What Is Resistant Starch? (And Why You Should Care)

What is a Resistant Starch?

Resistant starch is a type of starch that is not digested in the stomach or small intestine, reaching the large bowel intact. Thus, it “resists” digestion. Here it functions like soluble fermentable fibre and becomes the food to nourish intestinal bacteria.

In your body, you have 10 times more intestinal bacteria than you do human cells. This means that 90% of your body is bacteria!

The foods that you eat therefore, nourish 10% of your cells and the other 90% feeds off fermentable fibres and resistant starches. As the intestinal bacteria feeds on resistant starches they form short-chain fatty acids like butyrate.

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Benefits of Resistant Starches

Many studies in humans show that resistant starches can have powerful health benefits.

These include:

  • Increases butyrate which then becomes the fuel to feed both intestinal bacteria and the cells that line the large bowel – this helps to keep a healthy balance of gut flora to eliminate bloating and support proper digestion.
  • Increases the number of intestinal bacteria – strengthens the immune response against bad bacteria.
  • Lowers the pH level in the large bowel, potentially reducing inflammation – reducing symptoms of leaky gut, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Crohn’s Disease, Coeliac Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.
  • Improves insulin sensitivity – lowers blood sugar levels, reduces symptoms of Diabetes, supports fat metabolism assisting with weight loss.
  • Reduces appetite – the high fibre content creates a feeling of fullness, therefore wanting less calories which also assists with weight loss.

Get more Resistant Starches in your diet


  1. Navy Beans and Black-eyed Peas – soaked over night, cooked and then cooled.
  2. Chickpeas – soaked over night and then roasted or cooked and then cooled.
  3. Bananas and Plantains – raw banana or cooked mashed plantain (green bananas).
  4. Potato and Sweet Potato – cooked and then eaten cooled, or organic potato starch flour. (Sweet Potato Rosti Recipe)
  5. Brown, Red or Black Rice – cooked in boiling water with 2 tsp coconut oil, then cooled in the fridge for 12 hrs.
  6. Green Banana Flour – gluten free baking (Green Banana Flour Pancakes).
  7. Cassava Flour – gluten free baking (Recipe click here).

The way these foods are prepared has been proven to increase their resistant starch concentration. Click here to read the study. 

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Do you have enough Resistant Starch in your diet?

The foods listed above are some of the many foods containing resistant starch. How many of these foods do you consume regularly in your diet?

Resistant starch is an important part of the diet to support a healthy digestive system by feeding the right type of beneficial bacteria in your gut, such as Akkermansia muciniphila.

When your intestinal bacteria becomes out of balance it is called gut Dysbiosis. 

This can lead to symptoms like:

  • Digestive issues– bloating, belching, constipation, diarrhoea, heartburn, bad breath, abdominal pain, indigestion
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Joint pain
  • Fibromylagia
  • Allergies
  • Yeast infections
  • Thrush
  • Lowered libido
  • Fatigue
  • Mental fog
  • Sugar cravings (including alcohol)
  • Weight gain
  • Skin problems such as acne or hives
  • Nail fungi
  • Hyperactivity; learning and behavioral disorders
  • Depression

There are more than 1000 separate species of bacteria in the gut, so the digestive system is a very complex ecosystem!

Probiotic supplements can be an effective way of helping to support the right types of bacteria, but there are many other species that could be out of balance.

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Have you taken probiotics but still experience a number of these symptoms above?

Resistant Starches help to feed specific species of bacteria. But how do you find out exactly what species of bacteria are out of balance?

There is new technology that allows laboratory testing to analyze and identify the different species, percentage and ratio in your body. Click here learn more.

  • Sophia says:

    Hi. Great article, thanks for the information.
    I was curious – what was the reason behind eating refrigerating the resistant starches before consumption? Does this help the to develop in some way?

  • […] This meal can be enjoyed breakfast, lunch or dinner as a great source of fibre and protein, and is gluten free! Plus a great source of resistant starch! […]

  • […] These cassava and green banana flour pancakes are high protein, high fibre, low sugar and a great source of resistant starch! Read more about the benefits of resistant starch here. […]

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