Does eating rice make us fat?

Does eating rice make us fat?

When it comes to weight gain, there is a stigma that certain carbs such as rice should be avoided. Often, people think that they shouldn’t eat much rice because they feel by including it, this may cause them to gain weight or it’s stopping them from losing weight.

Some give up rice completely but find that as soon as they start eating it again, the weight comes straight back.

But do you really need to stop eating rice or are there better ways of eating rice?

In my Wellness Membership Program, I’m guiding on eating balanced meals and my clients are losing weight whilst eating rice and other grains (like pasta, bread and roti).

As an example, I wanted to show you what my client Bharti is eating. She’s lost over 16 pounds while eating her favourite meals, including traditional Indian food.

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Rice has been traditionally eaten in many countries and there are so many varieties of rice, including brown rice, white rice, wild rice, black rice and red rice. In my home, it’s a staple grain, being eaten daily and I like to make it as is easy to cook, can make once and eat twice and is not expensive.

When eating grains, you should reduce or avoid refined grains and have more whole grains instead. A whole grain contains the bran, germ and the endosperm. Refined grains have the bran removed and contains the endosperm which is starchy. This therefore affects the glycemic index, which measures how different foods affects blood sugar levels. Refined grains tend to have a higher glycemic index whereas whole grains tend to have a lower glycemic index.

Brown rice is a whole grain, therefore is higher in fibre, which has been shown to support a healthy digestive system and associated with a healthier heart as lowers cholesterol levels. Having foods with more fibre keeps you feeling full for longer. Brown rice also contains higher nutrient content.

Reduce risk of diabetes

Brown rice has been shown to be a better rice for those with diabetes. In a study done, it was seen that higher intake of white rice was associated with a higher risk of Type 2 diabetes. In contrast, high brown rice intake was associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. Substituting brown rice for white rice lowers the risk of Type 2 diabetes (1) If you are diabetic or pre-diabetic it is best to monitor how the different rice and portion sizes affects your blood sugar levels.

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How to lose weight when eating rice

Rice should be included as part of your main meal, where you are also having vegetables and protein. What causes weight gain is how you are cooking the rice, how much of it you eat and what you are eating with it. So, learn your portion sizes and what to eat and enjoy eating rice without worrying if it will cause weight gain.

Sujata Din is a Certified Health Coach and Certified Professional Cancer Coach. In this regular column for iGlobal, she offers some special insights, from useful wellness tips to recipes for creations that are not only delicious but also healthy.

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