Psyllium husk is a rich source of fiber. This nutrient plays a key role in bowel health by increasing the bulk of stool to help it move through the intestines. Psyllium husk is a primary ingredient in many types of fiber supplements and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center notes several studies have found it effectively treats constipation. Research has established some suggested dosages for this specific condition but you should check with your doctor about a suggested dose.
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The University of Michigan Health System reports studies on psyllium husk for constipation have used between 5 g and 10 g daily. It notes most doctors suggest 10 g taken in two divided doses throughout the day. The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center states children can use psyllium for constipation at a dose of 1.5 to 3 g with 4 to 8 oz. of water two or three times a day.
Drink between one and two 8-oz. glasses of water with each dose. Keep well-hydrated throughout the day – preferably with water – when supplementing with fiber. Fiber contributes to bowel movements by combining with water to bulk up the stool and help move waste through the intestines – too much fiber and too little water can actually worsen constipation.
Length of Use
The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center instructs you to consult with your doctor before using psyllium husk for longer than one week. Suddenly increasing the amount of fiber in your diet can lead to bloating, gas and diarrhea. Start off with smaller doses to help your body adjust to the effects of fiber; your doctor can offer guidance.
Other Considerations for Use
Taking fiber supplements too close to other supplements and medications could decrease their absorption. To prevent this problem, take your fiber supplement at least 1 hour before other treatments or 2 to 4 hours after. The University of Maryland Medical Center cautions against using psyllium supplements if you have narrowing of the esophagus or any other condition that causes narrowing or obstruction of the gastrointestinal tract.