Paleophil Uses Resistant Starch To Hugely Blunt BG Spikes for His Raw Fermented Honey Habit

It’s stories like this that make me laf about how the carbophobe and sugarphobe and starchophobe LC catechism will come to a screeching halt. It will end badly for the LC Nomenclatura who don’t get honest, quick.

It’s only a matter of time.

From Paleophil, in comments.

@Marie

Thanks for the 4 tbsp experiment suggestion. […] I tried the 4 tspb idea anyway and put it through a tough test. It passed with flying colors! I consumed 5 tsps of raw fermented honey, which normally would spike my BG to 180-210 mg/d, but this time with 4 tbsp of potato starch, I washed my finger and tested it twice and it measured at only 112 and 120. It helps that my fasting blood sugars have been running lower, so before I ate the honey, my BG was only 75. Thus, there’s more room for including more carbs in my diet if I wish. RS has been really amazing for me so far on the BG front.

He follows up.

Fermented raw honey is the only kind that not only doesn’t give me any negative effects, but actually gives me some benefits (reduced dry skin flakes on my scalp, eyebrows and forehead, softer, more hydrated and younger-feeling skin, thicker, less-greasy hair, and improved sleep). It’s also my favorite tasting honey, but some people don’t like the mild fermented taste (I love fermented foods). It’s not alcoholic at all, BTW, if anyone’s thinking that.

Once I tried fermented honey I discovered that all the talk of “sugar is sugar,” and “all sugar is the same” and “all carbs are the same and all turn into sugar” was BS. Resistant starches like potato starch further confirmed that. Raw honey contains fiber too, BTW, called oligosaccharides (Oligosaccharides Might Contribute to the Antidiabetic Effect of Honey, link to mdpi.com). Heating the honey likely degrades the fiber, as with other fermentable fibers like resistant starch, and other heat-sensitive components. Thus, it’s no surprise that honey aficionados recommend that honey be raw, and raw fermented is even better.

Plus, “Research conducted at Michigan State University has shown that adding honey to fermented dairy products such as yogurt can enhance the growth, activity, and viability of Bifi dobacteria as well as other commercial oligosaccharides.” link to honey.com.

What explains the short-term BG effect of resistant starch? I’ve only seen it reported as working in the large intestine. It looks we can have our cake and eat it too. ;-)

Now, for the paleo side: who’s going to tell me that honey is not paleo?

In other news, because it’s my wife’s birthday today and so I don’t want to spend much time on the blog; but, one commenter asks about Grok Eating resistant starch.

“has anyone ever shown that getting 20-30+ grams of RS daily was the norm for pre-industrial societies? ”

RS and grok – is worth a post? [since you won’t get the sycophants at MDA, and others, to come over until this is clearly shown….]

examples:

The medicinal uses of poi – link to ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.

Tatertot “Plantains/bananas were dried and stored throughout Africa, potatoes were dried and stored throughout S. America, corn was dried and stored throughout N. America. The inuits had ‘Eskimo Potatoes’ which were dried and stored throughout the Arctic.” link to freetheanimal.com.

+ add drying and storing cassava

Commentator Brad – “As Flores spoke, peasants prepared chuno, or dehydrated and chilled potatoes, and tilled the soil with ox-driven plows. Donkeys brayed and sheep and cattle grazed.”

link to freetheanimal.com

Coprolite studies –

link to ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

link to digitalcommons.unl.edu

I’d point out also that in the coprolite studies I’ve read, there’s usually significant pollen, which is high in RS. Search YouTube for techniques on extracting significant amounts from cat tales, a huge biomass both in terms of its pollen, and its network of tubers.

So there you have it, in one short post devastating to Low Carb Catechism. First, RS does blunt GB spikes significantly, even in the face of pure sugar. Second, Grok probably got a significant amount, not only from raw or cooked & cooled tubers of starchy veggies, perhaps even legumes, but also pollen, perhaps both harvested or resident on the food of the day.

Update: Tubers as Fallback Foods and Their Impact on Hadza Hunter-Gatherers.


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67 Comments

  1. yien on September 16, 2013 at 18:32

    potentially, one of the most convincing studies for grok and rs / prebiotics (also honey!) is, arguably, this one:

    The Hadza homeland is “close to Olduvai Gorge, one of the most important prehistoric sites in the world, where homo habilis – one of the earliest members of the genus Homo – was discovered to have lived 1.9 million years ago.”

    http://www.survivalinternational.org/galleries/hadza

  2. Kayumochi on September 16, 2013 at 10:41

    Has anyone in Low Carblandia or Paleomundo noted that their food movement is going in the same direction as all others or are they simply too young/ignorant/uninterested to know? Macrobiotics comes to mind … it was an influential movement that gave shape to the natural food industry as we know it yet today Macrobiotics is considered quaint at best. Had the internet been in existence Macrobiotics would have been picked apart much sooner …

  3. Resurgent on September 16, 2013 at 11:31

    In one word – WOW

    @Paleophil – If you are reading this – what is your source for raw fermented honey.?

  4. Brad on September 16, 2013 at 14:22

    Athough I don’t test or care about my BG levels, I’ve done a ton of IF’ing the past year and am very familiar with the feeling of hormone/adrenaline release that takes place well into a fast. I can feel the energy boost from the adrenaline and know when it’s happening. The other day I was surprised when it happened around 5pm on a day when I had eaten a very large and carby breakfast. It consisted of a waffle made from cassava flour, peanut flour, and some fresh ground sesame and flax seeds, and cinnamon. This was drenched in a highly caloric syrup made from LOTS of butter, a couple heaping soup spoons of blackstrap, and a liberal amount of raw tapioca starch (added after the melted butter had cooled). It seems the fat and RS must have tamed the BG/Insulin spike from the carbs and kept me in a somewhat fat-burning mode. I can’t think of how else I could get an adrenaline spike as if I was still in my fasting window. Normally, eating carbs, or any non trivial amount of calories would kick me out of this and it would take about 12 hours of not eating to get back into it. Interesting.

  5. Brad on September 16, 2013 at 14:35

    This was about 7-8 hours after eating breakfast, with no lunch. So this high fat and carby meal high in RS seems to have decreased the time to get back into fat burning mode from 12-16 hours to just 8. This happened just this once that I noticed so far, but I’ll be on the lookout to see if it was a one time fluke or not.

  6. Resistant Starches - Page 22 | Mark's Daily Apple Health and Fitness Forum page 22 on September 16, 2013 at 14:37

    […] is famous! Paleophil Uses Resistant Starch To Hugely Blunt BG Spikes for His Raw Fermented Honey Habit | Free T… Reply With […]

  7. BigRob on September 16, 2013 at 15:00

    @Brad

    Do you have a recipe for that waffle? It sounds delish.

