Reply To: flax and guar gum

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Marbro wrote: Guar gum is bad for you and should not be used in a candida diet. I can find no reference stating otherwise. I have read that diabetics sometimes use it in place of starch for a thickner but I don’t see it being good for fighting candida.

The use of guar gum as an ingredient in non-prescription diet aids was officially banned in the early 1990s by the FDA. The guar gum would bind with liquids in the stomach and swell, causing a feeling of satisfying fullness. However, this mass of swollen guar gum would also cause dangerous intestinal and duodenal blockages. Guar gum was declared unsafe and ineffective for use as a non-prescription diet aid, although it is still used in small amounts as a food thickener and binder.

I don’t see why guar gum would be any more dangerous than psyllium. It’s just soluble fiber. Any type of soluble fiber will swell up as it absorbs liquid, which is why you’re supposed to take it with lots of water if you’re using it as a fiber supplement. Without the water, then the blockages you mention could occur. The FDA shows guar gum as being GRAS (generally recognized as safe):

FDA on guar gum

Web MD also shows guar gum as being safe if taken with enough water (click side effects tab):

Web MD guar gum

I did see the stuff about the ban in the 1990’s. In diet pill form, it was probably being used without taking enough water. Psyllium would be danderous, too, if taken without enough water. I use guar gum every day as a soluble fiber supplement. It helps my bowels and feeds the good bacteria in the gut. Vitamin shop sells it as a powder. Bob’s Red Mill sells it, too.