Beta-glucan supplements have no known side effects, according to WebMD, but they may reduce the effectiveness of certain medications. Beta-glucans increase the functioning of the immune system, so people on medications meant to reduce immune system functioning should avoid them.Continue Reading
There is very little risk involved in taking beta-glucan supplements, states Drugs.com. Variations exist in the quality and composition of beta-glucan supplements because the substances derive from natural products. Supplements run the risk of contamination or a lower quality product, in addition to being more costly than food sources. Because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not carefully regulate supplements, it is best to get beta-glucans from food sources instead, advises Healthline. Beta-glucans occur in some common high-fiber foods, such as whole grains, oats and barely. Medicinal mushrooms are another source of beta-glucans used extensively in traditional Asian medicine.
There is evidence that beta-glucans can boost heart health, according to Healthline. Several studies suggest that they are able to lower high cholesterol and triglycerides as well. Beta-glucans may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and improve blood sugar control in those who already have it. Although scientists believe they have a positive effect on the immune system, as of 2015, studies have not sufficiently proven it.Learn more about Side Effects