Black Rice

I am not a big fan of rice. Other than to eat rice with khichdi (an Indian food that combines rice and lentils with vegetables) I don’t eat much rice. There are those that include rice as part of their daily diet. Ask them to forsake, and hell may be unleashed on earth. Even they would agree that polished white rice is not the healthiest thing for them. How do you satisfy your craving for rice, in such circumstances? You could look at Black Rice, also called the forbidden rice. Black rice acquired this name because at one point only Chinese Royalty and the very wealthy were permitted to eat it. Ordinary peasants were neither allowed to grow nor consume this rice. What drove the royalty to ban the consumption?

A 100 gms of Black Rice has about eight gms of protein, three grammes of Iron, five gms of fibre. It also has the highest concentration of antioxidants found in any rice. The antioxidant is anthocyanin found in the bran hull. Anthocyanin helps reduce inflammation, linked to several diseases including cardiovascular, immunity related diseases and cancer. Black Rice also contains Vitamin E which helps maintain eye and skin health. Studies have shown that black rice helps detoxify the body.

Despite all my readings, I didn’t realise that rice didn’t contain gluten. It was only recently that a friend pointed this out to me. Therefore, if you are gluten intolerant, this may be the product for you. Remember, most studies compare the benefits of whole grains, cereals and rice to processed foods. These studies then claim that the whole grain etc. are healthy for you in comparison. You could argue that almost anything is better than processed food. Rice has a fairly high carbohydrate content. If you have to eat rice, try the red or black varieties.


Ritesh is a born again health enthusiast and holds a Certificate in Physiology from Harvard Medical School and a Certificate in Nutrition from Tufts University.