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Resistant Starch From Starchy Veg

Commented on January 29, 2014
Created November 12, 2013 at 1:10 PM

I was recently reading about resistant starches and was interested in trying to increase my intake of them.

The thing is, I prefer to get my nutrition from "real" food rather than things that feel a bit contrived, so at the moment I am not that keen on just eating potato starch mixed with water or whatever. So I was wondering what paleo (e.g. beans are ruled out!) sources there are other than cold cooked potato. I've seen it mentioned several times that green banana and plantain are a good source - but is that raw or cooked? I tend to eat green banana or green plantain, cassava, taro, sweet potato, parsnip and (african not american) yam several times a week (basically every day) and I wondered if any of these are decent sources. I am cooking them as obviously that is the normal way of preparing them, but I am not sure how the resistant starch of these particular veg (if they contain it that is!) is effected as I can only really find stuff about cooked vs raw potato and unripe vs ripe banana.

If cooking does destroy most of the resistant starch, how does the whole cooling thing work? If I cook the above veg an hour before eating, let them cool a bit and add them back to hot food, will the heat destroy the starch again? Do I have to literally eat them completely cold or is it ok to say boil a few plantain and cool them and then eat them with a hot stew tipped over? I usually eat them with stuff like goat curry or stew.

I have done a bit of searching online including paleohacks and I cannot seem to find a clear answer to these specific things I am asking.

Finally, does anyone have any other tips for getting resistant starch WITHOUT resorting to stuff like adding uncooked potato starch to my diet? I'm not saying it doesn't work, I'm just saying I would rather eat stuff that basically resembles real food (e.g. like traditional people's diets) rather than adding powders and supplements all the time. For instance, I like to eat oily fish 2-3 times a week rather than taking omega oils every day, and I prefer to ferment foods than rely on probiotics.

4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5005)

on January 29, 2014
at 10:33 AM

What is wrong with beans? Lentils for example are excellent sources of resistant starch and loads of nutrients. They don't really need to be treated before cooking. And many beans, if soaked for 24 - 36 hours (don't change the water - just rinse at the end) are fine when cooked. Again, good source of RS and loads of minerals, folate etc.

Medium avatar

(238)

on January 28, 2014
at 08:40 PM

I was making my own, I buy almost zero premade foods. I've since started using potato starch and am now able to eat potato salad without any issue, except maybe adding weight. I think it was a case of too much too quickly.

D1ef888baa4ffcb96a0a5e6e1f769187

(20)

on January 28, 2014
at 08:28 PM

Potato salad often has a bunch of other stuff in it - including sweeteners. If you aren't making it, maybe one of those other ingredients is messing with you.

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 14, 2013
at 08:59 PM

"Resistant starch is basically indigestible matter in plants right?" I think it gets digested (or fermented) by bacteria in the large intestine.

wiki says this "Its bulking effects are generated by increasing the bacterial mass, and not through water holding, which accounts for its milder regularity effects compared to non-fermenting, bulking fibers like cellulose" Source

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on November 14, 2013
at 01:47 PM

I don't like seeing them move away from traditional fats, which may not be optimal (that's an argument for another day), but certainly they're better than the chemically refined oils coming from other plant sources.

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 14, 2013
at 01:35 PM

BTW ghee and coconut oil are very traditional fats but now people think they are bad due to saturated fat and start to use soya and corn oil! Also people are told that roti is better than rice for weight management and blood sugar, so they replace a fairly benign carb (white rice) with a problematic one (wheat). Sorry to post lots of comments on this and go off topic btw, just like to discuss it!

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 14, 2013
at 01:33 PM

On the plus side Indians in general eat a lot more vegetables and they don't do it just "for health" like so many Westerners, but because vegetables are delicious and necessary for a meal. Standard and popular street snack in North India is sprouted chickpea salad with veg (onion, tomato, cucumber, etc.). People also happily chow down on cucumber and other raw veggies as a street snack. In meals some people do tend to relying on potato too much, but otherwise they eat lots of veg varieties and enjoy them.

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 14, 2013
at 01:31 PM

Some of it is definitely quantity - Indians who still have traditional active lifestyle eat a TONNE of rice and roti without weight gain and middle class Indians have not learnt that they need less. But also they love to eat very unhealthy foods as they get more money and do not consider their health. Junk food is sadly becoming very common, and Indians with enough money don't like to walk when they can drive so they easily have inactive lifestyles.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on November 14, 2013
at 01:23 PM

It's all in the proportions I think! My friends from the sub-continent tend to eat a huge pile of rice at meals with some lentils, flecks of veggies and maybe an egg or a couple bits of chicken. Lots of curry in there, but I'm sure there's a ton of vegetable oil in there too. Change up the quantities: a pile of veggies and lentils, a serving a protein and a serving (not multiple servings) of rice. Use the right fats (not sure saturated fats are super-duper). Not familar with mustard oil myself.

