Our PhD colleague Ana Rovalino Cordova told us some more about the limited starch bio-accessibility in legumes: what is the role of plant cell walls? during the FQD seminar.
Food structure plays an important role in digestibility. Is the food matrix the one which determines the bio-accessibility of nutrients in a product. The main focus was understanding how structure affects starch hydrolysis in legumes. Naturally, starch is located in a protein matrix and surrounded by a wall of non-starch polysaccharides. This entrapment is responsible for the low hydrolysis rate of starch during digestion. The importance of this finding relies on the fact that limiting starch hydrolysis is beneficial for our health since it gives a slow and more constant release of glucose to our blood stream (ideal situation specially for people with metabolic syndrome).