Anybody who likes glucomannan or konjac root weight loss products will tell you that dieting has never been easier since this ‘zero carb, zero calorie pasta’ was invented. You can eat all you want and not gain any weight. But is there a downside to this miracle food? Let’s find out.
What Is Glucomannan?
Glucomannan is a soluble fiber extracted from the root of an Asian plant called konjac. It’s similar to the kind of fiber that is used in some natural constipation remedies, that swells and goes gloopy in the stomach without being absorbed.
Konjac root has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. It’s also well known as a food in Japan, mostly in the form of noodles. Chinese medicine uses it to treat many illnesses other than constipation, including asthma, coughs, skin disorders and allergies. It is believed to help the detoxification process by carrying toxins out of the system.
Recent studies in the US have shown that glucomannan can help with weight loss as well as lowering blood cholesterol.
For weight loss products, glucomannan is available in two forms. First you can buy it in capsule form and take it as a supplement. Second you can buy it as a food in the form of ‘all you can eat’ zero calorie noodles.
The noodles are a very popular option and suppliers often sell out because of the limited supply of konjac root. It’s worth trying the noodles if you can find them, because as well as the filling effect in the stomach which you get with the capsules, you have the feeling that you are eating plenty. You can substitute them for high carb, high calorie foods like pasta and get even more benefit from this most interesting of weight loss products!
Is It Really A Zero Calorie, Zero Carb Food?
Yes, unless there are added ingredients.
But Will I Like It?
That is a good question. It’s better not to fill your kitchen with ‘all you can eat’ noodles until you know you like them! The ‘pasta’ made from konjac root can have a strange, fishy taste that not everybody appreciates. Be sure to rinse them well before cooking. We find it also helps if you boil them up for a couple of minutes and then rinse and boil again in fresh water. That will make them taste much better. Adding a strong-tasting sauce, such as one based around tomato, is even more of an improvement.
If you don’t like the noodles, you can buy glucomannan fiber capsules to take as a supplement. There are no known side effects although if you take a lot, you may have abdominal pain, bloating and gas. This is just the effect of having too much fiber in the system at once. If you take less or spread it out over the day more evenly, these symptoms should disappear.
Where To Buy Glucomannan Weight Loss Products
You can buy glucomannan supplements online in the form of powder, tablets and capsules. The noodles are usually known as konjac noodles. Most stockists import them from Japan. You can find them online as weight loss products, in health food stores or in Japanese food stores.