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 14, 2013
at 01:17 PM

I don't think an Indian vegetarian diet is optimal for health, it can be reasonably ok as compared to SAD but I don't think it's as good as eating animal products and minimising reliance on grains and legumes. In general Indians do suffer from a lot of health problems. Diabetes, B12 deficiency and anaemia are rampant. I used to cook in ghee and coconut oil just as I do now so that aspect was ok for me. Giving up mustard oil was HARD. I do better without rice (in terms of carbs the starchy veg fills me more and I don't binge on them) but I do miss dal and other legume dishes.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on November 14, 2013
at 01:08 PM

Right, I think an Indian vegetarian diet can be healthy (though typically I would consider it to be quite unhealthy). A focus on veggies first. beans and legumes secondary would be quite healthy. And though not authentic to the cuisine, olive oil would be a great addition.

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 14, 2013
at 11:09 AM

I'm hoping that after a few months of just looking after my stomach health I will be able to enjoy beans a few times a week. I don't want to go back to eating them as a staple (I used to eat a typical Indian vegetarian diet of every meal being rice and legumes with veg and some yoghurt) because I feel better focusing on other foods, but I am not ruling them out completely forever.

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 14, 2013
at 11:08 AM

Used to eat rice as a staple (every meal) but realised when switching to grain free that it was actually making me hungrier after eating it and I can eat A LOT of it without feeling satisfied too. But I may add in small amounts once a week or so at some point. I usually ate sona masoori rice and rosematta rice.

56c28e3654d4dd8a8abdb2c1f525202e

(1822)

on November 14, 2013
at 12:39 AM

True. But beets, turnips, carrots, daikon, I mostly eat raw, grated, with olive oil and vinegar. I have a two veggie rule for dinner, and one is almost always a grated root. I recommend it to everyone.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on November 13, 2013
at 01:16 PM

Ok, you know to avoid that now. I think most though probably have few issues with legumes. Beans do have stellar associations with health outcomes, that's something to keep in mind.

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 13, 2013
at 07:56 AM

if we are talking RS (resistant starch), then (from the studies i have seen) most cooked (& still warm/hot) tubers are quite low in RS.

to get some half decent RS you need to cook and cool the tubers, Or eat them raw, not sure eating raw tubers is a good idea, at least not in qty

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 13, 2013
at 12:58 AM

another food source of RS is rice (if you eat rice), pref cooked & cooled & pref a high amylose type rice ie. most long grain rices (eg. basmati) but not jasmine (which is higher in amylopectin)

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 13, 2013
at 12:45 AM

another food source of RS is rice (if you eat rice), pref cooked & cooled & pref a high amylose type rice ie. most long grain rices (eg. basmati) but not jasmine (which is higher in amylopectin)

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 12, 2013
at 09:34 PM

Oh that looks really great, thanks. At the end it mentions a study done on resistant starch in African diets. It occurs to me that finding this study may be even more helpful, as these diets may contain the same sort of starches I am eating,

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 12, 2013
at 04:23 PM

Properly prepared I don't think they are that harmful and I used to eat them a lot. But my gut is not very happy with them and I do better without. Each to their own I guess.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on November 12, 2013
at 04:18 PM

Who's to say that beans are so terrible? Question the dogma! Beans are whole foods, eaten for ages (I know, I know, paleo blasphemy!)

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 12, 2013
at 03:17 PM

And yes I too am weary of fads, especially when they don't seem doable without consuming some sort of supplement or non-food (I consider eating raw potato starch mixed with a bit of water to be a non food!). That is why I am curious to see what RS can be had from "real" (but paleo e.g. tubers rather than grains and beans) food.

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 12, 2013
at 03:16 PM

I have been looking at his site. The problem is he focuses mostly on white potato. I was wondering about cassava, taro, green plantains and (true) yams. Oh, and I suppose sweet potato too. I don't think I have fully understood how the cooling thing works in terms of whether you can then make the starch warm again to eat.

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7 Answers

0
5661757f5a7ad1d09c44d7b3ce9b533f

on January 29, 2014
at 02:10 AM

I believe that if you re-heat your cold potatos (or whatever) higher than 140 F, then the resistant starch in them changes back to digestible starch again.

