This Wonder Food is Great for Your Gut

It might seem an unlikely source of goodness for your gut, but the humble potato holds more benefits than you might realise and it’s all to do with the type of starch they contain.

In their raw state, potatoes contain type 3 resistant starch. If eaten hot, these high levels of resistant starch become active and once eaten, are broken down into glucose and absorbed by the body. If, however, the potatoes are left to cool and then eaten, the active starch reverts back to resistant starch. This is a process known as retrogradation and is key in explaining how they’re so beneficial for the health of your gut.

Resistant starch is so-called because it’s resistant to digestion, which means instead of being broken down by your body, it passes untouched through your small intestine and into your large intestine. Because it’s also a prebiotic, when it arrives there, it feeds the microbes that are responsible for the overall health of your gut. When the bacteria digest it, it’s then turned into short-chain fatty acids which are a great source of energy for the cells in your large intestine. Experts also believe resistant starch is effective reducing inflammation, meaning it could help with inflammatory gut conditions.

While potatoes are a quick and easy way to get plenty of resistant starch into your diet, other good sources include cashews and oats. Finally, if you want to up the ante on the general wellbeing of your gut, Workshop’s Probiotic + Prebiotic contains some of the most researched strains of probiotics for a complete healthy gut microbiome, as well as prebiotics which provide food for the living bacteria.