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Resistant Starch May Help Reduce Inflammation, Heart Rate in Pre-Diabetics

Resistant starch is not digested by the body. Instead, it is fermented in the large intestine and has prebiotic qualities, which means it helps feed probiotics. A recent study suggests that adding resistant starch to a diet may help reduce markers of inflammation and heart rates in people with pre-diabetes.


Participants in the study included 68 overweight adults with pre-diabetes between the ages of 35 and 75. Over the course of 12 weeks, they were given either 45 grams per day of a resistant starch or the same amount of the rapidly digestible starch amylopectin. Ectopic fat depots, energy metabolism by respiratory chamber, and carbohydrate metabolism were measured at baseline and postintervention.


At the conclusion of the study, the researchers noted an average decrease in TNF-alpha levels of 2.1 picograms per mL in the resistant starch group. TNA-alpha is a marker of inflammation. They also noted improvements in heart rate, which decreased by 5 beats per minute. They did not, however, note any differences between the two groups in the areas of insulin secretion, insulin sensitivity, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, or other markers of inflammation.


Researchers from Pennington Biomedical Research Center led the study. It was published on July 12, 2018, in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.


Resistant starch can be found in cold cooked potatoes, pasta salad, rice, seeds, lentils, garlic and unprocessed whole grains. It can also be taken in supplement form.

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