Revisiting Resistant Starch: Part Two

      72 Comments on Revisiting Resistant Starch: Part Two

Here’s part two of my interview with Richard Nikoley, Tim “Tatertot” Steele and Grace Liu about resistant starch.  Given how many questions I asked and the comprehensive answers, I decided to divide the interview into three parts.

Fat Head: What do you think of the high-maize resistant starch the corn refiners are promoting? From some of your comments, I get the feeling you consider it yet another industrial food we can do without.

Tim: I’m very disappointed in the direction that the makers of Hi-Maize have taken it. Here they have a substance with the potential to help billions, yet they only want to put it in bakery goods and snacks so they can promote them as “high fiber foods.” The people who make Hi-Maize are the same ones who make High Fructose Corn Syrup. Since that bubble burst, they are looking for ways to refill the coffers of the corn producers. The studies in which Hi-Maize, or High Amylose Maize Starch (HAMS) was used to show marked metabolic improvements required approximately 20-40g of RS per day. This level makes most people fart, so when they put it in food, they are very careful to get it in at a level that ensures nobody “squeaks one off” in church, God forbid. This fart-proof level is the same issue that inulin and other prebiotic supplement makers had to deal with. A level of RS that produces no farts in 90% of the consumers is a level that does no good for 100% of people eating it for its “high fiber” benefits.

Grace: Movies like Fat Head, and others — King Corn and Future of Our Food — brought awareness and enlightenment for me about the dangers of the greed and perversions of industry interests including USDA collusion and GMO Big Agriculture. Part of the reason industrialized nations have epidemic gut problems, many experts believe, is secondary to GMO foods in the food supply that make up 80-90% of the American SAD food pyramid: GMO grain and GMO Bt corn fed livestock (pork, poultry, beef), GMO grain crops, GMO Bt corn, GMO soy, GMO sugar beets, etc. We have moved away from sustainable, organic, heirloom and biodynamic farming and livestock production and all its abundant life, including the soil organisms and other gut-preserving probiotics that live on the roots, tubers, shoots, fruits and leaves of our crops.

Fat Head: Lower glucose levels are a nice benefit, but I wasn’t getting the high fasting glucose levels that you and other people have reported on a very low-carb diet – perhaps because I’m low-carb but not zero-carb, and I usually have a high-carb Saturday night meal. So reports of lower fasting glucose levels didn’t persuade me to run out and buy potato starch. But when you wrote several posts about resistant starch and gut bacteria, you got my attention. Describe how resistant starch affects our gut microbiome.

Tim: RS is ALL about the gut bugs –100%. The first studies on RS in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s didn’t take the gut microbiome into account, and lots of their studies made it look like RS was not all it was cracked up to be. However, give a person RS for a couple weeks and allow their gut bugs to grow and change, then try the same studies — big difference. If most people had really good gut flora and all that was lacking was some fermentable fiber, then RS would be HUGE on its own.

Unfortunately, with widespread overuse of antibiotics, sanitized food and living conditions, and a disconnect from the microbes that live in the dirt, most people just don’t have the right set of gut bugs to take full advantage of simply adding RS to their diet. Back in the ‘80s and ‘90s when they first started looking into prebiotic fibers, they noted that about 75% of test subjects could not tolerate RS or inulin over 30 or so grams per day, causing them excessive gas, bloating, and pain. Now I suspect it’s even higher. The folks who can’t tolerate RS are the ones who need it most! For them, a good program of probiotics and fermented food should get them back on track.

Richard: It’s really been quite a deal for me. Unlike you, Tom, I’d had high fasting numbers for years and recently had seen a post-meal spike as high as 194 after a carby meal. Thing is, as I already said, my carb intake was very sporadic. Now, someone’s gonna say “Well, then you’re diabetic, or pre-diabetic, by clinical definition.” Well, that’s the rub. I just did a post about the Inuit and how in three studies, 1928, 1936 and 1972, they found no ketosis in the Inuit (To Reiterate, Just In Case You Missed It: No Elevated Ketone Levels in the Inuit), even though they are low carb, about 55g per day on average, mostly from the glycogen in fresh, raw animals (liver, meat, skin and surprisingly enough, whale blubber—the most carby of all). So researchers give them a glucose tolerance test and they passed with flying colors, with max spikes right to about 140. Keep in mind that nowadays in LC forums and comment threads all over, people have convinced themselves that they literally cannot have carbs. Why? Because they have physiological insulin resistance, high fasting BG, and so when they go eat a piece of their kid’s birthday cake and get 160-180, they self diagnose as diabetic or pre-diabetic and the prophesy is self-fulfilled.

So then how come the Inuit eating low carb can handle a bolus dose of glucose? The secret is in two things: 1) all the prebiotic fibers they get from the glycans in fresh raw blood, organs and meat, so they have healthier guts than your average modern LC dieter and 2) they have a massive protein intake, 250g and up. Try eating 250g protein daily without drinking it. So, they had plenty of dietary protein to fuel gluconeogenesis without causing insulin resistance. But what happens if you fast them for 82 hours, putting them into no-shit ketosis and forcing physiological insulin resistance? Give them the same bolus dose of glucose and they spike to 280-300 and 3 hours later, they’re still above 230.

Interestingly enough, some negative reaction to that post focuses more on measuring methods for ketones, insisting that it’s a LCHF diet — missing the point that it’s the very high protein that’s making the difference — and for some inexplicable reason, continuing to insist that they just must have really been in ketosis in spite of three studies spanning 44 years finding no ketosis amongst Inuit eating their traditional LC diet. For some reason, perpetual, chronic ketosis just simply has to be a very healthful thing to do, beyond it being proven therapeutic for certain medical conditions, and in spite of the very unhealthful thing that happened to their BG numbers when there’s no dispute about them being in deep ketosis after an 82 hr fast.

There’s much work to be done.

Fat Head: You’ve written that living on a very-low-carb diet might even starve our gut bacteria in the long term. Is there evidence for that, or is it more of a concern that warrants more research?

Tim: Well, here’s my stance on that…a VLC diet, such as an Atkins induction-type keto diet, isn’t going to completely kill off all your gut bugs, but what will happen is that the ones that do all the “good stuff” we’ve been talking about — for instance, producing butyrate and stimulating gut health — will be relegated to the minority. The majority of your gut bugs on a VLC diet are ones that can eat any old plant matter, animal scraps, and the lining of your intestine — the mucus layer. A gut thus populated has a high pH, pathogens thrive, and colonocytes starve. The good gut bugs are more than likely still there, just hiding and waiting for enough food for them to once again flourish. These populations change fast, even on a “by-meal” basis. Long-term eating habits set up long-term health patterns. We can eat however we want in survival situations, or any short-term diet intervention, but in the long run, a colon with ample butyrate and populated with beneficial microbes such as those that eat RS and the ones that benefit from the RS feeding frenzy is best.

