Fruit, Sugary Veggies & Safe Starches

Safe Carbs...from the PHD plan

Let's talk Plant Starches & Sugars, next!

Ok, so we covered how to add in watery Veggies to feel full, get great micronutrients & encourage better bile production.

Now let's get into the comforting deliciousness of Carbs...with Safe Starches next.

And we’ll talk about how Safe Starches are your Gut Lining, Joint, Brain Energy & yummy meal friends.

Plus, how you can use a daily “cycle” of Safe Starches to help set a healthful Daily Cortisol Rhythm and support Adrenal Health…which helps with:

  • hormone regulation,
  • electrolyte balance,
  • inflammation shut OFF at the right time,
  • good sleep & wakefulness,
  • blood sugar management,
  • body weight/metabolism,
  • and stress resilience.

Imagine the positive impact strengthening your daily cortisol rhythm & nurturing your Adrenal Health--by strategically (and painlessly) timing your Safe Starches--can have!

Excited to get into a FLOW with cycling Safe Carbs?? 🙂 

Let’s dive in…And first, you want to get in-the-know with how Plants store energy order to optimize your yummy, energizing Safe Starch & Fruit selections...

A bit more about Starches & Sugars

Ok and since it's so important in this Keto-crazed world to understand why it's crucial not to cut out all starchy carbs if you want to burn fat & feel energized...take a moment to get in the science-y know with Starches & sugars here:

Dr. Paul Jaminet writes in The Perfect Health Diet book that Plants store sugars in two ways: as starches and as sugars.

Starches digest completely to glucose (the “good carb”)

Sugars come in different forms, but the most prevalent is sucrose, which digests equally to glucose & fructose. And you do want a little fructose every day, in addition to glucose…and I'll share why!


Optimal glucose intake: So glucose is considered the “good carb” —the sugar that circulates in the blood & is used for lots of stuff…

And again, Dr. J calculated the body’s optimal glucose needs by measuring what the body creates during fasting (so smart, right?)…and he discovered that you can get to a very similar number by totaling the body’s uses for glucose (so cool) and that equals out to 160g or 640 calories per day.

And as I mentioned before, your liver can also make glucose from protein in a process called glycogenesis…but it’s taxing on your body, so it is much easier to just eat glucose in the first place…and it helps make your digestion & brain stronger. 🙂

Here’s what Glucose does in the body, aka why it's the "good Carb":

—Its combines with proteins to form molecules called glycoproteins…which are used to make the lining of the gut…plus tears, saliva & mucus (all important things)…helps lubricate joints & builds connective tissue

—it’s an alternative fuel that cells can burn, instead of fats

—and it’s a precursor for killing compounds (ROS, not rodents of unusual size, but reactive oxygen species) made by immune cells

So their main purpose has a lot to do with Gut, Immunity & Brain health, is my big take-away from this…plus well, pleasure & enjoyment with food too! 🙂

Optimal fructose intake: Fructose, which comes in fruit, sugary veggies & some of the safe only needed by our bodies in a relatively small amount…and actually our bodies send it to the liver where it gets converted to glucose and fat…so it makes much more sense to mainly eat glucose (and fat) in the first place.

Plus, in excess (think high fructose corn syrup), it can cross-combine with protein to make AGES that cause stiff joints and ageing skin (bleck) among other health problems.

However, fructose does benefit athletic performance for people who need a quick recovery from several activities on the same day or for endurance competitions…

AND the liver may manage glycemic control better when it has a small dose of fructose (which equates to less than 10 grams—which equals to 1 fruit SNACK--or 2 servings of vegetables with a meal), which helps improve the glycemic response to starchy meals, woot.

So benefits for most adults are realized by eating 15 - 25 grams of fructose per day—in the form of 3-8 grams of fructose per meal (as veggies), and 2-3 meals per day, plus up to several fruit snacks.

And the benefits of fructose end at 25 grams, or 100 calories, per day.

