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MoonDragon's Health & Wellness
Nutrition Basics

Herbs
GLUCOMANNAN
Konjac Fiber

(Amorphophallus Konjac)


For Informational Use Only
For more detailed information contact your health care provider
about options that may be available for your specific situation.





  • Glucomannan Description
  • Glucomannan Uses, Health Benefits, & Scientific Evidence
  • Glucomannan Dosage Information
  • Glucomannan Safety, Cautions & Interactions
  • Glucomannan Herbal Supplements & Products




  • glucomannan plant, root, and powder


    GLUCOMANNAN DESCRIPTION

    A WATER SOLUBLE FIBER

    Glucomannan is also known as Konjac Fiber and Amorphophallus konjac (or Amorphophallus rivieri). Other common names include Konjac, Konjac Root, Snake Plant, Devil's Tongue, Doo Bulbs, Mannan, Corpse Flowers, Voodoo Lily, Snake Palm. It is a member of the Arecaceae (Palm) family.

    Glucomannan, a natural water-soluble plant fiber, calorie free, that comes from the konjac root which is unique to Asia. Historically, Asians have used Glucomannan in traditional foods such as noodles, tofu, and other Asian food products.

    When Glucomannan is placed in water, it can swell up to 17 times its original volume. These qualities make it extremely effective and convenient as a fiber supplement, and can be useful for weight loss. Glucomannan offers a significant advantage over other forms of fiber because it takes much smaller doses to produce optimum results.

    glucomannan plant


    GLUCOMANNAN HISTORY

    Glucomannan is an excellent, natural dietary fiber that picks up and removes fat from the colon wall, and it is derived from the starchy tuber of the amorphophallis plant, which is sometimes also called the konjac plant. It is a perennial that is native to Asia, mostly China and Japan and also grown in Korea. Each plant produces one large tuberous root (generally over ten pounds in weight) that resembles a beet, and puts up a thick stem with one enormous leaf and one evil-smelling flower or spadix, which is pollinated by flies. The bark of the plant has the appearance of snakeskin, which has given rise to one of its common names, Snake Plant, and it may be found in light woodlands or cultivated beds in rich, moist, loamy soils in dappled shade, but will also survive in sun and either acid or alkaline soils.

    The root produces the excellent dietary fiber that has been used as a nutritious supplement in Oriental foods, such as noodles (shirataki) and tofu, and is also included in the gelling agent, konnyaku, in Japanese cuisine. It is considered a health food in Japan that is used to maintain healthy intestinal function.

    An interesting side-story tells us that Konjac powder was added to the first national currency of Japan in the late 1800s to prevent counterfeiting, but it was stopped after rats began to eat the bills.

    Glucomannan forms a thick, gooey gel when exposed to fluids and results in a soft mass that moves through the intestines in approximately twelve hours' time. It is not digested by the body, but produces a bulkier stool that tends to cause peristalsis in the intestines (muscle contractions), resulting in less pressure and more easily expelled waste as it passes through the colon (with much less straining).

    The dried corm (short, vertical, swollen underground plant stem) of the konjac plant contains around forty percent Glucomannan gum. Glucomannan is mainly a straight-chain polymer, with a small amount of branching. It has a very high molecular-weight polysaccharide made of d-glucose and d-mannose sugars. This relatively complex carbohydrate is a polymer made up of many monosaccharides joined by glycosidic linkages. Other constituents in Glucomannan include fiber, protein, fat, calcium, phosphorus and iron.





    konjac flower


    GLUCOMANNAN USES, HEALTH BENEFITS, & SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE

    A FIBER SUPPLEMENT

    COLON HEALTH

    Glucomannan is an emollient, polysaccharide soluble fiber that helps to remove fat from the colon wall and gently cleanse the intestine, helping to relieve constipation. Its ability to swell and form a thick gel when exposed to water helps to form a bulky mass in the intestines that cause the intestinal muscles to contract. This action produces an easy and soothing passage of the stool through the intestines and colon without the usual pressure and straining associated with constipation and is thought to decrease fecal transit time. As a gentle herbal colon cleanser, it is used to aid in the elimination of toxins from the colon that are produced during digestion and may also be helpful in cases of diverticulosis and other bowel disorders. Since it is often difficult to include enough fiber in our daily diets, Glucomannan is an excellent and easy way to promote regularity and a cleansed colon. We need fiber in our diets every day for good health, and Glucomannan supplements are an easy way to fulfill that need.

