Solnul study validates potato resistant starch for histamine reduction, gut health boost

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

© Rasi Bhadramani / Getty Images
© Rasi Bhadramani / Getty Images

Related tags Resistant starch Prebiotics Gut health microbiome leaky gut

Consuming resistant starch from potato may reduce levels of histamine, an inflammatory amino acid, and improve the integrity of the gut barrier, says a new metabolomics study from Canada.

Writing in the Journal of Functional Foods​, scientists report that metabolomic analysis of samples from people consuming 3.5 grams per day of resistant starch (Solnul) showed that not only were histamine levels decreased, but there was also a reduction in certain histamine-secreting gut bacteria.

Resistant starch supplementation was also associated with an improvement in gut permeability, and a reduction in leaky gut. Leaky gut is as it sounds: An undesirable situation when toxic components can pass from the gut lumen into the blood.

“Histamine sensitivity was thought to be due to our bodies’ inability to break down histamine and stop the inflammatory response. Our findings connect changes in histamine to reductions in histamine-producing bacteria and improvements in gut barrier function via Solnul supplementation using a combination of microbiome and metabolomic data,” said Dr Jason Bush, chief scientific officer at Canada-based MSP Starch Products and lead author on the new study.


The study used the Solnul-branded resistant starch from potatoes. The ingredient was developed by MSP, the largest potato starch producer in Canada. The company co-funded the new study, along with Canadian Agricultural Partnership-AgAction Manitoba.

The product has previously been shown to significantly increases the abundance of Bifidobacterium​. As previously reported by NutraIngredients-USA​, a low dose clinical study supported the efficacy of a 3.5 grams dose.

The brand name of Solnul is derived from the Latin name for potato, Solanum tuberosum​, and granule. The ingredient labels as prebiotic dietary fiber and is certified FODMAP Friendly, Gluten-Free, Glyphosate Residue Free, Non-GMO Project Verified and is a member of the Upcycled Food Association.

Study details

The new study was a post hoc exploratory metabolomic analysis of samples from a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled three arm study with 48 healthy people. The participants, all aged between 18 and 69, were randomly assigned to receive either 3.5 grams of Solnul or placebo for four weeks.

While histamine levels were significantly reduced after Solnul supplementation, the researchers found that histamine-degrading enzyme products were unaffected. The resistant starch also reduced histamine-secreting Haemophilus​ and Lactobacillus​, said Dr Bush and his co-workers.

In addition, resistant starch also reduced metabolites associated with intestinal permeability, such as 5-hydroxylysine, acetylspermidine, and short- and medium-chain carnitines ratios, “suggesting decreased serum histamine might be related to enhanced gut barrier function”, they wrote.

“Taken together, our findings demonstrate the value of metabolomic studies on dietary supplement ingredients and support the importance of supplementing the diet with [resistant potato starch],” they concluded.


Metabolomics is the large-scale study of small molecules within cells, biofluids, tissues, or organisms, commonly known as metabolites. This particular study looked at serum metabolites, offering a snapshot of the physiological pathways of an organism.

“This type of research is particularly exciting for us as few companies are using metabolomics to substantiate claims for their ingredients” said Jason Leibert, chief growth officer at MSP “These cutting-edge structure/function claims will give our commercial partners a competitive advantage and support the health goals consumers are seeking.”

According to a press release from the company, the structure/function claims arising from this dataset include, ‘enhances gut barrier function’, ‘reduces histamine sensitivity’ or ‘significantly decreases collagen breakdown metabolites, which may help to support collagen integrity’.

Source: Journal of Functional Foods
Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1016/j.jff.2023.105740
“Resistant potato starch supplementation reduces serum histamine levels in healthy adults with links to attenuated intestinal permeability”
Authors: J.R. Bush et al.

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