Brown Rice

Brown Rice

Brown rice is a superior grain to white rice for many reasons: health, amount in which it is processed, and taste. While most American diets consist of white rice, it is unfortunate that brown rice has taken a backseat to white when it can be a beneficial and tasty part of a person’s diet.

Brown rice and white rice start out the same when processed: the outer hull is removed, revealing the inner grain of rice. When the grain is processed further, the bran and germ layers are removed, resulting in what we know of as white rice. When the bran and germ layers are left intact, we have brown rice. These layers are important to the nutritional value of the grain. Without them, we are left with a grain that is lacking in B vitamins, iron, as well as fiber. While white rice is lacking in these nutrients, the law in the United States is that these vitamins present in brown rice (specifically, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B3,and Iron) must be added back into the white rice in order to be sold at our supermarkets. This is why when you buy white rice at the store it says it is “enriched”. The fiber content, however, is not added back in, which is an important part of a person’s diet.

The amount in which a food is processed is an important thing to consider in this day and age. The less processing it takes to prepare a food, the less energy is used as well. Brown rice is one of the foods that take less energy to prepare, so its milling is more environmentally friendly, as well as nutritionally superior. Many foods we consume are full of unpronounceable ingredients, which the average person does not even know what contained within. There is something refreshing about reaching for a bag of brown rice and seeing the ingredient: brown rice. Since this is a more natural state than white rice, it’s important to remember the proper storage of the grain to avoid spoiling. Many people are becoming more aware of the amount of processed foods in our diets, and as a result, we are seeing a resurgence of whole grains, and unrefined foods.

Taste is something that is overlooked when considering rice. While white rice has a bland flavor, the flavor of brown rice is distinctly different. It has a hearty, nutty flavor that is a great addition to any meal. If you are unaccustomed to brown rice’s flavor, a good way to prepare it is to use a favorite stock: chicken, beef, or vegetable. The use of stocks in rice’s preparation adds a nice richness of flavor to an otherwise mild flavor.

Brown rice is a nutritionally superior food to white rice in many ways, but the main reason why it is better the most important reason of all: taste!