  8. Richard Nikoley on September 16, 2013 at 16:27

    Brad:

    Describe that Rush. For me, it’s like this entense body wide muscle tightening, as though I’m doing isometrics to pump up or something. Incidentally, I’ve had this duplicate feeling (and I get it often in a fast, so I know what it is) after a meal of fatty pork, especially with a fatty sauce, but low to no carbage.

  9. Brooke on September 16, 2013 at 16:51

    I have type 1 diabetes and I plan to test this out over the next week. I eat plenty of fruits and some starches because I need them but I don’t need the spike that sometimes comes along with it.

    I have tapioca starch so I’ll try a couple of tablespoons here and there and see what happens!

  10. Paleophil on September 16, 2013 at 17:31

    @Richard: I’d like to add some subtle shadings–the terms “honey habit” and “pure sugar” remind me too much of CW and conventional LC dogma. I think of RF honey more as “honey medicine” (as in health benefits up until “the dose makes the poison”) instead of a habit, which might sound like addiction. Instead of just “sugar,” it’s “sugar + oligosaccharide fiber (that may lower BG) + symbiotic bacteria (that may lower BG) + natural antibiotics + enzymes + bits of pollen + maybe occasionally a bit of royal jelly that contains insulin-like polypeptides (that may also lower BG) + ???. Nature is infinetely complex and full of surprises that frequently confound human assumptions.

    My RF honey source is Really Raw Honey. It’s not cheap and the supply is sometimes limited.

    Caveat: While other of their customers also report benefits, not everyone responds as well as I did to it. A friend of mine tried it and reported no effect on her dandruff (though she does not follow a Paleo WOE). So YMMV.

  11. Ben Cohen on September 16, 2013 at 18:05

    Is this big news because it’s a starch that’s blunting the BG spike? Fat and green/orange vegetables also blunt BG spikes.

    Regardless, RS is intriguing and I’ve started to take some potato starch every day.

  12. Richard Nikoley on September 16, 2013 at 18:36

    Paleophil

    Yea, I just just kicking the hype up a notch to make sure read what you have to say. :)

  13. Brad on September 17, 2013 at 07:10

    Richard,
    The rush is kinda hard to explain. It feels kinda like a caffeine rush. I feel like my mind is working twice as fast, perhaps with less concentration (mind racing). You have this energetic feeling that makes you want to walk fast, if not run. A slight aggravated (on edge) kinda feeling…. I’ve noticed my patience is much shorter than it normally is – more grumbling and/or cursing out loud at annoyances that I might otherwise give little notice. I have not noticed a muscle tightening, but perhaps it’s just that I haven’t been paying attention to that. Next time it happens to me, I’ll see. Muscle tightening, cramps even, are a common fairly common thing though when eating low carb. Not sure if that is playing a factor. Incidentally, the day I noticed this, after having the big breakfast, I had done some fairly intense physical activity (yard work using a hoe), so I wasn’t just sitting on my ass during the ~8 hour gap.

    An aside from the RS thing, I’ve noticed that when I’m fasting (ie, in that “fat burning” mode) and get a hunger pang, almost any physical activity that increases heart/respiration rate like jogging, a set or two of pullups, etc., is enough to trigger a sufficient release of adrenaline and/or whatever hormones are responsible for liberating body fat. And when this happens, the same energetic feeling happens and the hunger pangs go away. Two other things that kill a hunger pang for me during an IF fasting window… drinking a strong cup of coffee, or just waiting about 20-30 minutes (presumably, this is the time it takes for the fat-liberating hormones to ramp up and swing into gear). Over the last year I’ve used this effect quite a bit in my lifting workouts while in the fasted state (fasted training). I think it works well, at least for me, and given my training is usually intense but short; 30-60 minutes max.

  14. John on September 17, 2013 at 08:53

    Been really upping the resistant starch the past few weeks, and measuring BG as well. Paleo and Magnesium supplementation seemed to keep it in a pretty good area, and I never worried about it too much. FBG was usually in the low hundreds or high 90s, when I did measure it. Well, recently FBG has been in the low 90s, and sometimes even in the 80s 2-3 hours after a meal, even a meal with significant carbohydrate. Recent meaurements have all been below 125, even 1-2 hours after eating a carb rich meal (and they didn’t used to be).

  15. Paleophil on September 17, 2013 at 19:16

    I forgot to mention a second caveat, though I hope most folks are already aware of it–that a single blood glucose test isn’t much of a test and BG measurements can vary widely. Today I tried a presumably more challenging test–5 tsps of brown rice syrup, which should contain more glucose and less fructose than honey, followed by 4 tbsps of potato starch in water. It was a major fail. One hour later I measured 3 times, with the range being 223 – 247 mg/dl. Not good. I did delay some minutes after consuming the syrup before consuming the potato starch. Don’t know if that makes a difference. So the possibility of a short-term BG modulating effect from potato starch appears inconclusive for me at this point, and given that I don’t know of a mechanism for it, I’d have to say that the default premise would be that there isn’t a short-term effect unless strong evidence shows one. This is a good reminder for me to not draw any conclusions based on little data.

    I’ll play devil’s advocate a bit too. Has anyone seen any information about long-term effects of resistant starch or “beneficial” gut bacteria on humans? What if it turns out that the RS-fed gut bacteria provide benefits in the short term, but in the longer term they turn on the host and shorten its life? It seems at least theoretically plausible and I think I read something along this line regarding helminths.

  16. Brad on September 18, 2013 at 02:27

    @Paleophil, being skeptical and playing Mr. Devil is all well an good in the search the truth. But in order for this to be “theoretically plausible” you would have to show at least a causation between RS intake and HARMFUL bacteria, or other parasites’ growth.

    Yes, studies are out there, depending on what you mean by “long term”. We don’t need to be your Google proxy, but here is just one off the top of the list. You can search for others…

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130219140716.htm

  17. Brad on September 18, 2013 at 02:48

    Btw, while some types of helminths do cause harm, they have also discovered others that may actually have a beneficial effect on the host immune system. This is still in the “we don’t know” category I think, needing lots more study. When you think about it, humans and these parasites have evolved in tandem over thousands of years so this would not be surprising that some are harmful while others are helpful, same deal as the gut bacteria.

  18. Paleophil on September 18, 2013 at 15:51

    @Brad, Thanks for the response, I know my devil’s advocacy attempt wasn’t great, but unfortunately the critics of RS haven’t put up much in the way of evidence, so I’m left with trying to fill that role, as I’d like to examine both sides of the question. I have a sense that there’s more out there that the critics haven’t bothered to use or verify and I’d like to see it for myself. Maybe the RS story isn’t all rosy. When something seems too good and easy to be true I start to get a tad suspicious. My goal is to learn, share and benefit, rather than to win debates. I’m seeking what works, rather than vindication.

