Is White Rice Healthy? – Can You Eat White Rice Everyday! Know The Exact White Rice Nutrition
Do you know that more than half of the world’s population consumes rice as the staple food? But, Is white rice healthy? Does white rice make you fat? Just take a step back and get to know some surprising facts about white rice before you start consuming it frequently!
Well, needless to say, the pros and cons of eating white rice depend on the nutritional properties of these grains and it is usually advisable to reduce the consumption of refined grains as these are said to have some minor side effects although not lethal!
But, white rice, on the other hand, is totally gluten-free and is highly beneficial due to its easily digestible nature along with the presence of essential vitamins and minerals.
This puts many of us in a lot of ambiguity whether or not to consume white rice. But, here is a perfect evaluation done to let you know about the pros and cons of white rice.
White Rice Nutrition
Let us deeply explore the complete white rice nutrition including the white rice calories and carbs in white rice to know whether you can really consume it on a daily basis.
One cup of long grained, cooked white rice which is around 158 grams gives you the following nutrients.
|Vitamins||Grams||%DV (Percentage of daily requirement that it meets)|
|Vitamin E||0.1 mg||0|
|Vitamin B6||0.1 mg||7%|
|Pantothenic acid||0.6 mg||6%|
|Minerals||Grams||%DV (Percentage of daily requirement that it meets)|
|Other elements||Grams||%DV (Percentage of daily requirement that it meets)|
White Rice Calories
One cup of cooked, long grained white rice gives you 205 calories which fulfil 10% of your daily calorie requirement.
If you are looking for weight loss, consuming white rice would do no harm unless you know how much calories you need by the end of the day. Now, you know how the exact amount of calories that can be gained through one cup of cooked rice which in turn helps you keep a check on your calorie intake.
Considering the weight loss benefits of both white rice and brown rice, consuming brown rice would be much favourable because white rice does not contain fibre which is actually needed for a weight loss.
Carbohydrates And Proteins
Rice is a great source of carbohydrates (helping you meet 15% of your daily carbs requirement) when consumed in the quantity of one cup. The same quantity also gives you 8% of your daily protein requirement.
Fats And Cholesterol
Rice provides 0.4 grams of total fats out of which saturated (unhealthy) and unsaturated (healthy) fats are present in equal quantities (0.1 grams each).
Omega-3 fatty acids make up to 20.5 milligrams while omega-6 fatty acids make up to 98 milligrams.
Fats altogether make only 1% of daily recommended fat intake.
White rice is totally cholesterol free but that does not mean white rice has to be consumed for lowering your cholesterol levels.
Refined and processed grains are known to increase cholesterol which is why you may have to consider other heart-healthy foods along with white rice to prevent cardiovascular risks.
Vitamins Present In White Rice
The major vitamins present in white rice that play an important role are folate, niacin and thiamin whereas vitamin B6 and pantothenic acid are available in minute quantities.
Vitamin E and riboflavin are absolutely present in trace amounts!
Minerals Present In White Rice
Manganese is present in abundant amounts in white rice followed by selenium, iron and phosphorous. Zinc, copper and magnesium are present in equal quantities which can fulfil 5% of your respective mineral requirement.
Calcium and potassium are present in trace amounts which can only fulfil 2% of your daily calcium and potassium requirement.
Rice is an excellent source of carbohydrates which gives you great amounts of energy. Calories in white rice are 205 for one cup. White rice contains proteins, vitamins and minerals in decent amounts to keep you healthy enough.
White rice is totally free of cholesterol and contains very little amounts of fats!
What Is With Refined Rice? Is It A Disadvantage?
The major difference between whole grains and refined grains is that whole grains contain the bran and germs along with the endosperm.
Bran can provide your body with good amounts of fibres, germs are nutrient rich and endosperm is a good source of carbohydrates.
White rice originally contains bran but it undergoes a process of pearling where the grains are passed through a machine which results in the loss of the bran.
The refining process helps in increasing the shelf life of the rice and also improves the texture, taste and quality along with decreasing the cooking time of the rice.
But, white rice loses most of its nutrients, more importantly, the fibre content!
Brown rice although takes a longer time to cook, is much healthier when compared to white rice because it does not lose bran, germs and endosperm which gives you a good fibre content along with rich nutrients.
Choosing brown rice would be a much better option because it contains bran, germs and endosperm all of which provide various health benefits.
White rice undergoes a process called pearling which causes the grain to lose bran, germ and endosperm which are highly nutritious!
This does not rule out the benefits of white rice because it provides other significant health benefits.
White Rice Is Not Diabetic Friendly Food!
If you are diabetic and have found yourself consuming white rice more often, it would be a better option to switch to brown rice to reduce your blood glucose levels.
Carbohydrates and glycemic index are two important factors that have to be kept in mind if you are diabetic because these determine the increase and decrease in your blood sugar levels.
Carbohydrates that you obtain through various foods are broken down into sugars which are then released into your blood through the intestines. It is always better to play safe by reducing your carbohydrate consumption when you are diabetic.