Another thing to consider, Tom, is your lifestyle on the farm … your close association with chickens, animals, dirt, trees and fresh foods give you a leg up compared to most people. Your gut is most likely populated with all the soil-based organisms and lactic acid producers that folks are paying dearly for. I’d guess that for you, a big slug of RS gave your gut bugs a real treat and they were trying to tell you something: FEED US! What do your chickens do when you miss a day of feeding them? They cluck and fuss and let you know they are hungry. When well fed, they lay eggs and grow big juicy breasts and drumsticks. It’s the same with your gut bugs. Treat them like your farm animals or crops, feed, fertilize, and treat them well and they will pay it back in spades.

Grace: I love VLC and LC diets. They will always have a place therapeutically and clinically, I believe. My problem is that for some or many, these diets compromise or will eventually compromise 1) the gut and 2) adrenal/thyroid/gonad health. In four different LC or VLC short-term studies, prominent core gut microbial populations were dramatically reduced. These gut populations are important for health because not only do they serve vital functions such as expelling pathogens, vitamin processing and production (A, K2, B) and maintaining healthy immunity, they are also huge butyrate factories, pumping out butyrate which keeps gut tight junctions tight, immunity intestinal integrity intact, pathogens low and insulin sensitivity appropriate via the GPR41/43 receptors.

In one study, the researchers examined the shifts in gut populations during an Atkins induction diet (24 g carb/day) for 4 wks. With the VLC diet, they observed an enormous drop in butyrate to a fraction (about one-quarter) of the maintenance diet level. Four very significant subpopulations of gut bugs were decimated by the VLC low fiber and RS-deficient diet: Bifidobacteria, Ruminococci, Roseburia, and F. prausnitzii.

The study groups ate salads, but this was not apparently enough to sustain the important core gut communities. Salads may provide about 10 grams of non-starch fiber, but zero RS or oligosaccharides for them to feed on. These prominent populations are also highly correlated to longevity and robustness in centenarian and aging studies. In more and more gut microbiota studies, these populations are found missing in disorders and disease, yet found in great abundance and diversity in the healthy. Their favorite substrate to feed on is resistant starch.

Strict paleo diets that eliminate legumes, GF grass grains, roots and tubers may also exert the same detrimental gut effects as RS-deficient Atkins because the gut has to contend with the same conflict: a deficiency of RS and soluble fibers from starchy ‘plant babies.’ Without RS and other fiber, fecal carcinogens are not diluted, N-nitroso compounds occur at higher amounts, stool pH increases (allowing more pathogenic growths), and microbial-derived antioxidants such as ferulate and other phenolic compounds decrease.

Fat Head: If we do starve our gut bacteria, what would be the negative health effects?

Tim: Look at America…the modern, dyspeptic gut we’ve created: Frequent heartburn, loose stools or constipation, indigestion, smelly gas, GERD, IBS, or worse. You may even have one of the many autoimmune diseases that are running rampant, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, or cancer. Digestive diseases affect over 70 million people in the US alone! These diseases required 48.3 million ambulatory care visits, 21.7 million hospitalizations, and caused 245,921 deaths in 2009. Total cost for digestive diseases was estimated at $141.8 billion in 2004. And, these stats are getting worse, not better. It’s estimated that over 90 million Americans use antacids or other digestive upset medicines. Upset stomachs are the number one cause of self-treatment. These are all caused by “hungry gut bugs.”

Richard: Most people actually have both E. coli and C. difficile in them, but they are kept at bay by our symbionts and commensals. C. difficile causes about a half million sicknesses annually in the US, hospitalizes 250,000 and kills 15,000. Guess when the most common time is for an infection to occur? Immediately following a round of antibiotics. Now, connect them dots.

[On that topic, folks, you may want to listen to this NPR interview about the effects of antibiotics on the gut microbiome — Tom]

Fat Head: To experience the benefits of feeding our gut bacteria, we need gut bacteria to feed. Is it worth taking probiotics while adding resistant starch to the diet? Or do probiotic supplements just create expensive poop?

Richard: This was the last puzzle piece for me personally. I pounded three brands of soil-based organism probiotics that Grace recommends. I did this for a week or so but by about day three, it was very clear this was a huge benefit. Very notable was energy and sleep. Very interesting because I seemed to be relieved of this sort of regimented thing where you have to get 7-8 hours. It quickly became way different. Some nights 4-5 hours and others, 8-9 but less on average and when it was one of those 4-5 hour deals, I wasn’t just getting up at 4 a.m. because of insomnia. I was ready to hit it and felt great.

But the biggest deal of all was airborne allergies or, for all I know, food allergies. Anyway, I’ve had perpetual congestion, sneezing, runny nose and cough virtually all my life. Used to be on meds year round. LC Paleo did wonders for that initially. Got rid of the meds, felt a lot better. But it was creeping back and I’d always have to have tissue on hand, have to shoot Afrin some nights to get to sleep, and now and then, have to pop an OTC. Within 3 days on the SBO probiotics and for the first time ever, I’m breathing clearly through my nose 80-90% of the time. Seems to be getting even better, even though I’m down to just taking one or the other of those three products every day or two. They are pricey, so after pounding them the first week or two, I’d recommend stretching them out like that.

Lots of folks have now introduced these and many positive reports are beginning to come in. Clear breathing seems to be a common one.

Grace: Since you are a farmer, Tom, I am envious of the natural probiotics you and your family encounter daily! My family and I are suburbanites with no garden and the only healthy dirt I encounter is the few that rim our carrot tops or the little dusting on my organic greens that haven’t been blasted off by triple filtered water rinsing. Also I’ve had plenty of antibiotics in my lifetime which likely decimated my gut little did I know.

What I see anecdotally and clinically is that many people’s guts are missing core ancestral species (which is my AHS14 topic this year). Our gut bugs have taken a hit and the damage is immeasurable. By using functional medicine lab testing of stools and urine organic acids, I can see the damage. By talking to people, the damage is often evident as well. This is the same advanced testing that is bringing us rapid information about the gut microbiota over the last 10-15 years.

I can’t tell you how often I see Bifidobacter, Lactobacilli and other core ancestral species missing. I advocate a few good soil based organisms (SBO) probiotics such as Prescript Assist and AOR Probiotic-3, which do an excellent job of filling in nicely for now for the lack of soil exposures that our ancestors were immersed in, and we now have challenges in obtaining.

Modern, industrialized societies consume 100% of food, vegetables, and packaged beer that is sterile, dead, or hyper-hygienically clean. By contrast, our ancestral gut strains Bifidobacter, Lactobacilli, Clostridium, Bacilli, and wild yeasts all naturally co-exist on farm livestock, children, chickens, eggs, raw dairy, legumes, grass grains, tubers, roots and other plant sources.

