Friday, March 19, 2010

Friday Food Fact: White Rice vs. Brown Rice

How does white rice differ from brown rice? A friend asked me this the other day and I couldn't give the exact answer. Immediately I knew this had to be the Friday Food Fact. So I did some research and here's the skinny.

First, after the rice is harvested it goes through a huller/husker to remove the outside grain husk. After this process is complete you're left with brown rice. From brown rice the grain becomes further processed by the removal of the germ and inner husk (bran). After the removal of the germ and bran the only thing left is what's called the endosperm. Finally the grain is then polished using either glucose or talc. What's left is white rice.

In the processing of the grain many nutrients are lost including Vitamin E, Thiamin, Ribofavlin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Potassium, and Iron to name a few. In addition white rice has been totally robbed of it's dietary fiber containing about 1/4 of what brown rice contains. Often you will see white rice that has been 'fortified' or 'enriched which means they have synthetically added back some of the original nutrients into the white rice. Crazy huh?

The same process and loss of nutrients is largely true with white vs 100% whole wheat baked goods such as breads, bagels, English muffins etc.

Here's an idea. Let's get back to eating the 'whole' foods nature intended us to eat. There's no question we'd be better off for it.


Melissa G said...

My friend and I were discussing the differences between brown & white rice on Tues night, Garrett, so this is a timely post! I gave up "white" foods yrs ago (white rice, white bread, white sugar, white pasta) and feel so much better for it. Always boggles my mind when manufacturers over-process food and then have to ADD vitamins/minerals/nutrients back in . . . when the food already had them in the first place! Good blog post ~ enjoy your weekend :)

Anonymous said...

Man proposes, God disposes.........................................

Muus said...

Wow.... I had no idea. Honestly, I just thought, it might be very different rice. Hmmm.. guess I am going to change to brown rice now... hihi... (going to miss Basmati and Jasmin Rice though... :(..)... and I wonder what my dogs "say" about that change. I make them rice once or twice a week with all kind of veggies in it... they love it.

Arkelanor said...

Hi Garret. Love, love, love your blog! You are uniting my two passions in one place: swimming and healthy eating. You got a regular in me! Check out my own blog (just about swimming so far):
I'd love to hear your comments.

Arkelanor said...

Hi Garret,

Just found your blog and became a fan! You combine my two passions: swimming and eating, all in one place.

Check out my (swimming only) blog I'd love to hear what a pro swimmer like you has discovered in the pool!

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