Saturday, October 18, 2008

Product Review: Fiber Supplements

I believe I mentioned that I was encouraged to increase my already-plentiful fiber consumption after I had some south-of-the-border issues. So, now I am an EXPERT on fiber. Let's review.

I started with a corn dextrin-based fiber supplement (I bought CVS store brand. The name brand used wheat dextrin. I have no idea whether that matters).
Pros: Dissolved completely in water (not milk) and did not taste like anything.
Cons: Did not work (and really, what's the point if it doesn't work). It did cause a change in the, ummm, product that I was producing but it did not appear to be for the better (nor for the worse, neutral).

Next, I decided to try the most famous of all: Metamucil. The woman pictured on the website is clearly not constipated. Nor has she ever been constipated. In fact, I'm not sure she's ever had a bowel movement. She's just too young, non-pregnant, and perky. I tried coarse ground, unflavored (but still sweetened) Metamucil (psyllium fiber).
Pros: Works great in as little as 12 hours.
Cons: Absolutely disgusting dissolved in plain water. Do not dissolve in warm water (it not try to hide it in your oatmeal unless you'd like to throw away a really big bowl of oatmeal). Do not put the cap back on the bottle before chugging the vile liquid because the longer it sits, the more disgusting it gets. Here's the deal: get yourself about 3 ounces of ice cold tap water, add one ounce of OJ for flavor, measure in one heaping teaspoon of Metamucil and stir vigorously for 10 seconds. Chug the whole mess. Rinse the glass with a bit of water and drink that (because it sticks to the glass). Replace the cap on the Metamucil jar and fill your glass with water to let it soak overnight.

Obviously, I found the Metamucial vile (but effective), so I wanted to try something else. I bought a bottle of fiber supplement tablets (made from inulin vegetable fiber) that are about 4 times bigger than a tumes but they taste like oranges and go down easy.
Pros: They taste good. Sometimes I would have one after dinner in lieu of a cookie.
Cons: They don't work. They do have an effect. It's the same effect as the corn dextrin fiber. That effect is that it turns your excrement into rubber. It's a bizarre occurrence and not one that I'd definitely say is for the positive.

Lastly, I found the Metamucil to be a little pricey, so I bought Pharmacists' Choice unflavored (but sweetened!) psyllium fiber supplement. It's OK. It's fine ground, I guess, since it isn't as coarse as the coarse-ground Metamucil.
Pros: Low, Low Price, and it works!
Cons: It dissolves a little funny and the sugar stays in the glass (which I guess isn't a bad thing since I don't need the sugar).

Overall, I highly recommend the psyllium powders that you mix with water (or juice). And eat some raisin bran every day. And fruit. And stay away from the rubber makers.


  1. Try metimucil clear it works well mixes well with any drink and works fast

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  14. hi, i just fell on this, looking up info on dextrin fiber corn, came with my bottle of probiotics. so , i use chia seeds, they are great and nutritious, so if you havent tried that, start with 2-3 teaspoons in room temp water stir let it sit, it will start to be a bit gelatinous, stir it up more an drink it, or eat it with a spoon, neutral natural taste, not disgusting....