Beta(2-1)fructans, Chicory Extract, Chicory Inulin, Dahlia Extract, Dahlia Inulin, Extrait de Chicorée, Extrait de Dahlia, Inulina, Inuline, Inuline de Chicorée, Inuline de Dahlia, Long-chain Oligosaccharides, Oligosaccharides, Oligosaccharides à Chaîne Longue, Prebiotic, Prébiotique.<br/><br/>


Overview Information

Inulin is a starchy substance found in a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, and herbs, including wheat, onions, bananas, leeks, artichokes, and asparagus. The inulin that is used for medicine is most commonly obtained by soaking chicory roots in hot water.

Inulin is commonly used by mouth for high blood fats, including cholesterol and triglycerides. It is also used for weight loss, constipation, diarrhea, and diabetes.

How does it work?

Inulin is not digested or absorbed in the stomach. It goes to the bowels where bacteria are able to use it to grow. It supports the growth of a special kind of bacteria that are associated with improving bowel function and general health. Inulin decreases the body's ability to make certain kinds of fats.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Effective for

  • Constipation. Inulin seem to help relieve constipation in some children, adults, and elderly people.
  • Diabetes. Inulin might help lower blood sugar levels when used along with diabetes medications in women with diabetes.
  • High levels of triglycerides. Taking inulin seems to lower triglycerides in some, but not all, people with high triglyceride levels. The average reduction is about 7.5%.
  • Weight loss. Taking inulin seems to decrease body weight a small amount in people who are overweight or obese.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Diarrhea caused by antibiotics. Some early research suggests that taking inulin with a similar fiber called fructo-oligosaccharides might not help prevent diarrhea in children who are taking antibiotics.
  • High cholesterol levels. It is unclear if taking inulin as a supplement lowers blood cholesterol. Most research suggests that if cholesterol is reduced, it is by a small amount.
  • Prediabetes. Some early research suggests that inulin does not improve the body's ability to manage insulin and blood sugar in people with prediabetes.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of inulin for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Inulin is POSSIBLY SAFE in adults and children when used appropriately by mouth. The most common side effects occur in the stomach. Using too much inulin causes more stomach problems.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Inulin is POSSIBLY SAFE in pregnant and breast-feeding women when consumed in food. Not enough is known about the use of inulin as medicine during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.



We currently have no information for INULIN Interactions.



The following doses have been studied in scientific research:



  • For treatment of constipation: 15-40 grams per day for up to 4 weeks
  • For diabetes: 10 grams per day for 8 weeks
  • For high triglycerides: The usual dose of inulin is about 14 grams daily
  • For weight loss: 10-30 grams per day for 6-8 weeks

