Basmati Rice for Weight Loss: Does It Help?


Basmati rice is a type of long-grain rice that is lower in calories and carbohydrates than other types of rice. Eating a diet lower in calories and carbohydrates can help with weight loss. However, consuming any food in large quantities can lead to weight gain, regardless of the type of food. Therefore, it is vital to maintain a balanced diet and engage in regular physical activity to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

Rice is our staple food.. It is abundant in fibre and carbs, which assist in maintaining high energy levels and enhancing digestive health. People trying to lose weight should eat less rice. However, you can add rice, especially basmati rice, in moderation to your diet to help you lose weight.

Indian and South Asian cuisine frequently uses a variety of rice known as basmati. Cooked basmati rice emits a distinct aroma similar to popcorn. The Hindi word for “basmati” is “full of aroma” or “fragrant.” It is also known as the “queen of perfumed rice.”

It comes in brown and white forms and is renowned for its nutty flavour and lovely scent. 

Nutritional Values of Basmati Rice

Each serving typically contains many calories and carbohydrates, though the precise nutrients depend on the particular strain of basmati. According to USDA, 100g of basmati rice contains:

  • Calories: 356 kcal
  • Protein: 6.67 g
  • Fat: 1.11 g
  • Carbohydrate: 77.8 g
  • Fibre: 2.2 g
  • Iron: 0.8 mg

Is Basmati Rice Good for Weight Loss? 

Basmati rice is a superior choice if you are attempting to lose weight while you cannot skip rice. Any healthy diet can include basmati rice in its whole-grain form. Some studies claim that basmati rice has fewer calories per serving than regular long-grain rice. As a result of its lower calories and glycemic index (GI), it is a healthier option if you attempt to maintain a healthy weight. Normal white rice has a GI of 79, while basmati rice has a GI of 50. Brown rice has a glycemic index of 55.

Low glycemic foods have a slow rate of digestion, which help satiety and promote weight loss. On the other hand, foods with a high glycemic index are linked to overeating and weight gain because they can quickly boost blood sugar levels.

In contrast, brown basmati rice has a little greater calorie, carb, and fibre content. Additionally, it offers higher phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, vitamin E, potassium, and potassium. 

You can consume it with dishes like chicken, fish, or vegetables. The most crucial step is to pay attention to your serving size. Following a healthy, balanced diet is essential to reaching and maintaining appropriate body weight. 

The HealthifyMe Note

Brown basmati rice is a whole grain since it includes the germ, bran, and endosperm, the three components of the kernel. There are many health advantages to eating whole grains. For example, eating whole grains lowers the risk of cancer, heart disease, and early death. In addition, regular consumption of whole grains, such as brown rice, has been linked to a lower risk of type 2 diabetes in another study. 

Benefits of Basmati for Weight Loss

Basmati rice also offers several health benefits that can lead to weight loss.

Low Glycemic Index

Basmati rice has a substantially lower glycemic index than other varieties, especially white rice. Basmati rice has a moderate to the medium glycemic index, falling to 50. Studies show that once you digest it, it releases its energy slowly. As a result, this keeps blood sugar levels stable. Small servings of basmati rice can be a part of a balanced diet if you have diabetes.

Low Calories

Basmati rice is lower in calories and carbohydrates than other rice types. For example, one cup of cooked Basmati rice contains about 205 calories and 45 grams of carbohydrates. In contrast, the same amount of white rice has about 242 calories and 53 grams of carbohydrates. Therefore, this implies that by choosing Basmati rice over other types of rice, you can reduce your calorie and carbohydrate intake without sacrificing taste.

Satiating

Basmati rice with a moderate GI is absorbed more slowly, which can help regulate blood sugar levels and keep you feeling full for longer. This benefits weight loss because it can help prevent overeating and cravings.

Contains Complex Carbs

Basmati rice is also a good source of complex carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates are a healthy energy source, providing a steady release of energy over time preventing blood sugar spikes to a great extent. It can help you avoid the energy crash and cravings that come with eating refined carbohydrates.

Rich in Vitamins and Minerals

Basmati rice is also rich in essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B6, vitamin D, and potassium. These nutrients are necessary for maintaining good health. They can help support weight loss by helping to regulate metabolism and promote muscle growth.

Gluten-free

Basmati rice is also gluten-free, making it an excellent option for those with gluten sensitivities. Also, this can be beneficial for weight loss. Usually people with gluten sensitivities often have difficulty losing weight. As a result, eliminating gluten from their diet can help to improve metabolism and digestion.

Versatile

You can enjoy Basmati rice in many ways, making it easy to incorporate into your diet and add variety to your meals. Eat it with pulses, meat and vegetables, and you have a complete meal. 

Low in Fat

Basmati rice is an excellent option for weight loss because it is low in fat and cholesterol. Also, this means you can enjoy Basmati rice without worrying about consuming excess amounts of unhealthy fats, which can contribute to weight gain.

Other Benefits of Basmati Rice

Improves Heart Health

You can lower the risk of heart disease by eating healthy grains like brown basmati rice. Eating whole grains can decrease blood cholesterol levels. They also assist in lowering blood pressure, which is a risk factor for heart disease.

Cancer Prevention

Compared to white basmati rice, brown basmati rice contains 20% more fibre overall. Studies suggest that diets with more fibre can lower your risk of getting some malignancies, especially colorectal cancer. 

Better Brain Health

B vitamins are abundant in basmati rice, particularly B1 (thiamine). Each serving contains 22% of the daily recommended consumption. Thiamine is essential for maintaining healthy brain function, and a lack of it can result in Wernicke encephalopathy.

Helps in Digestion

Basmati rice has a lot of fibre. Therefore, increased dietary fibre consumption can lower the incidence of Type 2 diabetes. Conversely, constipation and other digestive problems might result from a low-fibre diet. Because the fibre in basmati rice is soluble, it provides bulk and aids in proper digestion.

Brown Basmati or White Basmati: Which is Healthier?

White basmati, in contrast to brown basmati, is a refined grain. It removes essential nutrients during processing. According to research, eating more refined grains may increase the incidence of type 2 diabetes and negatively impact blood sugar regulation.

A study found a correlation between white rice consumption and an increased risk of obesity. However, it is critical to note that the bran, which provides most nutrients, including fibre, in the white variant, is removed during production. Therefore, white rice has more carbohydrates and less fibre than brown rice, which causes these effects. Thus, you can use white basmati rice in moderation. However, brown basmati may be a healthier choice in general. 

The HealthifyMe Note

Arsenic is a toxic heavy metal that can impair your health and raise your risk of diabetes, heart issues, and certain cancers. Compared to other types of rice, basmati is often lower in arsenic. However, compared to different rice kinds, several studies have revealed that basmati rice from California, India, or Pakistan has among the lowest amounts of arsenic. 

Conclusion

Throughout the world, particularly in Asian countries like India, rice is a staple diet. One of its nutritious varieties, basmati, offers several advantages for health. Basmati has a stronger scent and longer grains than other varieties of rice. It consists of a few essential vitamins and minerals. Also, does not contain cholesterol or trans fats, and the sodium content is naturally low. It has both white and brown varieties.

Eating rice in moderation can help people stick to healthier diets since it makes them feel satiated. Choose brown basmati rice whenever possible because studies suggest that white rice and other processed grains cause several health problems.

The Supporting Sources

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https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/2121458/nutrients

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