The search for a miracle weight loss potion or pill continues to elude us, there are regular crazes and new supplements which reach the market but rarely do they have any proven claims or research backing them.
Many people need to lose weight, often for health reasons but unfortunately, it is not always easy to achieve and long term success is rare.
There is however a supplement which has genuine claims based on scientific evidence - Glucomannan.
What is Glucomannan?
Glucomannan is a natural, water soluble dietary fibre extracted from the roots of the elephant yam, also known as konjac mannan. The food made from the corm of this plant is primarily cooked and consumed in Japan, often as a key ingredient in different types of noodles. Konjac has been known in Japan since the 6th century as a medicinal food, and it has been eaten for over 1500 years. It has almost no calories, but is very high in fibre - for these reasons it is often used as a diet food. It is also used as a vegan substitute for gelatin.
Clinically proven to help you lose weight
There are very few nutrients that can say they have approved and proven claims to help weight loss. The EU Register on nutrition and health claims provides a regulated library of health claims from products. The objective of the register is to ensure that any claim made on a food’s labelling, presentation or advertising in the European Union is clear, accurate and based on scientific evidence. It is basically designed to prevent consumers being misled by being told a product does something which is doesn't.
The Health Commission has ruled that Glucomannan in the context of an energy restricted diet, contributes to weight loss - yes it actually does work.
The beneficial effect for weight loss is obtained with a daily intake of 3 g of Glucomannan, taken in three doses of 1 g each, together with 1-2 glasses of water, before meals and in the context of an energy-restricted diet.
How does it work?
Glucomannan has an exceptional ability to absorb water and is one of the most viscous dietary fibres known. It absorbs so much liquid that if you empty a Glucomannan capsule into a small glass of water, the entire thing turns into a gel. These unique properties are believed to how its effects on weight loss - by making people feel fuller which can help reduce food intake.
Glucomannan is especially effective when combined with a weight-reducing diet. The same applies to all weight-loss methods - they always work best in combination.
A healthy balanced diet is the best way to consume all the nutrients we need. Sometimes however this isn't possible and then supplements can help. This article isn't intended to replace medical advice. Please consult your healthcare professional before trying any supplements or herbal medicines.