According to Nell Stephenson of Paleoista, It’s So Simple. If You’re Not Moving, You Don’t Need Starch:
Beyond that, from a very simplistic point of view, if you’re not someone who is engaged in long endurance activity, not only do you simply do not need to ‘eat starch with every meal’, you don’t need to eat starch at all. Further, if you’re someone who is not at their ideal, healthy weight, and you are not engaged in long endurance activity, you really don’t need to be eating starch.
Later in the post, she notes that she really means the “starch found in all legumes and beans that many of us grew up thinking were an important part of every meal.”
What someone “needs” in their diet is not just about the underlying metabolic processes. At the risk of repeating myself (or of repeating Dr. Yoni Freedhoff), I think Yoni is spot on:
It’s about living the healthiest life that you can enjoy, not the healthiest life that you can tolerate, because if your life is simply tolerable, you’re not likely to keep living that way. To take an extreme example, while becoming a teetotaling, vegan, shut-in, marathon runner might well help you to manage your weight, is that a life you’d be willing, or even able, to live with forever?
This is why despite still needing to lose weight (and hardly being an endurance athlete), I eat what I call moderate carb and include starch at both lunch and dinner.
And before you can say, “well Beth, you’re lucky, you’re clearly not metabolically deranged,” let me say I am (or at least was) the poster child for met syn … which included high blood pressure, very high BMI, and a starting high fasting insulin of 24. For me, avoiding starch is treating the symptom, not the problem.
So if going low-carb works for you, by all means keep doing it! But if you’re like me, if the thought of not having starch during your weight loss efforts is going to cause more problems wrt consistency (thanks again Yoni!) than it solves, then relax and include starch. You can absolutely lose weight with starch in your diet … I have!
But be honest, if adding starch causes problems (e.g., portions start creeping up or kicks in the WTF effect), then you’ll want to adjust.
Note: As someone following an ancestral approach, I generally get my starch from veggies, fruits, and white rice (see PHD).