Tim Steele and I On Dave Asprey’s BulletProof Video Podcast Talking Resistant Starch


Here’s the show page. The iTunes page. The Mp3 download.

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  1. Gemma on May 24, 2014 at 13:42

    Most informative. And funny too, worth listening for this single point:
    Seriously, Richard, you should try that. Perhaps you might get rid of your last 10% of sinus troubles.

  2. bettyboo on May 24, 2014 at 15:13

    Tim could plant his potatoes on my patch any day.

    • gabkad on May 25, 2014 at 17:11

      Sorry, betty, you’ll need to get to the back of the line.

    • tatertot on May 27, 2014 at 11:02


  3. bettyboo on May 24, 2014 at 16:20

    Just wondering if anyone thinks it’s time to stage an RS intervention for Jimmy Moore? Thoughts?

    • LeonRover on May 24, 2014 at 20:52

      Stage .. .. for Jimmy Moore:

      “Moore of Me, Why Not See Moore of Me ” — the Musical.

      See the Starch Intervention, Music by Miss Saigon.

      Yeah, it sings to me.

  4. wtf on May 24, 2014 at 19:51

    Some completely useless, yet interesting stats for you: Sisson’s webiste is ranked about 7,000 globally and Oprah Winfrey’s is ranked about 3,500 globally. That’s pretty freak’n good work from Sisson. Sisson really is the Oprah of Paleo, isn’t he?

    My (worthless) opinion? Richard, get yourself and your co-authors into the mainstream media (ie: television) for the book launch – your loyal readership won’t propel you far enough. If you can walk onto a TV set and flash a set of well toned abdominal muscles and a set of pants with a bulging bit of man equipment out the front, I think it will be good for the book!

    • Q on May 24, 2014 at 20:51

      Uh, yeah, just stuff a probiotic rich fermented cucumber down there, Richard.

    • Bernhard on May 27, 2014 at 00:06

      Actually we have tried this approach, never thought of using a cucumber. Any suggestion/ experience to share on how to go about that? Grateful for sharing experience.

    • Bernhard on May 27, 2014 at 01:04

      Oh. You were talking front end, thought you were talking rear end. Never mind, not asking to share experiences then, sorry.

  5. JCB on May 25, 2014 at 06:13

    Very interesting interview, and interesting that you discussed SBOs. I’ve been wondering about taking Prescript Assist on top of RS and did a bit of googling. I can see that some commentators warn against SBOs because they can form spores leading to overgrowth and suggest that people whose gut flora are already compromised might find these SBOs taking over in a pathological way because normal gut flora aren’t already there to keep them in a healthy balance.

    Clearly, some people do really well on SBOs but some seem not to.

    Any thoughts? Has there already been a post on this that I’ve missed?

    • Jim on May 25, 2014 at 09:53

      I’ve read the same sort of comments and was wondering if it’s worth while taking some time to progressively repopulate your gut. Start with some more “standard” lacto and bifo type probiotics and / or some fermented food, add some PS, increase the dosages and then start with SBO’s. Especially maybe for the kids … just trying to optimize their health and don’t want to create new problems doing it. Anyone have any thoughts?

    • yien on May 26, 2014 at 00:31

      The warnings against SBOs/B.sub. etc is standard paleo-sphere cut and paste hysteria (ironically) warning against an evolutionary diet. No different to people warning against linoleic acid PUFAs or eating nothing but honey for days on end.

  6. Jim on May 25, 2014 at 09:20

    Lol, EatLessMoveMoore is now “Bettyboo”.

  7. Mike on May 25, 2014 at 16:44

    Great Interview. RS + probiotic is a game changer in a sense that most people {if not all} are going to experience a change in their digestion…And from there it becomes an individual journey.

  8. Jo on May 25, 2014 at 23:55

    Very enjoyable interview. Thanks.
    A good (i.e. big) index would go a long way to keeping your mighty tome accessible and appealing for us masses.

  9. Guttural on May 26, 2014 at 02:21

    The L. Plantarum feather stuff exploded my brain.

    • tatertot on May 27, 2014 at 10:58

      Bacillus Lichenformis is the real feather-hog, L. plantarum probably comes in later after the feathers are degraded a bit.

      Food scientists have devised ways to turn waste feathers into animal food by fermenting them with L plantarum and B lichenformis.

