Rice is just another main ingredient of your balanced diet and is often considered the staple food of India. It is an important carbohydrate with almost half the global population depending upon it. It isn't just a carbohydrate, it has incalculable benefits over many other superfoods; rice helps in maintaining a healthy weight, brown rice protects against many chronic diseases, white rice provides energy and is easy on the digestive system and the list of the benefits goes on.
Does the question arise which type of rice to prefer? Let's clear the dilemma or say a myth concluding brown rice beneficial over white rice.
What is Brown rice and White rice?
Brown rice is processed as a whole grain with its outer layer of husk and bran intact whereas white rice is the same brown rice grain that is processed and polished after removing the outer layers of husk and germ. So now, with just understanding the basic difference between the two we got to know that is the same grain with just the difference of outer layer. Well, both brown rice and white rice fits well as a healthy diet but holds only a few notable differences.
Brown rice is a whole grain whereas white rice is minimally processed. It provides health benefits whereas white rice is much better for muscle gain as it is easily absorbed by the body.
Benefits of White rice
· Stabilize blood sugar levels – White rice has high starch content which helps to maintain blood sugar levels, but if you are diabetic you must consult your dietician or doctor before adding it to your diet.
· Energy production – It is an important carbohydrate and thus provides enormous and instant energy production. Thus, it is consumed by athletes for an instant energy boost as it is easily absorbed and digested.
· Promotes heart health – White rain is a whole grain and it helps in improving cholesterol levels thus reducing risks of heart attack and other cardiovascular diseases.
· Gluten-free – It is a gluten-free whole grain and it is good for people who are allergic to gluten. Thus it is beneficial over another whole grain that has gluten in it.
· Easy to digest – Just as you can easily cook white rice, your body can easily digest it too. Brown rice contains phytic acid, an anti-nutrient that is harmful to the digestive system. That's why brown rice can be replaced with white rice over such issues.
Benefits of brown rice
· Heart health – Brown rice contains lignin, a plant compound that protects against cardiovascular diseases.
· Antioxidants – Brown rice containing the outer layer of bran is a very good antioxidant.
· Weight loss – Research says replacing white rice with brown rice helps in losing weight and reducing hip and waistline.
Hazardous effects of brown rice
Though brown rice is the trend food people may follow, but it has various drawbacks in comparison to white rice. Both types of rice are equally good to eat but running after branding and marketing trends would make you regret your dietary decisions.
· Arsenic content – A highly toxic chemical is found in brown rice. Brown rice on an average 80% more inorganic arsenic than white rice, concentrated in the bran layer and germ layer of a rice grain.. When consumed in the long term may increase the risk of chronic diseases like cancer, cardiovascular disease and type 2 -diabetes.
· Phytic acid – Results in mineral deficiencies. Reduces the ability of the human body in absorbing iron and zinc.
· Anti-nutrients – Brown rice contains a high amount of anti-nutrients and thus brown rice is not easy to digest.
It is quite clear that both types of rice are equally good and should be consumed with a specific purpose under the prescription and supervision of a dietician or a doctor. Branding and marketing strategies would promote kinds of stuff and create hype about foodstuff such that we forget to look beyond the fancy fine lines. Thus don't just blindly follow a trend or adopt a measure on your own until and unless you have a specific purpose to do so.