Two meals which differed greatly in resistant starch (RS) concentration, but otherwise had similar macronutrient composition (including nonstarch polysaccharides), were fed for breakfast to five subjects with ileostomies. The high-RS meal included bread made from high-amylose maize, uncooked green banana flour, and coarsely ground uncooked wheat. The low-RS meal contained bread made from low-amylose maize, cooked green banana flour, and cooked wheat. The effluent produced over 14 h was analyzed for the total amount of starch escaping digestion. In the low-RS meal 51.8 +/- 6.2 g (mean +/- SD) starch was consumed and 2.4 +/- 0.6 g recovered in the effluent, while for the high-RS meal a total of 52.7 +/- 8.8 g starch was fed and 19.9 +/- 5.2 g recovered in the effluent. The ileostomy results provided additional validation of an in vitro resistant starch assay. Scanning electron micrographs of effluent from one subject who consumed the high-amylose bread revealed that many intact starch granules escaped digestion in the small intestine.