Gluten-Free Psyllium Husk, Fiber, Powder Health Benefits: Weight Loss, Diarrhea

    Psyllium (Psyllium semen) is a tried and proven natural remedy with numerous health-giving properties for different health complaint, used for centuries in folk medicine, Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicine. It is produced in large scale in countries such as India, USA, Germany, UK, France, Canada, Australia, Indonesia, Gulf of Pakistan etc

    India has been the largest producer of Psyllium for years and still dominating with over 70% world production and export while it seems USA is the country that most cherished the use of Psyllium since they import the produce more than any country in the world.

    It also has regulating effect on various complaints of the gastro-intestinal tract, and can positively impact the four factors of the metabolic syndrome: lowering cholesterol and blood sugar levels, blood pressure and obesity.

    Psyllium can be used over a longer period. Side effects are rare and real hard to worry about application. They are low calorie, gluten-free and nearly tasteless. Several psyllium products are available in health stores. The buyer has the choice between some European species of Plantago psyllium as such as Plantago afra, Plantago psyllium and the Indian psyllium seed of Plantago ovata.

    Psyllium seeds can be mixed in liquid and swollen before taken. The actual active ingredient of psyllium is mucilage which can help to regulate the consistency of the stool.

Obtaining the Psyllium Seed Peelings
    It is mechanically broken and the cups are separated by means of air separation (by a fan) of the heavier constituents of the seeds; the lighter seeds shell stay behind.
In the trade, psyllium as a whole or kibbled seeds, psyllium peelings, psyllium shell powder, and different combination preparations are available, so the desired product available for each application.

    Psyllium capsules contain usually the shells ground into fine powder, the Indian
Plantago ovata. Psyllium and psyllium peelings fade, only slightly sweet taste and are caused by the swelling slimy. If you don't like this mild flavor or the slimy consistency, you can draw on the flavourless capsules.

    These offer further advantages: they provide a simple revenue anytime and ensure the constant dosage. Psyllium peelings can either be consumed swollen, in liquid or spread via the breakfast cereal or soup.

    They are very popular, has ingredients used in bread baking in particular in celiac patients. The powder can also be used with various liquid, water, juice or soups. To generally creeping up, start with the treatment by leaving sources to one teaspoon of psyllium (corresponding to about 5 grams of seeds) 100 to 250 mL of water and then drink.

    Immediately, you should consume 1-2 glass of water. The daily dose can be increased gradually to 10 to 40 grams of Psyllium according to the individual and personal needs. The daily dose is lowered accordingly when using psyllium peelings due to the much higher source assets.

    The daily dose should be from 4 up to 20 grams maximum. Therefore, one should be careful and may consult the physician or practitioner for the appropriate dosage. It should be noted that, Since the seeds swell much, the daily drinking amount must be adjusted necessarily.

    If you're buying psyllium products, you should pay attention on certified organic products. They will be free of unwanted impurities and always constant quality. To correct taking note, also the dosage instructions on the product package.

Active ingredients in psyllium and psyllium peelings
    First and foremost, Psyllium mucilage is responsible for health promotion. Plantago afra contains approximately 10-12% mucilage. This mucilage are localized
in the epidermis of the shell and contain the monosaccharides Xylose and Arabinose as main components, as well as lesser amount the monosaccharide Rhamnose and
the fiber Galacturonic.

    Rhamnose and Galacturonic occur in the side chains. The seeds themselves contain also fatty oil, Hemicellulose (polysaccharides), proteins, small amounts of Iridoidglykoside (such as Aucubin), phenyl propan derivatives (Isoacteosid, Acteosid), flavonoids (including Plantaovasid) and alkaloids the Boschniakin type.

    The Indian psyllium (Plantago ovata) contains 20-30% mucilage. These consist of a widely branched Arabinoxylan (Hemicellulose), has tied Galacturonic. The seeds themselves contain a fatty oil which is rich in oil and linoleic acid, as well as proteins and small amounts of Acteosid, Triterpenes, Mono terpene alkaloids and approximately 0.21% Aucubin.

    In the presence of liquid, the gums swell up and formed the seeds around a slime layer. The whole seeds are able to bind at least ten times of its own weight in liquid. The seed shells can absorb even more than the forty-fold their own weight in liquid (source number > 40).

    100 grams of psyllium contains approximately 1.73 grams carbohydrates, 0.55 grams fat, 84 grams of fiber, 2.38 grams of protein and only 90KJ/21Kcal.

