Say hello to this Amazing Starch which is a carbohydrate (carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen)-forming glucose in which a large number of these molecules are joined together. Starch is a polysaccharide, which is naturally produced by all green plants as an energy store. It is contained in such foods as potatoes, wheat, maize (corn), and rice. Amylopectin and amylose are the two kinds of arrangement in the starch. Amylose is the most simple containing glucose, one molecule after another in long chains numbering into the thousands. Amylopectin has a more complex configuration in which the chains are off to the sides in several directions. Until the last century, we obtained our starch from the vegetable itself. But now it is added unnaturally to foodstuffs. It is also in the stripped cereal grains we use as the staff of life: bread. (“EAT BREAD AND YOU’RE DEAD” said one of my dying patients).
Pure starch is a white, tasteless and odorless powder that is insoluble in cold water and is tremendously caloric, even more so than plain sugar (sucrose). When dissolved in warm water, it is used as a slightly sweetening, thickening, stiffening or gluing agent. In our bodies the enzyme, amylase, starts breaking apart this large molecular structure to the subunit, glucose. The digestion starts in the mouth, but is mostly completed in the small intestine and what is left is finished by our colonic bacteria. The glucose is rapidly absorbed and used for short-term energy if the person is excercising or, if not, stored as fat. Resistant starches, on the other hand, resist digestion and pass through to the large intestine where they act like dietary fiber instead of being absorbed for instant use or stored energy as fat. There are four categories of Resistant Starch: RS1, RS2, RS3 and RS4. RS2, the resistant starch that occurs in its natural, granular form in foods such as uncooked potato, green banana flour and high amylose corn, is the healthiest. Hi-MAISE is the commercial form of this, costing less than $ 3.00 a pound. Studies have confirmed that different types of resistant starches deliver different effects. The benefits demonstrated by Hi-maize cannot be extrapolated to the other types of resistant starches R1, R3 and R4.
Hi-maize selectively increases the beneficial, while suppressing harmful bacteria. It is food for the good gut flora and, as such, is referred to as a prebiotic or a fiber that not only feeds but also sweeps the gut clean. Research on the health benefits of natural Hi-maize, including 300 peer-reviewed nutritional studies carried out over the last 20 years reveal its benefits that range from weight management, glycemic (blood sugar) management, colon cancer and cardiovascular protection as well as regularity. The fermentation of Hi-maize increases Short Chain Fatty Acid production (butyrate is particularly important for colon health), which reduces intestinal pH, potentially harmful secondary bile acids, ammonia and harmful phenols. Importantly, lipid oxidation is decreased by Hi Maise starch which burns lipid and leads to lower fat accumulation and weight loss.
Studies suggest continual exposure to elevated levels of insulin as a result of a high glycemic diet (sugars and starches) contributes to reduced sensitivity by cells to the insulin (insulin resistance) and a higher risk of diabetes. As insulin resistance increases, the body produces more insulin to maintain adequate blood sugar control. With rising resistance, even more insulin is required, and the body can not keep up or the pancreatic cells producing insulin may stop functioning and hence diabetes. Consumption of natural resistant starch decreases glycemic response in healthy individuals, reduces glycemic response in diabetics, increased insulin sensitivity with the prevention of the Metabolic Syndrome which in some form is present in 38% of our Americans today. The Metabolic Syndome is an abdominaly obese person with a crease in the lower part of the ear lobe, the top Blood Pressure reading higher than 136 and slightly abnormal blood studies. This includes a fasting blood suger and triglyceride higher than 100, and a HDL (Healthy) cholesterol lower than 45. Resistant starch can act as a replacement for wheat products in foods that are required to be gluten-free.
Our biotome, the 6 pounds of gut flora, can be divided into Bacteroidetes whose growth is favored by Resistant starch over the Firmicutes, causes weight/fat loss.
More Firmicutes, results in increased ‘energy-harvest’ or caloric extraction from our diet. Firmicutes are predominantly Clostridium, but include some Lactobacillus spieces, of which are in the probiotics we unknowingly doctors recommend! If Firmicutes outnumbers Bacteroidetes, partially digested complex carbohydrates are broken down to simple carbs rather than metabolized or eliminated through the stool. These, then, form the sugars that are easily absorbed into the blood stream. Also a special chemical is elaborated by this bacterial digestion that encourages the sugar to be directly made into triglycerides by the liver and preferentially stored by fat cells rather than burned! Additionally certain stains within the Bacteroidetes such as PL 60, are thought to produce a lipid digesting enzyme. The net result of having more Bacteroidetes and less Firmicutes is a decrease ‘energy-harvest’ or caloric extraction from the diet and a loss of 100 calorie a day which represents 12 pounds a year just by having the right ratio of the B/F. There have been some specific bacteria of the Bacteroidetes group such as Lactobacillus rhamnosus PL60 which produces conjugated linoleic acid and in itself has anti-obesity effects.
The combination of pre- and probiotics, known as Synbiotic, has been proposed to make a functional food with interesting nutritional properties that make these compounds candidates for a weight loss program. HI Maize, the high-amylose-resistant cornstarch laced with Lactobacillus rhamnosus, PL60, and other Bacteroidetes spiecies will soon be available. Some advanced practitioners have even proposed to rid the gut of most of the Firmicutes with the wonder antibiotic, Xifaxan and then repopulate with Bacteroidetes and feed it with Hi Maize RS2. Why wait another 10 years to be healthy, contact your health practitioner now. Armed with this information, you may be able to transform yourself NOW, rather than to remain overweight and unhealthy!