Tim: In the ancient past, no one needed probiotics because we got all the new microbes we needed from dirty food, dirty fingers and a close connection with the Earth. In the more recent past, probiotics worked like migratory farm workers. As long as you used them, they gave you some benefits, but as soon as you stopped, they were gone because they had no incentive to stick around. With RS, that all changes. Probiotics now have a reason to stick around a while. If you are one of the 25% of people who cannot ferment RS, or even one of the 75% who can, you should take probiotics when first healing your gut or switching to a high RS diet. Most if not all of us are missing key gut bugs that are found in several probiotic supplements. In a diet filled with RS, inulin, glucomannan, and other prebiotics in the 20-40 gram per day range, these probiotics will not only survive, but kick ass on the pathogens and set the stage for stability and resilience in your gut’s ecosystem.

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72 thoughts on “Revisiting Resistant Starch: Part Two

  1. Laura

    I’ve been following the RS conversation very closely. I added 4 TB unmodified potato starch. No effect. Nothing positive or negative. Then, I added the three brands of soil-based probiotics Richard Nikoley recommended. Still nothing. I’d like to have a stool analysis to see what’s going on, but I don’t have a doctor willing to go down the rabbit hole with me. I’ve read that the American Gut Project takes months to get results back. I went to the Metametrix website, but only doctors can order tests. Is there an easy way for a non-doctor to get a GI profile? Thanks for all the info. This stuff is fascinating!

    I’m not sure if there’s an easy test out there. I don’t believe there is.

    Reply
    1. Cal

      Grace may have something on her site. I’m not positive about this but I thought I read some comment somewhere, maybe at FTA, that she can drop ship them to you? Also, many places will also let a nutritionist order them. I would call Metamatrix and ask if they have a directory of Doctors in your area who use their tests.

      Reply
    2. Jeff C

      You can order many Metametrix tests through mymedlab.com. They have physicians on staff that will approve the test and the result is sent to them. They’ll do a quick review of the results then notify you that it’s available for download. We’ve ordered several Metametrix tests using them and the turnaround time is very good. No insurance allowed, the costs are out of pocket.

      You can also order tests through Crohns.net with a similar system though I’ve never used them.

      Good info, thanks.

      Reply
      1. Grace/Dr.BG

        Hi,

        Thanks Cal, Stephanie and Jeff C! Yes I can order them for you but I’m currently inundated. Thanks for your comments. The testing is a great place to start because it allows more targeted intervention if it’s necessary. If you have non HMO insurance the costs are
        $99 GDX GI 2200 panel — digestion, immune function, butyrate, parasites, worms, yeasts, candida, pathogenic bacteria v. symbiont bacteria
        $129 GDX ONE panel — urinary dysbiosis markers for fungi and bacteria that are causing damage, minerals, vitamins, neurotransmitters, toxins (plastic, etc), cancer biomarkers (8OHdG)

        Please consider them. Personally I think they should be inherent for every physical — infant, child, adult. These are the functional lab tests for any progressive who wants to know the root cause of health issues. There are 2 kinds of medicine we believe: functional and dysfunctional medicine.

        Reply
  2. Kathy from Maine

    Thanks so much for this summary! It really helps the layperson understand RS better. I do have a couple questions, though.

    1. I had a total knee replacement in 2010, and so have to take 2 grams of Amoxicillan an hour prior to dental cleanings. I never bleed during these cleanings, and yet my dentist and orthopedic surgeon insist I take the antibiotics. I’m hesitant to not take them, as a friend’s husband is currently battling a raging infection (sepsis) stemming from a hip replacement he had several years ago. So, seeing as how I feel I have to take the antibiotics, should I double-up on the Prescript-Assist for a few days before/after? What are the recommendations of the panel?

    2. I just had the NutrEval testing, and found I’m not absorbing diddly-squat of protein or B vitamins, so I’m on a mega regimen of supplementation. In addition to vitamins and other supps, each morning I take 1 probiotic capsule (15 strains, 50 billion organisms) and 2 Prescript-Assist capsules. Also take 2 digestive enzyme capsules prior to each meal. I’ve been doing this for almost 3 months now (but just added the pre/probiotic about a month ago). Also, I started eating a 5 oz raw potato each morning along with the pre/probiotic about 2 weeks ago. How long do I have to keep up at this level? At some point, can I drop it down to maybe just 1 Prescript-Assist daily plus the raw potato (or potato starch)?

    Again, thanks for offering all this information. When I first heard of resistant starch, I thought it was just a bunch of people who wanted to eat mashed potatoes again. Now the more I read, the more convinced I am of the criticality of RS.

    I’ll ask the panel to chime in.

    Reply
    1. Tim "Tatertot"

      I’ll try to get a really good answer for #1 and report back in a bit, but if I HAD to take antibiotics for anything, I’d want to be sure that my gut was in pristine shape before, during and after. Since you never know when life will throw you a curveball, best to keep gut healthy all the time by eating lots of RS rich foods and other foods with known prebiotic potential (onions, leeks, garlic, dandelion greens, green bananas, etc…) also, for the long haul, if you have no specific gut health issues, I think the best plan is to buy several types of probiotics and take them sparingly while eating fermented food regularly. Then, if I got in a stuation where I needed life-saving antibiotics, I’d take them, but as I was taking them, I’d take probiotics and double-down on the RS during that time. What is going to happen is that every day as the antibiotics wear off and at the very end of the dosing schedule, an immediate race for prime real estate ensues. You can’t wait a week…this happens the second the antibiotics wear off, you need to have a gut filled with probiotics, not so much that these are the guys who will repopulate you, but they will fight off pathogens until the good microbes that are hiding in your appendix and other nooks and crannies down there can peek out and start multiplying. If you let nature take it’s course in this situation, it’s very likely that antibiotic resistant pathogens will quickly form impenetrable biofilms and rule the landscape for years. We’ve seen studies where it can take over 4 years for an antibiotic ravished gut to return to a somewhat normal state, but they never get back to prime without intervention.

      2. Can you get retested and throw in some of the tests that Grace recommends? If not, you’ll have to wing it going by symptoms. Best to get a comprehensive stool test and see what’s really lurking inside. Find a functional medicine practitioner in your area and ask them to order the tests. They may have their favorites, it may cost some money, but will be well worth it. If your arm was hanging by a thread, you’d pay dearly to have it reattached, people are too cheap when it comes to their ‘second brain’ in my opinion.

      I’ll get back with better advice on dentist!

      Thanks for chiming in, Tim. Here’s what Grace answered in an email:

      A functional medicine practitioner can order (with non-HMO insurance)
      $99 GDX 2200 stool panel — find out the groups and parasitic species, digestive patterns, lack of pancreatic enzymes (like Richard’s poor doggy), pH, what commensals are missing, etc
      $129 GDX ONE urinary dysbiosis panel — this also provides mineral and vitamin deficiencies, plastic and other toxins, cancer biomarkers (8OHdG), etc

      Reply
      1. tim "tatertot"

        From a real live dentist:

        As far as I am aware (and this applied years ago as well), no prophylactic antibiotics for joint replacement patient UNLESS they have had problems in regards to infections after the surgery. And prophylactic antibiotics during the first 12 months.