Safe Starches, yumm

Ok, so now that we’ve gotten super science-y with how Plants store sugars in 2 ways, and how you do want a little fructose each day…

And glucose is the main “good carb” that helps your body’s joints, mucus, gut lining, immune system, brain, ect…

Let’s get specific with how to do this with Safe Starches:

The best Safe Starches:

Ok, first may be wondering why The Perfect Health Diet authors called them "Safe Starches"...

Safe Starches are considered “safe” because they have minimal toxins after cooking: white rice, potato, taro, tapioca, sago, winter squashes, sweet potatoes & yams, plantains, and some others…

And the best rule of thumb to rock that fructose-glucose equation, if you're going for eating 30% Safe Carbs, is to eat:

—1 pound per day of safe starches (such as potatoes, yams, plantains, white rice, etc…)

--And then to optimize your cortisol rhythms, you would want to eat these Safe Starches in divided portions over the course of the day, like this:

1/4 cup Breakfast + 1/2 cup Lunch + 3/4 cup Dinner each day

I'll share more below too--but the reason you would "cycle" your Safe Starches into these 3 portions each day to help trigger that natural "morning coffee pot" high cortisol in the morning & low cortisol at night so you can sleep--FLOW of daily Cortisol.

You can use the portions & timing of your Safe Starches to help this FLOW by going lower Carb in the morning when you want Cortisol naturally to be high (low carb raises Cortisol)...and higher Carb in the evening, when you want Cortisol to be low (high carb drops Cortisol)...

And "cycling" your portions of Safe Starches between breakfast, lunch & dinner on the daily would indeed equal out to 30% of calories--the optimal amount of safe starches on the Burn Fat/Perfect Health Diet 30% Carb plan...

--When you choose the *best* Safe Starches to help your digestion (instead of hurt it)...and optimize your daily fructose & glucose with these Safe Starches...

--And "cycle" your Safe Starches by eating them in specific amounts in each meal over the course of the day to go with the amount of cortisol you would ideally want to have...

THIS is an awesome strategy to feel satisfied, comforted AND energized, all at the same time. Yay.

More about the best Safe Starches:

Here is a fabulous chart from The Perfect Health Diet book, The Drs. Jaminet arranged the Safe Starches:

“from low to high in fructose fraction—so pure starches are at the top, foods with more sugar are at the bottom.”

So if you’re looking to get lower with your Fructose that day—white rice would be a great safe starch to have with a meal (because it has no fructose)…and sweet potatoes are obviously higher.

The thing is though...tubers (potatoes & sweet potatoes, yams, taro) have a variety of micronutrients in them…so there are benefits to eating these daily & not just relying on white rice...

And one key strategy to get enough Potassium on the daily is to choose starchy tubers like potatoes & sweet potatoes (over white rice). Although white rice is a good source of Manganese, too--so there is benefit in getting in a variety of Safe Starches & rotating them for pleasure & Micronutrient optimization.

Meet some of the FABULOUS Safe Starches:

Sweet potatoes & yams: sweet potatoes come in the yummy colors & flavors of orange, gold, and purple…are they’re more nutrient-dense and less starchy than yams. Both sweet potatoes & yams are packed with fiber, vitamin C, and lots of other vitamins & minerals. These delicious root veggies are great baked, roasted as slices or fries, and cut length-wise as “toast.” You can make yummy breakfast Yam Mash, too. Sweet potatoes have a decent oxalate content, so if you are sensitive to oxalates, then you will probably do better with other kinds of Safe Starches, instead.

Potatoes: whether you go for baby red potatoes, purple heirlooms, or baking white ones... these root veggies are a great source of Potassium, fiber, vitamin C and many more vitamins & minerals. They're very filling and incredibly versatile…with baked potatoes, roasted potato cubes, fries, mashed potatoes, potatoes pancakes…the list goes on. The skin is where a good amount of nutrition lies, too.

