Psyllium husk is used as a natural alternative for easing constipation and other digestive disorders. Its use can be traced back to the Arab world in the Middle Ages, and references to it has been found in ancient prescriptions from India. Psyllium was brought to the United States seven decades ago, and 60 percent of its current production is dedicated to pharmaceutical companies.
The fiber-rich husk originates from seeds from the Plantago psyllium plant, which grows in areas surrounding the Mediterranean, North Africa and Asia. The seeds are coated in a red-brown gel and have no taste or odor. Psyllium is mainly produced for its laxative qualities in supplements and foods.
Psyllium works at relieving constipation through its bulk-fiber properties that produce a lubricating film in the colon. This results in softer stools and encourages more frequent contractions of the lower bowel. When contractions occur more often, a person has a larger number of bowel movements and is relieved of constipation and the hemorrhoids that often accompany it.
Psyllium Husk can be purchased in several forms and usually found at most supplement, health, or nutrition stores. You will usually find it in pure 100% form and comes in a powder or pill option. If you do not wish to get your psyllium husk on it’s own it is often found in many products that are designed for regulation of your digestive system. Simply read the labels and you will find products that contain psyllium as an active ingredient.
Having regular bowel movements is essential for good health. Chronic constipation can lead to bacteria and other toxins building up in the body, which can cause illness. Along with the fiber it provides, Psyllium also soaks up toxins and efficiently moves them out of the body. This makes it an excellent colon cleanser.
Psyllium’s water-absorbing qualities can relieve diarrhea as well. People who suffer from too-frequent bowel movements have excess water in the colon. The husk absorbs the water, making for a firmer stool and more regulated elimination habits.
Those who are trying to lose weight and reduce cholesterol can find benefit with Psyllium. Because it becomes bulky in the colon, the husk can make a person feel full and eat less at meals. This can lead to weight loss when combined with proper diet and an exercise regimen. Psyllium can lower cholesterol by preventing it from binding into the intestines or liver as it is passed during digestion.
Overall, Psyllium husk is an excellent, natural therapy for bowel and digestive issues, and is safer to use in the long term than standard laxatives.