        After that, if the joint replacement surgery has been uneventful, then no prophylactic antibiotics.

        It has been recognized by all concerned that prophylactic antibiotics potentially cause more harm than good. Application was always a ‘risk mangement’ tool anyway: risk for the dentist not the patient. As in, just on the off chance that the patient ends up with some sort of terrific problem some time after a dental procedure, the dentist’s ass is covered.

        Reply
        1. tim "tatertot"

          And a slight correction:

          ‘there is no evidence that the application of topical antimicrobials (topical antibiotics applied by the dentist) prior to a dental procedure prevents prosthetic joint infection. Given the lack of reliable evidence establishing a link between deficient oral hygiene and prosthetic joint infection, experts concur on the recommendation that patients with prosthetic joints must maintain good dental hygiene. dentists choosing to use antibiotic prophylaxis should follow the 2003 recommendations.’

          2 years if there are problems with the joint replacement. sorry not one year.

          Reply
      1. Grace/Dr.BG

        Or for little ol’ sinusitis, sniffles or ear aches! Any of these improves with probiotics + prebiotics!

        What’s worse is antibiotics cause the yeast to proliferate once the commensal and symbiont warriors that guard the upper gut are obliterated by antibiotics — for a lot of people consequently subclinical yeast infections parade out that are largely symptomatic except for ‘unrelated’ chronic sinusitis or autoimmunity or allergies or metabolic dysregulation or worse cancer.

        Reply
    2. Weezy

      I can only relate my own experience with joint replacements and dental antibiotics.

      I’ve had four (2 knees/2 hips) replaced since 2008. No secondary infections or other recovery problems with any of the joints. After both knee replacements, I was very careful to take the big blast of antibiotics before dental cleanings. After the hip replacements, I forgot this more often than I remembered.

      No problems.

      I have good oral health so the dentist isn’t uncovering any bad infections. Since learning about our gut and the need for good bugs, I’ve decided to NOT take any more antibiotics before dental appointments. My own dentist says that his sources say to take them for 2 years; I’m 18 months out from the last joint replacement and I will NOT take any more antibiotics.

      I figure my poor gut has undergone enough trauma from 5 MAJOR surgeries since 2008 (and more before that). I now shudder to think about all the antibiotics I’ve been pumped full of during surgeries (one was breast cancer surgery). My best chance at regaining and maintaining health comes from eating well and now paying close attention to rebuilding my good bug supply.

      Do your research and come to a conclusion that is right for YOU.

      Reply
    3. Richard Nikoley

      Kathy:

      You might also go search my blog for Vitamin K2.

      I had to have 2 surgeries in about 2001 for gum disease. I used to have to get 4 cleanings per year. Since 2008 when I went “Paleo” and also began supplementing both vitamin D and K2 (MK-4…and LEF has a nice product called K2 Complex with K1, K2, both Mk-4 and Mk-7) my gums got better and better, and at this point I haven’t had a cleaning in over two years, have zero need of one, and really don’t even need to brush my teeth often. I use wooden toothpics to dislodge matter that get stuck, and I never floss.

      Also, unbelievably, since starting the potato starch, my teeth have become even better and many of my readers report the same thing. I used to get slight calculus deposits on the lower inside front teeth, now nothing.

      Now I understand why animals on their proper wild diets have no need of brushing and flossing.

      When I do brush, it’s always with a plain dry toothbrush. Way more effective than paste.

      So, bottom line, if you can get to where you don’t need teeth cleanings, alternative solution to the problem, with side benefits.

      Reply
      1. Kathy from Maine

        Thanks once again, Richard, for the advice. You and Tom and the others have been so forthcoming with information. I hope you know how very much it’s appreciated.

        Vitamin K2 has been cropping up in my reading for the past couple of weeks, and I had been planning to do more research on it this weekend. I did a search on your blog and found a wealth of info. Yesterday I went to both a major chain drugstore and a health food store, and neither carried K2. Might have to order it online as soon as I figure out the best form. Do you really think that the fermented cod liver oil is that much better than the regular fish oil capsules you can pick up anywhere? I’m currently using the enteric-coated GNC brand, but might have to switch after fully reading what you have written.

        Crazy thing happening, by the way. I tried posting a response to you on Friday, but the website wouldn’t take it. I tried several times, but then it said it was a duplicate response. I tried again yesterday, and still no dice. I contacted Tom, who said to try again today, and again nothing. Anyway, I’m trying yet again, and adding the above to make the comment different. Here’s what I tried to post the other day:

        Thank you so much for the detailed responses!!! Finding a functional medicine practitioner in Maine is difficult. I did finally find one about an hour away, and am on the waiting list to get an appointment (he must be in high demand), but they’re booking in October now. I might be able to get my NP (specialist in women’s issues) to order the tests you mentioned; she’s the one who ordered the NutrEval test. I’m not averse to paying for expensive tests, especially if they are revealing. Heck, the NutrEval test cost me around $1000 out of pocket. So glad I did it, too. Now at least I know what to target.

        As for the prophylactic antibiotics, I did some research on this on my own and found out the ADA no longer recommends prophylactic antibiotics, but the ortho association does. I think my dentist might be ok with my not taking them (especially since there’s never any bleeding … there’s way more bleeding when I get the occasional scratch from my cat than when I’m in the dentist’s chair). It’s my ortho who would have an issue with it. It states right on their website that prophylactic antibiotics are REQUIRED for the rest of your life prior to dental work. Covering their butts.

        There was one question that didn’t get answered, though, regarding how long I need to be on the mega doses of pre/probiotics and digestive enzymes. Or did you answer that question when you said I should get the NutrEval test again, plus the other tests?

        Since getting the first set of results, I’ve always planned to be retested after about 6 months on this heavy regimen, and was going to talk with the NP about it when I see her in June. Interesting turn of events: My NP needs to find a new practice to join as the head of her current practice is retiring this year. I found out by accident that she’s in talks with the integrative practice I’m trying to get in with! Sometimes things just work out the way they should.

        Reply
  3. PJ

    So if the quantity of RS-et-al that one ‘should’ take for optimum health causes a great deal of gas-et-al… is this forever? Does the body adapt? When healthy is it as much as when one is not?

    From what I’ve read on Richard’s site, an inability to handle RS could be a sign that your gut bacteria aren’t up to snuff. So my guess is that if you start small and feed the good bacteria you have, they’ll multiply and you can handle more of the stuff. Panel, chime in if I’m wrong on that.

    I got up to 4TB within a couple of days with no issues, so I take that as a good sign.

    Reply
  4. Cindy C

    I recently read the Time-Life Nature book from the 1960s , “Australia” on the bushman. They ate some seeds of grass, but were processed by the women stomping bare feet on them in the dirt/against a tree, or such. Then into a bowl to separate the chaff. They gathered fruit seeds dispersed by birds eating the fruit. Then they roasted them and made a type of bread with them. Of course they also ate lizards, and other animals. In the Time-Life Nature book “Mountains”, it was stated the mountain dwellers ate quina and guinea pigs, but had dry skin problems because of not enough fat in their diet.