Glycemic index is the ability of these carbohydrates to increase the levels of blood glucose. Foods containing a lesser glycemic index would be highly beneficial to those suffering from diabetes.
The glycemic index of white rice is 64 and that of the brown rice is 55 which makes brown rice the best food choice to prevent the spikes in blood glucose!
Considering the number of carbohydrates and the glycemic index which affect the blood glucose levels, choosing brown rice would be the best option because of its low glycemic index. Carbohydrates gained through both the sources are almost the same!
Why Is White Rice Healthy? Here Are 10 Fantastic Reasons Why You Should Consider White Rice!
Although white rice is devoid of as many nutrients as brown rice, consuming white rice along with other nutrients dense and fibre-rich foods can help you compensate the loss of nutrients that occurs due to the refining process.
Here are some amazing benefits of white rice
1. White Rice Is Totally Gluten-Free
Some whole grains contain gluten which is a major disadvantage for people suffering from celiac disease. This is because gluten causes symptoms such as bloating, abdominal cramps and a swollen belly.
Gluten is a mixture of proteins which is responsible for making the whole grains such as wheat appear elastic in nature!
Gluten leads to the damage of small intestine which causes some irritable symptoms. This is the main reason why people suffering from celiac disease should follow a gluten-free diet in order to reduce the symptoms and to prevent further damage to the small intestine.
2. White Rice Can Prevent Constipation
Consuming white rice on a regular basis helps in smooth and easy digestion. This is because white rice contains fewer amounts of fibres in it which acts easily on the digestive tract helping in quick and smooth digestion.
Adding other easily digestible foods like yoghurt, sweet potatoes or spinach would be a great advantage to people suffering from constipation.
If you have been suffering from an irritable bowel syndrome or if you undergoing any digestive disorder, you can change your routine diet and try to add rice more often to your diet so as to observe a change in your digestive pattern!
3. Great Source Of Energy
White rice contains carbohydrates in abundant amounts which act as a major source of energy. Interestingly, the structure of rice contains long chains which are made up of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are difficult to be broken down which means that they can provide energy for longer periods.
Consuming white rice every day can keep you away from the symptoms of dizziness, weakness, fatigue and shortness of breath because white rice acts as a major source of fuel which keeps you energized.
4. Benefits Of Rice For High Blood Pressure
White rice is totally free of sodium which makes it the best-recommended food for people suffering from high blood pressure.
High sodium levels can increase your blood pressure and a high blood pressure indicates that there is a high risk of cardiovascular problems.
People suffering from high blood pressure are advised not to consider salt in their diet because salt contains 40% of sodium in it.
In fact, people with high blood pressure require potassium levels in order to balance the levels of sodium. Rice although is not a rich source of potassium, contains the mineral in trace amounts.
Since rice is a sodium free food with good amounts of potassium, it makes the best choice for the ones whose blood pressure is above 120/80 mmHg.
5. White Rice And Arsenic
Arsenic is a toxic element that can be found in most of the daily consumable foods such as seafood, rice products and drinking water.
Arsenic can be accumulated through natural sources such as water, soil or rocks. Unfortunately, rice is the staple food of more than half of the world’s population which makes it the biggest food crop that is being contaminated with arsenic.
Low levels of arsenic are not harmful but regular consumption of arsenic causes narrowing of the blood vessels, increases the blood pressure, make you susceptible to cancer and cause type-2 diabetes.
However, brown rice is said to contain more amounts of arsenic when compared to white rice because brown rice contains bran which accumulates high amounts of arsenic.
White rice comparatively contains less arsenic in it which makes it a much better option to be included in the diet.
6. Benefits Of White Rice For Pregnant Women
White rice contains good amounts of folate in it which is a major advantage for women who are pregnant.
This is because folate is essential for preventing the baby from being prone to neurological disorders in the future.
Folate helps in preventing the birth defects which may occur due to improper pregnancy care tips. Pregnant women can make the best benefits out of white rice because it is a nutrient dense food that also helps in easy digestion.
You can add in some healthy cruciferous vegetables or protein-rich sources to the rice to consume a healthy meal.
It is a misconception to think that white rice is completely bad for your health. People suffering from diabetes can choose other best options as white rice is a rich source of carbs. People looking for weight loss may consider brown rice for the best benefits as it contains fibre.
Daily consumption of white rice would do no harm. In fact, you can consume two-three bowls of white rice on a regular basis along with other nutrient-rich leafy greens, cruciferous veggies, beans, legumes, or yoghurt to obtain the maximum health benefits!
However, one fact that can never be denied is that brown rice is a comparatively a great choice than white rice!
Sai Sudha is a certified health blogger, who has an experience of above 2 years with an authorized certificate in the area of Introduction to food and health from Stanford University.
She has a special interest in life sciences, human psychology and fitness which drove her to make blogging turn passion to profession. Being an introvert, writer, empath and a nature lover, she loves Yoga and believes it to be one of the best pathways to self discovery! She loves travelling, exploring new places and wants to spread help through words. She finds happiness in little things which makes her live life to the fullest.