Know all about Fiber Supplements
Fiber supplements are becoming increasingly popular and are readily prescribed by physicians whenever needed. Hence, it is important for the common people to know the content of fiber supplements, the way they may or they way they actually do affect our bodies and its nutrient percentages, effects of intake of these while under medication, side effects (if any) of fiber supplements, and other crucial aspects that define fiber supplements and their impact on human health.
What are “Fiber Supplements”?
Before we get started with studying the effects of fiber supplements and how they help us or harm us, it is important to be thoroughly acknowledged with their make and function – that is, it is important to know what exactly are these fiber supplements and how do they work?
- Firstly, as clear from the term itself, fiber supplements are artificial means that add up to the fiber content of certain foods or edible substances. These are not present in nature and need to be processed and produced.
- Fiber supplements may appear in forms such as capsules or tablets, or be mixed with certain fruits, vegetables, oils, and such other things that form part of our diets.
- Now, the second and one of the most important things to know about fiber supplements is that their primary content is the one extracted from animals and plants – known as “functional fibers”. It is this substance that is isolated from nature and added up and processed in a way so as to produce artificial means of attaining fiber in our diets.
- Some of the functional fibers we commonly have are oligo-fructose, insulin, psyllium [helps treat constipation], while some of the lesser known but useful ones include cellulose, pectin, acacia fibers, methyl-cellulose, poly-dextrose, and many more.
Know the Harmful side of Fiber Supplements
It is very important for us to be aware of the potential harmful effects that fiber supplements may have on us, and some of them have been listed below:
- One of the commonly encountered side effects is that of loose stools and increased bowel movements, abdominal discomforts, gas and bloating, etc. These are generally the effect of excessive intake of fiber supplements, due to which the general balance is disturbed and hence leads to such irritation.
- Apart from the above stated problems, excess of fiber taken in may cause them to come in contact with other body nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron, etc. and bound to them, which in turn get lost along with these fibers. The normal levels of these nutrients in the body thus get disturbed.
- Diarrhea and experiencing cramps are few of the other side effects of fiber supplements.