If you’ve been researching weight loss supplements, you’ve probably heard of glucomannan.
And if not, let’s get you acquainted with this natural appetite suppressant. Because it’s a big deal.
What is glucomannan?
Glucomannan is a naturally-occurring dietary fibre found in konjac root. Konjac is a plant that grows in south-east Asia, and it looks like this –
In recent years there’s been a surge of interest in glucomannan for weight loss, and with good reason.
When glucomannan powder is exposed to water, it expands. In your digestive system, this expansion stimulates the receptors that create feelings of fullness when food presses against them.
So if you’re looking for an appetite suppressant, you need to know about glucomannan. This ingredient can control cravings and help you on your weight loss journey.
How to take glucomannan for weight loss
If you’re thinking of buying a glucomannan supplement, you’re probably wondering what to expect.
Well, first up, you’ll most likely be taking a capsule with glucomannan as an ingredient. This is the easiest way to ingest powdered glucomannan, meaning you won’t have to eat the fibre in its gel form –
Most glucomannan supplements recommend washing the capsules down with a glass of water or two. This has two benefits –
- The water helps ensure that your glucomannan capsule reaches your stomach before starting to dissolve, giving the ingredients the best chance of taking effect.
- The water also provides fluid for the glucomannan to absorb, prompting its expansion.
As the glucomannan expands in your stomach, it will create feelings of fullness. And because glucomannan is low-calorie, you’ll feel full after ingesting fewer calories than you would have otherwise.
This is great in terms of weight loss. It means that you’ll feel full after smaller meals, and you’ll feel fewer cravings between meals.
Where’s the evidence that glucomannan controls cravings
You’re probably wondering, “sounds great, but where’s the evidence?”
And it’s a good question. When researching weight loss supplements you need to be sure that the evidence backs up the claims.
Thankfully, the evidence behind glucomannan is strong.
There is much research demonstrating that increased fibre intake is linked to positive weight loss benefits. In one example the authors found that consuming more fibre had the same impact on weight as reducing dietary fat intake from 34% to 28%.
Multiple studies comparing the effect of glucomannan versus placebo have found the fibre to have a statistically significant impact on weight loss.
You can see a more in-depth breakdown of the various weight loss benefits of glucomannan in this article by Healthline. They gather together many pieces of research and attempt to give an even, unbiased review of the ingredient and its impact.
Usually, weight loss supplements contain ingredients with links to weight loss, where some studies have demonstrated a positive impact, but the effect isn’t widely accepted.
So for glucomannan to have a cause and effect relationship is a big deal.
And you’ll see lots of supplement manufacturers taking advantage of the ingredient for this reason.
Other glucomannan benefits
Glucomannan is popular for reasons beyond appetite suppression. Here are a few of the other positive health effects it’s linked to –
- Glucomannan is linked to reductions in risk of certain cancer types thanks to a suspected ability to impair the growth of cancer cells.
- Glucomannan is linked to higher levels of healthy bacteria in your gut.
- Glucomannan is linked to reductions in LDL-C cholesterol.
Note that research is ongoing into all of the health benefits attributed to glucomannan, and a cause and effect link has not yet been established.
Why is it important to reduce cravings
When you’re looking to lose weight, you need to keep your caloric intake below your daily energy expenditure. Otherwise, your body will turn the excess calories into fat and store them around the body to provide energy later.
We ingest calories at mealtimes, and we need a certain amount of calories to survive. This depends on your physique and the amount of exercise you do, meaning there’s no one-size-fits-all amount.
Between meals, however, a lot of us feel the need to snack. These cravings can be a signal that you’re not eating enough at mealtimes, but they can also just be your body wanting more food that it doesn’t need.
If you’re eating a healthy amount of calories for your body weight at mealtimes but still feeling hungry between meals, then overcoming your cravings is an important step on your weight loss journey.
And sadly, the science suggests that women feel cravings more strongly than men.
This is where glucomannan, the clinically-proven natural appetite suppressant, comes in. Taking a glucomannan supplement as directed can help you to feel less cravings between meals, and to snack less as a result. It’s a more natural and gentle alternative to more drastic weight loss solutions.
Controlling your cravings translates to eating fewer calories throughout the day, and this works in your favour when you’re trying to manage your TDEE.
To round up
Glucomannan is a natural dietary fibre that’s extracted from the root of the konjac plant.
This fibre has received a lot of attention as a dietary supplement, thanks to its natural appetite suppressant properties.
Glucomannan supplements claim to reduce your cravings between mealtimes and to help you eat less at mealtime. The goal of both is to help you consume fewer calories during the day.
There is scientific backing behind glucomannan. A 3g daily dose split into three 1g servings is clinically proven to be effective for weight loss in certain contexts.
Taken as directed, glucomannan may help you to reduce your cravings, lower your caloric intake, and achieve your weight loss goals.