Basmati rice vs White rice

food Jun 24, 2021
Photo by Wolfgang Hasselmann / Unsplash

Rice is a staple food of India and an essential component of the Indian diet.
It symbolizes fertility, wealth and good health. Rice is one of the major constituents of Ayurveda meals.
It adds a taste of sweetness. Upon cooking, it becomes light, soft and nourishing.
According to Ayurveda, its wonderful cooling nature plays an important role in balancing the Vata and Pitta doshas.  
Rice is easy to digest and offers more calories.

Basmati rice is a unique species of rice originating from India. India is the largest producer and exporter of basmati rice.
Basmati rice is a kind of long, slender-grained rice which has a special aroma and flavour.  This smell is due to the presence of a chemical called 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline, which is found in basmati rice at about 90 parts per billion.
It is much taller than other rice, and so it is prone to wind damage. It provides the most benefits for our health and nutrition.
The benefits of basmati rice increase when the rice is taken in its natural unprocessed form.
The natural, unprocessed form of Basmati rice is known as brown Basmati rice.
Brown basmati rice contains about 20% fiber that helps prevent the formation of cancerous cells in the body. It contains more nutrition and vitamins than other forms of polished rice.
Brown basmati rice is perhaps the healthiest rice one can eat. It is a healthy ‘Super grain.”
Basmati is gluten-free and low in fat. It contains all essential amino acids, folic acid, and is very low in sodium. It   has no cholesterol.
Basmati has a low to medium Glycemic Index (GI).
It has a lower GI than regular rice -67 vs. 89  
Low to Medium GI ingredients like Pure Basmati rice are suitable for those with Diabetes.
Basmati rice is also lower in calories and helps to lose or maintain a healthy weight. So it helps to manage illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease.  
However, a very-low-calorie, eating plan should not be followed unless under the supervision of a doctor.
A 1/4-cup serving of raw brown basmati rice has 150 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 33 grams of carbs, 2 grams of fiber and 4 grams of protein.

White rice is the name given to milled rice that has its husk, bran, and germ removed.
After milling, the rice is polished, resulting in a seed with a bright, white, shiny appearance.  
This alters the flavour, texture and appearance of the rice and helps prevent spoilage and extend its storage life.
White rice is a controversial food in nutrition circles. It may be the healthier choice.

White rice contains a certain level of anti-nutrients called phytates. They make rice hard and we are unable to absorb the minerals present in rice.
White rice is considered safe because, when rice is milled, the bran is removed. Since the bran is removed, it removes almost all of the phytic acid. This makes the rice more digestible and cuts down the grain based fiber which can be harmful to the gut.

A few years ago, research came out warning against rice consumption because it contains high levels of arsenic.  Arsenic is often found in the bran, which is removed in white rice.

April 19th is National Rice Ball Day ...incase you were planning a night in!
Photo by Pierre Bamin / Unsplash

A cup of white rice provides 108 micrograms of folate, 0.3 milligrams of thiamine, and 3.4 milligrams of niacin.

Relatively high white rice consumption may increase risk of diabetes.  
The glycaemic index value of white rice variety depends on the degree of processing, cooking time, and amylose content.
The glycaemic index values of white rice are higher. Diets with a high glycaemic index or glycaemic load are associated with increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.


A. Sandhya

M.Sc Zoology

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