Is Rice Healthy? Is Rice Good for Weight Loss?


is rice healthy

Is Rice Healthy? Can you eat rice and still lose weight?  This is most common question that arises when starting a diet. While talking of weight loss we hear so many suggestions – eat this and eat that. But have you noticed that in the midst of the high fiber daliya (wheat porridge) and oats, and high protein sprouts and almonds, we often neglect the items that we consume on a daily basis like rice. In the quest for weight loss, rice is underestimated due to its high carb content. Let us find an answer to this niggling question , “Is rice healthy ?”

Is Rice Healthy?

Rice is a staple food in South and East India. All types of rice can be categorized under two basic categories:

Brown rice – It  is produced by removing the hull (outermost layer) from the rice kernel. This process does very little or no damage  to the nutritional value of the rice and avoids unnecessary loss of nutrients that further processing may cause.

White rice –  When brown rice is completely  milled and polished it converts into white rice. The processing extends the shelf life of rice but results in loss of many nutrients like dietary fiber, minerals (iron, manganese, zinc, selenium and phosphorus), vitamins (B vitamins including vitamin B3, B6 and folic acid),  and essential fatty acids.

Is Rice Healthy? What to choose – Brown or white rice ?

Well, definitely not the white rice. White rice is high in carbs and low in fiber, Hence it is easier to digest than whole grain breads or brown rice. It converts starch into glucose faster. This raises the  sugar levels in blood rapidly contributing to hyper glycemia in diabetics. It may also lead to  weight gain and obesity.

On the other hand, Brown rice  is a good source of fiber, minerals like  magnesium, zinc, iron, and B vitamins, while a moderate source of protein. Rice bran (fiber in brown rice) and rice bran oil (oil in brown rice) can help reduce your blood cholesterol levels.So, if you ask me, is rice healthy or unhealthy, well I will ask you to replace white rice with brown rice, you can supplement your weight loss efforts , reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes and hyper-cholesterolemia and improve your overall health.

The resistant starch theory

In simple terms resistant starch is the starch present in food but becomes unavailable to body after digestion (It will not be broken down to glucose). It means it will not be absorbed by the body and act like a fiber . The starch in the rice can be converted to resistant starch.

Converting the starch in rice into resistant starch

– Cook rice in excess water in a microwave or an iron vessel.

– Discard the excess water after cooking.

– Cool the cooked rice and reheat in the Microwave.

– Let it cool down and reheat again before eating.

when you cool and reheat the cooked rice, its starch undergoes modification in its chemical bonding structure, thus becoming unavailable for digestion. this starch acts like a fiber, attaches itself to the unhealthy fat and gets excreted as it is without imparting the carbs to you. so now you can enjoy eating your rice without having to worry about its starch.

Whether the question ” is rice healthy ?” bothers you or not, consider making a few changes. If you are a rice fan, make sure you couple your white rice with a high fiber dish. For eg , have your white rice with vegetable raita, or mix vegetable dal, or  sambar. Or simply make a vegetable pulao. Always eat it in a limited quantity.

All the macro nutrients whether  protein, fat or carbs  play an important role in the functions of body. You can’t simply cut any one of them completely and expect to be healthy. The key lies in eating everything in moderation. Excess of any one of these nutrient may corrupt the normal functionality. So stop worrying about whether is rice healthy?  And give attention to the quantity consumption of it. Avoid making mistakes while on diet.  Here are the 10 common mistakes that dieters generally make.

Image : Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos


  1. nilima says

    Hii payel i am 30years. My waight is 80 kg . I want loos my waight. But I can’t leave rice. Pls sujest me the quantities of raice.

  2. Padma says

    Hi Payal,

    Im 24 years old and my weight is 63 kgs. I want to lose 5 kgs. But whenver I try to lose weight, my face becomes droopy. Are there any ways to lose weight in body alone with my chubby cheeks.

  3. Khushboo says

    actually I don’t like to eat fruits and veggies very much
    so I had 2 apples and lots of water on 1st day I want to ask that
    this will not effect my body?

    Can I have boiled yellow corn on 2nd day?

  4. Namrata says

    Hi Payal,

    Your website is great. It is having lot of information that is really halpful.

    I am 41 years old IT professional. I am a rice lover but well within the range of BMI index.
    However I am always worried for my Belly Fat. Please provide some tips to reduce the same.

  5. Swapnali says

    i am 22 years old my weight is 65 kg. i want to reduce 10 kg , what should i do? ? please suggest me some diet or exercise .

  6. sridhar says

    Does starch refer to the white thick portion that is eliminated after boiling ? I am not ok when it comes to that white portion of the starch, my body is used to rice that is there after removing the starch – that i take it very limited and eat a lot of rotis is that fine

  7. atal says

    i am 34 yrs old. my height is 5 feet 6 enchs. i am diabetic peasants with stone problems my regular diet chart provided.

