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Glucomannan for Weight Loss - Is It Safe and Effective?

Discover the potent weight loss benefits of Glucomannan - a natural dietary fiber proven to promote satiety and support healthy metabolism.

Written by Liposet Staff

Updated on

Glucomannan Benefits For Weight Loss Glucomannan Benefits For Weight Loss. Image /Shutterstock

Overview

Glucomannan as a health-supportive constituent is rich in water-soluble dietary fiber extract from elephant yam roots also referred to as konjac, that supports healthy weight, suppresses appetite, lowers cholesterol, reduces fat absorption, and improves gut health.

What is Glucomannan?

Glucomannan is a dietary supplement for weight loss with a long history of use in traditional herbal mixtures and food such as noodles, tofu, and konjac jelly but now is being promoted as a dietary supplement for weight loss.

The supplement is packed with 40% of Southeast Asia’s dry elephant yam extract, with an exceptional ability to absorb water faster, making it one of the most vicious fiber dietary supplements on the market.

Glucomannan absorbs much liquid in that a small amount of it added to a glass of water can convert the entire content into the gel. These unique properties are what make Glucomannan boast as a remarkable viscous fiber. It has been found to absorb up to 50 times its weight in water.

It means that Glucomannan is an effective fiber with plenty of benefits that fibers can bring to your health especially supporting weight loss.

However, the question remains, does glucomannan for weight loss really work to offer the claimed health benefits? Join us as we explore the science behind glucomannan for weight loss support, the health benefits, ingredients used, how to take it, possible side effects, and much more.

How Does Glucomannan Work?

We wanted to find out what makes glucomannan for weight loss supplement a powerful and reliable solution to weight management.

Here is what we discovered:

  • Glucomannan supplement is a remarkable viscous fiber believed to support weight loss through different mechanisms, like reducing cholesterol levels, increasing satiety feeling, delaying stomach emptying, decreasing fat absorption, and slowing the breakdown of carbohydrates.
  • This water-soluble dietary fiber supplement features dry fiber extract from elephant yam roots, known for its ability to bulk up foods and absorb 50x its water weight in the stomach, the reason why you will experience satiety for an extended period of time.
  • Glucomannan has also been found to support weight loss by lowering cholesterol levels in the body. A study in Lipids in Health and Diseases looked into the ability of glucomannan fiber to slow down dietary fat absorption reducing total cholesterol levels and leading to a drop in bad cholesterol (LDL).
  • Glucomannan fiber is also believed to support stomach emptying and combined with appetite suppression the fiber can help slow down the gastric emptying process which is linked to healthy weight loss.
  • The water-soluble fiber has also been found to promote gut health that enables good bacteria to thrive, hence making the weight loss process effective.
  • A study in The Journals of Gerontology Series: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences looked into the effect of glucomannan fiber supplementation on gut health. Another study in looked in the Journal of American College of Nutrition found that glucomannan supplementation has shown the potential to treat constipation.

What are the Ingredients in Glucomannan for Weight Loss - Are they Safe?

Glucomannan features only one key ingredient, glucomannan fiber from elephant yam extract which has been found to be effective in supporting weight loss.

A study in the International Medical Journal of Experimental and Clinical Research compared the effect of different dietary fibers on weight loss in obese adults. All the adults placed on glucomannan fiber posted significant weight loss after 5 weeks of taking the supplement.

Another study published in the International Journal of Obesity looked into the effect of glucomannan supplementation on weight loss.

According to health experts, glucomannan can support weight loss via different mechanisms like suppressing appetite, slowing stomach emptying, and reducing fat absorption and cholesterol levels, supporting gut health.

Glucomannan is water soluble fiber with the ability to absorb water and expand in the stomach, thereby producing the feeling of satiety or fullness, says Liz Keller, a holistic nutritionist based in West Islip, New York, and director of nutrition for Holistic Nutrition Therapy at Well-choices Health Coaching.