The health effects at a glance
Psyllium for constipation
    Today, many people suffer from chronic constipation (constipation). The women are affected much more often than men. The constipation is caused in particular by lack of exercise, as well as the modern, low-fiber diet. Psyllium can contribute to alleviate the complaints here. Psyllium work this gently laxative (laxative).

    Due to the swelling of the gums, stool volume and thus also the filling pressure is increasing on the intestinal wall. The intestinal peristalsis is stimulated, the Chair faster transported and thrown the reflex for bowel movements.

Psyllium anti-diarrhea
    With diarrhea, the anti-diarrhoeal effects of psyllium source materials comes to fruition. The source materials are able to bind large amounts of water in the intestine and cause such an effective thickening of the intestinal content and extending the transit time in the large intestine. The mucus protects on the intestinal mucosa and binds the bacterial toxins that are often formed during diarrhea.

    Psyllium and the metabolic syndrome: blood sugar, cholesterol, blood pressure, obesity.
    In Germany for example, approximately 25% of the population of the metabolic syndrome are affected, with rising and unknown number of unreported cases. The disease is equally often affect men and women.

    Patients are usually over 60 years of age, however, the number of cases is growing also on steadily in the under 60 years. Children and young people are
increasingly affected.

    The four main risk factors of the metabolic syndrome (called a "Deadly Quartet") include
An increased blood glucose.
Elevated cholesterol levels
Obesity and high blood pressure.

    Psyllium can have positive effects on these four diseases. Psyllium can reduce blood sugar levels in diabetics easily. Through the psyllium, the intestinal content is
viscous and the carbohydrates contained in it are delayed. This applies in particular to the carbohydrate glucose, causing blood sugar spikes.

    The insulin response is improved. Psyllium is also very effective as it may reduce the serum concentrations of total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol without affecting the concentration of "good" HDL cholesterol.

    Cholesterol and bile acids are bound by the swollen on mucilage in the small intestine and thus prevented the resumption in the intestine; This binds in such a way that, it automatically increases excretion.

    Epidemiological studies also suggest that the water-soluble dietary fiber contained in the psyllium can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure. Psyllium can be useful also for weight loss in overweight or obese because the seeds can lower calories. The nagging feeling of hunger will decrease and the patient would take less food.

Psyllium in pregnancy, hemorrhoids and anal fissures
    The use of flea seed products is also helpful for the regulation of chair consistence during pregnancy, in anal fissures, hemorrhoids and after rectal-anal operations. The Chair is soft and so much glide enabled by the source materials.

    This can prevent the often extremely painful bowel movements for hemorrhoids and fissures. The quality of life of patients will rise significantly.

Psyllium for irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis
    More than 10% of the population in USA and Germany are affected by irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Here, psyllium in severe chronic diarrhoea can lead to a significant relief of discomfort as the mucilage have a soothing effect on irritated and inflamed intestinal sections.

    It Could be shown in a study published in the British medical Journal BMJ 2009  that Indian psyllium was far better able to alleviate symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, as for example flax seed.

Psyllium as Remedy for animals
    Psyllium is being used as animal medicine for a long time. Psyllium peelings are approved by the European Union as a single feed for animals such as dogs, cats, and horses so also in people, primarily for the treatment of gastro intestinal disorders, digestive disorders and to regulate Chair.

    In horses, the seeds are usually used as treatment to prevent the dreaded and for the animal life-threatening sand colic. To do this, a four-week psyllium Spa is performed usually twice a year, to remove the sand deposited in the digestive tract and digestive disorders.

    The psyllium is usually well eaten and are very well tolerated for the animals. In the trade, there is a suitable means for any purpose. The dosage and preparation instructions are described in detail on the packaging. For further questions, contact your veterinarian.

 External use of psyllium
    Psyllium are also ideal for external use with boils, abscesses and sprains, dislocations and other blunt injuries of the locomotor system. The psyllium in the form of pulp envelopes are used for this purpose.

    Soak seeds in warm water for the treatment of abscesses and boils, treatment of sprains etc. However, soak the seeds in cold water. A spreadable paste should arise, which is applied to the area to be treated and covered with a cloth. You can soak the porridge one to several hours.

    Pulp residues can be easily removed with water. The warm pulp softens the inflamed site, soaks up excess tissue fluid and promotes wound healing. The cold porridge to the treatment of blunt injuries dissipates heat from the injured area and is so cooling. Here too, the pulp takes tissue fluid so that swelling can go back faster.

