If you haven’t heard of resistant starch, it’s worth finding out a little bit more in my opinion. Starch is a complex carbohydrate so it shouldn’t be a staple for LCHF practitioners but resistant starch is somewhat different. Here’s why..
As the name implies, resistant starch is somewhat “resistant” to human digestion i.e. it breaks down much slower than other starches/ complex carbs. This means that it has a lower glycemic index and hence also a lower glycemic load, which in turn means less insulin “spiking”, whilst at the same time providing some “slow acting” carbs for energy. Hence the theory is that you can ingest resistant starches when feeling hungry without necessarily putting on weight. There is further evidence that these starches also help to stimulate healthy gut bacteria and flora.
Examples of Resistant Starch
Corn Flour or Corn Starch is probably the cheapest and most readily available resistant starch. Simply add a couple of tablespoons to some water, mix well and drink. If you want to get the real benefits from the gut flora and bacteria, it is recommended that you take it first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. There is one small drawback with this: GAS! Even on a small amount of corn flour, this will cause flatulence, so be warned! However, I am told that if you do this regularly, the flatulence dies down, eventually disappearing altogether.
Here are some further examples of resistance starch:
- Banana flour
- Green, raw banana
- Potato Flour
- Rolled Oats, uncooked
- Frozen Green peas
- Cooked White beans
- Cooked Lentils
- Cold pasta
- Cold potato
- Cold rice
Is Popcorn Resistant Starch?
Armed with the above knowledge, this begs the question “is popcorn resistant starch”? The answer is yes, when served COLD. I have been experimenting with popcorn over the last couple of weeks or so and as you can see on the left, just a small amount of corn kernels (<20g) produces A LOT of popcorn! You literally get a lot of “bang for your buck” with minimal chance of weight gain. In addition, if you pop your corn in high grade olive oil, you get the added benefit of essential omega 3 fatty acids. Add some Himalayan salt before serving and you’ve got the perfect solution for plasma volume maintenance as well!
- I have “dabbled” with corn flour in in the past and can vouch for the immediate flatulence! I did not notice any weight gain and I may go back to it again in the mornings, if I can remember! I may even also start trying it in the afternoons as a “snack” if I’m feeling at all hungry. I will keep you posted..
- I have also been trying out some popcorn prepared in olive oil and Himalayan salt every couple of days or so for the last 3 weeks, in quantities as shown in the picture above. I haven’t noticed any undue weight gain but I still recommend you don’t go overboard with these; they’re HIGHLY addictive!
2 thoughts on “Resistant Starch”
Why for so many are these are they listed as “cold” and you have to eat them cold? What is the thought process behind that? Once they’re cooked any physical changes and breakdown to the food has happened, so… ??
It’s a good question and here’s why:
Apparently it’s all down to the starch molecule strands and the way they “line up” at different temperatures. When warm, the body can break these down fairly rapidly, leading to a higher insulin spike (higher GI) than when cold, when the starch molecules are more “complex” and hence more “resistant” to digestion.
With rice and potatoes, it is recommended that you chill them in the fridge for at least 24 hrs to ensure that all the starches have become fully “resistant” before consuming. Sushi & Potato Salad would be one “palatable” way to do this. Hope this helps.