Glucomannan can be added to food like noodles and pasta to increase fiber content and has also been found to protein and reduce fat absorption, adds Keller.

A study published in Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine found that glucomannan supplementation can aid in appetite reduction, essential for weight loss support.

Reduction of body fat absorption is another mechanism through which, glucomannan supports weight loss. Research published in Preparative Biochemistry and Biotechnology and Phototherapy Research looked into the effect of fiber on body fat reduction and weight loss.

According to Dr. Mehmet Oz, glucomannan consumption can help reduce carb absorption as well as cholesterol levels, thus supporting weight loss. Dr. Oz further explains that supplementation of glucomannan can make you feel full for a long, without causing constipation or bloating.

Research published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that supplementation of glucomannan combined with plant sterols can positively affect plasma LDL cholesterol concentration.

A study publication in the Food Chemistry Journal looked into the effect of glucomannan fiber supplementation on gut health. According to the findings, glucomannan fiber supplementation contributed to the alteration of microbiota composition, and production of beneficial bacteria, and helped to host good health.

What Are The Health Benefits of Glucomannan?

When taken as it should Glucomannan as a weight loss supplement may offer the following health benefits:

  • Supports weight loss: Glucomannan fiber has been found to be effective in supporting weight loss. The ingredient is said to work through different mechanisms to help you shed some pounds and maintain a healthy weight.
  • Reduces fat absorption: Glucomannan fiber has been associated with the reduction of fat and calorie absorption. People who eat fiber have been found to eat fewer calories due to its ability to reduce hunger strikes for unhealthy food such as calories.
  • Suppresses appetite: Glucomannan has been found to help with appetite suppression. A food number of studies have noted that glucomannan fiber can help increase the feeling of satiety and fullness and also act as an appetite suppressant.
  • Lower cholesterol levels: Glucomannan fiber intake has been linked to a reduction in cholesterol levels. According to Emily Van Eck, MS, RDN, Glucomannan can bind to cholesterol, the same way other fiber can, which can prevent the body from absorbing cholesterol. This can lower LDL cholesterol, the one often called "bad cholesterol".
  • Support gut health: Glucomannan fiber has also been found to support gut health because it is a favorite food for some friendly gut bacteria. These gut bacteria help to keep the digestive tract healthy. A well-balanced gut has been linked to healthy weight support.
  • Slows stomach emptying: Slow stomach emptying is another health benefit associated with taking glucomannan fiber supplements.

Safety and Side Effects

  • Glucomannan fiber without strange drugs, additives, or harsh chemicals is considered safe for use by healthy adults, says Dr. Oz. Individuals with health conditions especially diabetes should not take the supplement before consulting with their healthcare provider.
  • To ensure safety, it is recommended that you take it in small doses and with lots of water to avoid side effects such as diarrhea or choking. Since glucomannan is a viscous fiber, it is advised not to take it at the same time as your medication as it can affect the absorption of medication.
  • Glucomannan is safe and well tolerated when taken as it should. However, some users may experience mild side effects such as bloating, soft stools, flatulence, and diarrhea. The reason behind these side effects is that glucomannan predominantly impacts our gut while it relieves constipation. It can also swing in other ways and make you experience other symptoms.
  • Before committing fully to glucomannan, you should take it slow to see how your body will react. You should also take glucomannan with plenty of water as it will to some great extent help you bypass the said side effects.
  • According to Dr. Oz, drinking lots of water prevents the fiber from gumming up in the digestive system, causing intestinal blockage, and choking (blocking your throat).

Dosage and How to Take It?

  • According to the manufacturer, you should take 2-4 grams of glucomannan per day, 15-30 minutes with 1-2 glasses of water before having your meal, especially if you are taking it for weight loss management purposes.
  • However, the supplement’s safety on pregnant, and breastfeeding women as well as children has not yet been approved so they are not advised to take the supplement.
While there are some real biological differences between men and women, metabolism is metabolism, and weight loss is weight loss. Unless a weight loss supplement focuses specifically on something like hormone levels, it’s going to work the same for men as it will for women. With this in mind, one weight loss supplement that I can definitely recommend is Glucomannan, says Catherine Rall, Registered Dietitian.
  • Also, individuals with medical conditions like diabetes should not take the supplement without first talking to their healthcare provider because glucomannan is said to reduce some diabetes medication absorption.