View References


  • Abrams SA, Griffin IJ. Calcium absorption is increased in adolescent girls receiving enriched inulin. World Congress of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, & Nutrition, Boston, MA, August 5-9, 2000: Abstract 821.
  • Bonnema AL, Kolberg LW, Thomas W, Slavin JL. Gastrointestinal tolerance of chicory inulin products. J Am Diet Assoc 2010;110(6):865-8. View abstract.
  • Brighenti F, Casiraghi MC, Canzi E, Ferrari A. Effect of consumption of a ready-to-eat breakfast cereal containing inulin on the intestinal milieu and blood lipids in healthy male volunteers. Eur J Clin Nutr 1999;53:726-33.. View abstract.
  • Closa-Monasterolo R, Gispert-Llaurado M, Luque V, et al. Safety and efficacy of inulin and oligofructose supplementation in infant formula: results from a randomized clinical trial. Clin Nutr 2013;32(6):918-27. View abstract.
  • Collado Yurrita L, San Mauro Martín I, Ciudad-Cabañas MJ, Calle-Purón ME, Hernández Cabria M. Effectiveness of inulin intake on indicators of chronic constipation; a meta-analysis of controlled randomized clinical trials. Nutr Hosp 2014;30(2):244-52. View abstract.
  • Cummings JH, Macfarlane GT, Englyst HN. Prebiotic digestion and fermentation. Am J Clin Nutr 2001;73:415S-420S. View abstract.
  • Davidson MH, Maki KC, Synecki C, et al. Effects of dietary inulin on serum lipids in men and women with hypercholesterolemia. Nutr Res 1998;18:503-17.
  • Dehghan P, Gargari BP, Jafar-Abadi MA, Aliasgharzadeh A. Inulin controls inflammation and metabolic endotoxemia in women with type 2 diabetes mellitus: a randomized-controlled clinical trial. Int J Food Sci Nutr 2014;65(1):117-23. View abstract.
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  • Gibson GR, Beatty ER, Wang X, Cummings JH. Selective stimulation of bifidobacteria in the human colon by oligofructose and inulin. Gastroenterology 1995;108:975-82.. View abstract.
  • Guess ND, Dornhorst A, Oliver N, Frost GS. A randomised crossover trial: the effect of inulin on glucose homeostasis in subtypes of prediabetes. Ann Nutr Metab 2016;68(1):26-34. View abstract.
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  • Heap S, Ingram J, Law M, Tucker AJ, Wright AJ. Eight-day consumption of inulin added to a yogurt breakfast lowers postprandial appetite ratings but not energy intakes in young healthy females: a randomised controlled trial. Br J Nutr 2016;115(2):262-70. View abstract.
  • Hoeger WW, Harris C, Long EM, Hopkins DR. Four-week supplementation with a natural dietary compound produces favorable changes in body composition. Adv Ther 1998;15:305-14. View abstract.
  • Kleessen B, Sykura B, Zunft HJ, Blaut M. Effects of inulin and lactose on fecal microflora, microbial activity, and bowel habit in elderly constipated persons. Am J Clin Nutr 1997;65:1397-402.. View abstract.
  • Kok N, Roberfroid M, Delzenne N. Dietary oligofructose modifies the impact of fructose on hepatic triacylglycerol metabolism. Metabolism 1996;45:1547-50. View abstract.
  • Marteau P, Jacobs H, Cazaubiel M, Signoret C, Prevel JM, Housez B. Effects of chicory inulin in constipated elderly people: a double-blind controlled trial. Int J Food Sci Nutr 2011;62(2):164-70. View abstract.
  • Menne E, Guggenbuhl N, Roberfroid M. Fn-type chicory inulin hydrolysate has a prebiotic effect in humans. J Nutr 2000;130:1197-9. View abstract.
  • Mensink MA, Frijlink HW, van der Voort Maarschalk K, Hinrichs WL. Inulin, a flexible oligosaccharide I: review of its physicochemical characteristics. Carbohydr Polym 2015;130:405-19. View abstract.
  • Pedersen A, Sandstrom B, Van Amelsvoort JM. The effect of ingestion of inulin on blood lipids and gastrointestinal symptoms in healthy females. Br J Nutr 1997;78:215-22. View abstract.
  • Piazza C, Privitera MG, Melilli B, et al. Influence of inulin on plasma isoflavone concentrations in healthy postmenopausal women. Am J Clin Nutr 2007;86(3):775-80. View abstract.
  • Roberfroid MB, Van Loo JA, Gibson GR. The bifidogenic nature of chicory inulin and its hydrolysis products. J Nutr 1998;128:11-9. View abstract.
  • Roberfroid MB. Functional effects of food components and the gastrointestinal system: chicory fructo-oligosaccharides. Nutr Rev 1996;54:S38-42. View abstract.
  • Sharma A, Bemis M, Desilets AR. Role of Medium Chain Triglycerides (Axona®) in the Treatment of Mild to Moderate Alzheimer's Disease. Am J Alzheimers Dis Other Demen. 2014 Aug;29(5):409-14. View abstract.
  • Szajewska H, Weizman Z, Abu-Zekry M, et al.; ESPGHAN Working Group on Probiotics and Prebiotics. Inulin and fructo-oligosaccharides for the prevention of antibiotic-associated diarrhea in children: report by the ESPGHAN Working Group on Probiotics and Prebiotics. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr 2012;54(6):828-9. View abstract.
  • Teuri U, Karkkainen M, Lamberg-Allardt C, Korpela R. Addition of inulin to breakfast does not acutely affect serum ionized calcium and parathyroid hormone concentrations. Ann Nutr Metab 1999;43:356-64.. View abstract.
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More Resources for INULIN

CONDITIONS OF USE AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION: This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified health care provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor or health care professional before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your health care plan or treatment and to determine what course of therapy is right for you.

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