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Wellness + Nutrition

The good carb/ bad carb … can potatoes assist in weight loss? Resistant starches explained

5th May 2018

Pretty soon you will be hearing the term ‘resistant starches’ fairly often. Its the latest health discovery and will transform how we think about carbohydrates. Can potatoes (cooked and served in the correct way) assist in weight loss? Read this article below and find out.

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Although this may be the first you’ve heard of resistant starch, it’s likely been a part of your diet most of your life. Resistant starch is a type of dietary fibre naturally found in many carbohydrate-rich foods such as potatoes, grains, and beans, particularly when these foods are cooled. It gets its name because it “resists” digestion in the body, and though this is true of many types of fibre, what makes resistant starch so special is the powerful impact it has on weight loss and overall health. Not only does it increase your body’s ability to burn fat, but it also fills you up and reduces overall hunger. Its health benefits are truly impressive as well. Studies show it improves blood sugar control, boosts immunity, and may even reduce your cancer risk.

Resistant starch is bulky, so it takes up space in your digestive system. And because you can’t digest or absorb it, the starch never enters your bloodstream. That means it bypasses the fate of most carbohydrates, which gets stored away as body fat when you eat more than you can burn. Here are two more key ways resistant starch can help you drop unwanted weight:

It increases your calorie burn; Unlike some types of fiber, resistant starch gets fermented when it reaches the large intestine. This process creates beneficial fatty acids, including one called butyrate, which may block the body’s ability to burn carbohydrates. “This can prevent the liver from using carbs as fuel and, instead, stored body fat and recently consumed fat are burned,” explains Janine Higgins, PhD, nutrition research director for the University of Colorado’s Adult and Pediatric General Clinical Research Center. In your body, carbohydrates are the preferred source of fuel, like gasoline that powers your car’s engine. Butyrate essentially prevents some of the gas from getting into the tank, and your cells turn to fat as an alternative. One study found that replacing just 5.4% of total carbohydrate intake with resistant starch created a 20 to 30% increase in fat burning after a meal.

It shuts down hunger hormones Animal studies have found that resistant starch prompts the body to pump out more satiety-inducing hormones. A meal with resistant starch triggers a hormonal response to shut off hunger, so you eat less. Research shows that you don’t reap this benefit from other sources of fiber.


The research on resistant starch doesn’t stop at weight loss. This powerful nutrient is also earning accolades as a major disease fighter from standard bearers such as the World Health Organization. Here’s why scientists around the globe are so excited about its health benefits:

It can prevent cancer Research shows that the butyrate created by resistant starch may protect the lining of the colon, making it less vulnerable to the DNA damage that triggers diseases, such as colon cancer. It can also create a pH drop inside the colon, which boosts the absorption of calcium and blocks the absorption of cancer-causing substances.

6 Best Fat-Burning Foods

TRY: Beans

RESISTANT STARCH: 8 g per 1/2 cup

Snack on chilled pinto bean dip with crudites
Substitute hummus for mayo on sandwiches
Add black beans to garden salads

TRY: Bananas (slightly green)

RESISTANT STARCH: 6 g per small
SMART SERVING SUGGESTIONS Slice and mix with yogurt and oats for breakfast
Dip in yogurt, roll in chopped nuts, and freeze as an ice-cream alternative
Dice and toss with lemon juice, salt, sugar, and onion to make tangy banana chutney

TRY: Potatoes and yams
RESISTANT STARCH: 4 g per 1/2 cup
Serve cold potato salad as a side dish
Add chilled, chunked red potatoes to a salad
Puree cooked white potatoes to create a chilled garlic potato soup

TRY: Barley
RESISTANT STARCH: 3 g per 1/2 cup
Add to chilled lentil salad Mix into tuna, chicken, or tofu salad
Sprinkle onto garden salads

TRY: Brown Rice
RESISTANT STARCH: 3 g per 1/2 cup
Order brown rice sushi
Mix chilled brown rice with fat-free milk, raisins, and cinnamon in place of cold cereal for breakfast
Add to chilled marinated cucumbers as a side dish

TRY: Corn
RESISTANT STARCH: 2 g per 1/2 cup
SMART SERVING SUGGESTIONS Add to a taco salad, burrito, or quesadilla
Sprinkle into salsa Make fresh corn relish.


So now you know whole grains and high carb vegetables can be most beneficial, especially as part of a balanced weigh-loss program. I love potato salad, Santa Anna’s Organic Wholegrain and Non GMO corn chips and tortilla’s, Nature’s Choice non-GMO popcorn kernels, barley soups, as well as roasted sweet potatoes, baked white potatoes (occasionally), brown basmati rice, wholegrain Soba (buckwheat) noodles and pulse pastas. Carbs are not a swear word anymore, yay!!


Happy healing and cooking.



Wellness + Nutrition

Probiotics & Fermented Vegetables the benefits of probiotic rich fermented foods

8th December 2014

Humans have been fermenting/ culturing foods for hundreds of years, apart from it preserving foods and improving taste, it also has amazing health benefits. Natural fermentation infuses food with beneficial microbes, also known as probiotics or good bacteria. There are many health benefits to eating fermented foods, not to mention fermented drinks like kerfir and kombucha, below a abbreviated list;

Probiotic Benefits

  1. Strengthens your immune system
  2. Improves digestion and assists in elimination
  3. Good bacteria assists in natural weight loss/management
  4. Destroys toxins in the food we eat
  5. Prevents candida overgrowth
  6. Fermentation improves the nutrition in the vegetables, for example fermented cabbage has 200 times more Vit C then raw cabbage.
  7. On a enviromental note, fermenting in season veggies reduces the carbon footprint.
  8. Lowers blood pressure.

My favourites fermented foods are kimchi, suaerkraut and a simple mixed veggie ferment. They are all very easy (and extremely economic) to make at home, here is the recipe for a great ferment to start with:

  • Use organic veggies if possible, do not peel them, just wash them well, or remove top layer from cabbage, or top and tail where needed.
  • Wash and sterilise two large consol (mason) jars.
  • You wil need 5 large carrots and one small red or white cabbage.
  • Dissolve 4 heaped tablespoons of pink salt in 700ml of boiled water.
  • Shred carrots and cabbage finely, mix them together and pack tightly into your mason jars.
  • Then fill the jars with the salt water until the salt water covers the surface of the vegetables and gently tap jars to encourage all the air bubbles to escape.
  • Now you just screw your lid on tightly and leave your jars outside of the fridge for 2-4 days depending on the season. In winter jars should be left out of the fridge for at least 4 days, but in warmer weather 2 days should be sufficient to start the fermentation process.

NB: Be sure to “burp”, (open) the jars once a day for the first 4 days to let out gasses from the fermentation.

In approx 5 days, or less in warmer weather, you should have some lovely crunchy naturally pickled veggies, the longer they stand the more “pickled/sour” the taste. They will keep well for a long time in the fridge. Your veggies should have pleasant pickled or beer like smell, if they smell off, you should probably start your process from scratch, but this is a unlikely event.

My daily Yoga Kitchen Lunch Bowl ALWAYS includes fermented vegetables. Will be sharing some lovely bowl combination some day soon.

Have you tried fermented foods and if so which ones are your favourite? Would love to hear from you.

With ♡, yoga kitchen