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Can Psyllium Be Taken Long Term?

Good health is very important to every human. This explains why most people adopt measures to keep their body system functioning effectively. Health-conscious individuals are turning to psyllium husk powders to maintain a healthy diet as well as stay gluten-free. 

Psyllium is a soluble fiber utilized as a gentle bulk-forming laxative in products. This implies that it dries up water in the gut and makes for easy movement of the bowel. With this, it can be used to treat constipation. It can also be added to one’s diet to promote regularity and maintain good digestive health. 

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Generally, taking psyllium has proven to be beneficial to different parts of the body such as the pancreas and the heart. Recently, getting these products has become difficult hence the need to try new recipes. Fortunately, there are several psyllium husk substitute ingredients like flaxseed and chia seeds that you can use to achieve a similar outcome.

How Does Psyllium Husk Work?

When you take this product, you must take a good measure of liquid with the supplement. The liquid helps the product to absorb water as well as pump it into your intestines. Psyllium husks are considered a good source of soluble dietary fiber. It is safe for long-term use but a physician needs to be consulted in the event of total reliance on these products. 

This article will explain the benefits of these products as well as some substitutes that you can try out.

Psyllium Husk

Benefits of Psyllium Husk

The following are some of the benefits users may experience:

Cholesterol Reduction

Psyllium binds bile and fat salts inside the body, just like other fiber supplements. The liver replaces the bile acids excreted from your body with the use of cholesterol. This procedure causes a deficiency that reduces a person’s cholesterol level. It does not just lower overall cholesterol, but it also lowers LDL cholesterol. 

Relieves Constipation

With its laxative function, psyllium relieves constipation. It has also been found to be more effective than wheat bran and docusate sodium in treating chronic constipation. For other ways to treat constipation, you can read this article.

Relieves Diarrhea

Psyllium does not just improve constipation and related symptoms; it is also effective in treating diarrhea. These plants have the capacity to absorb enough water and this reduces diarrhea. 

Weight Loss

These products have a significant impact on blood sugar that helps with the regulation of body weight. You will observe that excess sugar in the bloodstream will cause the body to store them as fat. They also assist you in losing weight as it makes you have a full feeling that controls your craving for food. 

Blood Pressure

Psyllium helps with the reduction of blood pressure. Patients with high blood pressure can talk to a physician before using the product to control their blood pressure. 

Where Can I find these products?

These products come in different forms such as capsules, powder, and chewable wafers. You can easily find it in supplement and health food stores, or medicine sections of supermarkets. You need to know that it is not labeled with the tag “Psyllium.” For instance, Metamucil which is a popular laxative is psyllium husk. It can also have other brand names like Cilium, Alramucil, or Genfiber and is also the main ingredient in Colonbroom.

Top psyllium Husk Substitutes to Try Out

Here are some options to consider:

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are tiny greyish-black seeds with a gelatinous body coating that makes them sticky. They are originally grown by indigenous people in Guatemala and Mexico. Chia seeds are known to absorb enough water like psyllium husks and this makes them very soft to feel. They are also rich in proteins that are trapped by the body system.

Chia seeds contain fatty acids (Omega 3) that are effective in reducing the cholesterol levels in the body as well as maintaining heart health. Taking these seeds will also make you feel full for a long time, reducing your chances of overfeeding.

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Flaxseeds

These are tiny brown seeds used for making muffins and bread. These seeds do not just make for good options to psyllium husk, they also serve as a vegan/ vegetarian alternative to eggs and dairy products. Flaxseeds are considered very healthy due to their high level of fatty acids. Those seeking gluten-free alternatives will find these seeds beneficial as they are derived from a hypoallergenic plant. 

In terms of nutritional value, these seeds have a considerable amount of fiber and fatty acids that make one feel full for a long time. You only need to get the complete seed and grind it before use. 

Xantham Gum

This product is an essential ingredient for making bread. It gives baked foods the needed elasticity that was missing before and also helps with retaining moisture and keeping the bread fresh for long. Xantham Gum is considered one of the best alternatives to psyllium husk due to its affordability despite sharing a similar texture with husk powders. 

Cornstarch

Cornstarch is a popular ingredient used in making cornbread. It shares the same texture with husks. Cornstarch is cheap and readily available although it may not be considered as the healthiest choice due to the association of corn with several health issues.

Almond Flour

Almond flour is considered a healthy diet due to its rich fat content. It is also low on fiber and protein. With rich minerals like manganese, copper, and vitamin E. Plus, almond flour makes for a good alternative to psyllium husks. You can easily find almond cookies, almond cakes, and almond milk in stores around you.

Coconut Flour

This is a popular choice especially for people who are searching for gluten-free alternatives. It has a good measure of dietary fiber, magnesium, and calcium. Although it can be difficult to digest, it is definitely a viable substitute for psyllium husk.

Conclusion

If you are looking for products that will help keep your body systems running, then psyllium husks may just be an option to consider. They have been in use for centuries and have proven to be effective. If you also wish to use substitute ingredients, this article will guide you.