Plantain: Bananas’ older, starchier cousin….rich in fiber, Vitamin C, potassium and magnesium. Green plantains make great baked plantain chips…while yellow plantains are yummy boiled, baked, or grilled….and black plantains are sweet and soft, and make for good pancake and dessert recipes, too.

Winter squashes include: acorn, butternut, spaghetti and pumpkin…all are classified as Starchy Carbs. Pumpkin has the highest fiber content of these winter squashes…and all are a handy substitute for potatoes in a meal. I really like acorn squash oatmeal and spaghetti squash pasta, myself.

Taro: Taro is similar to a sweet potato and makes good baked chips…delicious in soups & stews…and it’s used in Hawaiian & Asian baked goods often. It’s high in fiber, vitamins & minerals.

Tapioca & Sago are similar nutritionally, although from completely different plants. Tapioca is a starch extracted from the cassava root & Sago is a starch taken from the center of sago palm stems. Neither one has many vitamins & minerals to it, so it’s more of a starchy filler (kind of like white rice)…and tapioca or sago pearls are used in making pudding…and tapioca flour in baked goods & sago flour in breads.

Fermented Buckwheat: Buckwheat is a “psuedograin”…and when you take whole buckwheat groats & ferment them overnight…you can reduce their really high phytic acid content, making it then very well tolerated by most people…quite hearty, a complete protein, high in magnesium and copper, and you can make fermented buckwheat oatmeal and pancakes with it.

White Rice (even more about white rice below)…White Rice is low in fructose and it's the version of Rice where the hull has been removed (tumbled, not processed per se). The hull does contain micronutrients--but it also contains a variety of anti-nutrients that lock up these micronutrients & other micros eaten with the same meal, too. That's why White Rice is the best rice--it let's you absorb the Micronutrients you're eating, while being very easy on your digestion. Plus, it's a good source of the micronutrient Manganese, too!

Other Starches--when to consider:

Ok, so these Starches are not in The Perfect Health Diet book…but if you have relatively good digestion AND you have learned how to maximize your Micronutrients intake on the daily…you could consider adding these Other Starches into your meal rotation options…

The main challenge with these Other Starches is that they contain a significant amount of Phytic Acid, which can bind to micronutrients not only in the foods themselves but also to other foods within the same meal too…especially Iron, Calcium & Zinc.

Which does help explain why many people are deficient in these micronutrients--since these foods are pretty popular--especially in developed countries. An often-cited research study on the effects of Phytic Acid & non-traditional preparation of grains and legumes in developing countries found that:

"More than half of the world populations are affected by micronutrient malnutrition and one third of world’s population suffers from anemia and zinc deficiency, particularly in developing countries. Iron and zinc deficiencies are the major health problems worldwide. Phytic acid is the major storage form of phosphorous in cereals, legumes, oil seeds and nuts. Phytic acid is known as a food inhibitor which chelates micronutrient and prevents it to be bioavailabe for monogastric animals, including humans, because they lack enzyme phytase in their digestive tract. Several methods have been developed to reduce the phytic acid content in food and improve the nutritional value of cereal which becomes poor due to such antinutrient. These include genetic improvement as well as several pre-treatment methods such as fermentation, soaking, germination and enzymatic treatment of grains with phytase enzyme..."

There are some tricks to prepare these foods so that you can reduce much of the Phytic Acid found in lentils & beans, germinated brown rice (sprouted brown rice) and sprouted rolled oats. To get detailed directions on how to best do this, please see the Weston A. Price Foundation article that gets updated regularly—with the best way to prepare these foods to reduce this binding anti-nutrient, Phytic Acid.

I'll also include bean/lentil prep directions, sourced from this research article, in the Breakfast Recipe book too.

And essentially I do recommend getting started with the recommended Safe Starches instead…and focus on improving your digestion...and improving your Micronutrient intake...before relying on any of the Other Starches listed above.

