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.
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