Can Psyllium Husk Be Considered As Prebiotic

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Is Psyllium a Prebiotic

Psyllium husk is taken as a dietary supplement and gives a variety of health advantages. Prebiotics is a type of soluble fiber that provides healthy bacteria in the intestines food. There are many forms of prebiotics that are effective. Psyllium is an effective mainly for individuals with low levels of bacteria.  Even in these people it is effective after psyllium has been partially processed in the digestive tracts.


Psyllium husk is a natural soluble fiber that comes from the plant called Plantago Ovata. Plantago Ovata develops seeds that are coated in a gel like substance which is called psyllium husk. The substance is extracted from the seeds and freeze dried to create psyllium. The natural soluble fiber psyllium is one of the main ingredients in bulk laxatives. Since psyllium is a soluble fiber it absorbs water and swells, which adds bulk to feces and can relieve constipation or diarrhea. To keep from having any uncomfortable side effects, six to eight glasses of water must be consumed a day.

 What is a a Prebiotic

Prebiotics plays a very important role with the bacteria in the digestive tract. The natural bacteria in the digestive tract are known as probiotic bacteria. The natural bacterium in the intestines helps with digestion and they can also help with diarrhea by swarming the bad bacteria out. The natural bacteria(probiotic) in the digestive tract use the prebiotic material as food.  An individual can increase the amount of prebiotic in their diet to aide to increase the amount of beneficial bacteria.

Psyllium a Weak Source of Prebiotics

Prebiotic are considered to be different kinds of soluble fibers because when consumed it does not break down and it is available for the natural bacteria to use as food. Even though psyllium is a soluble fiber it is not a complete and efficient prebiotics by itself. A study showed that even adding synthetic materials such as gastric and pancreatic enzymes to psyllium husk increased its effictiveness as a prebiotic.  However it was found that it was effective only in individuals with abnormal low levels of prebiotic bacteria.

 Psyllium Is Still Good For You

Psyllium might not be the greatest source for prebiotics material but it has a variety of benefits. Consuming psyllium on a daily basis has many health benefits such as reducing cholesterol, lowering blood glucose levels, lower risk to heart disease and regulating bowl movements.

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