So back to the big picture with daily servings of Safe Starches:

When you're going for 30% Safe Carbs, you want to go for three servings a day--spread out over Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner in a way to support good daily cortisol rhythm-- with these Safe Starches.

With 48% Safe Carbs (build muscle & lift weights if you're already Very Lean), you would aim for adding in another 1/2 - 3/4 cup of Safe Starches, stacking it to support daily cortisol flow too.

Personally, I LOVE these Safe Starches 'cause they have indeed strengthened my digestion & they make my meals really satisfying, comforting & delicious.

And don’t worry—there's still a way to eat more traditional “comforting/pleasure carbs”...using some safe starch tricks:

If you’re craving Baked Goods or Noodles:

Whole foods (not purified or processed foods) are def the best way to get your Carbs…but if you’re craving baked goods, pizza or pancakes, here is what the Jaminets recommend:

—Use the “safe starch” flour mix, which contains rice flour, potato starch & tapioca starch (see my pancake recipe in the Recipe Book or use Glutino flour mix for occasional treats)…Udi’s bread, Domino’s gluten-free pizza or cauliflower crust pizza

—Coconut Flour is free of phytic acid, and can be a great flour for baking too

--Rice noodles make great occasional pasta and noodle dishes (yummmm!) and rice crackers are quite tasty

—Plus, The Perfect Health Diet recommends only using sweeteners that digest into glucose…which includes rice syrup, tapioca syrup & dextrose powder


Meal Prep:

—Starches should be cooked gently—and eaten as part of a meal with vinegar/lemon or lime/pickled foods & veggies...for best glycemic control

What's up with White Rice?

Ok--so here’s why White Rice is the best Safe Starch grain that will work for almost everyone…

The Drs. Jaminet detail why White Rice is the only true Safe Starch grain...

First, Gliadin

First, because White Rice is the only grain or cereal grass that doesn't contain this type of protein called Gliadin (which sets off a yucky chain reaction in your Gut Lining and can cause Leaky Gut).

White Rice has had the husk, bran & germ removed (seemingly, that's where this Gliadin protein resides) Brown Rice, often touted as the healthier option in California Vegan restaurants :) actually not. Brown Rice (and other kinds of rice) is rice with the husk, bran & germ intact...

You want the husk-, bran- & germ-less version...and that's White Rice.

Because again there's a protein found in Gluten (and brown rice, cereal grasses & other grains)--that's a type of protein called Gliadin (not found in white rice—that’s why white rice is a safe starch)…

and Gliadin stimulates the release of a protein called Zonulin.

And this protein called Zonulin causes the tight junctures in the Gut Lining to open & close (discovered when researching cholera in 1995).

Zonulin is what causes the gut lining to open up it’s tight junctures & creates “leaky gut"...allowing what was supposed to stay Inside the digestive track to come OUT. ...Which activates your Immune System, causes inflammation, feeling poopy-bad, and lots of other problems in the body.

Oooh Zonulin is indeed the bad boy when it comes to wheat (and brown rice)!


Second, avoid leaky gut & it's complications of the newest research areas when it comes to Alzheimer's and dementia, is that these life-stealing diseases are potentially caused by brain infections.

New research is sharing that many types of these brain infections are created by the body attacking human proteins that look like invader proteins...and causing the brain to stack together amyloid-beta proteins (which is BAD STACKING for healthy brain processing). Eating wheat is one of the things that can set-off this reaction! Oh man!

Another vote for enjoying your Safe Starches.


Third, avoid Phytic Acid

The third reason why White Rice is the best Safe Starch because when the hull of the rice is removed (through a process of "tumbling," so it's not a "processed food")...this removes the mineral-binding Phytates.

Yes, the hull of the rice has many Micronutrients in it...

