himalayas contain more wonders than you thought. Shilajit is a miracle herb that is…
Coconut sugar: What is it and is it healthier than table sugar? In the long list of things that the wonderful coconut gives us, coconut sugar is…
Kava: Is it the healthy substitute for alcohol you have been waiting for? Native to the beautiful South Pacific islands, Kava is a famous beverage rooted in the…
Hibiscus: Nourish your beauty and health with these vibrant blooms Hibiscus is a trumpet shaped flower found abundantly in tropical countries. It has been historically…
How can Kegels help you overcome weak pelvic muscles & incontinence? Kegel exercises are pelvic floor strengthening exercises that can help you overcome incontinence issues that…
Oxidative Stress: Understanding the most lethal phenomenon happening in your body right now Free radicals cause damage to the body, which is known as oxidation.  The amount of…
diabetes symptoms in women
Diabetes in women: Understanding the dangers, risk factors, & treatment Diabetes causes more problems in women that it does in men. The risk of developing…

Related Posts

Want to live a healthy lifestyle?

Subscribe to free FactDr newsletters.

REVAMP YOUR

If you're enjoying our website, we promise you'll absolutely love our new posts. Be the first one to get a copy!

Get factually correct, actionable tips delivered straight to your inbox once a week.

I want the latest scoop on :

We hate spam too. We will never share your email address with anyone. If you change your mind later, you can unsubscribe with just one click

By clicking Subscribe, I agree to the FactDr Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of FactDr subscriptions at any time.