In the past several years, it's become widely spread that brown rice is a healthier option over white rice. But is this really true?
Many clients are shocked when I mention white rice, so let's look into this topic a little bit to help you make the best decision.
First, what's the difference between white rice and brown rice anyways?
Brown rice is the whole form of rice. The shealth, known as the bran, that covers the grain of rice remains intact in brown rice, which is what gives it the brown color. White rice, on the other hand, is a refined version of rice and does not contain the bran.
The bran that remains on brown rice grains contains fiber and is very beneficial for your digestive health. It also contains magnesium, phosphorous, B-vitamins and protein. This is why it's commonly said that brown rice is the healthier option for you. More nutrients = healthier. Brown rice is also lower on the glycemic index and can help decrease the risk of diabetes.
The bran often absorbs pesticides and chemicals that are sprayed onto it during the farming process. One of the biggest chemicals to be of concern is arsenic. Some studies show that brown rice contains 50% more arsenic than the daily safety level issued by the EPA, especially when eating more than one serving per day.
As the bran is removed through the refining process, all of the potentially harmful chemicals are removed leaving only the tasty white center of the original rice seed. It's a good source of carbohydrates due to its low sodium levels, especially for those with high blood pressure and kidney problems.
White rice does not contain as many beneficial nutrients as brown rice. It does, however, still contain many of the essential amino acids we need in our dietary intake.
So what about taste? There are a few key differences as shown below.
So... which one is better?
Ultimately they both have benefits and disadvantages. The best thing to do is eat both. You don't always have to eat brown rice or always eat white rice. You can both forms of rice to create variability in your diet. It's important to keep your diet constantly varying - if you eat the same thing day in and day out, what vitamins, amino acids, nutrients and fuel might you be missing out on?