But most unfortunately, these micronutrients are BOUND up by Phytic Acid. And this Phytic Acid can also bind up OTHER Micronutrients in the same meal too (especially Iron, Calcium & Zinc). :0

Dr. Chris Masterjohn does eat sprouted brown rice but he also mentions that he has a genetic condition for High Iron (hemochromatosis)...and with eating some phytate-rich food presumably, he's able to keep his Iron levels in a manageable range WITHOUT doing quarterly phlebotomies/donating blood (best way to reduce high iron).

Plus, he mentions he's getting an extremely high amount of Micronutrients too over the course of the day...he has his Micros DIALED!! 🙂 And--he's getting more opportunities to get said Micronutrients because he eats a pretty big volume of food too since he trains weekly in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and lifts weights.

So to me that is saying something! As someone who's prone to Iron-Deficiency anemia--that's why I prefer White Rice and other Safe Starches, too. As I want my Iron...and my Micronutrients are hanging in there, but I wouldn't say I'm getting a huge surplus of them from the food I'm eating.

And I prefer (and recommend) focusing on getting your Micronutrients dialed with Safe Starches, veggies & fruit, too.

The fabulous news is the White Rice is a great Safe Starch's very easy to make a batch & refrigerate and reheat it to make incredible, gut-friendly Resistant Starch (see below)...

And you can get yummy crackers, noodles & flour made from White Rice to satisfy your noodle, pancake & cracker cravings. 

Sooo...that's why White Rice is a safe starch.


What about Arsenic?

There is some concern about the arsenic levels in white rice.

Dr. Paul Jaminet writes that organic white rice grown in California (but not other US states), jasmine rice from Thailand, and basmati rice from India and Pakistan are lowest in arsenic concentrations.

The reason why rice grown in other US states has a concerning amount of arsenic in it, is because those fields used to be planted with cotton, and farmers used a heavy amount of arsenic-based pesticides to control boll weevils, and now the arsenic remains in the soil.

You don't need to cut out White Rice (and white rice products like noodles) completely, but instead here are a few recommendations from Dr. Chris Kresser:

" a brand made in California like Lundberg; their California White Basmati Rice has only 1.3 to 1.6 ppb arsenic per serving (1/4 cup uncooked), well below the safe limit. In addition, rinsing the rice before cooking and boiling it in a high water-to-rice ratio can help reduce the arsenic content significantly."

So, be sure to *rinse your rice* before you cook it...and choose white rice from one of the locations listed above.


The power of Resistant Starch:

And finally, one of the best ways to have your Safe Starches is make them in an awesome Resistance Starch-producing way. And it involves using your refrigerator!

So first it’s key to know why Resistant Starch is such a thing:

Resistant starch is starch that escapes digestion in the small intestine and instead reaches the large intestine where it’s consumed or fermented by your gut microbiota in your colon.

Sounds gross, but that’s a really great thing.

Some types of resistant starch (RS1, RS2 and RS3) are fermented by the large intestinal microbiota, passing on health benefits through making these short-chain fatty acids, increasing bacterial mass, and feeding these fabulous butyrate-producing bacteria.

Butyrate has lots of benefits, including helping you feel more energized and increasing your Gut Health (which impacts many aspects of your health).

Hello, refrigerated Safe Starches!


Resistant Starch, I just can't sing your praises enough--for doing some wonderful things to improve our Gut function & health:

—feeds “good” bacteria in your colon that make butyrate (which helps re-build gut lining cells & helps you feel energized)…this is major benefit #1 & it's been shown to work for all people

improves insulin sensitivity, even in type 2 diabetes!

reduces fasting blood sugar & increases your ability to feel FULL

—may help treat SIBO by flushing out bad bacteria 

--and seemingly improves magnesium absorption

Ok--sounds like something you should be taking advantage of (if you're not already), right?

Resistant Starch *rocks* for Gut Health:

Best way to create Resistant Starch:

Best way to make your Safe Starches higher in Resistant Starch is to make them in batches, store them in the refrigerator (it takes about 24 hours to make resistant starch)—and then re-heat gently with a little added Good Fat when you’re ready to eat your meal…and Yummy!