    The only specific harmful bacteria I’ve seen cited by RS critics is klebsiella. Oddly, the only research report I found cited by any of them actually concluded that RS was good for FIGHTING klebsiella, not promoting it. Yet this rumor persists, so I’m guessing that there’s something else out there somewhere to account for the rumor. So here’s a call out to RS critics to please provide any supporting research that directly links resistant starch to harm from klebsiella or anything else (and I don’t mean the studies on “fibre/fiber/dietary fiber,” I mean specifically resistant starch).

    Brad wrote: “while some types of helminths do cause harm, they have also discovered others that may actually have a beneficial effect on the host immune system”

    Yes, those are the helminths I meant–the ones that have been shown to provide short-term benefits. I think I saw a claim along the lines of that they eventually turn against the host once they sense its days are numbered. Unfortunately, I don’t have a source to provide you with on that, sorry.

    @Richard, I’m hoping for your promised answer to my earlier LC-friendly point (if you haven’t answered already) that RS could be seen as compatible with (relatively) LC instead of only as a refutation of it, given that RS is converted to LC-friendly fats by gut bacteria. You have the right to do what you want with your blog and the public comments, I suppose, though I haven’t joined your anti-LC war and actually use a somewhat LC approach myself (because it works best for me so far, rather than because of any theory). So I hope the liberty you took with my comment earns me your promised response. :) I think I can guess some of your points, but I’ll leave it to you.

    While it’s clear that the notion that all carbs are the same is bogus, there are still other, better arguments for a relatively LC approach made by people like Paul Jaminet, and while the RS evidence makes long-term zero carb implausible, I don’t see it ruling out LC of the Perfect Health Diet sort.

  19. Brad on September 18, 2013 at 16:25

    Paleophil, so 130g carbs per Jaminet, you consider LC, eh? I think it’s LC compared to SAD, but two pounds of starchy carbs per day I would not call “low” in general. For me, low is significantly less than that. But no sense in arguing about fine details. The main point I think Richard is making is to point out to the LC crowd that there near complete avoidance of carbs is just dumb, especially if you have an active lifestyle and certainly if you want to put on some lean muscle mass via strength training. IMO, if doing the latter the best thing you can do is eat some carbs before bedtime, where the insulin spike will help the anabolic muscle recoup/rebuilding and growth process that occurs primarily when you sleep.

  20. Richard Nikoley on September 18, 2013 at 17:11

    @phil

    Sorry if I didn’t keep up on all Qs. Happens, sometimes, especially if I’m into how to vinyl wrap my x-5 and switch out rims & tires (but that was yesterday).

    Everyone do what they need to do. I’m no authority, only a confident cheerleader. I’m satisfied to have folks interested. That’s all.

  21. Paleophil on September 18, 2013 at 17:24

    @Brad: Yes, we agree that fear of all carbs for anyone is dumb. Yes, I do consider PHD effectively “low carb,” because it is lower by half in carbs than the standard American avg of ~50% carbs and also lower than that advocated by the the conventional authorities and most “experts”, some of whom advocate even more than 50% carbs. Plus, Paul is not afraid of saturated fats and Paul’s recommended median of 25% carbs for most people is actually only 5 points higher than Ron Rosedale’s recommended 20% carbs (that’s right, Dr. Rosedale, the fellow who says that any amount of carbs is poison). Of course, there is no single accepted definition of “low carb,” but Paul’s approach is clearly WAY lower-carb than the CW. So, yes, Paul qualifies as LC to the vast majority of people in the world (that doesn’t guarantee that he’s right, but to pretend that his approach is not lower carb than most would not be accurate).

    Doesn’t it strike you as a bit odd that there is such hostility between Rosedale advocates (20% carbs) and safe-starch Jaminet advocates (25% carbs)? All this arguing and invective over 5 points difference? Really?

    @Richard, No prob, I’m not complaining, just interested in your take, whenever you can.

  22. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 08:20

    This may be down Tatertots alley… looks like there are studies, mostly in Japan, on something called Resistant Maltodextrin (RMD). Seems plausible there could exist a rice derived resistant dextrine. Or is “dextrin”, and more specifically RMD present in cooked rice? Also, is RMD and/or oligodextrin just part of RS, or is it separate and in-addition-to RS?

    These trials investigated the attenuation of the glycemic response to rice, noodles, pastry, bread, and refined carbohydrates that included 30–173 g available carbohydrate. RMD was administered in drinks or liquid foods or solid foods. Placebo drinks and foods excluded RMD. Percentage attenuation was significant, dose-dependent, and independent of the amount of available carbohydrate coingested. Attenuation of the glycemic response to starchy foods by 6 g RMD in drinks approached ≈20%, but when placed directly into foods was ≈10%

  23. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 08:31

    Wow, this indigestible dextrin (RD), is it yet another starch prebiotic like RS?…

    Title; The Effect of the Intake of Rice Crackers Containing Indigestible Dextrin on Postprandial Blood Glucose Levels in Healthy Adults-Studies on Cases of 80kcal Intake of Rice Crackers

    “Abstract;Eighty kcal of rice crackers containing indigestible dextrin (4.6g/21g) were administered as test samples to 27 healthy adults (18 males and 9 females) and the postprandial rise of blood glucose levels were compared with placebo samples (80kcal, 17.8g) not containing indigestible dextrin. As a result, test samples showed lower blood glucose levels (p<0.05) at 15 and 30 minutes after intake compared to placebo samples. This result suggests that rice crackers containing indigestible dextrin are useful for primary prevention of diabetes."

  24. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 06:06

    Tim/Tater, or anyone else… what is rice oligodextrin?
    I was reading about something called “rice oligodextrin” which is used as a low glycemic carb supplement by strength trainers and bodybuilders. Apparently it’s a low GI carb. I guess it’s slowly digesting or possibly resistant to digestion to some extent? Anyone know anything about this? The “oligo” part of it makes me wonder if it could have some prebiotic effect. If so, it could be another hidden benefit/nutrient in rice…. ie, another gut critter food. Or, just a good carb relative to BG/Insulin effects?

    Very interested if anyone knows or finds out anything about this. cheers, -Brad-

  25. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 08:10

    Found this on Wiki on “dextrin”…

    “Due to the rebranching, dextrins are less digestible; indigestible dextrin are developed as soluble fiber supplements for food products.”

  26. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 08:23

    The references section of that RMD study points to others, but looks like in Japanese…

    37.↵ Takeyasu H, Suzuki T, Sakamoto H, Muraoka T, Imamura Y, Shionoya K. [Effect of cooked rice containing indigestible dextrin on postprandial blood glucose level and safety of its long-term ingestion.]. Jpn Innovative Food Ingred Res 2006;9:37–45 (in Japanese).

