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Kim Tomsic

Thursday, January 27, 2011

More about Starch Resistant Carbs and Benefits

Today, Shine from Yahoo has an attractive article and I was easily lured by the title:
8 Reasons Why Carbs Help You Lose Weight.
Shine's eight reasons why you should eat starch resistant carbs include: "carbs make you thin, carbs fill you up, carbs curb your hunger, carbs help control your blood sugar, carbs speed up metabolism, carbs blast belly fat, carbs keep you satisfied, carbs make you feel good..."
The problem with the article, however is that it talks a lot about Resistant Starch carbs, but fails to do a thorough job identifying what that means. When I browsed the article, my brain tried to skip over the whole “Resistant Starch” part and jump right to the focus: Carbs Help you Lose Weight. But once reality set in, I was certain that Mac & Cheese and Captain Crunch aren’t going to get me bikini-ready.


Resistant Starch: A starch which goes undigested in the body

Simply put, a resistant starch acts like a dietary fiber. When you eat a resistant starch food, you feel satisfied and full, and just like a fiber, the part of the food that is a resistant starch goes unabsorbed and passes through your body. Some call the food “fat burners.” Another positive spin--a healthy enzyme called Butyrate is created by resistant starches. Many in the medical community believe butyrate not only helps prevent colon cancer, but it also boosts the immune system.

Skinny, Healthy, Disease Resistant…I love it!

Why a starch is resistant?

1. It has a fibrous outer shell (i.e. grains and legumes that are cooked intact);

2. It’s a starch our digestive enzymes can’t break down (i.e. unripe bananas, uncooked potatoes **I repeat, uncooked, and plantains);

3. It’s been chemically altered (yhick, no thanks);

4. It’s created in the cooling process (i.e. when potatoes are cooked, they are 95% starch and the last 5% becomes resistant starch in the cooling process).


******Before****** you add these food items to the top of your grocery list, please note that all beans (and bananas, etc.) are not created equally. These items need to be in their purest form. For example: canned beans are going to have a high glycemic index and they are not the goal in regard to finding a resistant starch.

Bananas (but under ripe; ripe means high sugar and less resistant carbs)

Brown Rice



Navy Beans (supposed to be one of the best R.S. foods)

Oatmeal (yum!!! By the way, it’s slow cooked oats, not the instant oatmeal; steel cut oats are even better.)

Pearl Barley

Whole Grain Bread (and don’t be fooled by fancy packaging…read the label and avoid high fructose corn syrup and other crazy ingredients now found in bread)


Note: From researching various medical blog sites, I discovered that although a food is listed in the resistant starch food group, please understand that the entire banana, potato, or serving of brown rice is not 100% packed with resistant starch. Each food has their own balance of resistant starch; some numbers show that only 5% of the food contains resistant starch, so you must watch the glucose level.

Please leave your thoughts or recipes below.
Opposing viewpoint
Michael R. Eades, M.D. is one doctor who is not a fan of the resistant starch fad and why:


A websites where medical benefits to resistant starches are discussed (people with insulin issues and weight loss goals):


Another website claims to be the information portal for medical professionals regarding resistant starch:



Want some resistant starch recipes? Click below:


Lentil Salad:


Prevention Magazine:


Flax Bread:


Barley Risotto Primavera:

Want to know more?  

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