Is Rice Healthy? Nutritional Benefits of Rice

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White Rice Vs. Brown Rice

Brown rice is a whole grain. Eating only 1 ½ cups of brown rice provides all three servings of whole grain that your body needs daily. Like all carbohydrates, it provides energy to keep your body going; however, unlike refined grains, it is digested relatively slowly so the energy lasts for longer. White rice, on the other hand, does not have these benefits. Enriched white rice does, however, contain various added vitamins and minerals that can help round out your diet, such as folate.

Benefits for Dieters

Rice is relatively low in calories, has virtually no fat or sodium, and contains fiber, which can help a person on a diet remain full for longer. (Brown rice does contain more fiber than white rice, however.) Rice is also nutrient dense, which means that you can get more nutrients into your body by consuming fewer calories by eating rice. Rice cakes are a favorite food for many dieters, giving ordinary rice an added crunch.

Mood Benefits

Rice can also help regulate your mood. The consumption of rice can cause the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the brain that can improve mood. So eating a few rice cakes can give a tough day a more optimistic outlook.

Specialized Diets

Rice is the least allergenic of all grains, which is good news for those who are allergic to wheat or oats. Rice is a particularly important part of the daily diet of many people who have celiac disease, because rice contains no gluten. For the same reason, many people on the GFCF diet eat rice, although they cannot eat most other grains. And of course, because rice contains no animal products, it is one of the staples of the vegan (and often the vegetarian) diet.

So is rice healthy? It definitely contains many health benefits and few drawbacks. And brown rice contains even more health benefits than white rice. So in short, rice is definitely a healthy choice for dieters and healthy eaters alike.

This post is part of the series: How Healthy Is…?

Are you looking for some healthy foods that you’ll enjoy? This series includes articles on various healthy foods, with explanations about exactly what makes them healthy.

  1. Hummus: Health Benefits and Uses
  2. Nutrition Values for Fresh Fig Fruit
  3. Top Four Health Benefits of Sardines
  4. The Truth About Rice: Is It Really Healthy?
  5. Calorie and Nutrient Content of Green Olives