    38. Fuse T, Kumagai T, Watanabe T. [Effect of cooked rice containing indigestible dextrin on postprandial blood glucose level and the safety of eating it in the long term.]. J Nutr Food 2002;5:47–53 (in Japanese).

    39. Fuse T, Takano K, Kumagai T, Watanabe T. [Effect of cooked rice containing indigestible dextrin on postprandial blood glucose level in healthy human subjects.]. J Nutr Food 2002;5:69–74 (in Japanese).

  27. Kenny on September 19, 2013 at 08:31

    I’ve been suspecting that I am nightshade sensitive for a while: the tapioca starch seems to have confirmed it. My digestion got worse.

    Today is day one of starting a homemade green plantain flour (dehydrated at 125F as chips, food processor powdered). 1 TBSP per day; here’s hoping.

  28. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 09:05

    Fascinating subject this ID. I’ll have to get back to it later. But for now, one last comment.

    So from my quick preliminary search there are studies that show that ID has many similar benefits of RS – and perhaps ID and RS are actually one and the same? dunno yet.

    One type of ID is called “pyrodextrin” which is created by the process of pyrolysis. In reading the below Wiki excerpt on pyrolysis, it seems quite logical and plausible that ancient man would have eaten this prebiotic on a regular basis through simply roasting tubers over an open flame. You will also note that at least this type of ID could not be created by boiling rice, but very well could be by baking and frying things like tubers and plantains. Maybe fried rice as well? Literally food for thought.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrolysis#Cooking

    “Pyrolysis occurs whenever food is exposed to high enough temperatures in a dry environment, such as roasting, baking, toasting, or grilling. It is the chemical process responsible for the formation of the golden-brown crust in foods prepared by those methods.

    In normal cooking, the main food components that undergo pyrolysis are carbohydrates (including sugars, starch, and fibre) and proteins…

    …Even though cooking is normally carried out in air, the temperatures and environmental conditions are such that there is little or no combustion of the original substances or their decomposition products….

    Pyrolysis of carbohydrates and proteins requires temperatures substantially higher than 100 °C (212 °F), so pyrolysis does not occur as long as free water is present, e.g., in boiling food — not even in a pressure cooker. When heated in the presence of water, carbohydrates and proteins suffer gradual hydrolysis rather than pyrolysis. Indeed, for most foods, pyrolysis is usually confined to the outer layers of food, and begins only after those layers have dried out.

    Food pyrolysis temperatures are, however, lower than the boiling point of lipids, so pyrolysis occurs when frying in vegetable oil or suet, or basting meat in its own fat.

    Pyrolysis also plays an essential role in the production of barley tea, coffee, and roasted nuts such as peanuts and almonds. As these consist mostly of dry materials, the process of pyrolysis is not limited to the outermost layers but extends throughout the materials. In all these cases, pyrolysis creates or releases many of the substances that contribute to the flavor, color, and biological properties of the final product. It may also destroy some substances that are toxic, unpleasant in taste, or those that may contribute to spoilage…

    … Solid residue from the pyrolysis of spilled and splattered food creates the brown-black encrustation often seen on cooking vessels, stove tops, and the interior surfaces of ovens.”

  29. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 09:19

    this if from a biased source (sells a supplement), but still…

    “What is Indigestible Dextrin?

    Dextrin is the generic term for a group of low-molecular-weight carbohydrates that can be made from starch including corn, potato, rice or wheat. Most starches are digested and absorbed into the body through the small intestine, but some resist digestion and pass through to the large intestine where they act like dietary fiber.

    Health benefits of indigestible dextrin are well documented. Indigestible dextrin is among foods known to inhibit an increase in blood glucose and regulate insulin response. For example, clinical studies have shown that indigestible dextrin increase insulin sensitivity in healthy people by more than 30%. It can also help diabetics manage their blood sugar levels”

  30. Brad on September 19, 2013 at 09:26

    Also from that Wiki page on dextrin…

    “Dextrins produced by heat are also known as [pyrodextrins]. During roasting under acid condition the starch hydrolyses and short chained starch parts partially rebranch with α-(1,6) bonds to the degraded starch molecule.[4]”

  31. marie on September 19, 2013 at 19:16

    Paleophil, I was happy for you that the RS seemed to give you more ‘room’ to take your honey, but something’s been nagging me and maybe it relates also to the different results you got for the rice syrup (and maybe even the different results from a first try, when you thought you may have contaminated your finger).
    Did I see somewhere in a previous post that you are usually VLC?
    The reason I’m asking is because if so, a lot of time of course you would be ketogenic, especially after any longer overnight fasts. Not always though, unless you specifically target that state and test for it, and especially not if you’d recently (in last day) had more carbs.

    So…..Do you think it’s possible that sometimes you’ve been ketogenic and sometimes not? Or even just trying a test after the overnight fast versus trying a test later in the day?

    It’s that damn curiosity of mine, you’ve spiked it! :)

    When ketogenic, especially fasted ketogenic, there’s such a rapid BG surge in response to any starch or sugar that you’re just not likely to see much immediate effect (not much blunting of a BG spike) from the RS. I had No blunting when in fasted ketosis and had small, though noticeable, blunting when just fasted long overnight (~16hrs) even though in the latter case (fasting long overnight after a regular day’s eating) I was not in deep ketosis yet. It’s essentially the body’s normal response to fasting that us dominant here. Again, all this is versus controls done under the same metabolic/dietary conditions.

    I don’t personally care about RS blunting either way, I have no BG control issues myself and neither does my dad. The reason I ever tested the stuff is because of certain other health benefits (especially immunity and colon lining repair/cancer effects) and it seemed rational to make an effort to get it back into a modern diet that’s largely processed it out.
    But….yeah, I’m curious :D

  32. Paleophil on September 19, 2013 at 20:13

    It’s possible I was in ketosis during the high BG tests, but then my BG was only 75 with the good test, which suggests I might have been in ketosis then too. What do you suggest?

    I was hoping that RS might help me gradually incorporate more carbs into my diet, as well as heal my own gut. I don’t tolerate safe starches well, but handle RS perfectly fine (I don’t even get excessive farting unless I ingest quite a bit–not even in the early days). It does seem like I’m handling potatoes somewhat better since adding potato starch to my diet and eating potatoes mostly cold and increasing my plantain intake and eating the plantains much less ripe.

