Is Brown Rice Healthy, and Should You Choose It Over White Rice? Here’s What a Nutritionist Says

Is Brown Rice Healthy, and Should You Choose It Over White Rice? Here's What a Nutritionist Says

As a nutritionist, a lot of my clients inform me that they’ve heard that they should opt for brown rice instead of white rice. In fact, brown rice has been identified as a rich nutrient source of energy-boosting carbs and is generally regarded as the healthier choice. Why is this the situation? This article will provide you with the facts concerning brown rice such as its nutritional value, health benefits, and how for incorporating it into your meals as snacks, meals, or even desserts.

Brown rice vs white rice

Brown rice constitutes a complete grain. A grain is said to be whole when the three primary parts of it–bran, germ, and endosperm — remain intact. The bran of a grain is the fibrous outer skin of the grain. The germ is the embryo, and it could develop into an entirely new plant. The endosperm of the germ is its food source of starch.

Since brown rice has all the original components that it has, it offers more than double the amount of fiber as its white cousin. This is because white rice isn’t an entire grain, but rather refined, which means the germ and bran are removed. As a whole grain brown rice also has greater amounts of essential nutrients.

Brown rice nutrition

1 cup of cooked brown long-grain rice is packed with two48 calories. 5.5 grams of protein and 52 grams of carbohydrates and 3 grams of fiber as well as less than 2 grams of fat in accordance with the US Department of Agriculture database. Brown rice is also naturally high in minerals and vitamins. This same portion, which is about one-third the size of tennis balls contains 88 percent of the daily requirement for manganese, a vital mineral to maintain immunity as well as collagen production and for strong bones. It also contains more than 20 percent of the daily requirement of magnesium muscle DNA production. Brown rice cooked also provides between 10 and 27 percent of the daily target for selenium.

This delicious whole grain is also full of healthy antioxidants. A study from a 2018 investigation released in the Journal of Antioxidants found that brown rice has a variety of kinds of compounds known as phenols. This antioxidant group is known to guard cells against damage associated with a higher chance of the type 2 form of diabetes and cancer, obesity, and heart disease.

Blood sugar regulation

Brown rice consumption has been found to improve post-meal blood sugar control for those with diabetes. It could even aid in preventing Type 2 Diabetes. Numerous studies have also observed that substituting white rice for brown rice may lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The reason for this is the grain’s fiber, slow-burning starch as well as nutrients, antioxidants as well as capacity to provide beneficial bacteria to the gut, like Lactobacillus as well as Bifidobacterium that are associated with weight loss and diabetes prevention.

Heart health

In an earlier study researchers looked into the impact of eating brown rice on markers of inflammation and cardiovascular risk indicators in forty menopausal women who were obese or overweight. Participants were required to eat about 5 ounces of cooked white or brown rice over a period of six weeks and then a wash-out time before switching to another type of rice. Researchers discovered that the intake of rice cooked in brown decreased inflammatory markers, such as C-reactive proteins. A study of a female who was healthy discovered the consumption of brown rice as a main meal for 10 weeks. She improved general health and reduced cholesterol levels and the risk of developing heart disease.

Arsenic and brown rice

One issue with brown rice consumption is the amount that contains arsenic an irritant associated with health hazards,  However, the risks of arsenic from rice consumption of any type are not easy to determine according to the findings of a study that was published in The Current Environmental Health Reports. Researchers note that the relationship between the consumption of rice and health outcomes is muddled by a myriad of aspects. This includes populations that have different habits of eating rice compared to their overall caloric intake.

Presently, eating brown rice in moderation is one of many carbs in whole foods. Now discovered that boiling brown rice could remove as much as 54% of undesirable heavy metals such as arsenic. This method was superior to washing or soaking and was also proven to conserve nutrients like zinc.

Healthy ways to eat more brown rice

Brown rice has a wide range of uses and is used in nearly any dish. For breakfast, and porridge make sure to flavor the rice with plant-based milk. Include brown rice and vegetables in frittatas and omelets. Brown rice can be added to soups, chilis jambalaya, tacos, and casseroles. Include it in grains or salad bowls together with leafy greens other vegetables and protein lean, sprinkled with sauces. Serve brown rice alongside stir-fries and then opt for sushi made from brown rice. Include it in vegetable Burgers, stuffed cabbage, bell peppers, as well as lettuce wraps. It can also be used in desserts like pudding, toasty Brown Rice Ice Cream cookies, and bars.

Other varieties from the grains are also easily available. You can add puffed brown rice to dark chocolate or other sweet treats when cooking and baking. The plain sprouted brown rice protein powder is an excellent choice to add protein to smoothies or boost the protein. Here are some of the items made from brown rice that I like:

  • Arrowhead Mills Puffed Rice Cereal ($6; amazon.com)
  • Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Brown Rice Flour (11; amazon.com)

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