Amorphophallus konjac

Amorphophallus konjac is a very large, exotic flower originating in Asia. Other common names are Devil’s Tongue, Snake Plant, and Elephant-Foot Yam, and Voodoo Lily. The long center is called a corm and is wrapped by a large leaf. The parts of the plant that are used are the corm and the tuber, which is sometimes called a konnyaku potato. It is used as a dietary supplement for many reasons, including as a weight loss aide, in the treatment of certain diseases, and in helping with food digestion. All of the reasons will be discussed below.

Uses of Amorphophallus Konjac

  • Treats obesity. It forms a gelatin-like mass when it is mixed with water; it also cannot be digested when it is consumed, and so is often used as a natural laxative. Since it can swell when mixed with water and it takes a good while to move through the digestive system, it makes you feel fuller and satisfied for a longer amount of time. This characteristic makes is good for treating obesity or for being used as a weight loss aid. However, note that it should be used in conjunction with exercise, eating right, and drinking plenty of water, not as a sole weight loss substance.
  • Weight loss aide. For the same reasons mentioned above, it can be used as an appetite suppressant and assist with weight loss.
  • Diabetes. Amorphophallus konjac has a positive effect on Diabetes as well. Since it moves through the digestive tract slowly (as explained above), it slows the rate of carbohydrate absorption. If carbohydrate absorption is slow, blood sugar will remain stable and not spike. This is good news for those with Diabetes because maintaining blood sugar levels is essential to managing the condition.
  • Traps wastes and residues. This substance traps food residues and waste as it moves (slowly) through the digestive tract. This “internal scrubbing” allows more room for digestion and absorption to happen of things that need to be absorbed.
  • Food preservative.
  • Pharmaceutical products. Amorphophallus konjac is used as a thickening agent in some pharmaceutical products.
  • Cosmetics. It provides body and volume to a lot of beauty products.
  • Wound treatment. It can be used as a protective layer over wounds and does not cause skin irritation.

Amorphophallus konjac is said to be a healthy food substance, even though it is not digested by the human body. It is a basic (alkaline) food that provides several nutrients. Water, protein, carbohydrates, lipids, sodium, potassium, magnesium, copper, phosphorous, iron, zinc, pantothenate, niacin, fatty acids, folic acid, dietary fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin B12. All of these are essential nutrients that the body needs. What a deal to get them all in with a single dose of Amorphophallus Konjac.

Side Effects
It is recommended to only take Amorphophallus Konjac under the supervision of a healthcare provider.

  • Esophageal blockage can occur if it is not consumed with at least 8 ounces of water.
  • It is not recommended for children or women who are breastfeeding or pregnant.
  • If someone is using it for Diabetic control, don’t use it too frequently because it may lower blood sugar levels to a dangerous number.
  • Since it forms such a sticky, gel-like substance, it can block absorption of other medications and drugs. Wait 2 hours before and after consuming Amorphophallus Konjac when taking other medications.
  • Avoid taking certain herbs along with Amorphophallus Konjac because other herbs have blood-sugar-lowering properties. The following should be avoided: kudzu, ginger, eleuthero, panax ginseng, and fenugreek.
Last updated on Aug 29th, 2010 and filed under Healthy Eating. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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