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Review Demonstrates the Benefits of Resistant Starch in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes


Insulin Resistance in Obese and Type 2 Diabetes Patients

Insulin resistance has become a significant health care problem in the US and Australia, yet it is preventable and reversible through lifestyle changes, proper nutrition, supplements, exercise and stress management. Weight loss and exercise are among the best approaches for restoring the body’s ability to respond to insulin.

The Health Benefits of Resistant Starch

Previous research has shown a variety of health benefits from resistant starch, including helping with obesity, cholesterol levels, constipation, and the production of short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) in the gut.

Researchers Investigate the Effect of Resistant Starch Supplementation on Insulin Resistance

In a review in Lipids in Health and Disease, researchers investigated the effect of resistant starch supplementation on mitigating insulin resistance in patients with type 2 diabetes and obesity.

This review consisted of 14 randomized clinical trials, conducted with 515  patients, published between 2006 and 2017. All these trials took place over a 4 to 12-week period except for one study that lasted one year.

There were 6 studies on obesity without type 2 diabetes and 8 studies focusing on patients with type 2 diabetes. Six of the studies on diabetes included obesity while the other two with diabetes did not include obesity.

The Research Team’s Findings

The research team found patients with type 2 diabetes who were obese, experienced a greater beneficial effect with resistant starch supplementation than those who were not.
The dosage of resistant starch can have different effects. A higher dose of 30-40 grams per day decreased fasting glucose levels; however, 10 grams per day was effective in lowering fasting insulin levels.

Does a High Fibre Diet Help?

A high fibre diet leads to the production of SCFAs (Short Chain Fatty Acids) in the gastrointestinal tract. SCFAs can help increase insulin sensitivity, improve glucose tolerance, and reduce B-cell apoptosis by modulating the gut microbiome.

Other research has indicated that obesity has a microbial component that alters the caloric extraction from ingested food. For example, if a person has more Bacteroidetes bacteria, they tend to be leaner. The ratio of High Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes has been known to increase the caloric extraction from food and these individuals tend to be more obese. This also ties together the importance of dietary fibre, prebiotics, and weight loss.

Conclusion – Resistant starch and other nutrients

Resistant starch should be considered for patients with obesity, insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, and metabolic syndrome. It can also be a great substitute for regular starch in baked goods, which lowers the caloric density and glycemic index of food products. Other nutrients to consider for these patients include curcumin, tocotrienols, fish oil, magnesium and glycine.


Research and References

By Michael Jurgelewicz, DC, DACBN, DCBCN, CNS

Source: Gao C, Rao M, et al. Resistant starch ameliorated insulin resistant in patients of type 2 diabetes with obesity: a systemic review and meta-analysis. Lipids Health Dis. 2019 Nov 24;18(1):205.