Amylose is a type of resistant starch that is found in many foods. It is one of the two carbohydrates that combine to form starch. If food has a higher amylose content, it is digested differently. Instead of being digested normally in the small intestine, it is fermented in the stomach by healthy bacteria. Its molecular structure is long and linear chains of glucose units. It is also used as a thickening agent by chefs in a variety of recipes. It is found mainly in whole foods, but can also be in processed foods as well.
Amylose is a type of polysaccharide, which are a group of molecules that make up complex carbohydrates. The three primary carbs that we associate with nutrition are starch, glycogen, and cellulose. Glycogen and starch are responsible for helping the body store energy. Starches found in food help with short-term storage while the body makes glycogen for long-term energy.
There are several foods you are most likely already eating that have plenty of Amylose in them. These foods are potatoes, rice, corn, and wheat. Large amounts are also found in your everyday cereals or from sources you may not always eat like a green banana. Lentils, barley, and many types of bread are also a great source of this starch.
There are a few conditions such as obesity, treatment of mold sickness, and insulin resistant diabetes that may require a doctor to suggest a no amylose diet. Amylose foods have been said to have a large number of sugars that can have negative impacts on these conditions, mainly because of its counterpart amylopectin. It differs from traditional low carb diets in that it allows most fruits to be eaten other than bananas.
If you need to follow a low or no amylose diet, there are plenty of foods available to choose from. Lean meats are top on the list for a protein source. Bananas have a high amylose content, so they are out, but other fruits are fine. As for vegetables a good rule is to stay away from anything that grows underground such as potatoes. Any foods with added sugars and corn syrup are definitely out.
Amylopectin is a type of carbohydrate (polysaccharide) that is water soluble and found in plant material. It is the second part necessary in binding with amylose to form starch. Amylopectin is much different from amylose, however. It is not used for a gel substance and isn't usable as a thickener. Amylopectin is digested in the body a lot easier than amylose and therefore has been linked to spiking blood sugar. It also has several more branches and a much higher glycemic index.
Amylose and amylopectin are two of the types of starch found in rice. Rice with a high amount of amylose tends to be less sticky and is fluffy. The glycemic index of rice high in amylose, especially when cooked and cooled, is often quite low. It is recommended as a healthy way for people with diabetes to add rice to their diets.
Amylase is a substance that is made in the pancreas and the glands of your mouth and throat. It is a necessary substance to achieve proper digestion as it helps turn carbs and starches into sugars. Often a test on amylase production is the first step in determining if the pancreas is functioning properly.
There are several health benefits linked to the consumption of amylose. A balanced mix of several groups of molecules helps maintain a healthy digestive system and amylose is one of them. It has been credited with controlling weight as well since not all of the calories from this starch are digested. It also helps reduce chances of becoming constipated. Amylose has been associated with controlling blood sugar and making people feel more satisfied.
Amylose content in foods can actually change from raw to cooked versions of the same food. It can also change from unripe versions to ripe like in bananas for example. The amylose content in a green banana is much higher than that of a ripened banana. Many starchy vegetables like sweet potatoes will lose amylose content the longer they are cooked.
Adding more amylose to your diet to reap the health benefits is an easy thing to do. Some products can be found at most local markets called Hi-maize resistant starch or resistant cornstarch. This starch can be added to casseroles, smoothies, and sauces. It can help double the amount of amylose that you take in from food sources alone, therefore increasing the health benefits.
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