  33. Paleophil on September 19, 2013 at 20:13

    I mean my BG was 75 before the start of the good test

  34. marie on September 19, 2013 at 20:45

    Paleophil, sure, I remember. A moderately low BG by itself may or may not indicate ketosis when you’ve been taking RS for a while, it’s confounded because RS has that long-term lowering effect on BG, from the literature and the anecdotes at least.
    My FBG has always been good, ca.85, unless I’ve fasted for 48hrs, when it’s ca.65 mg/dl (and I’m in deep ketosis). So I’m not a good test for the ‘long-term effect’ on the FBG, nor on the baseline BG (stable BG @5 hrs after an average meal). Homeostasis being what it is in a healthy metabolism, I don’t expect it would let some extra SCFAs drive me into hypoglycemia.
    Someone who had high, or anyway higher (ca.100), numbers to start with would be able to notice a long-term effect of RS, since they’d have more latitude to drop BG before homeostatic mechanism kicks in.

    I’m just thinking that drifting in and out of ketosis would give someone inconsistent results.

    I was measuring/testing met state and doing controls exactly to avoid that problem. Had to be sure for dad. It’s a painful way to do it, mind you, fingertips refused to play piano for a few days… :(
    BTW, I never had TMI issues either, still don’t. However, we’re a small club, it’s seems! Did you normally get other prebiotics (inulin is a common one) in your diet?

  35. Paleophil on September 20, 2013 at 04:06

    So how did you do it with your Dad to utilize the short-term BG blunting effect of RS and avoid bad BG spikes? Did you do something like have him eat some protein to get out of ketosis, then eat the carbs mixed with RS to slow the digestion? Do you think that slowing digestion is the short-term blunting mechanism?

    On the SAD, my FBG was measured two or three times in the 70’s-80s, after which physicians didn’t bother to measure it again. After I went LC, my FBG rose into the 90’s-100’s, the natural physiological insulin resistance that’s common with LCing (Petro reported that the Kitavans have it despite eating lots of starch – http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.com/search/label/Living%20on%20Kitava – perhaps they aren’t getting much RS).

    Yes, I normally got other prebiotics like inulin from the foods the LCing RS critics recommend, such as carrots, parsnips and turnips.

  36. Paleophil on September 20, 2013 at 04:22

    However, my sister probably eats more veg and fruits than me and she had lots of fartage after her first try of just 1 tbsp of potato starch.

  37. marie on September 20, 2013 at 07:40

    Nope, the objective with dad was just to make sure he can take RS alone without dropping out of ketosis. He can and it’s good that way.
    It would have been a great bonus if then the short term affect allowed him to add some moderate foods, like yogurt, without raising BG and dropping out of ketosis, but the blunting just isn’t enough to keep one in ketosis. It would have to overcome the normal physiological insulin resistance of ketosis/fasting and there’s no suggestion it can do that.
    For someone who is not in ketosis or fasting however, in many cases it does to have a strong immediate blunting effect and can keep BG numbers reasonable after even a potato. I can see why diabetics are interested and why there’s research on with RS as a diabetic BG control tool.

  38. marie on September 20, 2013 at 07:43

    I see about your sister. I’ve heard that before too, so tending more towards the idea that after all it’s hit or miss when it comes to that uncomfortable effect. I’ve also seen that many people say it subsides after a week or two.

  39. Paleophil on September 20, 2013 at 16:08

    Marie, So what do you think the mechanism for short-term BG blunting is? Is it just reducing digestability by mixing undigestible stuff in with the easily digestible? Do you discuss this stuff anywhere on the Net that I could check out? If there really is a short-term as well as longer-term benefit, then RS-rich foods would seem to be one of the world’s best superfoods (but my skeptical nature spurs me to question this :) ).

    It sounds like I’m in a similar boat as your Dad. Even though I’ve never been diagnosed as insulin resistant (due to my past low FBG measures), even the superfood yogurt gives me negative symptoms if I eat more than a modest amount (less so with sheep yogurt than other types). I empathize with him.

    Ideally, a super-healthy person should presumably be able to handle both ketosis and boluses of carbs. Having to coddle the body with either chronic extreme LC or extreme HC doesn’t make sense to me evolutionarily.

  40. marie on September 20, 2013 at 17:53

    Paleophil,
    the mechanism seems to be at the molecular level involving the SCFAs. So it’s not like a ‘mechanical’ slowing down of digestion (which happens with insoluble fiber, for example), if that’s what you’re thinking.
    I usually have only a casual interest in nutrition, I don’t have a blog or any thing like that (thanks for asking!) but the series on RS that’s on this blog with all the information and references collected by tatertot Tim and Richard’s summaries and synthesis does include info on BG blunting. That series is how I got interested in RS at all.

    A couple of things meantime though about ketosis, carbs and insulin resistance that you mentioned:
    -Dad didn’t have a ‘problem’ exactly with yogurt, it’s just that having to stay in deep ketosis as part of his cancer therapy, yogurt became a forbidden food (unless one can find a way to eat it in a ketogenic 4:1 ratio of [fat]:[carb+protein]….which frankly gave some nauseatingly bad mixes with coconut oil or heavy cream!).

    The only initial objective I had was to make sure that dad could take the RS plain or mixed into a ketogenic meal, without the RS itself spiking BG and causing him to drop out of ketosis.
    That’s why I test for both BG and excreted ketones.

    So, I confirmed that as a supplement, RS in the form of straight potato starch behaved as the literature said it did. That is, there was no BG rise at all. Moreover, I found that this lack of BG effect held even in deep fasted ketosis and the ketostix stayed well negative (“40”, even went briefly more negative, deeper purple at “80” in one case). This was predictable if indeed it just fermented to FAs.

    Great, so now dad’s been taking RS, for purely the immunity and gut benefits (effect on lining and cancer specifically).

    Meanwhile, I got curious and we got ambitious.
    Could the long-term FBG lowering and/or the short-term blunting that were reported in the literature also work while in ketosis and was it enough to allow him to expand his cuisine?

    Meh….as we’ve been discussing, Ketosis is a special place :)
    That normal physiological insulin resistance due to ketosis/fasting allows a huge spike in BG after eating any well-digested carb.
    So when in ketosis (and especially when fasted) the effects of RS on BG indeed were not enough to let me eat something with significant carbs, like potato, and still stay in ketosis (yogurt didn’t work either, and I didn’t dare try honey alone at that point!).
    Instead, the BG spikes and bye bye ketones, at least temporarily. Thing is, cancer patients (well, those with cancer types where deep ketosis is an experimental adjuvant therapy) must never raise that BG concentration at all.

