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The first excuse we use to not include brown rice in our diet is that brown rice takes longer to cook. Well, it does, but at the same time brown rice is far more nutritious and an equally tasty alternative to white rice.
Brown rice is the unprocessed version of white rice and thus it doesn't appear as appealing as white rice, but still it surpasses white rice in terms of health benefits.
It is a great source of carbohydrates and contains a range of essential nutrients such as vitamin B, phosphorus, selenium, manganese, potassium and magnesium. Selenium also plays a role in the antioxidant process and can destroy cancer cells and even repair DNA. Most people don’t take in the proper amount of selenium of which brown rice is a good source – it provides more than 27 percent of the daily recommended value. Selenium is important for regulating the thyroid hormone metabolism and immune system function.
Here we are listing 8 of the most important health benefits of brown rice:
Brown rice is enriched with selenium, as well as certain phenols which are known to fight the chances of colon cancer. These elements are present in much higher concentrations in brown rice than in white, thus this association may not be seen with high white rice consumption. The high content of dietary fiber also contributes to a healthy colon and helps maintain digestive system.
Brown rice has pytonutrient lignin which is known to inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells. Regular intake of brown rice can prevent the rick of developing these cells altogether.
Brown rice offers high fiber content which offers protection against cardiovascular disease. It has been established that the layer of tissue around brown rice, the same layer which is polished off when making white rice, helps reduce the action of protein Angiotensin II, which is known to increase atherosclerosis and blood pressure. The oil present in brown rice or extracted rice bran oil may help to lower harmful cholesterol levels and blood pressure, whilst raising levels of ‘healthy’ HDL cholesterol.
Brown rice contains a high level of the nutrient manganese, which is required to produce fatty acids and hormones needed to maintain a healthy nervous system.
Brown rice is a great source of magnesium, which is the key nutrient needed for healthy bones along with calcium and vitamin D. One cup of brown rice contains about 21% of your daily magnesium requirements. So definitely, there is no better grain to include in your diet, to ensure strong bones. Regular intake also prevents the development of osteoporosis in later stages of life.
Since brown rice is high in dietary fiber, it helps satiate your appetite and thus reduces the capacity for food intake. Brown rice also has a lower glycemic index than white rice, which means it will help in keeping blood sugar level stable.
Brown rice also contains good amounts of insoluble fiber that stays in the gut and aids digestion and excretion. This type of fiber attracts water into the gut and in this way causes more fluid bowel movements and prevents constipation. This way it also helps in regular flushing out of toxins from the body.
Since brown rice is richer than white rice in fiber content, inclusion of brown rice in the diet results in a more controlled, slower release of sugar into the blood stream. A diet rich in low GI, high fibre foods is associated with more stable blood glucose levels, which can help to reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
For more reasons to include brown rice in your diet, click here.
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