Is Guar Gum Healthy Or Unhealthy? The Surprising Truth?

- Sep 06, 2018 -

It May Have Some Benefits

Guar gum is well known for its ability to thicken and stabilize food products, but it may also provide some health benefits.

Studies indicate that it could be beneficial for a few specific areas of health, including digestive health, blood sugar, blood cholesterol and weight maintenance.

Digestive Health

Because guar gum is high in fiber, it may support the health of your digestive system.

One study found that it helped relieve constipation by speeding up movement through the intestinal tract. Guar gum consumption was also associated with improvements in stool texture and bowel movement frequency .

Additionally, it may act as a prebiotic by promoting the growth of good bacteria and reducing the growth of harmful bacteria in the gut.

In a 2012 study, 60 participants with constipation who received a supplement containing guar gum experienced a significant decrease in concentrations of harmful bacteria in their digestive tracts .

Thanks to its ability to promote digestive health, it may also aid in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome .

A recent 6-week study followed 68 participants with IBS. It found that guar gum improved IBS symptoms, and in some patients it also reduced bloating while increasing stool frequency .

Blood Sugar

Studies show that guar gum may be effective at lowering blood sugar.

This is because it is a type of soluble fiber, which can slow the absorption of sugar and lead to a reduction in blood sugar levels .

In one study, people with diabetes were given guar gum four times per day over a six-week period. The study found that guar gum led to a significant decrease in blood sugar and a 20% drop in LDL cholesterol.

Another study had similar findings, showing that consuming guar gum significantly improved blood sugar control in 11 participants with type 2 diabetes

Blood Cholesterol

Soluble fibers such as guar gum have been shown to have a cholesterol-lowering effect.

Fiber binds to bile acids in your body, causing them to be excreted and decreasing the amount of bile acids in circulation. This forces the liver to use up cholesterol to produce more bile acids, leading to a decrease in cholesterol levels

One study had 19 obese people with diabetes take a daily supplement containing 15 grams of guar gum. They found that it led to lower levels of total blood cholesterol, as well as lower LDL cholesterol, compared to a placebo

An animal study found similar results, showing that rats fed guar gum had reduced blood cholesterol levels, in addition to increased levels of HDL cholesterol

Weight Maintenance

Some studies have found that guar gum could help with weight loss and appetite control.

In general, fiber moves through the body undigested and may help promote satiety while reducing appetite

In fact, one study showed that eating an additional 14 grams of fiber per day may lead to a 10% decrease in calories consumed

Guar gum, in particular, may be effective at reducing appetite and decreasing calorie intake.

A 2015 review of three studies concluded that guar gum improved satiety and reduced the number of calories consumed from snacking throughout the day

Another study looked at the effects of guar gum on weight loss in women. They found that 15 grams of guar gum per day helped women lose 5.5 pounds (2.5 kg) more than those who took a placebo.

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