There is a lot of talk these days about natural weight loss using supplements such as glucomannan that have recently become quite popular. But it is one thing to be popular, it is another thing for it to work. And even more importantly it is imperative to know and understand what it is that is being talked about. Being popular is no guarantee that it is either safe or effective.
So What Is Glucomamnan
Glucomannan has a number of names like konjac glucomannan, konjac fiber and even amorphophallus konjac depending on where you see it. But they are all referring to extracts from a plant or the plant itself known as amorphophalluss konjac which is a large single stemmed Asian plant that is native to warm sub-tropical and tropical areas parts of east Asia such as India, Japan and Indonesia. It is perennial plant (lives longer than 2 years) that grows a large corm from a tuber that is sometimes (incorrectly) referred to as a yam.
It is prominent because when the corm is dried it contains about 40% glucomannan and can be processed into into a flour or jelly with essentially zero calories. And it is a common item in the Japanese diet where it is used as an ingredient to make Shirataki Noodles and Konnyaku – both traditional foods that have been eaten for centuries in Japan. It can also used be used as a substitute for gelatin by anyone who is a vegan
But the real significance is that in its dried form it is a good source of water soluble dietary fiber that expands markedly when mixed with water. As such it can be used as an appetite suppressant. It also has other properties where it is used for weight management, constipation and high cholesterol.
But There Are Some Cautions
Although there are a number of products available on the market and there appears to be some clinical evidence to suggest that glucomannan has these potential health benefits it has not been approved for such use by the US Federal Drug Administration (FDA).
Canada on the other hand has given approval for some products that contain it to be used in these areas. But they have issued some cautions. Because of its highly gelatinous nature when taken in capsule, powder or tablet form you should take a minimum of 8 ounces of water or fluid to avoid any potential risk. It is also advised not to take any such product immediately prior to going to bed.
Shirataki Noodles Are Fine
However the now rather well known Shirataki Noodles (often referred to as Magic) pose no such problems because of their size. And they are made of Konnyaku which consists of 97% water and 3% glucommanan.
Dr Oz Says Glucomannan is the ‘Best’
And if you want some reassurance about these cautions remember that on his website Dr Oz, in his 2010 Best and Worst Diet Pills, referred to glucomannan as the ‘Best’.
He noted that it was a natural thickening agent used in Asian cuisine to thicken noodles and tofu. We can use the powder to thicken soups and stews and because it adds fiber our sense of fullness stays longer.
As well as a powder it can be bought in capsule form over the counter at health food stores for around $10 or so.
And his only caution
Dr Oz says take the capsules with LOTS of water – and we have already mentioned that anyway
A Great Diet Pill
To take advantage of this rather good news Nuropharm Limited have formulated a weight loss supplement by combining glucomannan extract with extracts from licorice, green coffee and capsicum to come up with Nuratrim. A once a day diet pill that aids weight loss.
The key ingredient of course is glucomannan, which swells in the stomach and gives a sense of fullness to reduce over eating.
But the other extracts play an important part as well – the licorice, green coffee and capsicum help to speed up the metabolism and burn carbohydrates and fat.
So in Nuratrim we have a unique formula diet pill that is safe, effective and natural and can help in the management of weight control.
It contributes to reduce your appetite and starts working right away.
Not only that it can cut your calories by almost 20% and results in reduced cholesterol.
All of this the manufacturer claims can happen with no known side effects.