Does rice make you gain weight?

[Article updated on 19/09/2023]

Available in more than 40,000 varieties, rice is a staple food for more than half of the world’s population. However, there are many misconceptions regarding rice consumption. One of the first things that comes to people’s minds when they decide to lose weight is to reduce their rice intake. Rich in carbohydrates, rice is, in fact, considered one of the worst foods for losing weight. But does rice make you fat like people think?

Before reading on

I’m not an expert in this field, but I am passionate about nutrition and health.

The articles you’ll find on my site are the result of in-depth research that I’d like to share with you. However, I would like to stress that I am not a health professional and that my advice should in no way replace that of a qualified physician. I’m here to guide you, but it’s important that you consult a professional for specific questions or medical concerns. Your well-being is important. So be sure to consult the appropriate experts and take the best possible care of yourself.

What is rice?

An edible cereal, rice is used in the preparation of a variety of dishes including porridges, soups and main dishes. Many regions, including almost all of East and Southeast Asia, rely entirely on rice as their staple food.

Does rice make you gain weight?
Almost all (95%) of global rice production is consumed by humans.

The whole grain, known as paddy, is enclosed in a hull. Complete machining removes all protective layers. Rice stripped of only its outer shell is called brown rice. Rice stripped of all its layers is called white rice. When white rice constitutes a significant part of the diet, there is a risk of beriberi, a disease resulting from thiamine and mineral deficiency. Parboiled white rice retains most of its nutrients.

What is the nutritional value of rice?

Brown rice contains both bran and germ. It is therefore more nutritious than white rice and rich in fiber and antioxidants. The nutritional value of rice is:

  • calories: 130;
  • carbohydrates: 29 grams;
  • fiber: 0 grams;
  • protein: 2 grams;
  • lipids: 0 grams;
  • manganese: 19% of the recommended daily intake (RDA);
  • magnesium: 3% RDA;
  • phosphorus: 4% RDA;
  • vitamin B6: 3% RDA;
  • selenium: 11% RDA

The bran and nutritious germ are removed from white rice to improve the visual quality of the rice. This factor makes brown rice a healthier choice than white rice. As for nutritional value, white rice contains:

  • calories: 112;
  • carbohydrates: 24 grams;
  • fiber: 2 grams;
  • protein: 2 grams;
  • lipids: 1 gram;
  • manganese: 55% RDA;
  • magnesium: 11% RDA;
  • phosphorus: 8% RDA;
  • vitamin B6: 7% RDA;
  • selenium: 14% RDA.

What are the properties of rice?

Each type of rice has particular properties.

Properties of white rice

White rice is undoubtedly the most famous type of rice of all. It can be found in any supermarket and stands out for its very low cost. However, white rice is not the option that suits you, since in its production it loses many of its properties.

White rice loses 85% of its vitamins, its fibers and a large part of its minerals due to refining. This rice is produced after hulling and polishing the grain. Basically, white rice contains only the endosperm, which is mainly composed of starch. This is called refined rice.

Brown rice

Brown rice has its shell removed but not the pericarp (the outermost part of the grain). This rice keeps all the nutrients intact. Richer in iron, selenium and B group vitamins, it also stands out for its high fiber content.

Brown rice fiber is essential because it helps carbohydrates to be absorbed more slowly. Fiber also manages to keep blood sugar levels stable. It prevents the appearance of cravings throughout the day and prevents the accumulation of fat.

Properties of red rice

Red rice is a very popular type of brown rice that is consumed mainly in Asian countries. This type of rice is used medicinally for cholesterol lowering and blood sugar control.

Red rice gets its characteristic color after brown rice is fermented with a type of yeast called Monascus Purpureus. It reduces the production of bad cholesterol.

Black rice

Black rice or emperor rice is a well-known type of rice in China. On the other hand, in Europe it is not easy to obtain and is considered a gourmet food. Currently it is very fashionable due to its wonderful nutritional properties.

Black rice stands out for its high vegetable protein content (up to 10 grams per 100 grams of product). It is ideal if you follow a vegetarian or vegan diet.

Black rice has high antioxidant power. It has anti-inflammatory properties. It is also a protector of the circulatory system and the vascular system. Black rice contains 4 times more iron than other rices. It also has all the properties of brown rice.

White, red, brown or black rice does not make you gain weight
Rice does not make you gain weight.

Does rice make you gain weight?

In the West, there is a widespread myth that rice makes you fat. However, in Southeast Asia, it is a staple food that has been consumed for millennia without causing any problems.

Of course, there are obese people in Asia, but they only make up a tiny part of the population. Indeed, Asians have a very fine structure, enjoy enviable health and many appear younger than their age. They also enjoy great longevity!

The myth of rice as an anti-diet food comes from the fact that this popular grain is a powerful source of energy. Certainly, if we consume more energy than we need, it is stored and makes us gain weight. However, we know that we cannot live without energy. In fact, carbohydrates are as essential in our diet as fuel for a vehicle.

In addition to the large amount of carbohydrates, rice contains protein and other important nutrients for the body. At the question ” Does rice make you gain weight? “, I am replying to you no, rice does not make you gain weight. On the contrary, it can be a powerful ally for losing weight..

Consume a dose proportional to the energy expended during the day. Prefer brown rice, as its absorption into the blood is slower. Additionally, brown rice, unlike refined rice, has a higher proportion of nutrients and more fiber.