    Reply
  5. Nads

    How do the panel feel about Colonoscopies? I am supposed to have regular ones because of a family history of bowel cancer. But for the last two years I have baulked at them because I don’t fancy having a complete gut cleanout and the potential to catch bad bugs as I’ve heard the scopes can’t be completely sterilised.

    I’ve asked the panel to chime in, and they have been. Stay tuned.

    Reply
    1. tatertot

      With a family history, you will probably get talked into colonoscopy at some point. I’ve heard the horror stories, too, and am not crazy about having all that equipment jostled about inside of me. However, on the gut microbe side of it, the cleanout doesn’t entail killing them off with antibiotics, just flushing them out. They will regrow rapidly and possibly even better than before if you take some proactive steps.

      Eat as healthy as possible leading up to it–plenty of RS and probiotics. Then immediately afterwards make sure your first foods contain RS and fermented foods (yogurt, kraut, etc.). Eat really healthy, fibrous foods and get on as many probiotics as you feel comfortable with. These probiotics won’t necessarily be the ones that re-populate your gut, but instead they will keep pathogens down while allowing the beneficial microbes to dominate.

      Reply
  6. Firebird7478

    So everyone knows…Bob’s Red Mill Potato Starch is available at Wal-Mart. I picked up a bag for around $3.80.

    I was also going to buy some white rice, but I think the potato starch might be good for now. I don’t want to get the carbs up too high.

    Good to know. It’s more expensive at Whole Foods … well, isn’t everything more expensive at Whole Foods?

    Reply
    1. Walter

      It’s called Whole Paycheck for a reason. And it’s run by a Vegan and they put out vegan propaganda and sell meat and dairy and lots of white flour products.

      I like the vegan owner. He’s a libertarian with nothing good to say about government mucking up free enterprise. And he sells meat, so he can’t be too much of a zealot.

      Reply
      1. Rae

        I buy my red meat and fish there, because it’s so good and also because it’s the closest grocery store to my work… but whenever I go, I laugh at the irony of the name. Veganaise and soy chicken nuggets and fake vegan cheese are not “whole foods”, no way.

        Now that you mention it …

        Reply
      2. Bret

        In further defense of Whole Foods, their co-CEOs appeared on Jim Cramer’s Mad Money a couple of months ago and acknowledged their massive competition in the whole/real food marketplace that is gaining more and more steam. They clearly said they welcomed the challenge and were ready to compete, innovate, and serve their customers. As obvious as these principles may seem, it is surprisingly difficult to find corporate leaders willing to communicate in such direct, plain, and honest terms. Many, perhaps most, use PR department-approved doublespeak and cling to industry technobabble in front of cameras and microphones, while secretly planning to use their big bucks to buy off regulators, legislators, and other government goons. These Whole Foods CEOs are legit, and I believe in their company big time.

        I roll my eyes at the vegan propaganda seemingly omnipresent in our society. But I believe in freedom of choice above all else. Many people at WF, Sprouts, Trader Joe’s, and so on may be committed vegetarians, and they may be accordingly silly and ignorant, but as long as they do not try to force their beliefs onto others (like CSPI has made a habit of doing), then that’s their decision. Finally, from a business perspective, there is a lot of overlap between natural food lovers and vegans, and these companies would be stupid not to serve that wing of the food market. I am just grateful they are willing to serve us animal eaters as well…there was a time when it was difficult (at least for me) to find health food stores that were not 100% vegetarian.

        Well said. Vegan or not, if more CEOs adopted John Mackey’s attitudes about business and government, we’d be WAY better off as a society.

        Reply
    2. Lori Miller

      Got a box for $3.49 at Safeway for my mother. It’s not Bob’s Red Mill, but potato starch is potato starch, yes?

      If the label says unmodified potato starch, I would think so.

      Reply
  7. Becky

    I’ll chime in again to serve as a warning to VLC’ers. Tim’s statement that VLC preserves the bugs who’ll eat anything, including the colon’s mucus layer, RESONATES.

    I had robust, flawless digestion, was 2.5 years on paleo, and then found myself in the hospital with diverticulitis and an IV dosing me for four days with big-gun antibiotics, Cipro and Flagyl. Another attack 42 days later, more Cipro and more Flagyl. My gut bugs were not only destroyed, my colon (after a colonoscopy) showed the diverticulitis. My first ever colonoscopy two years earlier was pristine.

    Diverticulitis is hell, people. I do take probiotics, have increased my carbs, but those “pouched out” places in my colon will always be there. Warning. Warning. Paul Jaminet does address this, seems to agree with Tim’s assessment of what happens when gut bugs don’t have the carbs they need.

    I am getting a bit tired of plantains, yams, and cold rice. Nightshades don’t work for me. But gotta feed those bugs!!!!!

    That’s one of the reasons — the main reason, in fact — that I’m moving towards more of a Perfect Health Diet. I didn’t have the high fasting glucose issue that Richard wrote about, didn’t have the dry eyes, cold hands or thyroid issues that some people report on VLC, but his posts about RS and gut health convinced me it’s important to feed those gut bugs … and I’d rather start before I develop a problem.

    Reply
  8. GadsBC

    My FBG has gotten quite high (100) and post workout BG very high (140) after my 10 months on VLC. So I am really wanting this RS concept to work, but my inner skeptic is struggling with the idea that RS will help suppress BG spikes when RS is processed down in the colon, whereas glucose is absorbed higher in the digestive tract.

    Smackdowns of my skepticism are strongly encouraged.
    Thanks.

    Skepticism is good. Try it and see what happens.

    Reply
    1. Grace/Dr.BG

      Glucose is absorbed higher in the gut as you said however it appears your high sugars in the AM are from a feedback from the brain that starvation is going on. Cortisol is being ramped up to maintain the critical and narrow concentration of workable glucose for the brain, liver and muscles. The body is attempting to preserve glucose for brain, liver and muscles and raising insulin resistance.

      To ramp outta physiological insulin resistance induced by chronic low carb/ketosis consuming a meal or two at higher carb (with fiber/RS) works well every week or as needed.

      RS works by binding receptors that torque up satiety and improve insulin sensitivity. It lowers inflammation and increases fat burning as well. For athletes — this improves endurance and performance (for me). For people on diabetic medications, caution is required. Improving gut function and lowering inflammation will lead to a reversal of diabetes (dose reductions are mandatory).

      Reply
  9. Nads

    Anybody know some good ways to incorporate the RPS into food? I have some in a high fat protein smoothie for breakfast. Do they go ok in fat bombs? (Assuming there is not heating) or in greek yoghurt? Or whipped cream?

    I’ve blended the potato starch into a protein smoothie. Doesn’t affect the taste at all, just makes it thicker. I’ve also stirred it into yogurt with berries.

