Brown rice VS white rice

Brown rice is the rice as it comes naturally from the plant. The grain is complete, composed of three parts: germ (the point where the grain sprouts), bran (the external envelop), endosperm (the white internal part, that the new plant initially uses as “fuel” to grow). White rice is the rice resulting from industrial processing. The grain is incomplete, because the germ and the bran are removed. Only the endosperm remains.
Brown rice is alive food. If you put a grain in water, it will sprout. White rice is dead food. If you put a grain in water, nothing will happen.
Brown rice requires longer time to cook, because the presence of the bran makes the grain harder. White rice has been created for “convenience” reasons: one of these is that it requires less time to cook, because without the bran the grain is softer.
The presence of the bran has an important effect in brown rice. Since it contains fiber, it slows down the absorption of sugar in the blood stream, which is released more gradually and for longer time. Result: you feel full for longer, and have better control of your appetite. White rice was created also because it’s more palatable. Without fiber, as soon as you eat it the sugar is immediately released into your blood stream, giving you “pleasure”. But you pay a heavy price for this pleasure: the spike in your blood sugar level will be compensated by a very low level later. Result: you will have low energy, and soon you will be hungry again.
Brown rice is a nutrient dense food. Together with the carbohydrates contained in the endosperm, you also get  minerals, vitamins, good fats, fiber, all coming from the other two parts: germ and bran. White rice is an empty calorie food. Basically, it only gives you the pure carbohydrates contained in the endosperm. So white rice is caloric, but not nutrient.

This simple comparison brown rice vs white rice makes it evident:

brown rice is the healthiest form of rice. It is nutritious and it represents a long term strategy for having more energy.

white rice in an unhealthy food. It is non-nutritious and it represents a short term strategy: it’s a libido in the moment you eat it, but it’s also an insidious energy zapper.

Make your choice!


Notes: updated Nov 11, 2014 with better pictures.

Related: Density of nutrients, How your body uses the different nutrients

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