Rice: Is it good or bad for the diet? Properties and benefits of this versatile grain – Health

The workhorse of everyday cooking, with the versatility needed to adapt to the most diverse recipes, Rice provides many benefits, But it also has its opponents. Although it is the basis of the diet of Eastern populations, such as the Chinese or Japanese, who are not prone to being overweight, it is common for people focused on losing weight to eliminate it from their diet. As everything, The main thing is to keep the balance and preparation and portion sizes right.

“Economic, quick-cooking, filling, provides fiber, especially in the case of whole grains, It is touch-free, does not spread and can be taken in food,” lists nutrition graduate Jorgelina Latorraga (MN 4283), head of food and nutrition services at Finochieto Sanatorium and member of the ASE National Wellness Medical Team. Let’s give. key characteristics..

There are those who prefer hard rice, others soft, more or less whole grain. The type of rice consumed does not make much difference.

Furthermore, since it is a carbohydrate, it contributes to muscle gains.

“Logically, carbohydrates promote muscle gains because they help improve muscle hydration. he is, “Consuming good amounts of protein, carbohydrates and fluids will improve your muscle size.” Sports therapist Alejandro Garcia (MN 106404) says. The variety of rice chosen has no effect on this.

For the sports expert, the choice of rice type is more influenced by taste and one’s own taste. ,There are those who prefer hard rice, others soft, more or less whole grain. The type of rice consumed does not make much difference.”, in terms of muscle gains, he says.

There are thousands of varieties of rice in the world and although each dish requires different varieties, personal taste influences the choice of one or the other. “The difference is more of texture, than taste. Basmati is also identified by its aroma,” highlights Jorgelina Latorraga. In each case, the amount of cotton they release during cooking, the ability to stick or gelatinize, or the possibility of swelling define the classification of each fiber. this last “It is important in gastronomy because it allows you to obtain preparations typical of each region”Adds the nutritionist.


We tell you which is the most recommended type of rice.

Another classification, perhaps the most commonly used, divides rice according to its shape, which can be “round, normal and long; In Argentina we have Carnaroli, which does not stick or go over, and Double Carolina, which conforms to this classification,” explains Latorraga. However today it is possible to obtain the imported variety that every recipe requires.

“At a health level we already know that we are interested in foods that are not processed, so all whole grains, red, white, black or wild, are considered whole grains that have their germ fiber. , preserves vitamins, fatty acids and starch in a balanced and natural way for our nutrition,” says the expert.

For people who want to lose weight, or who simply take care of themselves and choose to eat healthy, a question always arises when creating recipes: Is it advisable to eat white rice or is it better to limit yourself to whole grain rice? According to nutritionists, For those looking to lose weight or whose aim is to eat healthy, it is not necessary to remove white rice from the diet, as long as it takes up a quarter of the plate, cooked with pure olive oil, not with butter or cream, And accompany it with vegetables and lean protein. “The difference between white and whole wheat is the fiber contribution of the latter, which allows not all carbohydrates to be absorbed and has a lower glycemic index. But if you keep these tips in mind, you can eat white rice as part of a healthy diet and lose weight.”

Among brown rice, Latorraga clarifies that Yemeni is “the most favorable in terms of texture and flavor.” And what has not passed or stuck, it “has a carbonization processing that makes it most practical for salads, diarrhea diets and side dishes because this process does not make the rice a processed food. The degree of processing is at an intermediate level. remains because the fiber has been removed, but it has not been processed to a level that increases the glycemic index (GI) of the food, i.e. its ability to raise the body’s blood glucose,” he said. Highlights. Wafers, snacks, cookies and rice toast, on the other hand, have increased GI and processing. “There the GI increases and the healthiness of rice decreases. Same thing happens with rice noodles also. The healthy thing that is promoted about these products is that they are low in calories, but when consumed too much or daily they increase blood sugar and stop providing the healthy effects we are looking for. Searching,” he explained.

Naomi Moriyama in her book “Japanese women do not age or gain weight” says that the basis of the Japanese diet is made up of 12% protein, 25% fat and 63% carbohydrates. without a doubt, Rice is the basis of the oriental diet to such an extent that at lunch and dinner bread and crackers are replaced by a small plate of rice without fat or salt. In addition, they eat a lot of fish, little sugar and drink eight to twelve glasses of water daily.

With regard to the amount of rice consumption recommended in our diet, each person’s lifestyle is decisive. “The amount of carbohydrates in general, not just rice, depends on the type of sport you practice and the quantity and whether you do sport or not. but more or less Between three to fifteen grams per kilogram of body weight per day may be recommended. Fifteen grams is in case of excessive physical activity or sports.Garcia insists.

How you prepare the dish also makes a difference. Nutritionist Jorgelina Latorraga recommends adding vinegar, pre-rinsing it or cooking it al dente to help lower the GI. “The amount and spices a person consumes also determine how healthy rice is. It can be cooked with olive oil and spices and used as a garnish for a tea cup or a quarter plate size. So it is an excellent option,” he assured.

Alejandro Garcia recommends mixing it with healthy fats, such as nuts, avocados and oils, as well as healthy proteins, such as meat, eggs or dairy products. “This explains why, in countries where consumption is daily, they do not have the problem of being overweight, because they manage the quantity and do not saturate it with fatty bodies of animal origin such as butter, cream or cheese,” he Said. Gives warning. Latorraga.

Nutritionist to train for weight loss It is advisable to season the rice with pure olive oil, add the vegetables, always controlling the amount of cooked rice, which should not exceed a quarter of the dish in line with carbohydrates. “Stews that include rice should not contain visible meat fat and should contain plenty of vegetables, avoiding the cream or butter present in risotto,” the expert explains. Another tip? “Commercial rice burgers are filling and don’t contain cholesterol like meat, but because they contain pre-fried batter, they are processed and provide calories. So, it is best to have salads with them in that version,” he advises.

Without a doubt, you can always learn something from oriental people. In this case, thousands of ways to make rice the basis of your diet without the risk of being overweight. And, by eating judiciously, today we know that we should not demonize any type of rice. Like any other food derived from nature, its secret lies in its preparation and the right dosage served on the plate so that it provides satiety and avoids excess.

La Nación (Argentina)/GDA

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