And happy digestion. 🙂

My favorite ways to make Resistant Starch includes Step One: dicing & oven-roasting potatoes...or making a batch of white rice...

And then Step Two: refrigerating the leftovers to make resistant starch leftovers for the next day!)...

Plus it's nice to know that you can gently re-heat your refrigerated Safe Starches...and you won't destroy the fabulous Resistant Starch molecular bonds. No need to eat pre-refrigerated Resistant Starches COLD! (yay).

Step Three: Gently re-heat and enjoy.

Dr. Paul Jaminet also shares that you can also take a little Potato Starch before your first meal. This is a convenient way to start your day with Resistant Starch! 

Just be sure to start slowly with a low amount (1/2 teaspoon) and slowly increase the amount (and Bob's Red Mill is a good Potato Starch brand)…

Although using Potato Starch isn’t necessary at all. Just follow the method above ^^^^ (batch cook, refrigerate & reheat), works great especially for ready-to-go BREAKFAST and LUNCH safe starches. 

Let's "Daily Cycle" Safe support good Adrenal Health, good Sleep & burning fat

When Dr. Alan Christianson, author of The Adrenal Reset Diet, was researching daily cortisol fluctuations...

And how the modern stressors of daily life & certain food choices can cause cortisol to spike at un-ideal times, leading to belly fat gain & poor sleep…

Something that really caught his attention was that low blood sugar leads to high cortisol…and that high blood sugar leads to lower cortisol.


He began to wonder—could he use Carbs to help reset daily Cortisol rhythms--and at the same time, help people burn belly fat?

He started off by experimenting on himself—measuring his glucose levels hourly and his cortisol levels with a variety of tests, most frequently measuring his salivary cortisol levels every 4 hours.

He found that eating High Carb for breakfast and Low Carb at night actually reversed his daily cortisol rhythm (it’s supposed to be naturally high in the morning, like an “internal coffee pot” and then taper down over the course of the day, so that you can relax and sleep well at night).

And then when he reversed this and went Lower Carb in the morning and Higher Carb at night, he was able to flip this again back to a solid healthy cortisol rhythm.

And he explains why this is SO important:

“What does better cortisol metabolism mean? It means less belly fat, better energy, less anxiety, better depth of sleep, a healthier immune system, and a longer life.”

So cool!

After trying out this experiment with himself--and then individual patients with similar success—he next went big and conducted a 30 day formal study…and here's how he summarized the Results:

“By the end of the [30 day] study forty-two participants had completed…Their average age was 44, and 83 percent were female. Over the course of the month, their results were nothing short of remarkable. The greatest amount of weight lost was 18.2 pounds, while the average was just over 9 pounds. Only two participants did not lose weight, but even they saw a reduction in the percentage of body fat. Changes in waist measurements were also dramatic. Over half of the participants lost over 2 inches around their waist. Several lost over 4 inches!

Changes in adrenal function from the diet were also clear. By measuring daily cortisol rhythms, we compared how close their adrenal function was to ideal, both before and after the study…The study showed that at all times of the day the diet moved cortisol levels closer to their ideal amounts. The average participant saw a correction of his or her whole day’s cortisol metabolism by over 50 percent with diet.”

And he notes that this cortisol rhythm resent began within just one day of doing the “daily carb cycling” and that a solid rhythm was developed after 30 days.

So neat, right?

I will tell you that I also experienced similar results with Daily Safe Carb Cycling as described, too. I started sleeping better right away and I did lose some belly fat that had been hanging on for dear life, after several weeks of doing this. Also, I was only dancing 1x a week at this point to teach a class & a little daily walking, because I had a tender ankle that I was trying to (supposed to be completely) “rest.”

Dr. Alan Christianson notes that the time he published his book, he was only able to find one other study that used a daily cycle of Carbs to modulate daily cortisol rhythms…and I have to mention this study was a success, too.