    APPETITE CONTROL & WEIGHT LOSS

    It also increases bulk in the stomach and intestines and gives dieters a feeling of fullness, which helps to reduce the appetite and assist in weight loss programs. Clinical evidence suggests Glucomannan may be beneficial in weight loss. Because it is a soluble fiber, it absorbs water to form a viscous- gel-like mass. Glucomannan appears to help by expanding greatly to many times its own weight and occupying calorie-free space in the stomach, which makes people feel full and satisfied, and thereby reduces the appetite. By picking up and removing fat from the colon wall, it is thought to be beneficial for obesity as it efficiently moves fat from the body.

    HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH

    Glucomannan fiber may also be beneficial in lowering total cholesterol and regulating blood sugar levels. While Glucomannan is primarily used as a fiber supplement, several small controlled studies have found that Glucomannan reduced total cholesterol levels in otherwise healthy adults. Studies found Glucomannan reduced bad cholesterol (LDL), and some studies showed increased good cholesterol (HDL). Glucomannan was also found to improve other risk factors of heart disease, such as high triglyceride levels and high blood pressure.

    BLOOD SUGAR REGULATION

    Several studies have suggested that Glucomannan may help regulate blood sugar levels in the body, and therefore could be helpful in treating diabetes. Glucomannan is believed to regulate blood sugar levels (both low and high blood sugar), which may be of great help in cases of diabetes (and obesity). It has been shown to improve the lipid profile and alleviate the fasting blood glucose levels of Type 2 diabetics. It is slow moving and not digested by the body but forms a bulky, soft mass that is said to absorb dietary sugar and insulin and help to regulate variable blood sugar levels that often occur after a meal. There are also many current studies that show promise for Glucomannan in the treatment of pregnancy-related diabetes and possible help in cases of hypoglycemia for those who have undergone recent stomach surgery.





    GLUCOMANNAN USES, HEALTH BENEFITS, & SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE

    FIBER SUPPLEMENTS

    Glucomannan is a water-soluble dietary fiber that can absorb up to 200 times its weight in water. Derived from konjac root (Amorphophallus konjac), this true weight loss helper has been proven to help to slow down the rise in the blood sugar after meals, support healthy cholesterol levels, and speed up metabolism.

    Regarding good heart health, a fiber-rich diet is highly recommended, and Glucomannan fiber has shown excellent test results in helping to lower total serum cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, while increasing the good cholesterol (HDL) levels. Lower cholesterol is said to reduce platelet aggregation (clotting) and be beneficial in the treatment of high blood pressure and arteriosclerosis, which could lead to strokes and heart attacks. Among the positive studies is one published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 1995, entitled "Effect of Short-Term Ingestion of Konjac Glucomannan on Serum Cholesterol in Healthy Men." In this experiment, 3.9 grams of Konjac eaten daily reduced total cholesterol by ten percent and LDL cholesterol by 7.2-percent.

    Glucomannan is an ingredient in a variety of dietary supplement products marketed to aid in weight loss but this natural supplement can help in other conditions as well. When using glucomannan and other dietary fiber supplements, it is best to start out with a small amount and increase gradually. It is recommended to drink at least 8 ounces of water each time any bulk-forming laxative, including glucomannan, is taken.

    Suggested dosage is 2 to 3 capsules, 2 times each day with water at mealtimes; however, capsule sizes may vary. Read product label directions before use.





    GLUCOMANNAN SAFETY, CAUTIONS, & INTERACTIONS

    SAFETY CONCERNS

    While taking Glucomannan, some people have experienced excess gas, stomach distension, or mild diarrhea. These symptoms usually subside after the first couple days of use, or with a reduction in dosage.

    Safety in young children, pregnant or nursing women, or those with severe liver or kidney disease is unknown.

    CONTRAINDICATIONS

    It is recommended that Glucomannan Herbal Supplement and other medications be taken at different times, as fiber interferes with the absorption of other medications. Taking Glucomannan may interfere with the actions of blood sugar medicines resulting in the return of symptoms otherwise controlled by prescription medicines; this includes any change in blood sugar control.

