From Dr. Mercola:
Rice, in one form or another, is one of the most important staple foods in the world and has been for possibly thousands of years. Today, it supplies around 20 percent of the world’s food energy. China produces and consumes 90 percent of the rice on the planet, and in the U.S., rice is a $2.2 billion industry.
Today, basmati rice from India, jasmine from Thailand, and Arborio from Italy are growing in popularity among the more than 40,000 types, including long-, medium-, and short-grain white, as well as brown rice, yellow rice, purple, red, black, and shades in between, each with subtle textures and flavor variations.
These aromatic varieties can cost twice as much as plain white rice.
You may have heard brown rice is better for you than the white version. Technically, that’s true, but how it’s grown should also be taken into consideration, because it’s extremely important to keep abreast of new information and to know the path foods have taken on the way to your table.
Wild Rice Provides Superior Macronutrients Compared to White
White rice provides more thiamin (25 percent of the recommended daily value, DV), folic acid, and calcium, but wild rice has a more extensive nutritional profile overall, imparting 10 percent of the DV in folate, vitamin B6 and niacin, and eight percent each in riboflavin in every one-cup serving.
Comparatively speaking, wild rice is more nutrient-dense, plus it has significantly fewer calories and carbohydrates than white rice.
At the same time, it provides three times the fiber of white rice and an impressive amount (and higher quality) of protein due to essential amino acids such as methionine and lysine.
“Essential” means they can’t be synthesized by the body and must come from an outside source.1
Lysine has been referred to as one of the building blocks of protein, vital for optimal growth and converting fatty acids into energy, as well as lowering cholesterol and forming collagen for developing strong bones, tissues, tendons, cartilage, and skin.
It also prevents the amount of calcium lost in the urine and may even help prevent the bone loss known to occur with osteoporosis.2
Methionine, too, is important for forming cartilage, and can be particularly helpful for arthritis sufferers by boosting sulfur production. It has a number of other positive uses throughout the system, such as dissolving fats in your liver. It’s also an anti-inflammatory, and reduces pain as well as hair loss.3
Minerals are another major attribute in wild rice. That same single-cup serving provides 15 percent of the phosphorus you need in one day, along with the same amount of zinc (both essential for optimal heart, nerve, and muscle function) and magnesium.
Wild rice is a better choice for people wanting to lose weight, because it makes you feel full longer.
How Does Brown Rice Stack up to White Rice?
Ten percent of the daily recommended protein, as well as 14 percent of the fiber, is contained in