All right—so hopefully Dr. Alan Christianson and I have both inspired you to give this “Daily Safe Carbs Cycling” a go. I do recommend reading his book (I just also recommend Safe Carbs, maximizing your Micros & egg yolks/choline to be a good fat-burner & feel energized too).

How to Daily Safe Carb CYCLE:

Safe Starches are considered “safe” because they have minimal toxins after cooking: white rice, potato, taro, tapioca, sago, winter squashes, sweet potatoes & yams, plantains, and some others…

And the best rule of thumb to rock that fructose-glucose equation, if you're going for eating 30% Safe Carbs, is to eat:

—1 pound per day of safe starches (such as potatoes, yams, plantains, white rice, etc…)

--And then to optimize your cortisol rhythms, you would want to eat these Safe Starches in divided portions over the course of the day, like this:

1/4 cup Breakfast + 1/2 cup Lunch + 3/4 cup Dinner each day

I went into greater detail above--and essentially, the reason you would "cycle" your Safe Starches into these 3 portions each day is to help trigger that natural "morning coffee pot" high cortisol in the morning & low cortisol at night so you can sleep.

You can use the portions & timing of your Safe Starches to help this FLOW by going lower Carb in the morning when you want Cortisol naturally to be high (low carb raises Cortisol)...and higher Carb in the evening, when you want Cortisol to be low (high carb drops Cortisol)...

And "cycling" your portions of Safe Starches between breakfast, lunch & dinner on the daily would indeed equal out to 30% of calories--the optimal amount of safe starches on the Burn Fat/Perfect Health Diet 30% Carb plan...

Recommended Tool:

I highly recommend getting a glass 1 cup measuring tool. This makes actually seeing what 1/4 cup, 1/2 cup, and 3/4 cup actually looks like.

glass measuring cup--a very helpful tool

I usually only measure Safe Carbs like rice, oven-roasted potatoes…stuff like that. If I have a baked potato or sweet potato for dinner—that’s usually 3/4 cup (I don’t shove the sweet potato in my glass measuring cup :))

But I do find using a measuring cup super helpful for other Safe Starches—especially for Breakfast and Dinner.

Why this helps regulate daily Cortisol Rhythm & supports Adrenal Health in a nutshell:

Low carbs—raise cortisol

High Carbs—drop cortisol

This research ^^^ led Dr. Alan Christianson to create the idea of daily carb cycling:

--Having a small amount of Safe Carbs with Breakfast allows your cortisol to naturally spike (since a low carb situation raises cortisol)..and it allows your insulin to stay at a natural morning low, too.

--Higher Carbs with dinner helps lower cortisol & helps you sleep deeply at night.


To optimize your cortisol rhythms, you would want to eat these Safe Starches in divided portions over the course of the day, like this:

1/4 cup Breakfast + 1/2 cup Lunch + 3/4 cup Dinner each day

Lose Weight…Feel Great

with Moderate Safe Carbs--on a daily cycle--NOT by going Very Low Carb

And again—as weird as it might sound…The Perfect Health Diet research authors detail that you don’t want to cut Safe Carbs OR Protein to lose weight…bc this carb intake recommendation is actually based on Brain Size, and not body size…truly, fascinating!!

I def experienced this first hand! And they have a wealth of user-experience testimonials to prove this too…you can def lose weight, and do it while feeling satisfied with food…with this way of eating.

The Drs. Jaminet assert that if you go too low carb—it can be really hard on your joints, your gut health, and your physical and brain energy.

And Dr. Alan Christianson also highlights that Going Very Low Carb raises cortisol & also raises blood sugar…which can cause very poor sleep and hurt your thyroid function, too.

It’s more about enjoying your Safe Carbs—and if you can get into this daily cycle with them—you may be very impressed with the results!