    So there you have it.
    __Yes for RS in ketosis – can have it and stay in ketosis, no effect on BG whatsoever.
    __No, RS did not moderate enough, ‘blunt’, the BG spike to a carb-y food if carby food is eaten in ketosis or after fasting – in fact, would drop out of ketosis.
    __Yes, RS does do a great blunting job if one is not in ketosis to begin with. So, diabetics, people with metabolic syndrome or anyone who just has a lot of carbs but would like to keep that BG tame might, imho, benefit from taking RS or eating RS-rich foods, for the BG effects.
    Of course, any one at all might want the immunity and other benefits.
    Any ‘”superfoods” label though will get my spidey-sense going too :)

    I agree about that ‘coddling’ not being an evolutionary strategy….
    However, I don’t see your conclusion. A super-healthy person may get an even bigger BG spike from a bolus of carbs if they’ve been in ketosis than an unhealthy person – that BG spike is just a side-effect of the healthy ‘physiological’ insulin response. No reason they “can’t handle” that BG spike, is there? It does come down pretty rapidly if one’s healthy (mine in about 2 hours). May need to drink some extra water.
    However, to avoid it, maybe staying moderate carb all along (which means that occasional boluses also do not cause big spikes) would be the strategy? That’s all assuming there’s something beneficial that’s hi-g that should be eaten frequently, because if not, if infrequent, then staying in ketosis and only getting a spike occasionally is easily handled.
    Or, say, staying in ketosis in winter and not in the summer, or, you know, intermittently(IF)….just saying ;)

  41. marie on September 20, 2013 at 18:11

    Hmmm, so maybe that was rather….detailed?!
    I hope I didn’t tire you out ;)

    Richard, c’est trop, tu m’excuser?

  42. Richard Nikoley on September 20, 2013 at 18:43

    Are you kidding? It’s the next blog post.

  43. marie on September 20, 2013 at 19:59

    Ah oui? Quelle idée ;)

  44. marie on September 20, 2013 at 20:06

    Edit :
    10 lines up from end should say : “….healthy ‘physiological’ insulin resistance” , not “…response” .

  45. Richard Nikoley on September 20, 2013 at 20:48

    Oui, c’est sa.

  46. marie on September 24, 2013 at 17:03

    Paleophil,
    it’s a good point, your distinction between long-term and immediate post-prandial results of RS and what affects them. So all the SCFA mechanisms may be long term or operating on some intermediate time of a few hours that gets noticed as a ‘second-meal’ effect.
    Then again, I’ve never known what to make of transit time studies. Different foods, different substances can have very different transit times.
    Anyone has daily examples of ‘fast’ digestion if you think about it, from asparagus (granted that’s digested/absorbed in the small intestine) where an hour later there’s that funky odor of urine, to that diarrhea where you barely get home in time after visiting a certain not so clean restaurant for dinner.
    Then there’s the famous corn on the cob….kids have fun spotting the kernels when they go to the bathroom later that night for number 2 (mommy!mommy! look!!). They must have been in the colon some time before being expelled of course.

    If you want to look further, whether the resistant starch does get down to the colon in roughly the time it takes for water to get there, or whether it takes longer, the SCFA mechanisms themselves have different time-lines :

    One molecular/cellular mechanism for the SCFA affecting BG is via their mediation of GLP-1. A couple of the mechanisms by which GLP-1 works are immediate/short-term and some long-term.
    This incretin hormone, which is secreted by cells in the lower small intestine and in the colon, has a key role in carbohydrate metabolism, for example, it stimulates pancreatic beta-cell proliferation (a long-term effect), it strongly stimulates insulin secretion (that can be short-term/immediate), and here’s one you’ll like especially, it slows down the emptying of the stomach and the intake of food (an immediate effect), reducing glucagon secretion (so that’s similar to the’slowing down’ idea but needs the SCFAs to get it going).

    There’s more, SCFAs may act directly on fat cells and affect carb metabolism through reducing plasma concentrations of NEFAs (I skipped a few steps there) which then reduce insulin resistance….

    Here’s a review article (thanks to Tim for first sending me this) which has various mechanisms I mentioned so you don’t have to hunt down each one in a separate paper.
    It’s actually looking at the long term ‘second meal’ effect, but refers to mechanisms that can be also short-terms and to the ‘known’ postprandial glucose moderation of hi-GI foods by lo-GI foods.

    It concludes: “Thus, the benefits of incorporating LGI foods into a diet extends beyond the immediate post-prandial phase and as such may help prevent or delay the progression of type 2 diabetes”.

    Do I think, no matter how it works, that RS will blunt anything at all? I’d be very surprised if it did.
    Stay away from that rice syrup my friend!
    Honey is, indeed, where it’s at. Well, honey+yogurt. Still haven’t dared honey alone, one controlled step at a time ;)

  47. […] the link to her comment, in case anyone wants to see the […]

  48. Paleophil on September 24, 2013 at 14:47

    Marie,
    Aren’t the SCFAs produced by bacteria in the large intestine, which would take too long (6-8 hours according to to account for a short-term effect within an hour or two? That’s why I’m wondering if there could be a short-term effect via slowing of digestion.

    Is there any evidence that healthy traditional peoples commonly get > 200 mg/dl or even > 160 mg/dl BG spikes that last for more than an hour after eating carby food? It seems to be taken as a given that one should try to avoid spiking one’s BG above 140-160 mg/dl by lots of leading thinkers in the Paleosphere (Jaminet, Kresser, Guyenet, Harris, Eades, Rosedale, …). Do you have evidence to the contrary? Here are a couple examples of what I was referring to regarding healthy people handling boluses of carbs without excessive BG spikes:

    “In South America, different investigators studied a group of native Americans in central Brazil that subsist primarily on cassava (a starchy root crop) and freshwater fish. Average blood glucose one hour after a 100g OGTT was 94 mg/dl, and only 2 out of 106 people tested had a reading over 160 mg/dL” – Stephan Guyenet, [url=http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2010/11/glucose-tolerance-in-non-industrial.html]http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2010/11/glucose-tolerance-in-non-industrial.html[/url]

    “In diabetics, there seems to be no detectable health risk from glucose levels up to 140 mg/dl, but higher levels might have risks. Neurons seem to be the most sensitive cells to high glucose levels, and the severity of neuropathy in diabetes is correlated with how high blood glucose rises above 140 mg/dl in response to a glucose tolerance test. [8] In people not diagnosed with diabetes, there is also some evidence for risks above 140 mg/dl. [9]

    For several reasons brief excursions above 140 mg/dl are probably not a problem for healthy people. However, for purposes of argument I’ll stipulate that a blood glucose level over 140 mg/dl probably does some mild harm.
    Does eating a safe starch necessarily raise blood glucose above this level? No.

    I offer as Exhibit A the experience of Haggus Lividus on Jimmy’s thread. Haggus measured blood glucose levels after consuming ~100 calories of rice and found that blood glucose levels peaked at 7.7 mmol/l = 139 mg/dl. Within an hour and fifteen minutes they were back at 5.8 mmol/l = 104 mg/dl. After sweet potatoes, blood glucose peaked at 6 mmol/l = 108 mg/dl.” – Paul Jaminet, http://perfecthealthdiet.com/2011/10/jimmy-moore%E2%80%99s-seminar-on-%E2%80%9Csafe-starches%E2%80%9D-my-reply/

    Contrast those results with just 5 tsp brown rice syrup containing only about 17g carbs spiking my BG >220, despite consuming 4 tbsp of potato starch soon after the syrup. I tried again with 2 tsp of the syrup and 3 tbsp potato starch while not in ketosis (per keto strip). BG maxed out at 163 mg/dl, still a poor result compared to those others above. Granted, they are just a couple measurements, but they are concerning.