Compatibility and contra-indications
 The safety and the correct use of psyllium and psyllium peelings
    Psyllium are very well tolerated and side effects are relatively rare when used correctly. Often, to apply it properly, you should ensure sufficient fluid intake. Especially at the beginning of the treatment, feeling of fullness and pressure feelings occur in rare cases of bloating or even mild digestive disorders in the gastrointestinal tract.

    These side effects are usually harmless and disappear after a few days and a certain habituation mostly by themselves. Very rarely, even allergic reactions are possible: colds, bronchial spasms, conjunctivitis, and skin reactions. This is common when using psyllium powder; as the case may be that, the fine dust inhaled or get on the skin.

    In these cases, it can be remedied by using whole shells, seeds powder or capsules. Also, the intake of specially purified peelings of of psyllium, whereby certain proteins have been removed, can help to avoid allergic reactions. Take psyllium when you are not lying down or in the evening before going to bed.

    The psyllium or psyllium husks could swell in the esophagus and thus obstruct breathing. If it should occur after ingestion or swallowing, pain in the chest, feelings of tightness or shortness of breath may occur and a doctor should be consulted immediately because it ca lead to suffocation. Interactions with other drugs are not known so far.

Contra-indications - when not to use psyllium
    The intake of psyllium products should be avoided for some diseases. In case of doubt, consult also your doctor or medical specialist. Some of them include, narrowing of the esophagus or digestive tract, intestinal obstruction, abdominal discomfort, nausea and vomiting, rectal bleeding, megacolon or a known hypersensitivity.

    Also, it should be taken by insulin-dependent diabetic patients, children under 12 years of age, as well as by people who need to restrict their daily drinking quantity or their total liquid intake for health reasons. This may be the case for example with certain dysfunction of the heart and kidneys.

    You should also avoid simultaneous taking of certain medicines and other source means: Cumarinderivaten (means inhibit blood clotting), intestinal motility inhibitory diarrhea or pain relievers (such as loperamide, opioids), lithium and iron supplements due to the reduced consumption of active ingredient during the treatment of psyllium.

Background knowledge to psyllium
    It's called psyllium seeds of some plants in the genus of plantains (Plantago) in the plantain family (Plantaginaceae). These larva are among other things related to the domestic US ribwort plantain. The seeds, due to its resemblance to fleas were given the name "Psyllium".

    Plantago psyllium (also: Plantago afra or Plantago psyllium) and p. indica (also:
p. arenaria or sand plantain) wild occur in southern Europe, in North-Eastern Africa, in Western Siberia and in Asia minor. The plants in Spain and southern France are grown commercially for the production of seeds.

   The seeds (capsule fruits) are dark brown to Black-Brown, shiny and oblong elliptic to oblong ovoid. They are 2-3 mm long, 0.7 1.5 mm wide and glabrous. The seeds in the longitudinal direction are furrowed with a bright, circular and skinned spot on the ventral side.

    The plant can be up to 50 cm tall and grows bushy and held out to erect branches. The stem is loose yellow, the opposite leaves are lanceolate, thin and flat,
three-nerved. They are 3-4 mm wide and 6-8 mm long. The flowering period is from June to September, which are numerous and dense flowers in long stalked spikes in the upper leaf axils.

    Two seeds are contained in each fruit capsule. Plantago ovata (also: Plantago ispaghula, Indian psyllium, blond psyllium, Indian plantain) is an herbaceous, usually one-year plant that can reach a height of 2 to 10 cm depending on the location and growth conditions.

    It grows from the basic rosette lace and densely woolly hairy leaves, the 2 up to 10 cm long and between 1-5 mm (or, depending on the available water up to 10 mm) can be wide. The flowering period extends from January until April.

    In the ears, they form seeds as opposed to the conventional psyllium seed of
Plantago psyllium that's slightly larger (1.5 to 3, 5 mm long). They are pale pink or reddish-yellow colouring, colour strongly varying from pale and drab. It's called "Blonde psyllium" the Indian psyllium.

    The oval-shaped or boat-shaped seeds are also longitudinally furrowed with a clearly visible "demolition job" on the ventral side. Originally, the Indian psyllium is native to the deserts of North Africa and Southwest Asia. It's also naturalized in Central, South, and East Asia as well as Australia. The Indian psyllium are grown mainly in India and Pakistan for export.