      Birds will line their nests with feathers they go to great lengths to collect, and seem to be picky about color. This surely helps seed the baby bird with it’s first set of microbes.

      Also, much speculation that the colors of bird feathers evolved to attract or repel microbes.

      People’s homes used to be full of feathers, from bedding, coats, fashion accessories, feather dusters, and even “boudoir mood aids”. When’s the last time anyone had their butt tickled with a feather?

      Feathers have been replaced with man-made fibers. This study examines asthma incidence on man-made pillows vs feather pillows, looks like feather pillows are better.


      But, like most studies, take it with a grain of salt:

      “Finally it should be noted that the findings from this study pertain to children with asthma and HDM sensitisation, not the child population generally. Thus a null result from this therapeutic intervention does not rule out a potential protective effect of feather bedding in relation to the inception of asthma.”

  10. Gemma on May 27, 2014 at 01:23


    Many diabetics report here or elsewhere that after consuming more fibre (RS etc.) their blood sugar control gets better, some need less insulin supplementation.

    A wild speculation, not sure if discussed here yet: could part of the effect happen due to their diet-induced modification of gut flora resulting in “intestinal neo-beta-islet-cells” formation?

    Some bacteria (shown in Escherichia coli Nissle 1917 engineered to secrete either GLP-1 PDX-1 proteins) are able to excrete certain proteins that stimulate INTESTINAL epithelial cells to synthesise insulin in response to glucose.

    See here in study from 2008:
    Secretion of Insulinotropic Proteins by Commensal Bacteria: Rewiring the Gut To Treat Diabetes

    and now an article from March, 2014
    Cellular alchemy: How to make insulin-producing cells from gut cells

    full study here
    De Novo Formation of Insulin-Producing “Neo-β Cell Islets” from Intestinal Crypts

    “We report that transient intestinal expression of these factors—Pdx1, MafA, and Ngn3 (PMN)—promotes rapid conversion of intestinal crypt cells into endocrine cells, which coalesce into “neoislets” below the crypt base. Neoislet cells express insulin and show ultrastructural features of β cells. Importantly, intestinal neoislets are glucose-responsive and able to ameliorate hyperglycemia in diabetic mice. Moreover, PMN expression in human intestinal “organoids” stimulates the conversion of intestinal epithelial cells into β-like cells. Our results thus demonstrate that the intestine is an accessible and abundant source of functional insulin-producing cells.”

    • tatertot on May 27, 2014 at 10:43

      Great links! Thanks. Yes, this has been discussed quite a bit. I think that most of the insulin sensitivity seen is gutbug driven. Similar to the immediate effects of gastric bypass surgery and metformin–both have big impacts on gut microbes.

      A well-formulated RS supplement would probably put the Metformin people out of business. I keep hoping they will offer to buy my silence. I will promise them that for $1M ‘tatertot’ will never say another word about RS.

    • Grace/Dr.BG on May 27, 2014 at 13:39


      Seriously I could get a PhD from all of your sources and thoughts LOL~!!

      Have you heard of amyloidosis? It scars the pancreatic islet cells and is a new, underestimated cause of T2D. I find it totally ironic we can reverse T2D with amylose (resistant starch; butyrate FAR2/3 receptors) but our bodies ‘use’ amylose in the disease pathology of T2D.

    • Gemma on May 28, 2014 at 00:35

      Not that someone gets scared: so called amyloid deposits leading to amyloidosis are in fact proteinaceous material, not starch.

    • Gemma on May 28, 2014 at 10:31

      Some more reading on β-cell regeneration:

      Cellular reprogramming for pancreatic β-cell regeneration: clinical potential of small molecule control

      A Small Molecule Swertisin from Enicostemma littorale Differentiates NIH3T3 Cells into Islet-Like Clusters and Restores Normoglycemia upon Transplantation in Diabetic Balb/c Mice

    • Gemma on May 29, 2014 at 05:42


      you said “A well-formulated RS supplement would probably put the Metformin people out of business.”

      The time will come…

      The antidiabetic gutsy role of metformin uncovered?

      A novel cobiotic containing a prebiotic and an antioxidant augments the glucose control and gastrointestinal tolerability of metformin: a case report.

      Now you only need to add an ageing retardant element to your RS concoction…

      Metformin retards aging in C. elegans by altering microbial folate and methionine metabolism

    • Gemma on May 29, 2014 at 05:47

      Here a better link to the full:

      The antidiabetic gutsy role of metformin uncovered?

