Nothing feels more heavenly than a bowl of steaming rice with a cup of seasoned veggies at the end of a hard day of toil and this is the opinion of billions of people living across the globe. Soft, boiled and fragrant rice is not just a food but an emotion that satiates the stomachs and hearts of all.
But as consciousness for health is taking over the world by storm, most people are trying hard to avoid rice to stay in shape and good health. Yes, it is only prudent to refrain from eating white rice given its number of ill health effects.
But, does that mean that you have to migrate to dry and dull bread now? Well, of course not! You can have rice as much as you want but not the white but the amazing brown rice.
How to cook brown rice?
Cooking a cup of brown rice takes a little more time than cooking the quantity of white rice. But the wait is worth it, as brown rice is loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, fiber, and minerals.
The procedure of preparation of plain steamed brown rice is simple though. All that you need is 2 and 1/2 cups of water and a cup of plain brown rice.
- Bring the water to its boiling point
- Add the brown rice to the boiling water and cover the lid
- Let it simmer for about an hour
- Turn the heat off after the rice has simmered enough
- Let the rice sit for about a quarter of an hour with the lid still keeping it covered
- Remove the lid from the pot after about 15 minutes of letting the rice sit
- Fluff the rice in the pot and serve it in a plate
Top 15 Reasons to Choose Brown Rice over White Rice and Stay Healthy
1. The Difference in Physical Features of the Two Varieties of Rice
Physical properties of brown rice: Brown rice as a grain is whole in nature. This implies that all of its parts are completely unblemished- the wheat, germ, and the endosperm and can be obtained just by removing the external hull of the kernel of grains. This additionally implies that it is loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, fiber, and minerals.
The external layer of the grain of brown rice is packed with antioxidants, fibrous content, and vitamin B. The central layer is a powerhouse of healthy proteins, a portion of vitamins of B-Complex, minerals, and essential fatty acids. The core of the brown rice grains contains starches, a few proteins, and a portion of the vitamins and a few essential minerals.
Brown rice possesses all the three layers which are good for health but also has a catch. This is because the different layers might be difficult to digest for some. It is hard to digest brown rice because of its high fibrous content and there is also the danger of phytic acid that is generally found in the grain layer.
Physical properties of white rice: White rice is produced after the removal of the germ and grain, leaving just the endosperm unblemished. This variety of rice is processed and vigorously polished to make the core become white in color. In this way, obviously, the greater part of the vitamins, antioxidants, proteins, and minerals get almost completely eliminated. This is why white rice is stripped off all the essential nutrients and supplements.
Be that as it may, this procedure of milling and polishing expels the wheat layer, and subsequently dispenses with the risk of phytic acid. Besides, white rice is digestible in nature because of its balanced content of fiber.
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2. The Difference between White and Brown Rice in Nutrition Density
Nutrition density of brown rice: A cup serving of brown rice possesses double the measure of manganese and phosphorus as compared to white rice. It additionally contains almost about2.5 times the content of iron and 3, 4, and 10 times the content of vitamins B3, B1, and B6 respectively.
Only a cup serving of brown rice satisfies about 80% of the prescribed daily necessity of manganese. This mineral is highly beneficial for good cholesterol formation, vitality, and secretion of sex hormones.
Brown rice is also rich in 27.3% of selenium, 20.9% of magnesium, 83.85 milligrams of potassium and 18.70 milligrams of tryptophan. This is an impressive nutritional profile and one of the best benefits of brown rice VS white rice. However, the calorie content of brown rice is slightly more than that of white rice.
Nutrition density of white rice: White rice is truly unfortunate when it comes to its nutritional profile. The processing and polishing of the grains remove around 60% of iron, 80% of vitamin B1, 90% of vitamin B6, 67% of vitamin B3, and a good portion of phosphorus, manganese and dietary fiber.
A cup measure of white rice contains around 0.50milligrams of manganese, 9.70micrograms of selenium, 8.70 mg of magnesium, 17.40milligrams of potassium, and if you are wondering about how many calories in white rice then it is about 206 calories in a cup serving of it. One good point in favor of white rice is that it does not contain any phytic acid.
3. Benefits of Brown Rice VS White Rice for Diabetics
Is brown rice healthy for diabetes? Brown rice is known for its low value of the glycemic index that makes it a healthy choice of rice for diabetics(1). Consumption of brown rice instead of white rice can cause an effective decrease in the levels of blood glucose. It likewise prompts decreased resistance to the hormone insulin.
But if you consider basmati rice VS brown rice then the value of the glycemic index of both the varieties of rice are at the same level.
White rice in the context of diabetes:
With high carbohydrate content, white rice has a very high value of the glycemic index that makes it quite unhealthy for diabetics. If you are still too much in love with white rice to avoid it completely then go for a variety that has a low value of GI such as the white basmati rice.
