Updated: Mar 5
Everyone thinks #brownrice is healthier because it has more nutrients and won’t spike your blood sugar as much. Although they are not entirely wrong, these benefits are very minimal and contradicting.
First off, rice, in general, is not a nutrient-dense food and should only be a small part of one’s healthy balanced diet. Brown rice has slightly more vitamins than white rice, but it is not enough to make any difference in your health. However, brown rice can be quite aggravating for people with digestive troubles, whereas #whiterice is known to #heal and nourish the stomach in Traditional Chinese Medicine. This is why.
Brown rice (and black rice, wild rice etc.) are full of phytates, which are anti-nutrients. Phytates bind to essential minerals like zinc, iron, calcium, magnesium and prevent them from being absorbed into your cells. Phytates can also inhibit pepsin and amylase, which are crucial digestive enzymes needed to break down protein and sugar. This will throw off your digestion- especially if you are low in stomach acid (which most of us are). Although #antinutrients are in lots of foods and are not bad for you by any means, you should not be consuming a lot of them in their raw form especially if you have digestive issues. Soaking all your #grains, legumes, nuts (these all contain phytates and lectins) are a great way to help break down these anti-nutrients. Think of white rice as like the peeled version of brown rice, but that ‘peel’ is what chemically protects the plant from being eaten. Brown rice has the bran and the germ intact which irritates your gut lining contributing to leaky gut, autoimmune disorders, food allergies etc. However, white rice only has the germ intact and a lot less phytic acid. In addition, brown rice used to get covered in arsenic based pesticides and although banned now, there is still traces left.
Okay, but what if you’re #insulin resistant and are trying to control your blood sugar levels? All grains will spike your blood sugar, and yes, since white rice is an easily absorbed form of glucose, it will spike your blood sugar a little faster than brown rice. But again, not enough to negatively affect your health. After all, white rice is only rated as a medium glycemic index food. If you have known #bloodsugar issues, you should be pairing or cooking with high-quality saturated fat and protein to cut the glycemic load. I cook my white rice in full-fat coconut milk for this reason (also makes it taste better!).