    • tatertot on May 29, 2014 at 07:26

      Gemma – Seems like we should have paid more attention to Hippocrates. Those are amazing papers, I was half-joking when I said that.

    • Gemma on May 31, 2014 at 04:20

      Here the latest news on longevity (what a surprise: the mitochondria are just one of the players in the game)
      The three genetics (nuclear DNA, mitochondrial DNA, and gut microbiome) of longevity in humans considered as metaorganisms

    • Tatertot on May 31, 2014 at 08:37

      Could it be?

      “The relationship between human Gut Microbes and the host is highly plastic, with the potential to readily adapt to changes in diet, life style, and geography, as well as to the different host ages, defining a process which is fundamental to maintain host health and homeostasis [91]. This plasticity has been recently highlighted by David and colleagues [92] that reported the effects on GM composition of different diets, that is, one based on animal products and another one based on plant products. Authors observed that the short-term consumption of these two kinds of diet alters microbial community structure and bypasses the interindividual differences in the microbial gene expression.”

    • Gemma on May 31, 2014 at 09:42

      This one?
      Diet rapidly and reproducibly alters the human gut microbiome
      “We prepared two diets that varied according to their primary food source: a ‘plant-based diet’, which was rich in grains, legumes, fruits and vegetables; and an ‘animal-based diet’, which was composed of meats, eggs and cheeses (Supplementary Table 1). We picked these sources to span the global diversity of modern human diets, which includes exclusively plant-based and nearly exclusively animal-based regimes11 (the latter being the case among some high-latitude and pastoralist cultures). ”

      11 cites Cordain 2000: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10702160?dopt=Abstract&holding=npg

      What a mess. Does it only show what a short-time keto does to gut flora?

    • Richard Nikoley on May 31, 2014 at 11:31


      Regarding that metformin link, looks like Robb Wolf was thinking ahead on this.


    • Gemma on June 1, 2014 at 07:46

      “Regarding that metformin link, looks like Robb Wolf was thinking ahead on this.”

      Robb described the mechanisms how metformin bring benefits to the human body (in short: reducing inflammation).

      What is novel in both texts linked above is that these mechanisms are controlled and mediated by gut flora. It is beautifully complex.

      This article
      describes microbial recomposition following metformin treatment (increase of Akkermansia resulting in improved mucosal layer).

      The second study on C. elegans (a roundworm):
      Metformin retards aging in C. elegans by altering microbial folate and methionine metabolism

      brings these main points:
      – the antidiabetic drug metformin disrupts bacterial folate and methionine cycles
      – this effect in C. elegans microbiota increases lifespan via methionine restriction
      – Metformin increases lifespan only if microbiota are present and is otherwise toxic
      – Microbiota may mediate metformin effects on mammalian health and aging

  11. Gemma on May 27, 2014 at 12:01


    It is getting a bit more complex with all these microbiota and GLP loops:
    Microbial Modulation of Energy Availability in the Colon Regulates Intestinal Transit

    More details here, if you can get full access:

  12. Bernhard on May 27, 2014 at 00:14

    The following may have been discussed (quite sure it has been discussed but can’t find anything, sorry).
    “Butyrate at 2 mM of concentration promoted barrier function as evidenced by the significant reduction of the inulin-FITC permeability of Caco-2 cell monolayers. However, butyrate at 8 mM of concentration impaired the barrier function and caused significant increase in inulin-FITC permeability (Fig. 2).”
    Question: Once again the dose being the difference of stuff being an elixir or becoming a poison?

    • tatertot on May 27, 2014 at 10:36

      Bernard – Yes that study is interesting, but has to do with premie babies without a fully functioning gut and necrotizing colitis.

      What I have seen about butyrate and dose is that in healthy humans, most butyrate is absorbed by colonocytes at the site of fermentation. Raw potato starch ferments very quickly, adding ample fiber alongside the potato starch helps to spread the fermentation throughout the colon. Psyllium and wheat chaff used in most of the studies, but I think almost any fiber works.

      I’ve never seen anything remotely suggesting that we can get too much butyrate from prebiotics/fiber. Maybe if you drank lots of straight butyrate it’s a different story. I think the real goal of a good prebiotic strategy is to eat enough fiber to both ferment into SCFAs and do it in a synergistic fashion throughout the entire colon.

