You have probably noticed guar gum (also known as guaran) as an ingredient in a wide variety of different foods. But most people don’t actually know what guar gum is. When used in foods, such as oatmeal and similar items, it is a thickening agent. It stabilizes and binds particles together to create a certain texture and “look” people expect.
When used in this way, there is too little guar gum to have a significant effect on health. However, guar gum can also be used to support optimal health in a wide range of situations.
Guar gum is a type of fiber, and fiber is extraordinarily vital to the proper function of the intestines. All fibers have a very similar role: They cannot be digested by the body, so they encourage appropriate and timely bowel movements and the natural “cleansing” of intestinal tracts. Without some fiber, most people would quickly become unhealthy.
Guar gum grows larger when situated in the intestine, so it has long been used in certain kinds of treatments to generate a feeling of satiety. However, experts are learning that it has many other uses.
Beyond The Intestines: Interesting Uses Of Guar Gum To Support Optimal Health
Guar gum has frequently been used to treat symptoms related to the intestines, including diarrhea and “irritable bowel syndrome.” Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is a “catch-all” term for some pathologies of the bowels that have no clear cause.
More recently, guar gum has been used for as part of treatment for diabetes and for weight control. It can curb the amount of cholesterol in the body and may also play a role in helping to keep the arteries strong and supple.
Although you are probably exposed to some guar gum each week, a supplemental amount is usually needed for health effects. If you are experiencing issues that guar gum may help with, speak to a physician.