The “Rice is good or bad” debate had been captivating the minds of health-conscious people around the world, with Whole wheat and bread, having almost won the debate that was until the “Gluten” debate came along. Is brown rice good for weight loss? Is rice fattening? What are the benefits of eating rice? What is the healthiest rice? Are the carbs in rice unhealthy? If these questions have been bothering you and finding the correct answer has been a challenge, then look no further, as we have the experts to opine on this.
While White rice has been considered as the culprit of many modern-day illnesses, including obesity and diabetes with numerous studies on the ill effects of rice available online, it is worthwhile to give a thought that rice has been a staple food in India, and many other parts of the world.
“We have been consuming rice for thousands of years and had no health issues. This is because, we had always consumed rice in its most natural form – unrefined & unpolished – the whole grain rice”, says Dr Gauri Rokkam, M.Sc (Food & Nutrition) Ph.D. (Yoga & Life Sciences) who is also a Holistic Nutritionist, Yoga Therapist & Lactation consultant and has designed a 4 week “Heal Thyself” program where modern nutrition principles are blended along with the food principles of Yoga and Naturopathy which aids in preserving health & preventing diseases. She believes in a holistic approach to weight loss and does not believe in counting calories.
If you ever needed an authoritative answer on the rice debate, here it is! This is what Dr Gauri has to say about Rice -
What kind of rice is good for you?
A whole grain rice has several layers. Only the outermost layer, the hull, is removed to produce what we call brown rice or red rice. This process is the least damaging to the nutritional value of the rice and avoids the unnecessary loss of nutrients that occurs with further processing.
If brown rice is further milled to remove the bran and most of the germ layer, the result is a whiter rice. During this process of milling the rice loses many more nutrients.
At this point, however, the rice is still unpolished, and it takes polishing to produce the white rice we are used to. Polishing removes the aleurone layer of the grain--a layer filled with health-supportive, essential fats.
“This layer is removed to extend the shelf life of the product as these fats, once exposed to air by the refining process, are highly susceptible to oxidation” The resulting white rice is simply a refined starch that is largely bereft of its original nutrients.
Brown Rice Vs White Rice Nutritional facts
Brown Rice has 67% more Vitamin B3 than White Rice.
Brown Rice has 80% of more Vitamin B1 than White Rice.
Brown Rice has 90% more Vitamin B6
Brown Rice has 50% more Manganese
Brown Rice has 50% more Phosphorus
Brown Rice has 60% more Iron
Brown rice has all the dietary Fibers and essential fatty acids which are not in white rice as they are destroyed during the milling and polishing process.
Thus, the culprit is not “rice” but the “refined & polished rice”. “Whole rice” is not only safe but has numerous health benefits.
If you are wondering if is rice bad for you? Is rice fattening or does rice help in weight-loss then you need to definitely check the health benefits of brown rice, which are numerous:
It helps in weight loss due to its satiating effect.
It helps reduce blood sugars due to its slow digesting nature & thus the demand for insulin goes down.
The fiber (both soluble & insoluble) & the oil in whole rice seems to lower cholesterol.
Many more added benefits come from the B complex vitamins, manganese, magnesium, selenium and other phytonutrients.
So, enjoy any variety of whole rice which is unpolished and unrefined – steamed, made into idly, dosa, roti, dumplings, Rava upma, payasam, home-made shavige, etc.
About the Author
Dr Gauri Rokkom, (Nagashree. R. Shanakar) is a Doctorate in Yoga & Life Sciences from SVYASA Yoga University. She holds a Master’s degree in Food & Nutrition, Bangalore University. Her recent research on “Fresh Coconut”, proved that fresh coconut is innocent. Her researched paper has been published in the prestigious Journal of American College of Nutrition, USA and is the first study on fresh coconut, in the world.
Dr Gauri has helped people get healthier by eating & living right. By adopting these simple changes, people have reported reversing their various diseases like diabetes, dyslipidemia, hypertension, obesity, allergies, digestive disorders, hormonal imbalances, etc., through her 4 - 6 weeks “Heal thyself” holistic wellness program. This program lays out a simple, safe, delicious, practical and nutritionally sound way to improve health and achieve sustainable weight loss. Most people find they can eliminate their medications within this short time frame and get back to vibrant health. If you want to meet or contact Dr Gauri, connect with her on her Facebook Page “Swaastya Nutrition services” or drop us a mail on [email protected]