Belly fat is extremely unhealthy. In fact, it increases the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and other health conditions.
Fortunately, belly fat can be lost.
Recent research shows that taking soluble fiber supplements is an effective strategy for weight and belly fat loss.
Glucomannan is a water-soluble dietary fibre extracted from the roots of the konjac plant.
Glucomannan has an exceptional ability to absorb water and is one of the most viscous dietary fibres known.
It is available as a supplement for weight loss.
What are the benefits of glucomannan extract?
It’s believed to promote weight loss in several ways. It takes up space in your stomach and promotes a feeling of fullness, reducing food intake at a subsequent meal.
It also delays stomach emptying, contributing to increased satiety.
Evidence suggests that glucomannan extract may promote weight loss at doses of 1 to 4 grams per day by promoting satiety and by blocking some calories from being absorbed in the body.
Glucomannan extract also feeds the friendly bacteria in your intestine, which turn it into short-chain fatty acids (SCFA’s) which help to protect against fat gain.
Feeding your gut bacteria may also have other benefits. Some studies have shown a correlation between altered gut bacteria and body weight.
In the largest study, 176 healthy but overweight people on a calorie-restricted diet were randomly assigned either a glucomannan supplement or a placebo. Weight loss was significantly greater among those who supplemented with glucomannan extract.
Dosage per day
For weight loss, a dosage of 1 gram, 3 times per day is considered sufficient.
Experts recommend taking it 15-30 minutes before a meal. Drink 8 ounces of water with 1 gram of glucomannan before each meal.
The psyllium plant is mainly grown in India and Bangladesh and psyllium husk is the outer layer of the seeds.
Psyllium is most commonly consumed as a powder supplement.
What are the benefits of psyllium husk?
Psyllium husk helps with weight loss by increasing fullness.
Psyllium husk contains soluble dietary fiber, which forms a gel-like layer after coming in contact with water. This layer helps slow down the transit of food through the stomach, resulting in increased satiety.
In a study, consuming psyllium husk with meals increased fullness and reduced subjective appetite sensation, resulting in a weight loss of 10 pounds.
Not only is psyllium husk associated with weight loss, but another study showed that it reduced body mass index (BMI) and total body fat percentage.
Psyllium husk also boosts metabolism by improving gut function, which, in turn, helps to burn fat.
Dosage per day
The recommended dosage is 10 to 20 grams of psyllium husk per day with 8 ounces of water.
The best time to consume psyllium husk for weight loss is in the morning before breakfast or at night before going to bed.
Bitter melon extract
Bitter melon is a tropical vine that belongs to the gourd family, with a unique appearance and flavour. It’s cultivated around the world for its edible fruit.
Extracts of bitter melon are also widely available in supplement form.
What are the benefits of bitter melon?
Bitter melon makes an excellent addition to a weight loss diet, as it’s low in calories yet high in fibre.
Fibre passes through your digestive tract very slowly, helping keep you fuller for longer and reducing hunger and appetite.
Therefore, swapping higher-calorie ingredients with bitter melon could help increase your fibre intake and cut calories to promote weight loss.
Some research also shows that bitter melon can have beneficial effects on fat burning and weight loss. It helps in the dislocation of human fat cells and also hampers the formation and growth of new fat cells.
One study found that consuming a capsule containing 4.8 grams of bitter melon extract each day led to significant decreases in belly fat.
Participants lost an average of 0.5 inches from their waist circumference after seven weeks.
The mulberry tree grows in Asia and for thousands of years, mulberry leaf has been used for medicinal purposes.
Something called mulberry zuccarin is extracted from the leaves and turned into a supplement.
What are the benefits of mulberry extract?
Researcher has shown that rutin, a compound naturally present in mulberries, helps to treat obesity.
This is good news for those who want to activate their brown fat (or BAT) to increase metabolism and facilitate weight loss.
When brown fat burns, it creates heat without shivering. This process is called thermogenesis. During this process, the brown fat also burns calories.
Mulberry extract also supports healthy weight loss by helping to control your appetite and reducing sugar cravings and sugar crashes.
Gymnema is a woody climbing shrub that’s native to the tropical forests of India, Africa and Australia. Its leaves have been used in the ancient Indian medicinal practice Ayurveda for thousands of years.
As a supplement gymnema extract is typically taken in a tablet form
What are the benefits of gymnema extract?
Gymnema extract helps to reduce sugar cravings.
One of the primary active components in this plant is gymnemic acid, which helps suppress sweetness. When consumed prior to a sugary food or beverage, gymnemic acid blocks the sugar receptors on your taste buds.
This reduced calorie intake plays a role in weight loss and prevents weight gain.
Gymnema extract also motivates the body to be a more efficient fat burner.
Research has shown that gymnema extract supports healthy weight loss even while on a high-fat diet.
Dosage per day
The recommended dose is 100 mg, 3–4 times daily.
If you’re looking to use gymnema extract as a way to block the sugar receptors on your tongue, take it with water 5–10 minutes before a high-sugar meal or snack.
The bottom line
With new weight-loss supplements coming out all the time where do glucomannan extract, psyllium husk, bitter melon extract, mulberry extract and gymnema extract fall on the spectrum?
These supplements with soluble fibre curb your appetite and reduce calorie intake - an effective strategy for weight loss.
Most importantly, soluble fibre supplements help you to lose belly fat and to prevent belly fat gain.