Many Indian people, especially in the coastal areas, eat rice as a staple food. Coupled with seafood, dals, various curries and tandoori dishes, rice is an integral part of the Indian diet. Even North Indians love to eat biryanis and pulavs, even though wheat is the staple food. But experts say that it is now time to take another look at the rice you eat. Surely it tastes awesome, but is it that good for your health?
A few years ago we heard that we should switch from white rice to brown rice. These days everyone is raving about wild rice. Is there really any difference between these types of rice and how they affect your health?
White Rice: This is the most refined type of rice where the husk, bran and germ are removed from the grain, giving us that sooth yummy tasting rice that you love with your curries. The grain is also polished, giving it that bright white shine. But during this process of refining, many nutrients of the cereal are lost eg B vitamin Thiamine, Niacin and Iron. White rice is not much except a bunch of carbohydrates.
Brown Rice: While refining this type of rice, only the husk is removed. So there is much lesser loss of nutrients. It is higher in Magnesium, Zinc, Potassium, Posphorous and Folate that the white rice. It also has higher levels of fiber and protein.
Wild Rice: Wild rice is the seed of wheat grass and has higher levels of protein, folate, potassium and zinc that both white and brown rice.
Why this is important?
For good cardiovascular health, a diet rich in Potassium and Magnesium is recommended. High fiber foods are also useful in regulating chlestrol levels. This is why both brown rice and wild rice are considered to be significantly healthier than the white rice. This is especially important information for people who eat rice on a daily basis. If rice is mostly a Sunday thing for you, eating white rice will not make you very unhealthy!