When it comes to types of grains to eat, rice has, for some civilizations, been a centuries-old choice. These civilizations have used white rice as a staple in their diets.
However more recently brown rice has been making a splash on the health food scene. Some people have gone as far to say that brown rice is good and white rice is not. The debate has gone on for years over which is healthier; brown or white rice
Brown vs White Rice
White rice, by volume, has more iron, folic acid, thiamine, niacin, and riboflavin. Brown rice has more magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, potassium, zinc and vitamin b6. The more nutrient-dense rice is brown, but only slightly. But, aside from this slight advantage, brown rice actually faces more problems when being digested.
The first digestion downfall is that brown rice has more phytates and lectins than white rice. Phytates and lectins bind to vitamins and minerals and prevent your body from absorbing them.
So even though brown rice might be nutrient dense, your body cannot actually absorb them all and therefore falls short of truly being “more nutritious” than white rice. It has the bran and germ removed, hence making it “white” rice.
The majority of the phytic acid is found in the bran, so white rice has almost all of the phytic acid removed in the process of taking off the brand. This means that you can actually absorb the nutrients in white rice better.
The second digestion downfall is that brown rice still has the bran and germ, and the bran and germ make it harder to digest. Bran and germ can both be irritating to the digestive tract. Being eaten regularly, or paired with other grains, can lead to digestive problems like leaky gut or inflammation.
It, because it is void of both the bran and germ, is easier to digest and a good source of glucose after working out or whenever you need it.
But what about the fact that white rice has a higher glycaemic index than brown rice?
Even though white rice has a slightly higher glycaemic index, you can lower it by eating it with the right foods. To prevent glycaemic spikes when eating white rice, you can eat it with vinegar or fats.
A good way to eat it with a drizzle of low-fat butter or even olive oil on the rice itself. Pairing white with butter roasted vegetables, a few slices of avocado or chopped roasted nuts will also be a tasty way to eat it.
Overall, although brown rice is slightly more nutrient dense, white rice provides an easier way to get these same nutrients to your body while being easier to digest and easier on your gut in the long run.
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