    Reply
  10. js290

    Gut biome seems to be effects of the diet. Just because some
    beneficial ones are dormant with a different diet composition doesn’t
    necessarily mean that diet is bad. So, if said diet is therapeutic,
    then the biome will change accordingly, and lack of other beneficial
    bacteria may not be a problem.

    Reply
    1. Grace/Dr.BG

      Thank you js290 for your thoughts.

      I agree. But the problem is most people arrive at paleo or vlc/atkins because of health issues (root cause: gut) and I think these guts are more compromised than the average in the studies, especially if healthy lean controls were used.

      In the paleo blogosphere it was always startling to me that suddenly someone is reportly poor digestion with paleo or vlc/atkins (like fodmap intolerances suddenly) yet it happened and not infrequently. why? somewhere the gut got compromised. It could also be factors where antibiotics +low fiber (RS-free) diet are the worse combos.

      There are different shades of sibo. The mod to severe ones have fodmap intolerance and this is because opportunistic flora have taken up residence in the small intestines (SI) where digestion is supposed to occur. Like antibiotics, VLC or RS-deficient diets may lower the population of the protective commensals and symbionts that normally ‘guard’ the SI for susceptible individuals. When they’re gone, the bugs from the colon start to emigrate north to the SI. they invade and colonize. Probiotics certainly help to prevent this particularly the species L plantarum and the SBO ones. Each help to propel invaders from their SI real estate. Eating oligosaccharide fiber has the same effect to prevent pathogen adherence in studies. Oligos are found in green banana flour, inulin supps, onions/leeks and beans/pulses. If oligos are consumed along with RS, then synergism occurs: exponentially more butyrate is formed and additionally fermentation is shifted distally in the colon to the furtherest end.

      Reply
      1. Boundless

        > Eating oligosaccharide fiber has the same effect to
        > prevent pathogen adherence in studies.

        Quest bars contain isomalto-oligosaccharides (IO), which I understand are not RS, but might have a similar effect. Do our RS investigators here have an opinion on what IO does in the gut?

        Of course, many Quest bar flavors also contain a small amount of sucralose, which I understand is antagonistic to gut biome, so there’s some chance that these bars cancel themselves out.

        Reply
  11. Harold Aardsma

    Should we go out to our gardens and start eating dirt? Considering the coast of those dirt based probiotics I might add some dirt to my next smoothie. Okay, maybe I don’t mean that literally but I have heard it is a good thing to pick and eat, without washing first, some veggies right out of the garden.

    After decades of requiring everything to be hyper-sanitary, who’d-a thunk we need some of that dirt?

    Reply
    1. tatertot

      Better to eat a bit of dirt clinging to veggies than just random dirt. The bacteria in the soil are attracted to the roots of plants and serve to protect them from pathogens exactly like they do in our bodies. The soil found clinging to a carrot or radish will be many more times enriched with beneficial microbes than a shovelful from the middle of the row.

      I regularly pull root veggies, brush or hose them off depending on how much dirt/mud is on them and eat. They don’t need to be meticulously scrubbed or peeled for the most part. Same as tomatoes off the vine, wild fruit, etc…

      Reply
  12. Bruce

    I am currently taking about 4 TBS of potato starch daily. At the beginning it was hilarious with much fartage. That has subsided. The great news is my irregularity has become a bit more regular.

    Now a question(s) regarding cooked and cooled potatoes. It’ll will soon be summer, I hope, and potato salad with light dressing should be okay, right?

    The second question, what about potato chips? They’re cooked and cooled right? I’m thinking that they’re not a health food, but would they provide any RS? Just curious.

    I wouldn’t try getting my RS from potato chips.

    Reply
    1. Richard Nikoley

      Bruce:

      Yes, potato chips actually have the highest RS content of any cook potato product I’m aware of. However, you’re got to get quite a lot of fat, so probably not a good tradeoff. Another thing in my philosophy that’s changed is while I’m not afraid of good fats, I no longer go out of my way to get them, of to add them to things.

      Anyway, there’s a company, “Honest Chips” I think, that does all their potato chips in coconut oil.

      Reply
      1. Bret

        Sounds to me like a great incentive for us to make our own potato chips. Butter, lard, coconut oil, olive oil, ghee, a combination of the above… Plus some sea salt. I’ll bet we can homemake the tastiest potato chips we’ve ever had, and the healthiest as well.

        Reply
      2. Pierson

        What about homemade French fries? I bake mine in butter, lard, or coconut oil, if that makes any difference

        Reply
  13. Scott451

    My wife battled ulcerated colitis most of her life. She got to the point where she was losing so much blood she was anemic and would sometimes black out on the toilet.

    After we were married, she had a J-Pouch made. They removed her colon and rectum, then used the end of the small intestine to form a pouch to act as a new rectum.

    I notice the talk of gut flora focuses on what’s going on in the colon. But, since my wife has no colon, what might her options be? Do the same bugs live in the small intestine as in the colon?

    Good question. I have no idea on that one.

    Reply
      1. tatertot

        But, no, the same gut bugs don’t live in the small intestine. Some do, but generally pH is higher in the SI and supports completely different microbes and in less numbers. Sorry I couldn’t be better help for you.

        Reply
    1. Grace/Dr.BG

      Scott451 ~ Thank you for your thoughts and ? I’m not familiar with your wife’s gut situation (not many studies) but it appears there may be a similarity with short bowel syndrome where the sphincter is nonfunctioning therefore microbes from the colon/rectum ascend north and create havoc, eg sibo situation but in an exacerbated fashion.

      In one lit review were probiotics were very helpful in SSB by improving the flora, increasing nutrient absorption and other benefits, however there were a few cases of adverse effects as well. I wonder if the adverse effects involved lack of fiber/prebiotics or if the subjects were severely immunocompromised by long standing malnutrition and SAD diets?

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23462584

      Reply
  14. Dianne

    When I was harvesting a couple of our home-grown cabbages, at first I was annoyed at the bugs on them, then realized that they were probably very good for us to eat:-)

    Reply
  15. gollum

    Interesting, but well.

    RS primes you (by whatver mechanism) to tolerate more carbs?
    How much of it is resistant – are you sure you are just not priming your pancreas?
    These bugs that improve insulin sensitivity – okay maybe they do. In their evolutionary mind, it’s maybe spelled “fatten host”? Peter again.

    I hope I got it somewhat right by having eaten onions, peanuts, beans, yoghurt (I actually found one with L. bulgaricus – for the halal croud – can you imagine that), kraut and occasionally fruit, leek etc. Not to feed the gut bugs, but basically being a zero carb nazi was too much effort, so I went for “these marginal carbs will go against the 50.. 100g”

    I don’t know much about probiotics. (Live) yoghurt and kraut are said to be probiotic, endivies/chicory to contain inulin, beans and others to have rhamnose and other polysugars. I’ll take my chances with these. Even if the inulin is somewhat laxative.

    Depending on which testing method is used, the RS percentage of total starch in unmodified potato starch is in the 70% — 80% range. So if I swallow 40 grams of potato starch, I’m getting 10 or so grams of non-RS starch.

