There is a huge number of debates over the topic of rice being healthy or unhealthy. Rice has a very poor reputation since many people consider it as the culprit behind obesity, diabetes, and many other body disorders.
Now the question is, “Is rice really the one committing these crimes or we the consumers are the real culprits?” and “Whether Rice can be included in the diet of people who want to lose weight?”
So first thing here I am going to answer the question:
Is eating rice daily a healthy option?
Yes, Rice intake is not unhealthy if taken in the right quantity and at the right time.
Brown rice or White Rice; Which is Better?
There is not a huge difference in the nutritious value but when comparing micronutrients, brown rice is in the winning position.
Which type of rice is healthier?
The glycemic index is a parameter designed to tell us the quality of food and its effects on our body which ranges from 0-100. Usually, the food with a low glycemic index is considered healthy.
Now if we talk about the glycemic index of both types of rice, brown rice is again superior when compared to white rice since brown rice has a relatively lower glycemic index to white rice.
Basically, glycemic index is calculated on the basis of how rapidly the food can hype the sugar level in blood and get digested.
- Glycemic Index
Brown rice = 54. Glycemic index less than 55 is considered a healthy food range.
White rice = 62. Glycemic index of 56-69 is considered as medium healthy food range and above 90 is the bad food range.
When we compare the nutritional value chart it seems that brown rice is a better option considering carbohydrate, fiber, protein, and micronutrient value but on the other hand brown rice holds some disadvantages too.
Disadvantages of brown rice
- High in toxic elements like arsenic and phytic acid which can obstruct the absorption of nutrients like calcium, iron, zinc, protein, and other important nutrients in your body by binding with them.
- Digestion is laborious
- Highly expensive
Benefits of white rice
- Easy to digest
- Good glycemic load when combined with vegetables
- Tastier than brown rice
What should we prefer if we want to lose weight?
When we consider our diet for weight loss, we need instant energy from the food we are eating for our workout sessions where white rice comes as our saviors.
As mentioned above, white rice has a high glycemic value which hypes up our sugar level and gets digested rapidly in comparison to brown rice.
In this way, white rice provides instant fuel to drive our body and aid the muscle recovery, Whereas brown rice is hard on digestion and doesn’t provide instant energy as well as are high in fat value. No one wants extra fats if already planning to lose weight.
White rice may not be considered as the best option for sedentary people but, for athletes and people doing heavy workouts, it is considered to be safe starch consumed before exercising.
White rice has fewer calories when compared to brown rice which helps in creating calorie deficit facilitating weight loss.
It is gluten-free which an amazing point because it can lead to intestinal disorders for being indigestible in many people.
Incorporation of Rice in Diet
- Pair your Rice portion with healthy vegetables rich in fiber and protein. Consider cheese, dal, broccoli, or chicken breast, pulses, lentils, etc., these will help in increasing the glycemic load.
- Portion control is an important rule of the weight loss game. Do not consume rice in all your meals. Spare at least one meal and skip eating carbohydrate-rich food items in between your meals to restrict calorie intake. If you include rice in all your meals it can lead to the following side effects:
- Increased BP
- Metabolic syndrome
- High fasting blood sugar due to insulin resistance
- Weight gain
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Fatty liver
- Large waistline
- High triglycerides
- High blood cholesterol
- Cook your rice in the pan than a pressure cooker.
- Don’t overcook rice as it will increase the glycemic index to the unhealthy range.
- Avoid using short rice.
- Avoid using sticky rice since they have a high glycemic index.
The right portion of rice in the diet varies on the basis of:
Rice portion in a single meal of:
Women = 40-100g
Men = 50-125g
If a woman is taking 100 g rice per meal and is having 2 meals of rice per day, she is consuming 200 calories. (1cup rice a day).
- Activity Level
High activity levels require high-calorie intake whereas low activity levels require low-calorie intake so one can adjust the portions according to one’s activity level.
- Weight loss goals
If your body is huge, possesses a good amount of muscle mass and heavy weight then you need to create a high-calorie deficit to lose weight but if you only need to maintain your body then you can continue with the given quantity of rice in portions.