Chitosan – sources, health benefits, nutrients, uses and constituents at NaturalPedia.com

Tuesday, August 15, 2017 by

Chitosan is a type of fiber that is commonly found in the hard outer shells of crustaceans such as crabs, shrimp and lobster. According to an article posted on the Live Strong website, the compound is commonly manufactured as a dietary supplement to aid in weight loss and cholesterol control.

List of known nutrients

Chitosan is loaded with essential nutrients needed for better overall health and body function. Health and wellness website My Fitness Pal lists the important components found in chitosan, which include:

  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Protein
  • Sodium
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C

Medicinal uses for chitosan

Chitosan is best known for its efficacy in inducing healthy weight loss and reducing blood cholesterol levels. Chitosan is known to bind with harmful fats in the stomach and intestinal tract. Since the human body cannot digest chitosan, the compound takes the fat along with it once it is pushed out of the body. This effect has earned chitosan the moniker “fat trapper,” according to an article on the Nutrition Formulators website.

Chitosan is also found to combine with water in the stomach. Due to this combination, the compound expands and the body is coaxed to feeling fuller for longer periods of time. Aside from this, the compound is also known to reduce the rates of bad cholesterol in the bloodstream. Chitosan’s powerful effects on body weight and cholesterol rates may lower the odds of diabetes, gout, gallstones, and cancer.

In addition, regular chitosan consumption is found to reduce systolic blood pressure levels. As a result, this reduces the risk of hypertension-related diseases such as stroke, heart attack, and coronary heart disease as well as heart failure, kidney failure, and other serious health conditions.  On the other hand, the In Life Healthcare website also indicates that chitosan may help prevent the onset of pre-diabetes. The compound is touted to decrease blood sugar levels, with the effects being dose-dependent. Chitosan is also shown to promote cellular balance in insulin production, which in turn facilitates blood glucose control.

Moreover, higher chitosan consumption is found to reduce the odds of developing Crohn’s disease. The compound does this by keeping homocysteine levels in check. Taking chitosan regularly may help slash the risk of disease-related complications such as severe ulcers in the small intestine, colon, or both. Chitosan also prevents the onset of Crohn’s disease symptoms such as diarrhea, abdominal pain, vomiting and fever.

Furthermore, chitosan is shown to address anemia. Besides this, the compound contains antithrombotic and haemostatic properties. This means that chitosan helps prevent the onset of harmful blood clots and maintains the body’s internal equilibrium. Additionally, the compound is known to possess anti-tumor properties. On the other hand, chitosan is touted for its beneficial effects on the immune system.

The compound is also shown to mitigate the proliferation of parasites, germs and other infections. Chitosan is found to inhibit E.coli, Pseudomonas and Candida albicans. Likewise, the compound is known to ward off molds and yeast.

Body systems supported by chitosan

Chitosan is particularly beneficial in fortifying both the digestive and cardiovascular systems. Likewise, the compound is shown to promote the body’s overall blood circulation and prevent related diseases. Chitosan also supports the immune and urinary systems.

Ways to use chitosan

Chitosan is primarily found in the shells of crustaceans such as crabs and shrimp. Because it is indigestible, it is commonly sold as a food supplement. However, chitosan can still be enjoyed when crustaceans are eaten with their shells on. Grilling or frying on-shell shrimp, for instance, may still enable people to get their dose of chitosan. Boiling the shells for soup stocks is also one way of obtaining benefits from chitosan. An article posted on Epicurious.com features interesting ways on how to enjoy chitosan sources such as shrimp.

Where to learn more

Summary

Chitosan promotes weight loss and regulates blood cholesterol levels.

Chitosan prevents heart disease, kidney failure and gallstones.

Chitosan keeps diabetes, infections and cancer at bay.

Chitosan wards off anemia, Chron’s disease and parasite proliferation.

Chitosan is beneficial to the cardiovascular, circulatory and digestive systems.

Chitosan also supports the immune and urinary systems.

Sources include:

LiveStrong.com 1

LiveStrong.com 2

NutritionFormulators.com

InLifeHealthcare.com

Epicurious.com



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