No typo here. There is actually a carb that slims you down!
We all know the carbs to enjoy in moderation; yes, we're looking at you, (tasty, tasty) chocolate brownie.
But did you know there are certain types of carbohydrates that actually help our bodies combat fat and maintain a healthy weight when eaten regularly? We kid you not. All hail resistant starch!
The sneaky fat-fighter
Found naturally in bananas, oats, lentils, cooled-down cooked potatoes, and a range of other foods, resistant starch is a sneaky sort of fellow.
Compared to other types of carbohydrates, which are digested quickly (white pasta, baked treats) or slowly (beans, long-grain brown rice), resistant starch actually passes through the small intestine without being digested.
It changes the order in which the body uses food as energy, and puts fat at the top of its list to burn (baby, burn, take that, fat!).
In research published by the Journal Of Nutrition And Metabolism, Australian scientist Dr Janine Higgins explained, "This effect over time could cause an increase in lean body mass and a decrease in fat stores".
"This increase in lean body mass could help reduce the risk of certain chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease, and could have a positive effect on your body shape.”
Resistant starch is such a little champ that it's often likened to fibre (you get from fresh fruit and vegies), which, as we know, is a key component to a healthy diet. Carbs (the good ones) will also fill you up and satiate your appetite, speed up your metabolism, give you the energy to exercise longer, and, as the brain’s favourite source of food, will actually help to lift your spirits.
What to eat
Ideally, we should be consuming around 20 grams of resistant starch each day (most women are only having 3-7 grams), so try to add at least a few of these sources to your diet on a daily basis:
- Slightly unripened bananas
- Wholegrain bread
- Hi-Maize corn starch
- Cooking and cooling food can raise resistant starch levels, so try cold pasta, potatoes and rice (sushi!)