This week’s SUPERFOOD: Brown Rice! These days most everyone knows that brown rice is better for you than white rice. Even most Asian restaurants will offer brown rice as an option to the sticky white rice associated with a regular order of General Tso’s chicken. However, why is brown rice healthier?
The main reason brown rice is the better choice boils down to the fact that brown rice is a WHOLE grain. Just as a wheat berry’s nutrients are stripped in the creation of white flour, white rice is made by stripping whole grain rice. White flour and white rice are not whole grains, they are processed foods. Here’s a review of how white flour is made from my 11 October 2011 post:
“Understanding White Flour: Did you know that when white flour is processed, it’s stripped of all the natural vitamins and minerals found in it’s original whole wheat grain? Yes! A wheat berry is made up of three parts: the bran, endosperm, and the germ. During processing, the high-fiber bran part and the vitamin & mineral packed germ is discarded (for animal feed!) leaving only the endosperm (the carbohydrate portion of the wheat berry). 90-98% of the critical nutrition is located in the germ and the bran, but that is not what is made into flour or the millions of products found on grocery shelves- pretzels, breads, crackers, etc. Those products only contain the endosperm- basically the empty calories of the carbohydrate portion of the wheat berry.” To read more from this post: CLICK HERE
So, brown rice is the whole grain and retains the fiber and germ, essentially maintaining all the vital nutrients. Brown rice is high in manganese, selenium, antioxidants, and fiber. Manganese benefits your nervous and reproductive system, while selenium is a mineral known to reduce the risk of heart disease and arthritis. The fiber in brown rice also keeps you regular and can promote weight loss by making you feel fuller…health benefits AND weight loss – WIN/WIN!
Also, recent research has suggested that replacing white rice with brown rice can reduce your risk for Type 2 diabetes: Brown Rice can reduce the risk of Type 2 Diabetes. This is because refined white rice has a higher glycemic index when compared to brown rice, which basically means that it turns into glucose more quickly when ingested. So, rid your pantry of white rice and replace it with brown rice or a similar whole grain variety…and remembering the moderation rule, don’t flip out if your favorite restaurant hasn’t added brown rice to the menu. Just ensure the majority of the grains you consume are whole grains, instead of the processed and stripped white varieties.
Here’s an awesome way to incorporate brown rice tortillas into your meal plan. It’s delicious and nutritious, your kids won’t even know that it’s good for them In addition, try our tasty cinnamon chips that are also made from brown rice: Tasty Cinnamon Chips
1 lb ground turkey
1/2 red onion, chopped
Garlic cloves, 2-3 or to taste
Salt/pepper to taste
2 tsp lime juice
1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)
2-3 green onions, chopped
Optional add-ins: spinach, cheese, black olives, cilantro, avocado
***To turn the brown rice tortillas into chips: You can either BAKE or FRY the tortillas.
To BAKE: Rub a little EVOO on brown rice tortillas cut into squares or triangles. Bake at 350 for 8-9 minutes.
To FRY: Heat EVOO and cook brown rice tortillas cut into squares or triangles, flipping once. Dry on paper towels to soak up any excess oil.
To make the FUN NACHOS:
1. Saute a couple cloves of pressed garlic and chopped red onion in olive oil til brown.
2. Add 1 lb ground turkey, salt/pepper to taste, and lime juice.
3. Once browned, add a can of black beans and chopped green onions.
4. Lay the turkey mixture over brown rice tortilla chips then sprinkle with your choice of extra toppings. Try cheese (or vegan cheese to make it CLEAN), chopped spinach, cilantro, black olives, and avocado.