Powdered psyllium husks are the ground coats of seed from psyllium (Plantago spp.), a plant native to India and Pakistan where it known as isabgol or isphagula.
Powdered psyllium husk, which is mild and pleasant tasting, is added to foods as a thickener. Because the husks contain so much fiber, and mucilage, the powder is used as a thickening agent in the food industry in the manufacture of frozen foods, especially ice cream.
Psyllium here refers to Plantago ovata, the species name of which is derived from Sanskrit and means “horse flower.” The plant is cultivated and harvested for its seed and husk, the latter of which is obtained from the minute, gel-coated seed that the shrubby plant produces in great number. In fact, a single plant can produce more than 10,000 seeds. Psyllium has a long history of use as food, especially in Europe, North Africa, India and China, although the U.S. is the largest importer today. Psyllium seed and husk is an excellent source of gluten-free, soluble fiber. Psyllium is also rich in minerals and vitamins, including potassium, zinc, iron and magnesium.
Do not take in large doses. Be sure to take with plenty of water to prevent choking / obstruction.