I have a new report of results I’m posting about in advance of hitting up the topic of Resistant Starch next week, by means of some pretty interesting, well controlled and documented self experiments by two readers working in concert. For those just showing up or who haven’t been interested so far, here’s a list of my previous posts on the topic of Resistant Starch, in chronological order and current comment count—because there’s a wealth of info and self experimentation results in the comments.
- Prepare for the “Resistant Starch” Assimilation; Resistance is Futile (180 Comments)
- Resistant Starch: 4-Letter Word? Nope. Goal: Create Mashed Potatoes A Diabetic Can Eat Every Day (452 Comments)
- Resistant Starch: Now We’re Getting Somewhere (68 Comments)
- Resistant Starch: Now We’re Getting Somewhere, Part 2 (35 links to research) (127 Comments)
- The FTA Resistant Starch Trial: N=75 +++ (58 Comments)
- Beans and the Second Meal Effect: Resistant Starch (36 Comments)
- Low GI Mashed Potatoes! and the Resistant Starch Content of Foods (24 Comments)
So, the subject in this case is a woman, age 72, Type 2 for many years, overweight all of her adult life, on meds with supplemental slow and fast acting insulin, as needed. She maintains a very low carb diet that’s mostly paleo in terms of avoiding grains and processed foods. While she has pretty reasonable postprandial control (likely via the LC regime), fasting blood glucose has always been a problem (170-190 mg/DL upon rising).
She began using Bob’s Red Mill Potato Starch (80% RS by weight) at the end of May and two weeks later, reported in email:
I have been on the potato starch since a couple of weeks ago. I just upped my daily intake to two tablespoons a day. So far no problems with excess gas. Last week I was able to reduce the amount of insulin by a small amount and today I was able to reduce again. I think combination of my being very careful with what I am eating and the potato starch.
For me, the best way to take it is to put in about two nice size gulps of water and down it. No taste no problem at all and very simple which I like. No preparation, no clean up.
It seemed the RS was helping with both postprandial response as well as baseline insulin requirements; but when I asked, not much going on in the fasting BG area. Still high; always high.
So, shortly after I published Beans and the Second Meal Effect, I suggested she try adding some beans to the mix. Before I share her results though, let’s review Dr. Michael Greger’s excellent 3.5 minute video that shows the result we might expect, both in terms of postprandial control and fasting glucose levels.
The full text of the first study he mentions—from 1982!!!—is right here:
David J. A. Jenkins, D.M., Thomas M. S. Wolever, B.M., Rodney H. Taylor, MR. C. P., Christopher Grffiths, B.A., Kathleen Krzeminska, B.A., James A. Lawrie, B.A., Carolyn M. Bennett, David V. Goff, M.Biol., David L. Sarson, B.Sc., and Stephen R. Bloom, M.D.
ABSTRACT Breakfasts of lentils or wholemeal bread of identical carbohydrate content were taken by seven healthy volunteers. The lentils produced a significant 71% (p <0.001) reduction in the blood glucose area and flattened the plasma insulin and gastric inhibitory polypeptide responses by comparison with the bread. In addition, the lentil breakfast was followed by a significantly flatter blood glucose response to the standard bread hunch which followed 4 h hater (by 38%, p < 0.01). The blood glucose pattern was mimicked by feeding the bread breakfast slowly over the 4 h before lunch. Giving a bread breakfast containing a quarter of the carbohydrate reduced the breakfast glucose profile but resulted in a significantly impaired blood glucose response to lunch (168% of control, p < 0.01). These results, together with breath hydrogen studies, performed on a separate group of four volunteers, indicate that the flattened response to lentils is not due to carbohydrate malabsorption. Show release or “hente” carbohydrate foods such as lentils may form a useful part of the diets of those with impaired carbohydrate tolerance.
So, after a week of adding 1/4 to 1/2 cup of beans in the morning, here’s her report.
Thought I would let you know that since starting on the potato starch and then adding beans once a day, my morning BG is down from 170 to 190 to the high 130 to low 140. The beans I started with was leftover lentil soup. I just ate the lentils, not the meat, potatoes or carrots. Today I made my first pot of beans.
I have been eating about 1/4 to 1/2 a cup in the morning only.
I think starch-o-phobes, carb-o-phobes, and even Paleo legume-o-phobes have some ‘splainin’ to do …To. My. Mom!
More in the coming days. In the meantime, another article you might be interested in: Eating More Legumes May Improve Glycemic Control, Lower Estimated Heart Disease Risk.
“These findings linking legume consumption to both improved glycemic control and reduced CHD risk are particularly important because type 2 DM is increasing most rapidly in the urban environments of populations in which bean intake has traditionally been high (e.g. India, Latin America, the Pima Indians of Arizona),” the authors conclude. “Support for the continued use of such foods in traditional bean-eating communities, together with their reintroduction into the Western diet, could therefore be justified even if the effect on glycemia is relatively small, given the magnitude of the problem and the need for acceptable dietary options, especially those options that may also have a BP and cardiovascular advantage.”
I’m gradually coming to suspect that a combination of RS via potato starch and some measure of properly prepared legumes per day—a cup or two, perhaps, in total—might be the closest thing to a blood sugar control silver bullet (with concomitant slow fat loss long term) we’re gonna find.