Getting about 20%-25% of calories as safe starches (30% of calories as carbs) is optimal for good energy & gut health. It’s best to cook them in a batch and save them in the refrigerator until meal time, when you can gently re-heat them (they will keep their resistant starch structure when you re-heat with a temperature of 130 degrees or less (low heat)--so no need to eat them cold!).

This is both convenient and generates more resistant starch (which is GREAT for gut health, blood sugar regulation & improving digestion!).

Ok, so let’s dig in a little more with HOW to enjoy eating these Safe Starches & this Moderate-Carb diet:

**Safe Starches should be eaten with Vinegar/Lemon/Lime/Pickled Foods & Vegetables...with minimize their blood sugar response. Safe starches are meal foods, not snack foods.

****Plus Veggies (go for eating a variety) with meals to taste!


The Safe Starches are one of the main thing you want to focus on measuring and understanding as you first get started with this way of eating/thinking about food.

I personally started with using a 1 cup glass measuring measure cooked, cooled & reheated potatoes, white rice...

And go for optimizing your cortisol eating these Safe Starches in divided portions over the course of the day, like this:

1/4 cup Breakfast + 1/2 cup Lunch + 3/4 cup Dinner each day

More about Blood Glucose Levels:

Ok, so having good blood glucose levels is very important…and eating Safe Starches is a way to help stabilize glucose levels, even for diabetics, Dr. Jaminet asserts...

The ideal situation with Blood Glucose, is that it mainly stays in a stable range, from 85 to 105 milligrams per deciliter…AND After eating Carbs, your blood glucose levels should not rise higher than 140 milligrams per deciliter and should return to normal in a few hours. The Healthiest levels are when both fasting & two-hour post meal blood glucose is between 81 and 108 milligrams per deciliter.

The best way to plan for Glycemic control is to eat low-glycemic fruits & veggies, with a Glycemic Index (GI) of 55 or less…and most fruits and veggies fall into this category (woot) so no further action is needed on your part with Fruits & Veggies.

Fruits can be eaten at any time...but Starchy Carbs are best eaten as part of a MEAL in order to significantly reduce the glycemic response of safe starches. 

So, when it comes to Starchy Carbs…there are a few tips & tricks you need to employ to reduce the GI of Starchy Foods with these tricks:

—Cook them gently (cook with water as opposed to baking, cuts the GI in half and gets it to 50, instead of 100!)

—Avoid commercially processed foods that are made at high temperatures for quick execution…virtually doubles the GI of these foods!

—Eat starches with Veggies (fiber reduces the GI of accompanying Starch)

—Eat starches with acids, especially Vinegar (like 1 tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar in a little water before a meal can significantly cut the glycemic response...very helpful for Breakfast & Lunch meals, to help you not feel sleepy after eating!)...or Lemon or Lime...or Pickled Foods...which significantly reduces the GI of starches, woot

--3-5 grams of glycine before a meal helps stabilize your blood sugar after the meal, and 15 grams a day every day has been shown to improve long-term blood sugar stability in Type 2 Diabetes (this recommendation is def not a substitute for one-on-one medical care and attention…but it can be a safe strategy to help manage blood sugar stability). More details about this in the COLLAGEN section.

—When you cook, cool & reheat potatoes & rice…this dramatically increases the amount of Resistant Starch in them…which is *fan-tastic* for glycemic control, gut health & weight-loss…more about the power of Resistant Starches in the above section…

So you want to cook starches gently (boil or instant pot with water)…and enjoy as part of a MEAL with veggies & an acidic sauce...and/or taking some Collagen/glycine before a meal…and cooked, cooled & gently reheated potatoes & rice  are an excellent way to get Resistant Starch & reduce the GI of these foods…

You will be rocking it!


Plus—good ol’ exercise has been shown to be excellent for clearing insulin…so a brisk walk before or after dinner or lunch can really go well (and using my fitness plan, too! :))

Ok--last but not least...let's talk Fruit, as the last part of these Safe Carbs, next...