    I also experience negative symptoms after consuming rice syrup (zit, jitteriness, mild malaise) that I don’t get from RF honey (even at the same BG levels), so I’ll probably avoid using rice syrup as my test sugar in the future. My 2 hour measures usually do get down to fairly normal levels, but my max spikes still seem too high with rice syrup even when consuming potato starch, per the research that Paul Jaminet referenced.

    Thanks for the input.

  49. Brad on September 24, 2013 at 15:31

    PaleoPhil, regarding that Brazil study, there is a lot left out that we don’t know. How was the cassava root prepared? The digestibility of cassava root can vary widely based on how it’s prepared – boiled, baked, roasted, pan fried, deep fried. Also, was any westerners used in the study to compare eating the same food? There are no details given.

  50. Paleophil on September 24, 2013 at 17:45

    “Ask, and you will receive. [Better yet,] Search, and you will find.” :)

    Baruzzi and Franco studied the Yanomamo and Xingu Indians of Brazil. The Xingu prepare cassava/manioc by “shredding the roots and expressing the toxic juice, then roasting the flour to make flat cakes [called beiju], which they cook over a small pile of coals.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yanomami#Domestic_life.2C_clothing_and_diet) The cakes resemble tortillas/pancakes. Images of Xingu making beiju are here: http://flickrhivemind.net/Tags/beij%C3%BA/Interesting. The cooking of the beiju in a modern kitchen is shown here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ITzkOKe5pY.

    Presumably it would be as with other foods–the traditional methods of cooking/processing and eating would have higher RS levels than modern methods, and foods higher in RS would produce lower BG spikes.

    It’s a safe bet that Westerners would not fare as well, on average, in OGTTs as traditional Brazilian Indians, given the overall worse BG and insulin sensitivity data for Westerners. Nonetheless, many of us Westerners are reporting improving numbers by including more RS in our diets, so there is hope.

    Accumulating evidence suggests that healthy traditional populations are better indicators of what levels of health can be achieved than Westerners afflicted with high rates of chronic diseases and disorders of civilization. So I’m not going to just assume that my BG spiking over 200 mg/dl from just 17g of glucose (which is a poor OGTT result even among Westerners) is perfectly OK. Instead, I’m going to see if I can further improve my insulin sensitivity beyond what RS has already done for me (which is already pretty amazing). It’s encouraging that my first test with RF honey produced a much better result. I seem to tolerate RF honey better than brown rice syrup. I plan on doing more testing when I get more BG strips and ketostix.

    I don’t think the Yanomamo are extroardinary mutants with purely inherited supernormal glucose tolerance. I think it’s far more likely that traditional diets produce better insulin sensitivity than Western diets, even LC Western diets.

  51. Paleophil on September 24, 2013 at 18:22

    Marie, Thanks much for the info. Richard is lucky to have your and Tatertot’s contributions to his blog.

    “Stay away from that rice syrup my friend!”

    Indeed. Ironically, I tested it after finding it recommended as a super-safe carb by Paul Jaminet for people like me who don’t tolerate cooked “safe starches” well. It turns out I tolerate brown rice syrup even worse. I’m not complaining, though, because this has provided interesting additional insight into my health. In the past I had suspected cooked starch, sucrose and fructose as my worst carb offenders, but now it’s looking more like glucose is enemy #1 for me, at least the heat-processed glucose in rice syrup. Maybe the fructose in honey actually helps me some, since I tolerate heated honey better than rice syrup.

    “Honey is, indeed, where it’s at. Well, honey+yogurt.”

    I have tried honey + yogurt and, oddly enough, I do better with RF honey alone than with yogurt added. I know this contradicts what everyone else says, but so be it. My experience seems to be different from that of everyone else on the Internet. LOL

  52. Paleophil on September 24, 2013 at 18:23

    PS, It occurs to me that Paul said “rice syrup,” rather than “brown rice syrup.” Maybe the brown kind is worse?

  53. marie on September 24, 2013 at 20:13

    Paleophil, smiling at the compliment.
    Meanwhile, yeah, honey doesn’t have a high glycemic index to begin with because it has a lot of fructose. So I guess it’s just possible that depending on the type of yogurt, the milk sugars in your yogurt cause you more BG trouble – though I just can’t see it if you eat whole yogurt, preferably strained. That be greek yogurt, eh?

    As for rice syrup, dunno of differences between brown or not, my eyes cross at the thought of syrups and molasses. Not a sweet tooth here.
    Honey goes on yogurt and in hot toddies on cold winter nights. That’s it’s purpose in life, imo!
    My sweet temptations are exactly two : chocolate chocolate-chip ice cream (a pint lasts me a week) and Lindt truffles – um, those however don’t even make it to the fridge, sigh…a sad tale of weak will :)

  54. Raphael S on September 25, 2013 at 00:26

    Paleophil, Marie, Brad, Richard etc..

    Please correct/amend/clarify these points about RS

    RS: is not digested
    RS: is fermented
    RS: CAN (although not ALWAYS apparently) blunt BG spikes independently of ones diet and fuel-burning modality
    RS: BG blunting effects can so far be hypothesised to act in the following modalities

    1: increasing SCFA availability (a POSITIVE)
    2: unknown, but apparent POSITIVE modification of the gut biome
    3: slower transition times suggesting a low-GI food type mechanism

    RS is definitely a tool to investigate or a dietary habit to strongly consider including in ones diet – however I’m still uncertain that we aren’t rediscovering info about fiber that we are not better able to understand…or am I truly missing some novel effect?

  55. Raphael S on September 25, 2013 at 00:30

    [should read: still uncertain that we aren’t simply rediscovering info about fiber that we are now better able to account for biochemically and anecdotally..or am I truly missing some novel effect?]

  56. Paleophil on September 25, 2013 at 04:24

    Marie, Most unfermented raw honey does appear to give me about as much trouble as the best yogurt, probably more, so the fermented aspect of the honey seems to be the biggest factor for me, even though yogurt is also fermented. It also tastes far better to me than brown rice syrup.

    I eat so little sugar aside from honey and some fruits that potato starch mixed in water and straight lemon juice taste sweet to me and and sweetened hams taste like super-sugary meat candy. Even Gold’s horseradish and Urban Moonshine Organic Bitters taste delighfully sweet to me, whereas brown rice syrup tastes sickeningly sweet to me. A concoction I enjoy is fresh-squeezed lemon juice plus Gold’s horseradish plus UMO Bitters, plus a little water. So I find there to be very different types of sweet and the best ones seem to be closest to what our ancient ancestors ate, interestingly.