  8. varsha says

    Hey, I am 22 yrs old and 5 feet 8 inches tall.I weigh 80kgs and want to be fit and healthy and I stay in hostel.could you suggest me some long term healthy diet rules that I can follow and also I can’t avoid rice as its the main food menu for lunch and dinner.and what should be my BMI in order to be healthy.would like to know the weight range. Thank you

    • says

      Hi Varsha ,

      inspired by your question, i am writing a full article on how people can lose weight while staying in a hostel and eating in a mess ..i have myself stayed in a hostel for 8 long years and i know how difficult it is to manage health there]. please subscribe to our RSS feed to get a notification when this article is up .. i would cover the rice part as well.

  9. Anurag says

    Hi payal, im from kerela , im 20 year old amd my weight is 110kg, height -180cm. I nedd to reduce my body weight inorder to improve my health and also body flexibility. I workout 1 hr in jim and this is the only thing i do for weight reduction. I know only workout in jim will not respod faster. So please sugfest me a perfect diet whic i can follow daily and pls note that im from kerela. Suggest me a diet which helps me to reduce my body weight to 80 kg. Plese reply me im in a stage losing my self confidence due to the overweight.

  10. Abi says

    Hi there,
    I am a 13 year old, who is 67kg and I want to lose 10kg in about 4 months. I’m thinking of dieting and exercising an hour for 3-4 days a week ( having a day break). Do you think my exercising routine is healthy.
    Thank you for you support.
    Love Abi xoxo

    • says

      Hi Abi ,

      your plan is perfect .. just that exercise for minimum 5 days a week. you are too young to be dieting .. just eat right food and avoid binging on fried snacks and unhealthy food

  11. Parul says


    I am getting married next month. And i have joined gym but my weight was not reducing rather i get very tired. I have thyroid as well with which my weight is not increasing but itis stagnant. I weight 90kgs and want to reduce atleast 10kg in a month. Though i have started having a healthy diet. Being a rice eater i have shifted to brown rice, egg white, corn flex, multi grain bread, soup . But still nothing is effecting .

    Plz suggest anythinh

  12. dev says

    i m 21 yrs old female,my height is 5ft, 5inches and i weigh 74 kgs,i decided to reduce my weight by using tread mill 30 mins,cycling for 20 mins , twice a day……..also i wish to have 2 carrots,1 pomegranet or other fruits,veggies for breakfast,usual lunch with small quantity of rice with enough veggies and fruits,green tea,veggies for the remaining day……………..suggest me weather this schedule is correct or i must change!!!!!!!!!!!!!! thanks a lot:-)

    • says

      Hi Dev ,

      the items you have mentioned are all correct , make sure you place your meals properly every 2-3 hoyurs . also exercises are right. I am sure this would help.

      All the best !

  13. shwetha says

    hi payal.
    I am shwetha 27 yr. my weight is 68 and 155 cm height. i suffer from hypothyroid and pcod . I need to reduce weight. I am a hyderabadii with andhra food that include rice. please suggest me. I am taking tablets for both thyroid and pcod. I excersise for 5 days in gym.

    • says

      Hi Shwetha,

      Thank you for reading at Dietburrp. Try changing you r food pattern a bit , i know it will be hard to go off rice , but changing pattern will help you induce weight loss. You can also try following the 1200 calorie diet charts on our website. Alot of readers have benefitted and lost upto 15 kgs in 2 months using these plans . I am sure you would benefit too . have you read the tips about hypothyroidism and pcod on our website ? please read them , i am sure you will find some useful tips.

      • shwetha says

        thank u so much for your advice. How can i get a personalised diet chat from u. what to eat before workout and after work out.
        my routine starts with a cup of milk at 8
        break fast at 10( idli/ dosa/ poha)
        lunch at 1.30 ( 2 chapatti and curd rice
        tea at 4
        dinner at 8( chapatti n curd rice ).
        i workout in the evening between 5 to 7
        i even substituted sugar with honey
        no deep fries

  14. sumathy says

    hi payal, im 45 year old my weight was 74 kg at last month. i follow ur suggestion and i loss 3 kg weight with in month. thanks. i have little confusion i eat 3 chappati pl can u guide me is the wheat is good for health? i have hypothyroide and i take 100 mg tab. in the morning. i walk 3 or 3 km per day from last month and try 2 follow ur diet chart.

    • says

      Hi Sumathy ji ,

      Thanks for reading at Dietburrp. And congratulations on your success. we are happy that our plans helped you. To lose further weight, you can experiment a bit with you diet, give up on wheat an eat other cereals like jowar, bajra, brown rice , oats etc . I have observed that a lot of people respond to weight loss by this change in the plan.

      All the best !!

  15. raj says

    Hi, I am raj , I am 21 years old college student. I weigh at 100 kgs. My BMI is 31, I want to get down my weight to 80. I go to gym regularly, what exercises should I concentrate more on. I would like to drop 10 kgs in about 4 months, is it healthy?. And what kind vegetables are good?

  16. VENKATESH says

    Hai, Iam 41 year old and a diabetic patient from past 6 months. Though I am a regular walker and doing reasonable diet, I couldn’t manage to lose weight. But, my friends who are also suffering from diabetics are losing weight.

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