      Conversely, the standard western diet provides very little prebiotic fiber, and what it does provide comes in short blasts not accompanied with fiber, ie. potato chips (crisps). All this RS is converted quickly in the cecum and probably never gets to the colon proper. We have a giant furnace that we feed with tiny twigs.

      We don’t have all the answers yet, but getting ample prebiotic fiber, particularly RS, is a great start for most people.

    • Grace/Dr.BG on May 27, 2014 at 13:35

      Thanks for the study — neonates and preemies lack the ‘machinery’ to digest RS until they’re regularly eating starch and have fully acquired the SBOs from the environment (eg, mom, crawling, siblings’ microbiota, pets/animals, etc).

      In pigs at post-weaning, RS may induce diarrhea which is secondary to malabsorption and microbiota defects much like FODMAPS and dysbiosis seen in IBS and IBD.

      I believe for some the high rates of butyrate from initial consumption is misaligned until adaptation occurs. This might be 2-8 wks depending on a person’s pre-existing microbiota and exposures to microbes. 25% of healthy peeps don’t even have R bromii to digest RS (or their R bromii are faulty and can’t ferment RS correctly).

      Additionally > 25% of healthy subjects in RS studies have completely 95-100% intact RPS in their feces indicating their guts are deficit of RS colonizers.

      What about unhealthy or atrophied guts habituated to low-fiber consumption? It’s kinda sad if someone can’t tolerate starches unrelated to glycemic spikes but gut issues.
      –VLC, Atkin’s?
      –Lacking healthy soil, farm and environmental exposures depleted of appropriate microbes?

      I think you make a valid point. Please see Fig 3. I don’t fully get it but the authors suspect that theoretically the colonocytes exhibit LESS butyrate uptake with raw potato starch compared with retrograded or a slowly fermenter (HAMS). I think 2 things could be going on — not enuf time for adaptation and colonocyte ‘maturation’ or the rate is just too high and this saturates the receptors. The excess could naturally be going to the portal vein and peripheral circulation, which they in fact demonstrate

      Potato and high-amylose maize starches are not equivalent producers of butyrate for the colonic mucosa.

  13. tatertot on May 27, 2014 at 12:18

    I remember that paper! I think we reference it in the book a couple times.

    The underlying theme is that if you get your gut microbiota just right, it will take care of everything, including transit time. Makes sense it would vary in relation to food ingested.

    I was just reading a paper (thanks, Grace!) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1891451/pdf/v041p00245.pdf where they intentionally slowed or sped the transit time and measured fecal SCFA. When transit time was greater than 50 hours, no butyrate could be detected in feces, meaning it was all absorbed before it made it to the rectum.

    That is not a good thing. Yes, none was wasted, but it means a percentage of the colon is left with no butyrate.

    Measuring fecal butyrate is a fickle test, it can be high and look great if you are not absorbing it, or it can be low and look bad if you are absorbing it very well. But zero butyrate can only mean bad things.

  14. Grace/Dr.BG on May 27, 2014 at 14:09

    For the geeks!

    Retrograded, cooled starches RS3 is a crystallized fuel for the microbes… In the gut it pretty much acts like psyllium, cellulose and other insoluble fibers…

    Int J Biol Macromol. 2012 Nov;51(4):632-4.
    Retrograded starches as potential anodes in lithium-ion rechargeable batteries.

    Retrograded starch is a crystal formed by starch molecules with hydrogen bonds. Many literatures have reported its physicochemical character, but its crystal structure is so far unclear. As we isolate amylose and amylopectin from retrograded maize, sweet potato and potato starches in 4.0 M KOH solutions and make them retrograde alone in neutral solution (adjusted by HCl) to form crystal, a new phenomenon appears, crystals of KCl do not appear in retrograded potato amylose, potato amylopectin, and maize amylose, indicating that those crystals may absorb K⁺ and (or) Cl⁻, and those ions probably act with aldehyde of starch or hydroxy of fatty acid attached in starch, such characteristic may make retrograded starches replace graphite as anode with high-capacity in lithium-ion rechargeable batteries.

  15. Trish on May 27, 2014 at 14:17

    Great podcast! I’ve done RS w/fermented foods (sauerkraut and pickles) from day 1 and I swear that’s a golden combination.
    Let me know if you’d like to partner with that FMT medical tourism business Richard!

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