4. Brown Rice VS White Rice for Weight Loss
Health benefits of brown rice for weight loss:
Brown rice is accepted to be a more advantageous choice for the ones who are seeking to shed the ugly flab. Brown rice is a whole grain that is stuffed with the vast majority of fundamental vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, essential fatty acids, and proteins, which makes it unimaginably beneficial for cardiac health. It is additionally rich in dietary fiber which encourages an appropriate movement of bowels thus helping in the loss of excess body weight.
Being a member of the family of whole grains, brown rice is appropriate for individuals who suffer from uncontrolled food cravings. Consumption of brown rice helps to suppress appetite and keeps the intake of calories in check. Brown rice is also responsible for the health of good intestinal bacteria. The only downside is the unappealing taste, the thickness of grains and the presence of phytic acid.
White rice for weight loss diet:
White rice has perpetually been disapproved because of its high carbohydrate and low fibrous content. Its content of nutrients is also very low. But, white rice is free of phytic acid, can be easily digested, and is delicious.
Furthermore, the white rice is low in calorific value as compared to its brown counterpart and if taken in measured servings proves to be almost as beneficial as brown rice for the weight loss regimen.
Also Read: Holy Basil Benefits for Weight Loss
5. Brown Rice VS White Rice for Digestibility
Digestibility factor of brown rice:
Brown rice is loaded with nutrients and high dietary fibrous content is not easily digestible. The reason behind the indigestibility is the central bran layer and the corrosive phytic acid.
Digestibility factor of white rice:
White rice is easily digestible as compared to brown rice. Its fibrous content is limited and so is its content of nutrients. If your gastrointestinal system is not so strong then opt for the white variety of rice to keep digestive troubles at bay(2).
6. The Difference in Arsenic Content in Brown Rice VS White Rice
Arsenic content of brown rice:
All the three layers of the grain are kept intact in brown rice which makes it higher in the content of arsenic. This is the reason why brown rice ought not to be consumed on a regular basis or in unlimited measures. It has been claimed by research that a cup serving of brown rice contains more than 50% of the safe level of the chemical, arsenic.
Despite being so nutritious and fibrous, brown rice is filled with poisonous arsenic and as such its serving needs to be controlled for the protection of health and physiology. Prolonged consumption of brown rice increases the dangers of chronic disorders and diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and cardiac problems.
Arsenic content of white rice:
White rice might not be a healthy choice for you but when it comes to the level of arsenic content then the white variety of rice, especially basmati and jasmine rice is completely superior to brown rice in terms of an extremely low level of poisonous arsenic content. When the rice is rinsed thoroughly before cooking, it gets rid of all its impurities along with toxic arsenic(3).
7. The Difference in Carbohydrate Content in Brown Rice VS White Rice
Health benefits of brown rice in terms of carbohydrate content:
Brown rice nutrition might be densely packed but it is somehow very low in carbohydrate content. This low level of carb is almost eclipsed by the high fibrous content of the brown rice grains. This makes the rice highly beneficial for people who are suffering from diabetes and need to be on a low carbohydrate diet.
Despite the fact that carbohydrate is disapproved of, ideal carbohydrate content is highly essential for healthy physiological functioning and for the balance in the daily diet. Carbohydrate makes provision for high levels of vitality and is remarkably essential for controlling the secretion of hormones, especially in women.
White rice in terms of carbohydrate content:
Being devoid of the layers, white rice is essentially higher in carbohydrate content. If taken in a limited serving, then consumption of white rice will not interfere with your diabetic issues. You can also opt for the white rice varieties of basmati and jasmine to maintain the daily carbohydrate intake without any rise in blood sugar levels.
8. The Difference in Mineral Density in Brown Rice VS White Rice
Is brown rice better than white rice in terms of mineral density?
Brown rice nutrition is indeed immense and so is its density of minerals. The brown variety of rice grains possesses almost 4 times the levels of magnesium as compared to white rice. Thus consumption of brown rice helps in the maintenance of strong teeth, healthy bones, solid bone density and more. It helps in the prevention of bone diseases like rickets and renal bone functioning and keeps them strong and in regular working condition.
An issue of mineral density for white rice:
White rice is low in the levels of mineral density. It is not beneficial for the strength of bones and teeth.
9. Benefits of Brown Rice VS White Rice in Terms of Fat Content
The fat content of brown rice:
Both the varieties of rice are low in fat content. Brown rice is slightly higher in fat content as compared to white rice. A cup serving of softly boiled brown rice possesses about 3 grams of essential fatty acids as compared to white rice that consists of 1 gram of fats in a cup serving of it.
The fat content of white rice:
White rice is anything but fattening, but excessive consumption of it can cause issues with weight gain and obesity. It consists of only a gram of fatty acids in it and is overall much healthier than its brown counterpart in terms of fat content.
