Also known as guaran, guar gum is made from legumes called guar beans (1Trusted Source).
It’s a type of polysaccharide, or long chain of bonded carbohydrate molecules, and composed of two sugars called mannose and galactose (1Trusted Source).
Guar gum is frequently used as a food additive in many processed foods (1Trusted Source).
Studies indicate that it could be beneficial for a few specific areas of health, including digestion, blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and weight maintenance.
Guar gum is the ground endosperm of the guar bean, usually produced as a whitish powder similar to flour. It functions to thicken fluids, increase viscosity, reduce ice crystal formation, and act as a stabilizer and emulsifier. It thickens water 8 times as well as cornstarch.
Guar gum gets a favorable 1/10 rating from Environmental Working Group, indicating that studies and existing knowledge of the substance show low risks of carcinogenesis and environmental impact of the end product, but there is a small risk of allergenic properties.
Nowadays, it has emerged in the field of health and nutrient because of its low-calorie and high fiber content so it is used for different health purposes.
It does not require any complicated procedure while using it. Simply, suggested taking a tablespoon of Guar Gum powder an hour before the meal with a glass full of water regularly. This powder when consumed with a liquid expands in an intestine and become 10 to 20 times larger of its original size in the stomach which helps to give the feeling of a full stomach on consumption.
Some studies have found that guar gum could aid weight loss and appetite control.
In general, fiber moves through the body undigested and may help promote satiety while reducing appetite (13Trusted Source).
In fact, one study showed that eating an additional 14 grams of fiber per day may lead to a 10% decrease in calories consumed (14Trusted Source).
Guar gum may be particularly effective at reducing appetite and calorie intake.
Some have found that guar products (or similar fiber products made from the guar bean) can help increase satiety, possibly lead people to eat less overall, slow the digestion of a meal, and possibly help decrease cholesterol absorption and the glycemic index of a meal. (2) One reason that guar gum might help you feel full after a meal is because it increases viscosity in the gut, which causes a slower absorption rate of carbohydrates and stimulates bile production.
The authors of a review of guar gum’s effects on appetite control concluded that a dose of 2–5 g increases satiety and reduces the frequency of between-meal snacking . However, guar gum does not appear to enhance weight loss. In a 2001 meta-analysis of 20 randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials that statistically pooled data from 11 trials, Pittler and colleagues evaluated the effects of guar gum for body weight reduction in a total of 203 adults . Trial participants included people with hypercholesterolemia, hyperlipidemia, or type 1 or type 2 diabetes; menopausal women; and healthy volunteers. Doses of guar gum ranged from 9 to 30 g/day for 3 weeks to 6 months; most participants followed their usual diet, and some received dietary advice. Compared with placebo, guar gum had no significant effect on weight loss.
Helps Form Gluten-Free Baked Goods
Guar gum is one of the most frequently used binding gums in most gluten-free recipes and baked gluten-free products. It can be used in place of wheat flour or other binding products that provide the signature bounce we look for in most baked items. It works by holding water and air in place, making gluten-free doughs less crumbly or likely to fall apart.
Keeps Ingredients (Including Fats/Oils) from Separating
If you plan on ever trying to make probiotic-rich homemade kefir or yogurt, guar gum comes in handy for thickening and maintaining homogeneity of texture. Same goes for homemade fruit sherbet, ice cream, almond milk or coconut milk. It’s very useful for keeping thinner ingredients (like water) combined uniformly with thicker ingredients (like coconut cream or oil).
Diarrhea. Adding guar gum to tube feeding formula given to critical care patients may shorten episodes of diarrhea. Guar gum also appears to shorten episodes of diarrhea in children with recent onset or persistent diarrhea. Guar gum does not seem to improve diarrhea in adults with cholera.
High blood pressure (hypertension). Taking guar gum with each meal might reduce blood pressure in people with high blood pressure. However, the effects of guar gum seem to be less than the effects of psyllium husk.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Taking guar gum by mouth might reduce stomach pain and improve bowel function and quality of life in people with IBS.
Preliminary research suggests that guar gum may help protect against diabetes. In a study published in the Iranian journal Pharmacognosy, for instance, scientists demonstrated that guar gum was more effective than the anti-diabetes drug glibenclamide in lowering cholesterol and blood sugar levels in diabetic rats. The study also determined that guar gum helped reduce body weight and food intake. However, it’s too soon to tell whether guar gum may have a similar effect on human health.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Taking guar gum during pregnancy in typical amounts is POSSIBLY SAFE. But not enough is known about the safety of taking guar gum during breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Diabetes: Guar gum might lower blood sugar levels in some people. Watch for signs of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and monitor your blood sugar carefully if you have diabetes and use guar gum.
Gastrointestinal (GI) obstruction: Don’t take guar gum if you have a condition that causes obstruction or narrowing of your esophagus or intestine.
Low blood pressure: Guar gum might lower blood pressure. In theory, taking guar gum might make blood pressure become too low in people with low blood pressure.
Guar gum seems to be safe (at up to 30 g a day for 6 months) when it is taken with enough fluid. But it can cause abdominal pain, flatulence, diarrhea, nausea, and cramps.