    If our ancestors and today’s most primitive peoples are any clue, the way the gods intended for honey to be eaten is straight out of the hive in the original combs (both honeycomb and grubcomb), with bare hands, with the dripping honey to be licked from the hands. Every primitive tribe I’ve seen that eats honey regards it as a food, rather than a treat/candy, and gorges on it when it’s available. This is another reason I suspect that their insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance is far better than ours.

  57. Paleophil on September 25, 2013 at 04:25

    I guess I should say glucose/fructose tolerance.

  58. Paleophil on September 25, 2013 at 04:29

    My yogurt is Old Chatham Shepherding Company sheep’s milk yogurt, plain. I tried all the Greek yogurts available to me and it produced the least negative symptoms.

  59. Paleophil on September 25, 2013 at 04:36

    Come to think of it, even the plain yogurt tastes sweet to me, which is why I rarely think to add the honey to it unless I happen to have both out at the time and feel like a variation.

  60. Brad Baker on September 25, 2013 at 06:41

    @Raphael, RS isn’t necessarily novel comparing to other soluble fiber, though it could be. The fact that it is present in significant amounts in certain inexpensive starchy foods, and depending upon preparation, is. At least to me it was new knowledge. But it’s also unknown, I think, how the different types of prebiotics affect our microbiota. It’s logical to assume that different types of prebiotic molecules have a more diversifying effect on the flora populations, and perhaps the flora’s fermentation could be producing different chemical byproducts that are beneficial to us hosts. Remember, there are thousands of different types of gut bacteria. Do they all thrive on the same food molecules? Seems unlikely to me.

  61. Brad Baker on September 25, 2013 at 06:51

    @Paleophil, I’m not really up on the whole honey thing other than knowing that “conventional wisdom” says it has healthy aspects to it. Though my take on it via what I see in most health food stores, is that it is over-hyped in a similar manner that (chia seeds) are. I have heard that “raw honey” is much better than the conventionally processed honey is. So… what are the nutrients in honey as you see it that are particularly healthy? I’m not claiming it’s not healthy. I’d just like to understand what is in it, that provides the benefits. thanks.

  62. Raphael S on September 25, 2013 at 06:55

    @Brad Baker
    I am trying understand its its mode of action compared to fibers.

    Also, what does it taste like? (in its isolated form obviously)

  63. Brad Baker on September 25, 2013 at 08:09

    @Raphael, well both RS and soluble fiber are polysacharides but there are differences and the whole subject just makes my head spin trying to understand it. It’s chemistry. The mode of action is similar in that these polysacharide molecule-chains are not broken down by amylase and other digestive enzymes and so arrive in the large intestine where the gut bacteria are able to break them down the into glucose molecules (and others?) that are consumed by the bacteria. In doing so the bacteria produce SCFA (short chain fatty acids), and others?, that are beneficial to us hosts. In short, you can consider RS just another type of fiber.

    Raw potato and tapioca starch has virtually no taste at all, though a bit chalky in texture.

  64. Paleophil on September 26, 2013 at 17:33

    Brad,

    I used to think the same things about honey in the past and had had only bad experiences with heated honeys. For me, the CW I’d seen repeated ad nauseum in the Paleo and LC online community was that honey is sugar, sugar is sugar, and all sugar is poison. One Paleo software I tried out even categorizes a diet as totally not Paleo if it includes any honey at all! Some even go so far as to say that all carbs are converted to sugar, so effectively all carbs ARE sugar and since sugar is poison, therefore all carbs = poison.

    The reason I tried raw honey was that there were almost no ordinary carby foods I could eat without problems and I found that personal experience was a far more reliable indicator than CW or people’s opinions. In my experience, the personal experiences and practices that tended to be most reliable tended to be those reported by traditional peoples themselves or people who had lived with them and observed them directly. Also, those opinions which did tend to prove true for me tended to be based on people’s actual experiences, rather than just opinions or articles/studies they had read (RS is a good example of this). Confirmation bias can lead people to cherry pick the articles/studies that support their existing opinions and ignore or pick apart the rest. I also noticed that a lot of the foods that traditional peoples and experienced dieters most highly touted were raw and fermented, or at least fermentable.

    So I opened my mind, eyes and mouth and tested lots of carby foods to see if there were any I could handle, including some highly touted honeys that some people had tried. I was quite surprised to find that I tolerated raw fermented honey better than not only any other honey and all grains and beans, but also most fruits and “safe starches,” and it was the only carby food that actually provided me with any noticeable health benefits–until I tried resistant starch, which has also been beneficial for me. I do have to limit my intake of even these beneficial “carby” foods (RS is not really carby in the end, but that’s another story that has been discussed already) to avoid some negative symptoms from excess (though with RS, excess just produces fartage, which is not a big deal). This same experimental approach was also part of what led me to try other uncommon foods like plantains before they started becoming somewhat popular in Paleo circles.

    I know most of this contradicts just about every assumption, dogma and dietary approach out there, some of which are touted in the comments of this blog series, but when it comes to my own health, I place my actual experience above dogmas. It’s fascinating to me that two of the carby foods that generate the most controversy and even ridicule-—honey (raw fermented, in small amounts) and RS (up to about 30+ grams per day)-—have actually worked better for me so far than any of the others. It’s also interesting that both contain prebiotic “fibers” (is this just coincidence or …?).

    Being despised by diet advocates seems to be generally more suggestive of a food being healthy, rather than unhealthy. Reminds me of the old commercial line “EVERYTHING YOU KNOW IS WRONG!!!” At least, that’s the assumption I start from when my own opinions are not working as well as I would like. :)

    Scientists have cited many components in honey that might account for its beneficial effects. Some of them are in my quotes and comments above. I eat some RF honey mainly because it works for me. YMMV.

  65. Kayumochi on September 27, 2013 at 05:24

    ” Paleo software” … Paleo software?

  66. Paleophil on September 28, 2013 at 05:58

    :) It does sound like an oxymoron, doesn’t it

  67. Paleophil on September 28, 2013 at 10:57

    @Raphael S

    Yesses to all your earlier questions, basically, and there’s also more to it. RS is different in some ways from the other prebiotics and was a part of the human diet for millions of years until it was reduced to just about 5% of the American diet in the last 50 years or so, and then many LCers and Paleoists reduced that even further and after some time on their diets started reporting multiple symptoms associated with gut bacteria depletion and low RS intakes. Is it just coincidence? Maybe time will tell.

    I highly recommend reading the whole RS series and the comments.

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