Low GI and Heart Disease

Rice has been a staple carbohydrate in many cultures for ages. But does this ancient grain bring about weight gain or weight loss? In modern weight loss diets, simple carbohydrates have been shunned, but science says rice can be a part of a successful diet plan. In order for rice to be good for weight loss, it’s important to:


  • Practice portion control
  • Use Low GI Rice
  • Bulk up with veggies
  • Be aware of additions
  • Adopt healthy cooking style

Rice Nutrition Values:


Rice is low in fat and gluten-free. The calories, macronutrients, vitamins and minerals vary depending on the type of rice. 100gms of Low GI Rice contains about 356.8 cal, 8.08g protein, 79.33g of carbohydrates, 0.89g of fiber, 0.80 g of fat and 0.60 g of Ash and one cup (200g) of cooked medium-grain brown rice has about 220 calories, 4.5 g protein, 1.5 g fat, 45 g carbohydrates, and 3.5 g of fiber. Brown rice is also rich in vitamins and minerals.


The healthiest types are: varieties of low GI rice, brown rice, wild rice, black rice, and red rice. Rice also comes in different sizes such as short, medium, and long grain. Short and medium grain tend to be more starchy and sweet, therefore long grain is slightly better for weight loss.

The way rice is processed will have an impact on factors that affect weight loss. Rice is made up of both digestible starch and resistant starch. Resistant starch is defined as the part that cannot be digested by human enzymes. This could promote weight loss by improving appetite, regulating hormones, and preserving lean body mass. Having more lean body mass has been linked to increased metabolism and therefore increased weight loss.



The amount of calories needed to lose weight can vary from person to person, depending on many factors such as gender, build, height, and activity level. The key is to determine the total amount of calories to take in per day in order to lose weight, then have the rice factor in as part of meal.

As a general guideline, Mayoclinic explains that since 3,500 excess calories equals about one pound (0.45 kg) of body weight, you need to create a deficit of about 3,500 calories in order to lose one pound.

The NHS developed an average recommended rice portion for healthy adults, 18-50 years old who do a moderate level of daily activity. Keep in mind this is a very general guideline.

  • Women wanting to lose weight should eat about 37 g of rice per portion.
  • Men trying to lose weight should eat about 50 g of rice per portion.


Rice can be an excellent component of an overall healthy diet. Just make sure to focus on the whole grain source, practice portion control, emphasize added vegetables, cook and cool to increase resistant starch, and focus on low calorie additions.

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