10. Difference between White and Brown Rice in Terms of Folate Content
Folate content of brown rice:
Brown rice might be considered as the healthier variety of rice, but when it comes to its content of folate, then brown rice falls short as compared to its white counterpart. Brown rice is high in the content of some of the vitamins of B-complex but its folate content is quite lower than the necessary amount. Folate is extremely essential for everyone especially for women who are in the pregnancy and post-pregnancy phase. So if you are wondering if brown rice is better than white rice then the answer is a big NO in terms of folate content(4).
Folate content of white rice:
The white variety of rice grains is excellently loaded with folate thus making it a healthier choice for women who are in the pregnancy, post-pregnancy and breastfeeding stage. A cup serving of boiled white rice consists of about 95.0 micrograms of vitamin B9. This makes it especially beneficial for the consumption.
11. Brown Rice VS White Rice Difference in Terms of Allergic Reaction
Brown rice and allergic reactions:
With its fibrous and harsh texture, and also the distinct nutty flavor, brown rice will probably cause hypersensitivities and allergic reactions in the form of skin rashes, irritation and more. Consumption of brown rice on a regular basis causes inflammation of the sensitive intestinal lining thus letting undigested particles of food, toxins, and bacteria percolate into the running bloodstream.
As such it is recommended to check for hypersensitive responses prior to shifting to a full course meal on brown rice.
White rice and allergic reactions:
The refined nature of white rice gives it a pleasant flavor and even texture that goes well with the digestive system and does not trigger any allergic reactions. The rice can be digested with ease and its nutrient content is sufficient for keeping up with the daily necessity. If you are allergic to brown rice then you can opt for white rice which is much healthier in terms of hypersensitive responses(5).
12. Brown Rice VS White Rice Difference in Terms of Cooking Procedure and Time
Brown rice cooking procedure and duration:
It takes almost an hour and a half to cook steamed brown rice which is indeed a higher duration as compared to the time required to cook steamed white rice. The procedure of preparation of plain steamed brown rice is simple though.
The proportion of brown rice and water required to cook 1 cup of brown rice properly is 1:2 ½ respectively which is higher than the normal requirement. Brown rice needs to be cooked for long on simmer heat and its sitting time is also more as compared to white rice.
White rice cooking procedure and duration:
It takes only a matter of 20 minutes to cook plain and steamed white rice which is indeed a much lesser duration as compared to the time required to cook steamed brown rice. The proportion of water required for cooking 1 cup of rice is less as compared to brown rice. It takes 1 ½ cups of water for 1 cup of rice. The rice needs to be cooked for almost 13 minutes on simmer heat after a boil and the sitting time is only 10 minutes as compared to brown rice. Brown Rice VS White Rice Difference in Terms of Antioxidant Content
13. Health Benefits of Brown Rice VS White Rice in Terms of Antioxidant Content
Antioxidant content of brown rice:
Brown rice is loaded with antioxidants and if the rice grains are germinated prior to consumption then antioxidant becomes even higher because of the high content of phenolic compounds in it. Consumption of brown rice infuses the body with antioxidants that fight against toxic free radicals and protect the health of the physiological system from oxidative stress and damage.
Antioxidant content of white rice:
Being stripped of all its layers and post-exposure to milling, refining, and polishing; the antioxidant content of white rice gets almost entirely removed. As such it is a healthier choice to opt for brown rice in terms of antioxidant content.
14. Health Benefits of Brown Rice VS White Rice in Terms of Selenium Content
Selenium content of brown rice:
The selenium content of brown rice is quite higher than that of white rice. A cup serving of steamed brown rice consists of about 50% of the advised daily intake of selenium. The trace mineral that is selenium aids in healthy physiological functioning in a number of different ways.
It is especially beneficial for the regulation of the thyroid gland in its function of secreting the thyroid hormone.
Selenium content of white rice:
The selenium content of white rice is very low as it gets depleted by the process of milling, polishing and refining the rice. It is always beneficial to opt for brown rice for a rich selenium intake in your diet.
15. Health Benefits of Brown Rice VS White Rice in Terms of Manganese Content
The manganese content of brown rice:
The manganese content of brown rice is quite higher than that of white rice.A cup serving of steamed brown rice consists of about 88% of the advised daily intake of manganese which is indeed huge. Manganese is extremely essential for the formation of fatty acids in the body and for the prevention of cholesterol.
This is another trace mineral that is required for the protection of the cardiovascular system from the risks of stroke, atherosclerosis, high cholesterol and more.
Consumption of brown rice is also beneficial for the protection of the reproductive and nervous system because of its high manganese content.
The manganese content of white rice:
White rice goes through a rigorous process of refining, milling, and polishing of the grains before it is out in the market. This process takes a toll on the nutritive value of the rice and also depletes the presence of manganese in it.
Therefore, it is advisable to consume brown rice for a better manganese intake.