    FAQs

    Q: Can Glucomannan Help You Lose Weight?

    A: There is good reason to believe that glucomannan works to support weight loss through different mechanisms such as suppressing appetite, boosting gut health, and reducing cholesterol levels and fat absorption. Also, a number of studies have supported glucomannan’s efficiency claims on weight loss management.

    Q: Can Glucomannan help me reach my Fiber Needs?

    A: According to the manufacturer, glucomannan is packed with 40% dry elephant yam extract, making it one of the most vicious fiber dietary supplements on the market.

    Q: What Happens If I Take Too Much Glucomannan?

    A: Glucomannan has been linked to mild side effects such as bloating, diarrhea, flatulence, and soft stool. Even when taken within the recommended dosage, some individuals may experience some of these side effects. So, you can imagine what will happen if you exceed the recommended dosage.

    Experts advise sticking to the recommended dosage while you take it slow to see how your body will react to the supplement. You can start by taking a small amount and increase bit by bit as your body gets used to it until you reach the recommended amount per day.

    Q: How Much Glucomannan is Safe to Take?

    A: Various studies have recommended taking 2-4 grams of glucomannan per day, terming it as safe. However, it is always safe to first go through the product’s packaging label before taking it.

    Q: When is the Best Time to Take Glucomannan Supplement?

    A: According to the manufacturer, there is no best time to take a glucomannan supplement. When you should take the supplement shouldn’t matter but avoid taking it close to bedtime.

    Conclusion

    Glucomannan for weight loss formulated using elephant root extract is one of the powerful fiber supplements with plenty of health benefits, including weight management support.

    This water-soluble supplement has been studied and found to work to support weight loss via various mechanisms such as appetite reduction, slowing stomach emptying, reducing fat absorption and cholesterol levels, and supporting gut health.

    The fiber supplement is considered safe for use by adults provided that you strictly follow the recommended dosage and the usage directions.

    With this supplement on your daily health regimen, you should be ready to enjoy your weight loss journey as well as other health benefits tied to glucomannan for weight loss supplementation.

    Sources:

    1. Safety and Efficacy of Glucomannan for Weight Loss in Overweight and Moderately Obese Adults https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3892933/
    2. Experiences with three different fiber supplements in weight reduction https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15614200/
    3. A large-scale method for preparation of plant thylakoids for use in body weight regulation https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20024791/
    4. Effect of glucomannan on obese patients: a clinical study https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6096282/
    5. Lactobacillus gasseri SBT2055 suppresses fatty acid release through enlargement of fat emulsion size in vitro and promotes fecal fat excretion in healthy Japanese subjects https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25884980
    6. Glucomannan and obesity: a critical review https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16320857/
    7. Glucomannan Hydrolysate Promotes Gut Proliferative Homeostasis and Extends Life Span in Drosophila melanogaster https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6748797/
    8. The drug slows stomach emptying, and may individualize obesity treatment, study shows https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/09/170927102544.htm
    9. Supplementation of konjac glucomannan into a low-fiber Chinese diet promoted bowel movement and improved colonic ecology in constipated adults: a placebo-controlled, diet-controlled trial https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18460488/
    10. Effect of plant sterols and glucomannan on lipids in individuals with and without type II diabetes https://www.researchgate.net/publication/7379043_Effect_of_plant_sterols_and_glucomannan_on_lipids_in_individuals_with_and_without_type_II_diabetes
    11. Dietary fiber konjac glucomannan exerts an antidiabetic effect via inhibiting lipid absorption and regulation of PPAR-? and gut microbiome https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/36191423/

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