Sorry for the deceptive title, this isn’t an old 80’s Robert Palmer video. It’s actually a blog about the potential of introducing Resistant Starch into one’s diet.
What is Resistant Starch (RS)? Good Question. 48 Hours ago I had not even heard of it.
I’ll provide a brief overview of it and a couple links to people who have more knowledge and experience with RS than I do.
I heard about it on The Fat Burning Man podcast and I started Googling the subject.
Starting at the beginning, RS is a starch that doesn’t digest in the stomach, so it travels downstream, arriving all the way to your colon. Once it hits the colon it ferments (use your imagination regarding negative side affects and the potential implications on your social life), allegedly the bacteria in your gut loves this stuff and uses it to naturally increase butyrate production. FYI, the increased gas production is allegedly a short-lived side-effect.
Butyrate is a Short-Chain Fatty Acid that possesses anti-inflammatory properties that can be beneficial to gut health. High quality butter is a modest source of butyrate, another benefit of bulletproof coffee in the morning.
Sources of RS are raw potatoes, or cooked potatoes that have been cooled, and which can be reheated. Cooked and cooled rice and converted rice are also sources of RS. Green bananas and plantains are a great source too. A fascinating fact regarding these food items is that by ingesting them as RS, rather than in their conventional forms, the glycemic load is greatly reduced, since the starch doesn’t get digested in the stomach or small intestine. So while the RS is stimulating the bacteria in the gut, producing short chain fatty acids (butyrate), the fiber is working it’s magic scrubbing the colon as it it works its way to the exit.
The possibility of increased butyrate production appeals to me in that I have suffered from severe gut inflammation for years. I also pay particular attention to my blood sugar, but rice has been problematic for me. The reduced glycemic impact is very exciting for me, as I enjoy rice as a way to increase my caloric intake with clean carbs, but I get an insulin spike that sends me to the moon and back. Today I ate the bowl of rice in the photo. It was one cup of rice that I prepared last night and cooled in the fridge. I warmed it up and stirred a tablespoon of Kerry Gold butter into it while it was hot.
Thirty minutes after I ate it, my blood glucose measured only 95. This is close to my fasting blood sugar.
If you are looking for a simple way to introduce RS into your diet, in a somewhat controlled and measurable fashion, try consuming potato starch, mixed in water or yogurt. A good source of this product is Bob’s Red Mill. Be sure to get potato starch, not potato flour. Begin with perhaps one tablespoon a day for a week and observe how it affects your digestion.
There seems to be a fair amount of data being gathered on this subject. For a scientific review of the potential effects of RS on the human colon, the American Physiological Society has a very detailed paper that you can view. If you prefer a BioHacker’s take on the benefits of RS, go to Free The Animal. The blogger’s personal observations are interesting. I am deliberately not providing a link, because though I find this gentleman’s work fascinating, he is rather crude and can be offensive.
I suspect that experimenting with one’s dietary starch intake is not anything a diabetic should do, but if you are a generally healthy individual, it might be worth searching the internet and conducting some controlled experiments on your reaction to introducing Resistant Starch into you diet on a regular or periodic basis.
Official Disclaimer: No, I am not a doctor, nor do I pretend to be. I am simply a guy taking responsibility for his own health and wellness.
Be Defiant! Be Well!