    CAUTIONS

    Taking Glucomannan supplements without adequate liquids may cause it to swell, and, in extreme cases, cause choking. It is recommended that plenty of water be drunk with Glucomannan, as the fiber tends to expand and may cause breathing problems or lodging in the throat.

    Do not take this product if you have difficulty swallowing. People with esophageal stricture (narrowing of the esophagus) or any other narrowing or obstruction of the gastrointestinal tract should not take Glucomannan.






    GLUCOMANNAN HERBAL SUPPLEMENTS & PRODUCTS

  • Glucomannan Herbal Products


  • QUALITY SUPPLIES & PRODUCTS


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    GLUCOMANNAN HERBAL SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS

    Glucomannan (Amorphophallus konjac fiber) is a 100% dietary fiber source obtained from the root of the konjac plant. Glucomannan is a calorie-free, natural plant fiber that removes fat from the colon wall and gently helps to cleanse the intestines and relieve constipation. It increases bulk in the stomach (and intestines) and gives dieters a feeling of fullness, which helps reduce the appetite and assist in weight loss programs. Glucomannan fiber may also be beneficial in lowering total cholesterol and regulating blood sugar levels. We need fiber in our diets every day for good health and Glucomannan supplements are an easy way to fulfill that need.

    STARWEST BOTANICALS PRODUCTS

    Starwest Botanicals: Glucomannan Powder, 1 lb.


    HERBSPRO PRODUCTS

    HerbsPro: Glucomannan Appetite Formula, NaturalMax, 2000 mg, 90 Caps (90652)
    HerbsPro: Glucomannan, Natures Way, 100 Caps (17911)
    HerbsPro: Glucomannan, Natures Way, 180 VCaps (69745)
    HerbsPro: Glucomannan, 100% Pure Powder, Now Foods, 8 oz. (94325)


    KALYX PRODUCTS

    Kalyx: Glucomannan Root, Natures Way, 100 Capsules: HF
    Glucomannan is a dietary fiber source from the root of the konjac plant. Glucomannan is an excellent addition to a sensible weight loss program.
    Kalyx: Glucomannan Powder, Starwest Botanicals, 1 lb: C
    Kalyx: Glucomannan Powder, Starwest Botanicals, 1 lb. (25 lbs earns 15% refund): C
    Kalyx: Glucomannan (Amorphophallus konjac) Root Powder, Kalyx, 1 kg (2.2 lbs): RF
    Kalyx: Glucomannan Root Powder, Kalyx, 1 kg (2.2 lbs): EB
    Kalyx: Glucomannan Root 90% Powdered Extract, Kalyx, 1 kg (2.2 lbs): EB


    AMAZON PRODUCTS

    Amazon: Glucomannan Konjac Supplement Products


    NOW Foods Glucomannan 100% Pure Powder - 8 oz.
    Glucomannan Powder by Now Foods is 100% Pure. Glucomannan is a soluble bulk-forming fiber derived from Konjac Root (Amorphophallus konjac). Clinical studies have demonstrated that Glucomannan can provide temporary relief of constipation and may help to maintain serum lipid levels already within the healthy range. In addition because Glucomannan helps to promote satiety (feeling of fullness) it can be an effective addition to a weight management plan that includes a healthy diet and exercise program. As a dietary supplement take 1/2 level teaspoon (2 grams) daily with at least 8 ounces of water 30 to 45 minutes before a meal or as directed by your healthcare professional.


    Amazon: Glucomannan, Now Foods, 575 mg, 180-Capsules
    Healthy Weight Management Supports Healthy Cholesterol Metabolism Promotes Feeling of Fullness Supports Regularity. Glucomannan is a soluble, bulk-forming fiber derived from the konjac root (Amorphophallus konjac). Clinical studies have demonstrated that Glucomannan can provide temporary relief of constipation and may help to maintain serum lipid levels already within the healthy range. In addition, because Glucomannan helps to promote satiety (feeling of fullness), it can be an effective addition to a weight management plan that includes a healthy diet and exercise program.




    Amazon has over 400 products available containing glucomannan (konjac root).

  • Nutrition Basics: Glucomannan Herbal Information






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