0
2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

on November 14, 2013
at 11:15 AM

Ok guys thanks for the comments. A thought occurred to me. Resistant starch is basically indigestible matter in plants right? So shouldn't it be present in some quantity in most plants and if you are getting decent size bowel movements would that perhaps indicate you are getting enough anyway? I was VLC for a while a month or so ago as I have been healing myself from some gut issues (going very well). I noticed that I had smaller bowel movements and (sorry for TMI) drier too. But after adding daily taro/plantain/cassava/sweet potato/(true) yam at supper they are much healthier looking and more substantial too. Magnesium supplementation had gotten rid of the dryness already but the amount seemed to improve with the extra starchy veg. So would that indicate I am maybe getting more resistant starch now?

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 14, 2013
at 08:59 PM

"Resistant starch is basically indigestible matter in plants right?" I think it gets digested (or fermented) by bacteria in the large intestine.

wiki says this "Its bulking effects are generated by increasing the bacterial mass, and not through water holding, which accounts for its milder regularity effects compared to non-fermenting, bulking fibers like cellulose" Source

0
2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

on November 14, 2013
at 11:06 AM

Apologies for multiple instances of "resistance" instead of "resistant" in my question and in the title! Have edited that now. Not sure how it happened to be honest!

0
56c28e3654d4dd8a8abdb2c1f525202e

(1822)

on November 13, 2013
at 05:32 AM

Basically, most anything that grows underground is a decent or good source. I like all root and tubers, but tend to eat 50/50 the most caloric ones (potatoes/sweet potatoes/yams) and those with about half the calories (beets, turnip, daikon, carrot). you are on the right track.

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 13, 2013
at 07:56 AM

if we are talking RS (resistant starch), then (from the studies i have seen) most cooked (& still warm/hot) tubers are quite low in RS.

to get some half decent RS you need to cook and cool the tubers, Or eat them raw, not sure eating raw tubers is a good idea, at least not in qty

56c28e3654d4dd8a8abdb2c1f525202e

(1822)

on November 14, 2013
at 12:39 AM

True. But beets, turnips, carrots, daikon, I mostly eat raw, grated, with olive oil and vinegar. I have a two veggie rule for dinner, and one is almost always a grated root. I recommend it to everyone.

0
Medium avatar

(238)

on November 13, 2013
at 12:51 AM

I just added cold potato salad to my diet last few days and frankly I feel the worse for it. I'm going back to only the occasional warm sweet potato.

D1ef888baa4ffcb96a0a5e6e1f769187

(20)

on January 28, 2014
at 08:28 PM

Potato salad often has a bunch of other stuff in it - including sweeteners. If you aren't making it, maybe one of those other ingredients is messing with you.

0
543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 12, 2013
at 09:27 PM

here's a pdf that may be of interest if you have not seen it before,

Sources and intake of resistant starch in the Chinese diet (pdf)

it lists both raw & cooked foods (& some cooked & cooled).

This is not a paleo document, but includes plenty of foods, including some tubers (potato, sweet potato, taro, yam), green banana, ripe banana,...

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on November 13, 2013
at 12:45 AM

another food source of RS is rice (if you eat rice), pref cooked & cooled & pref a high amylose type rice ie. most long grain rices (eg. basmati) but not jasmine (which is higher in amylopectin)

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 12, 2013
at 09:34 PM

Oh that looks really great, thanks. At the end it mentions a study done on resistant starch in African diets. It occurs to me that finding this study may be even more helpful, as these diets may contain the same sort of starches I am eating,

0
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on November 12, 2013
at 01:42 PM

You've read what Richard Nikoley (freetheanimal.com) has to say about it. He's all about resistant starch nowadays, plenty of research and people trying it over there.

(Richard latches onto fads like nobody else, I'm weary of resistant starch for that reason.)

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 12, 2013
at 03:17 PM

And yes I too am weary of fads, especially when they don't seem doable without consuming some sort of supplement or non-food (I consider eating raw potato starch mixed with a bit of water to be a non food!). That is why I am curious to see what RS can be had from "real" (but paleo e.g. tubers rather than grains and beans) food.

2a6025992746ff6cd4ffb6ccf0aa03fc

(60)

on November 12, 2013
at 03:16 PM

I have been looking at his site. The problem is he focuses mostly on white potato. I was wondering about cassava, taro, green plantains and (true) yams. Oh, and I suppose sweet potato too. I don't think I have fully understood how the cooling thing works in terms of whether you can then make the starch warm again to eat.

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