Top 10 Health Benefits of Brown Rice
According to a study conducted by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, brown rice is the top choice in terms of both nutritional and other inherent healthy benefits.
Here are the top 10 health benefits of brown rice.
1. Improves Cardiovascular Health
Brown rice is highly beneficial for a healthy heart. Its fiber content helps reduce blockage in the arteries due to plaque buildup.
2. Lowers Bad Cholesterol
Brown rice is an excellent source of soluble fiber, which helps lower the level of ‘bad’ low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol in the blood.
The oil in brown rice also has been shown to lower levels of LDL cholesterol.
3. Reduces Diabetes Risk
Brown rice has a lower glycemic index and is digested more slowly, causing a lower change in blood sugar. This helps avoid spikes in blood sugar levels.
4. Protects Against Cancer
A diet that contains brown rice instead of regular white rice is helpful in preventing various cancers, such as colon cancer, breast cancer and leukemia. This beneficial effect is due to the high antioxidant and high fiber content in brown rice.
5. Promotes Weight Loss
Switching to brown rice from white rice can even help you maintain a healthy body weight.
The fiber content of brown rice keeps you feeling full, which means less snacking on unhealthy foods. As brown rice keeps things moving in the digestive tract, it further promotes weight loss and metabolic function.
Plus, this rice contains manganese that helps synthesize body fats.
6. Boosts Immunity
Brown rice is loaded with a significant amount of vitamins, minerals and phenolic components that are essential for strong immunity. A strong immune system accelerates healing and enhances the body’s ability to fight infections.
Plus, the antioxidant property of brown rice helps fight free-radical damage that causes diseases and accelerates the aging process.
7. Keeps Bones Healthy
Eating brown rice even helps ensure strong and healthy bones. This benefit is mainly attributed to its magnesium content. Just one cup of brown rice contains 21 percent of the recommended daily value of magnesium.
Magnesium is a key nutrient, along with calcium and vitamin D, needed for healthy and strong bones. Magnesium is necessary to convert vitamin D into its active form so that it help in calcium absorption. Hence, this mineral aids in building bones and preventing bone demineralization.
In fact, magnesium deficiency has been associated with low bone density and development of arthritis and osteoporosis later in life.
8. Supports Healthy Bowel Function
Brown rice contains insoluble fiber, which is well-known for its digestive benefits. Fiber helps keep bowel movements regular by helping move bulk through the intestines more easily. As digestion becomes easy, intake of brown rice even reduces constipation as well as hemorrhoids.
Brown rice also contains a good amount of manganese that helps digest fats.
Furthermore, brown rice is naturally gluten-free, which makes it a popular staple of gluten-free diets.
When eating fiber-rich brown rice, make sure to also drink plenty of water to help the fiber do its job.
9. Maintains a Healthy Nervous System
Brown rice contains a high level of the nutrient manganese, a mineral needed to produce fatty acids and hormones necessary for a healthy nervous system. Also, magnesium balances the activity of calcium in the body for regulation of nerves and muscle tone. This is important for preventing muscle contraction.
Plus, the B vitamins in it ensure smooth functioning of the brain and nervous system by accelerating the metabolism in the brain.
Also, the potassium and calcium play a role in keeping the nerves and muscle cells healthy.
Even the vitamin E in brown rice is linked to prevention of several brain diseases caused by oxidative damage.
10. Perfect Baby Food
Being a powerhouse of natural nutrition and fiber, brown rice is one of the healthiest foods for babies. It helps in rapid growth of your baby. Its rich fiber content ensures smooth bowel functioning and prevents infant constipation.