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Weight Loss and Polysaccharides

When you think about sugar, you might mostly think about how it's a main cause of weight gain, and something that should be avoided when you are trying to lose weight. While this is partly true, all the cells in your body contain sugar; and actually, they cannot function properly without it. Scientists now know of several essential complex sugars that are crucial to optimal cell health; but the diets of most people only contain two of these essential sugars. In fact, the other six are no longer found in abundance in the standard modern diet. The good news is that the human body can produce these other six sugars by using the other two, but the bad news is that due to factors such as stress and poor nutrition, the process is slowed down or halted altogether. This leads to non-communicating and improperly functioning cells, which leads to disease. And obesity is a disease that results from metabolic imbalance.

How do polysaccharides help people lose weight? It all boils down to eating the right foods that contain the right kind of sugars. Single or processed (refined) sugar is not the kind of sugar your body needs. It's the kind of sugar that's going to cause you to gain weight. A classic example of why many people have problems losing weight is their resistance to insulin. Insulin's job is to basically convert sugar into energy, however, too much refined sugar (not to mention the addition of thousands of chemical additives in food) causes the cells to become resistant to your own insulin. Thus, the resisted insulin triggers the body to store the sugar as fat, and your body shifts into fat saving mode. This causes your metabolism to slow down, which makes it hard to lose weight. But, when your body receives all essential polysaccharides, the complex sugars prompt your body to use insulin properly and your metabolism is able to speed back up, resulting in weight loss.

What are some sources of polysaccharides? Mushrooms and other fungi contain three essential sugars: glucose, galactose and mannose. Saps and gums like gum acacia, contain galactose, rhamnose, arabinose and glucuronic acid. One of the richest sources of fucose is a seaweed called Undaria pinnatifida. Echinacea contains arabinogalactan and galactose, and aloe vera contains mannose, galactose and arabinose. Marine phytoplankton is a rare product that contains nearly every essential nutrient the body needs, including a dense amount of polysaccharides. Goji juice is also rich in polysaccharides, and boosts the body's production of human growth hormones, which build toned muscle and repair skin cells. Some secondary sources of polysaccharides are plant-ripened fruits and vegetables, however due to the fact that most produce is picked when it's still green, the essential sugars don't have a chance to travel down from the roots and stems and into the fruit.

Are polysaccharide supplements safe and effective? Polysaccharide supplements can be a more effective way of receiving your fill of polysaccharides because they normally contain all of the essential sugars. Most natural sources of polysaccharides only contain a few; therefore you would have to eat more to get all the essential sugars. Research has indicated that all the polysaccharides are used together for proper functioning, and not individually. Although your body can produce all of the essential sugars with only the consumption of two, it is a very energy intensive process and it takes away from precious resources that could be used for vital health preservation. For this reason, a polysaccharide supplement may be the most effective means of consuming all the essential sugars in order to lose weight. As far as safety is concern, because polysaccharides are considered to be food, they are generally safe to take. People with allergies need to be careful when consuming certain foods, and always check the ingredients when using a polysaccharide supplement. And so far, there are no known side effects from polysaccharides, and have not been found to interact with pharmaceuticals or herbal products. Another tip to keep in mind is to never take the polysaccharides supplement on an empty stomach. It won't cause you any harm, but your body will use it for energy, which is basically a waste.

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