    Reply
    1. Richard Nikoley

      “So if I swallow 40 grams of potato starch, I’m getting 10 or so grams of non-RS starch.”

      Actually Tom, no, there’s next to zero digestible starch in raw PS. The 70-80% figure is by weight. The rest is the moisture that’s locked inside the granules, and just like popcorn, is what makes them burst when cooked.

      Here’s a cool experiment for everyone to do.

      Take a glass of water, like 6 Oz. Put a couple of teaspoons of potato starch in it. Whatch what happens. It sinks to the bottom and packs tightly like fine sand or clay. It’s a non-Newtonian fluid. Now, put the glass in the microwave for 1 minute.

      See what you get. Then spread it around in your hair. (just kidding about the last step, but you’ll know what I mean).

      Not that I care about 10 grams, but I’m curious about part of Tim’s email to me, then:

      “For reference, here are the RS contents of raw potato starch using the various other testing procedures: (all expressed as a percentage of total starch)

      Ileostomy patient studies—up to 83%.

      The Champ method—87.5%.

      Models that use human volunteers to pre-chew food—66%.

      Canine models of digestion—68%.”

      Seems like a percentage of total starch would leave the rest as starch … ?

      I appreciate how all three of you are jumping in to answer reader questions. I knew we’d get quite a few.

      Reply
      1. tatertot

        I’ve often wondered if it doesn’t boil down to particle size. Starch granules will range in size from like 5microns to 150 microns, maybe a percentage at the smaller end are digestible? Don’t know. I’ve never seen a good explanation for what the remainder is and what makes it digestible.

        Reply
    2. gollum

      I was just urging a bit of caution. (Maybe endivies tip for readers who cannot get inulin supplements)

      An example, many people report cinnamon works wonders on their blood glucose, seems to improve insulin action. So does MOAR insulin iv. So my standard comment is “lowering glucose into where”? Fatty pads maybe.The law of unintended consequences also applies to your humble reader and frankly I don’t think we even start to begin understanding the gut biome and its meta-genetics.

      Still fascinating though.

      Here is Peter’s link on the bacteria. Better late than never

      http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.de/2007/12/fiaf-whos-fat-is-it-anyway.html

      Must.. fatten.. host..

      Another link on why fixing BG with insulin will overload your fat pads / DM2 liver secondary not alimentary glucose

      http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.de/2009/11/liver-and-insulin-not-cooking-recipe.html

      Reply
      1. Gemma

        Yes, if the microbiota is hungry it may try to fatten up the host. However if you feed it well with dietary fibre it can ferment, the metabolites (short chain fatty acids like butyrate, propionate and acetate) are sensed (portal sensing in the intestines and via gut -brain axis) and result in so called intestinal gluconeogenesis (IGN). The intestines can produce glucose too! So consumption of dietary fibre improves glucose control and improves insulin sensitivity. It was described only recently, in 2014.

        Reply
      2. Dave L

        Thanks for those links, gollum. I had a feeling that we’ve “been there, done that.”

        As far as SCFA and colon cancer:
        http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.com/2007/12/fiaf-starving-amidst-plenty.html?showComment=1197968580000#c2135435906416343613

        I’ll hold off on eating dirt, too.

        Still, it’s a fascinating series of articles, Tom. Looking forward to the rest. But I’m keeping my “science for smart people” cap on.

        I don’t think the two are mutually exclusive. Butyrate may help prevent colon cancer, and sugar may sure as shootin’ help to cause it.

        Reply
        1. Dave L

          Agreed. I’m not for or against RS. I’m just wary/tired of rampant confirmation bias. If I understand the scientific method properly, a researcher should ask questions and perform experiments to disprove his/her hypothesis. Once you eliminate the impossible and then the improbable, hopefully you’re left with something resembling the truth.

          For what it’s worth, I have been enjoying Ezekiel sprouted grain bread lately as it seems to be the closest commercially (and locally) available bread (which I enjoy with butter and cheese) that fits WAPF type of diet. And I had delicious mashed potatoes with butter, cheese, and sour cream last night with my dinner. My waist is my guide, and I’m still fitting in my 30″ jeans.

          For the moment RS is just an intellectual curiosity for me. I want to hear all sides of the argument.

          As you should. I like to hear all sides and then experiment for myself.

          Reply
          1. tatertot

            I am the world’s biggest skeptic. I tried hard to disprove that RS was somehow beneficial, mostly because it was all ‘big Agra’ touting its benefits (Ingredion/National Starch). What I DID disprove was the fact that you don’t need Hi-Maize ™ to get the benefits of RS, they are in real foods with a bit of tweaking and in raw starches if you know which ones. My first and foremost goal was to spread that truth and let people try for themselves. “The Man” would have you believe RS is available only in high-fiber bakery goods.

            Reply
  16. Janknitz

    A couple of thoughts. I just heard an interview with Dr. Richard Bernstein (Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution). He’s in his mid-80’s now–great for a Type I diabetic, BUT he did admit to having a problem with lack of mucous in his gut, and he has lymphoma. It made me sit up and pay attention to what you all and Paul Jaminet have been saying about protecting the lining of the gut with the mucagens that are a byproduct of starch metabolism.

    I googled “Asian rice noodles and wraps resistant starch” and was pleased to find out they are fairly high in resistant starch. According to the book “On Food and Cooking” by Harold McGee, rice starch noodles have 30 to 36% amylose and mung bean noodles have up to 40%. Noodles and wraps made from rice are deliberately retrograded in the process, so their RS should be pretty high as well. Whoo, hoo, I’m going to make rice wrapped salad rolls and occasional rice noodle dishes and ENJOY the heck out of them, guilt free from now on.

    Finally, Dr. Deborah Gordon (http://www.drdeborahmd.com/ketogenic-diet-short-version-0) shows how you can be ketogenic for health AND use resistant starch. They don’t have to be mutually exclusive.

    You can thank Paul Jaminet for the information about mucous. He was the one who brought that to everyone’s attention as far as I know.

    I checked my ketones a couple of times after starting the resistant starch and adding some potatoes back into my diet. I was at 0.6, which is at the low end of ketosis, but still in ketosis. So I agree; they’re not mutually exclusive.

    Reply
    1. Firebird7478

      Rice Noodles as in replacing regular pasta for Italian dishes or rice noodles for Asian dishes? One of my favorite meals as a kid was my mom’s chicken parm and pasta mixed with butter, ricotta cheese and salt. I’ve been doing that w/shiritaki noodles but it’s just not the same.

      Reply
    2. Grace/Dr.BG

      Janknitz ~ Thank you for those links — new to me! I was not aware that Bernstein had lymphoma. I hope he determines the root cause for the inflammation and imbalance. The GDX stool and urinary dysbiosis and cancer marker testing would be a great start. He is always so progressing and leading edge after radically changing treatments and improving the lives of so many with T1 and T2D.

      Reply
    3. Paleophil

      Excellent comment, Janknitz.

