In many cultures all throughout the world, rice is a daily staple diet. If you consume rice frequently, brown rice is preferable to white since it is healthier. Eating brown rice every day can help you acquire a variety of crucial nutrients, including fiber, B vitamins, and magnesium when it’s a part of a well-balanced diet.

Is Brown Rice That Much Healthier Than White Rice?

The Physical Difference

The germ, bran, and endosperm are the three components that make up a whole grain. The grain is regarded as entire, just like in brown rice, when all of these components are present. Bran offers fiber as well as that brown hue. The bran and germ are taken out during the production of white rice, leaving only the starchy endosperm and a white hue.

The Nutritional Difference

As described above, brown rice has the germ and bran intact. These parts contribute nutrients to brown rice that white rice is lacking, specifically fiber, fat, and protein. Other nutrients found in the germ and bran include numerous B-vitamins, iron, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc. White rice usually has B-vitamins and iron added back in (which is why you see the word enriched on the package), so you’ll still get those nutrients when eating enriched white rice.

The main difference between brown and white rice is the fiber content. Brown rice has more fiber compared to white. Brown rice also has a touch more fat from the essential oils in the germ, which can cause it to spoil faster than white rice.


Here’s a breakdown of the nutrition facts for both white and brown rice:

Brown Rice (1 cup cooked): Calories: 216, Total Carbs: 44.8g, Fiber: 3.5g, Total Fat: 1.8g, Protein: 5.0g

White Rice (1 cup cooked): Calories: 205, Total Carbs: 44.5g, Fiber: 0.6g, Total Fat: 0.4g, Protein: 4.2g

Brown rice provides slightly more calories, protein, fiber, and total fat than white rice. In addition, compared to white rice, it has a more earthy flavor. Additionally, the fiber in the bran of brown rice makes it harder for the grain to absorb moisture, giving it a chewier tongue feel.

Nutrients Of Brown Rice per Serving

One half-cup serving of long-grain brown rice contains:

  • Calories: 108

  • Protein: 3 grams

  • Fat: 1 gram

  • Carbohydrates: 22 grams

  • Fiber: 2 grams

  • Sugar: 0 grams

The antioxidants phenols and flavonoids, which help prevent cell damage and the risk of early aging, are abundant in brown rice. You can get a lot of vitamins and minerals from brown rice as well:

  • Calcium

  • Iron

  • Manganese

  • Magnesium

  • Phosphorus

  • Selenium

  • Vitamin B1 (thiamine)

  • Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine)

Health Benefits

The bulk of the grain’s vitamins and minerals are found in the bran and germ, the two outer layers of brown rice. This is why brown rice is the healthier option because those layers are removed when white rice is produced.

Here are some of the best health benefits brown rice has to offer:

1. Reduced Risk of Diabetes

Due to brown rice’s low glycemic index (GI), you won’t experience a surge in blood sugar after eating it. According to studies, consuming three servings of whole grains each day, such as brown rice, can cut your risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 32%.

Conversely, eating white rice can raise your risk of developing diabetes. According to a different study, those who consume more white rice have a 17% higher risk of developing diabetes than those who consume less of it. According to scientific estimates, a person can cut their chance of developing diabetes by 16% by swapping roughly 50 grams of white rice each day for brown rice.

2. Improved Heart Health

Numerous elements included in brown rice support heart health. It has a lot of dietary fiber, which lowers the risk of heart disease death. Additionally, brown rice has a lot of magnesium, which helps lessen your risk of stroke and heart disease.

Overall, research indicates that increasing your intake of whole grains, such as brown rice, may lower your risk of heart disease and stroke by up to 22% and 12%, respectively.

3. Better Weight Control

By 2020, one in ten Americans will be seriously fat and four out of ten will be obese. Making brown rice a regular part of one’s diet may help overweight persons lose more weight and lower their body mass index, a frequent indicator of healthy or unhealthy weight.

Additionally, brown rice has higher nutritional fiber than white rice. Foods with more fiber let you feel satiated for longer while consuming fewer calories. You can eat less food without being more hungry if you swap out white rice for brown rice.


Adding Extra Nutrition to Your Brown Rice

Although eating a range of meals is vital for overall health, it’s acceptable to make brown rice a mainstay in your diet. Make new meals using your brown rice as the foundation, such as vegetable brown rice pilaf or shrimp fried brown rice. Delicious beans and rice can also be made using brown rice. Brown rice is a robust grain that goes well in stuffed peppers and soups.

To add taste and antioxidants without adding calories, you can flavor your rice with herbs and spices like turmeric, cumin, or cayenne.

Making the Switch

While some people can quit cold turkey, if you’ve been eating white rice daily for the most of your life, switching to brown rice can be challenging for you. Start by combining the two and gradually reducing the amount of white rice you eat until you are solely eating brown rice to help you ease yourself into the healthier variety of the grain.