Long Chain Carbohydrates


Continuing the discussion from Effects of Soylent on Diabetics:

Went looking for low GI maltodextrins and came across this article about waxy maize starch and how it works in the digestive system, and why it has a lower GI than dextrose and maltodextrin. (I know that the GI measurements are controversial, but it seems like a good place to start.)

Anyone care to read this and comment? I have seen several people looking for a slower digesting alternative to maltodextrin, but the alternatives seem to have issues - like Isomaltulose affecting the liver because of the fructose in it. I’d be interested in a critique of waxy maize. Alternatively, I found another article about another product, waxy potato starch. The article itself doesn’t discuss digestion, so much as it does the commercial applications of the new starch, but it mentions that it’s a comparable replacement to waxy maize, and therefore, possibly an alternative to a corn product for people who have issues with corn.


I noticed that TrueNutrition just added Potato Starch Carbohydrate to their available products, which I’m definitely interested in testing.

Any additional findings in regards to either Waxy Maize or Potato Starch? It seems like a mix of maltodextrin and either of the former would be ideal.


I had potato starch in my recipe for the longest time. However, I recently chose to remove it because I feel it goes against the purpose of soylent. Raw potato starch has poor digestibility, just like any other starch. Though there is little information about its exact digestibility, I read two papers (sorry, I don’t have the sources right now) that pointed to a digestibility of about 37%-45%. This was way too low for me. I mean who wants to eat more than double the starch?

Of course, you could always cook it, in which case the digestibility increases to virtually 100%. The issue with this approach is that you either must cook it each time before you are going to eat/drink soylent, or you could store it. Store probably appears to be the best option for most people. Once again though, we arrive at a barrier. Once the heat and water are removed, the amylose and amylopectin molecules begin to realign themselves into a lattice. This has a very negligible effect at first. After a few days though, this progressive realignment begins to have a serious effect on digestibility. The starch begins forming resistant starch and dextrins. This may seem good if used as a supplemental carb source. On the other hand, if you plan to get a decent percent of your calories from precooked potato starch, you must eat very large amounts or compromise your nutrition.

Also, potato starch acts like corn starch only with more gelatinization power. It is used to create a very viscous gel when heated in water. Therefore, you must store precooked starch as a thick gel in the fridge. This is naturally more difficult to mix into your soylent than a powder. Unfortunately, though it has many good properties, I believe potato starch is more trouble than it is worth.


Actually, I’m already cooking my oat powder (along with my glucose source, fiber & soy lecithin for consistency), so I’m in that boat already. Wouldn’t be as much trouble to just add the potato starch in there, too.

This said, wouldn’t cooking the potato starch then increase its rate of intake, essentially defeating the purpose of a slow-uptake calorie source?