      Spanish Caravan (an MD) warned about Dr. Bernstein’s ill health over at the Free the Animal blog. He also warned that Dr. Bernstein’s patients are developing additional autoimmune diseases at alarming rates. I’ve seen others report similar experiences at other blogs and forums to what Spanish Caravan said that Bernstein and his patients have been suffering through. Unfortunately, several commenters dismissed SC’s warnings. It seems the worst sufferers tend to be the earliest adopters of Bernstein’s recommendations and other VLC/keto diets who stuck with these approaches for years and didn’t change when early minor symptoms started appearing.

      The future of ketogenic dieting seems to lie with incorporating some safe starches, including resistant starch, as well as other prebiotics and probiotics–something along the lines of Paul Jaminet’s ketogenic diet approach (with perhaps more of an emphasis on the prebiotics and probiotics and maybe allowing prebiotic-rich legumes if tolerated). It’s too early to tell, but I think it has the potential to be a “safe ketogenic diet” approach, though I doubt that even this is ideal in the long term for most people. It probably makes more sense in the longer run to try to fix the underlying issues causing worse-than-normal problems with carbs to begin with, if possible.

      Paul Jaminet outlines a ketogenic version of his diet in the Perfect Health Diet book.

      Reply
      1. Paleophil

        Of course, confirmation bias enables strongly convinced extreme dieters (from Zero Carb to vegan) to come up with excuses for problems (they were going to get the new problems anyway; they already had the problems before the diet and just didn’t know it; it has nothing to do with the diet; they didn’t do it right; they didn’t do it long enough; etc.).

        Reply
  17. Chris

    I’m wondering if using a starch blocker would provide beneficial bacteria like the resistant starch or if it would be a different type of starch? I’m thinking about trying a starch blocker along with eating the foods that I’ve made that contain resistant starch (beans, potatoes and rice that are cooked and then cooled). What are your thoughts on that Tom, Grace, Richard and Tatertot?

    I’m not sure, but we’ll see if they have any thoughts.

    Reply
    1. tatertot

      We’ve talking about this on the blog off and on for a year and still haven’t decided if it is a good idea. Amylase inhibitors mess with natural processes and prevent enzymes from being released that would digest rapidly digested starch in the small intestine, letting it get to the large intestine.

      The funny thing is, when people use these, they never report much gas. I also don’t know if regular starch is treated like RS by gut bugs. My thoughts are that regular starch in the large intestine is not the same thing as RS. It is probably just fermented like all the other non-soluble fiber that we get in out diet–not harmful, but not particularly helpful as a prebiotic, plus I don’t like the thought of “inhibiting amylase” however that is accomplished, although some real foods (bean, I think) have natural amylase inhibitors in them naturally.

      Reply
    2. Grace/Dr.BG

      The carb blockers block alpha-amylase which digests starches but also biofilms where the microbiota all rest and reside. Biofilms are like slimy fortresses where both beneficial and pathogenic flora live in communities. I think the shifting helps our commensals to maintain calm and access to the pathogens so that they don’t adhere and create havoc.

      Anything that reduces natural digestion ironically causes damage to the gut (and thus SIBO)
      –proton pump inhibitors (Prilosec ‘purple pill’)
      –acid blockers (Pepcid, Zantac, TUMS, etc)
      –lack of sufficient chewing and taking time to masticate (not enuf saliva, triggering of acid, shearing food particles, etc)
      –(stress eg ‘butterflies in the stomach’)

      I don’t know the short term or long term effects of carb blockers but they sound like not a great idea.

      Amylase is a gift — it helps insulin sensitivity and improves blood sugars. It evolved in higher copy numbers in carb-dependent societies. AMY1 is the gene coding for amylase across the animal kingdom. The higher the copy number for AMY1, the lower association with diabetes with starch ingestion: lower peak insulin, lower AUC, lower postprandial glucoses.

      Even if you don’t make amylase, we source amylases from food (like tiger nuts), probiotics, fermented foods and gut microbes.

      Tim mentioned carb blockers are from beans?

      A high fiber, bean (~1.5 c/day) diet v low carb diet. Equivalent weight loss in both the bean group AND the low carb group (~ 9 lbs).
      Tonstad S, Malik N, Haddad E. A high-fibre bean-rich diet versus a low-carbohydrate diet for obesity. J Hum Nutr Diet. 2013 Apr;12118 .

      The results are probably from fiber and RS which provide both satiety and butyrate, not as much carb blocking, but who can be entirely sure.

      Reply
      1. Chris

        Thanks for your reply. The carb blockers I’m looking at are ‘all natural’ and are white kidney bean extract. They have several different kinds on Netrition.com I have added beans to my diet. Pinto beans soaked 24 hours and then cooked and cooled. Also cooked and cooled potatoes and rice. So far no weight gains or losses. I’ve been stuck at a plateau since December. Lots of gas, sleep is good but no vivid dreams that I’m recalling. I appreciate all of your efforts.

        Reply
    1. tatertot

      Not sure if Richard and Grace will chime in, I have them both chained to their typewriters until the book is done.

      Anyway, I just searched Graces blog and couldn’t find any references to DE, but she does love Bentonite Clay and charcoal. It’s an intergral part of her weed-seed-feed approach.

      http://drbganimalpharm.blogspot.com/search?q=clay

      All I know about DE is people use it as chicken coop litter and there are warnings about breathing DE dust. I’ve read up on it. It sounds cool. If I had a particular parasite I was trying to target and DE is recommended I would have no hesitation trying it. But maybe try clay and charcoal first.

      Reply
  18. Stephen B

    I got some of Bob’s Red Mill PS the other day and I’ve started with 2 TBS. I’m getting the vivid dreams big time, full colour 1080p. Not much gas, probably just a bit more than normal for me, but nothing hazardous yet!

    My urine pH is up slightly 6 – 6.5 to 7. (I think that’s a good thing).

    Interestingly, I drank virtually a full bottle of white wine last night (I know I shouldn’t), and I’ve got no hangover! Normally I feel awful after a near full bottle.

    I’m hoping for some weight loss in the coming days/weeks ahead.

    Thanks to everyone for all the info.

    Reply
  19. Denise

    ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
    GadsBC says: April 17, 2014 at 9:39 pm
    My FBG has gotten quite high (100) and post workout BG very high (140) after my 10 months on VLC. So I am really wanting this RS concept to work, but my inner skeptic is struggling with the idea that RS will help suppress BG spikes when RS is processed down in the colon, whereas glucose is absorbed higher in the digestive tract.

    Grace/Dr.BG says: April 18, 2014 at 12:32 pm
    Glucose is absorbed higher in the gut as you said…

    I’ve been learning all I can about RS. What I can’t get is how does RS have any affect on BS levels since it is processed down in the colon and glucose is absorbed higher in the digestive tract?

    Thanks.
    Denise

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I don’t know if anyone can say for sure, but apparently resistant starch lowers blood sugar through its effect on the gut bacteria

      Reply

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