Guar Gum May Help Improve Constipation, Inflammation, and Behavior in Children with Autism
Many children with autism suffer from gastrointestinal issues,
including constipation and systemic inflammation. A new study suggests that
supplementation with partially hydrolyzed guar gum may help improve
constipation, inflammation, and irritability in children with autism.
Participants in the study included 13 children with autism spectrum
disorders between the ages of 4 and 9. All of them took 6 grams of guar gum
prebiotic fiber mixed into food or drink for 2 months. Blood samples and stool
samples were taken at the beginning and end of the study. Levels of
irritability were evaluated using the Aberrant Behavior Checklist at baseline
and at the end of the study.
At the beginning of the study, 9 of the 13 children defecated
only once per week, and 4 of them only twice per week. By the end of the study
period, defecation had increased to 4 times per week in all of the children.
There was also a significant decrease in levels of serum inflammation cytokines.
In addition, irritability behaviors in the children decreased.
The study was conducted by researchers from Kyoto Prefectural University and Higa University of Medical Science. It was published in the March 2019 issue of the Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition.