Psyllium Husk

An Ode to Psyllium Husk

I’m not really one for dietary supplements. My general approach to supplements is that if you eat a well-rounded diet, you are probably getting most of what your body needs to be healthy. Maybe a daily vitamin is in order if you’re worried about it or have a major health concern (pregnancy, for example).

But most people would do just fine eating a well-rounded diet and calling it a day.

But guess what? I take a daily supplement now… or pretty much daily. I don’t really even think of it as a supplement, but I guess technically it could be called that.

It’s called Psyllium Husk. Specifically, I take the powder form which is a super fine grind and easily mixes with a number of things.

Before we go on…

WARNING: This post will probably talk about poop. 

Okie dokie. Got that out of the way.

What is Psyllium Husk?

These husks come from a plant called Plantago Ovata. It grows wild in some areas in the U.S. It’s main use is harvesting it for its husks, which are a source of soluble fiber.

I’ve never actually seen the raw husks though. It’s most common to see it in a fine powder form.

What are the benefits of Psyllium Husk?

There’s really only one benefit of psyllium husk powder: It makes you very regular. It is technically a laxative, but it’s not a chemical laxative. It’s very mild and is a bulk-forming laxative which means it absorbs water and makes it much easier to, well, go.

I started thinking about taking psyllium husk while I was traveling. I always eat weird while traveling and taking just a teaspoon or two of it a day completely helped with my travel digestion.

Once home, I decided to keep taking it and now I still take it every day. There are a lot of claimed health benefits to psyllium husk, but if I’m being honest, I only take it for one reason.

Where can I buy Psyllium Husk?

I’m sure you can find it in health food stores, but I’ve just been ordering it online.

I ordered a huge bag of the husk powder from Amazon and it will last me many many months. Just make sure you buy the ground version as it dissolves the easiest and can be worked into more foods.

How do you take it?

Heads up: This stuff doesn’t taste amazing. I might venture to say it tastes gross. That said, the easiest way I’ve found to take it is just to stir 1 teaspoon of the powder into 8 ounces of water and stir it with a fork. Some small clumps are okay, but try to get rid of them if you can. Then chug it. Like, pretend you are trying out for a fraternity and down it goes.

The first few times you do this, you will curse my name, but it gets easier and the benefits are well-worth the bad taste.

Of course, you can add psyllium husk to a wide range of recipes as well if you just can’t handle the taste.

Recipes that use Psyllium Husk?

Here are a bunch of ways you can use psyllium husk in your daily foods.

  • Smoothies! This is the easiest. Add a few teaspoons to your smoothies while you blend them.
  • Oatmeal! As your oatmeal cooks, sprinkle it with a teaspoon of the powder. You’ll have to add a bit more water to the oatmeal probably because this stuff sucks up water like crazy.
  • Baked Goods! I haven’t tried this much and am working on a psyllium husk muffin right now, but in theory, you should be able to add it to most breakfast breads without too much worry.

Should you try it?

Of course, if you have any major health issues, you should talk to your doctor before trying something new, but drinking a little psyllium husk is a pretty low-risk way to get some fiber in your diet. Most Americans are very deficient in their fiber intakes (like half the recommended amount).

I had never heard of psyllium husk before a few months ago and now I’m a big fan!

Have any readers tried Psyllium Husk Powder? Leave a comment!

5 comments on “An Ode to Psyllium Husk

  1. Thanks for the recommendation I just bought some in capsule form. I’m about to travel internationally and something about jet lag always messes with my system.

  2. Be careful with that stuff. Years ago I was mixing it into my OJ every morning. And yes it works. I also developed a serious caseof IBS. Seems those little husks can scar the colon with prolong use. Took many months to heal up my colon. There are better alternatives to add fiber to your diet.

  3. To anyone reading the comments, I did chat with Pattiann in a separate email about her experience. She used a product from many years ago. I’ve never heard of that specific side effect and couldn’t find other accounts of it online, but you should check with a doctor if you are concerned. The biggest risk with psyllium husk is actually choking because it can bind together which is why it’s important you take it with lots of water.

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