top of page
  • Writer's pictureDr. Karuturi Subrahmanyam

White rice or brown rice - Which is healthier?


Rice is a popular food that people eat all over the world. It comes in different kinds, colors, shapes, and sizes. The most common kinds of rice are white rice and brown rice. But which one is better for your health?


White rice is the kind of rice that has been processed a lot. It has the outer layer and the inner layer taken off, leaving only the middle part. This makes white rice soft, fluffy, and easy to cook, but it also takes away most of its good things, such as fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

Brown rice is the kind of rice that has not been processed a lot. It keeps all parts of the grain. It has a chewy texture and a nutty taste, and it takes longer to cook than white rice. It also has more fiber, antioxidants, and good things than white rice.


Here are some of the good things that brown rice has more than white rice:

  • Fiber: Fiber is good for your stomach, as it helps you poop regularly, lower bad cholesterol, and control blood sugar. Fiber also makes you feel full sooner, which can help you lose weight.

  • Protein: Protein is good for your body, as it helps you build and fix your muscles, organs, skin, hair, and nails. It also helps you make hormones, fight germs, and do many things.

  • Micronutrients: Micronutrients are small things that your body needs to work well. Some of the micronutrients that brown rice gives you are:

  • Thiamine: Thiamine helps you turn food into energy and keep your nerves healthy.

  • Niacin: Niacin helps you lower bad cholesterol and improve blood flow.

  • Vitamin B6: Vitamin B6 helps you make red blood cells and brain chemicals.

  • Magnesium: Magnesium helps you relax your muscles and nerves, lower blood pressure, and control blood sugar.

  • Phosphorus: Phosphorus helps you make strong bones and teeth and use energy.

  • Iron: Iron helps you carry oxygen in your blood and prevent tiredness.

  • Zinc: Zinc helps you boost your immune system and heal wounds.


Brown rice also has antioxidants, which are good things that protect your cells from harm caused by bad things, which are unstable things that can cause swelling and sickness.

Some of the health benefits that brown rice can give you are:

  • Lowering the chance of getting type 2 diabetes. Many studies have shown that eating whole grains like brown rice can help lower blood sugar levels and insulin problems. On the other hand, eating processed grains like white rice can increase the chance of getting type 2 diabetes. This may be because of the difference in how fast a food raises your blood sugar levels. Brown rice has a slower and smaller effect on blood sugar levels than white rice.

  • Reducing the chance of getting heart disease or stroke. Eating whole grains like brown rice can help lower blood pressure, bad cholesterol levels, and swelling, which are all things that can hurt your heart and brain. Brown rice also has lignans, which are plant things that may have a good effect on your heart health.

  • Preventing cancer. Eating whole grains like brown rice can help lower the chance of getting some kinds of cancer, such as colon cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer. This may be because of the fiber in brown rice, which can stick to bad things and cancer things in your gut and get rid of them from your body. Brown rice also has antioxidants, which can prevent stress and damage that can lead to cancer.


White rice does not have many health benefits compared to brown rice. However, it does have some good points for some people and situations.

Some of the good points that white rice has are:

  • Helping with stomach problems. White rice is easier to digest than brown rice, as it has less fiber and less things that can stop you from getting minerals. White rice may be good for people with stomach problems, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), or celiac disease. White rice may also help with diarrhea, as it can soak up extra water and make your poop firmer.

  • Giving quick energy. White rice has a faster and bigger effect on blood sugar levels than brown rice, meaning it can give you a quick source of energy. This may be useful for people who need to fill up their energy stores after hard exercise or who have low blood sugar levels because of diabetes or other conditions.

  • Being cheaper and easier to get. White rice is less expensive and more widely available than brown rice in many parts of the world. It also lasts longer and is less likely to go bad than brown rice. White rice can be a main food for many people who do not have access to other healthy foods.


To sum up, both white rice and brown rice have their good and bad points. Brown rice is more full of good things and has more health benefits than white rice, but it also has more things that can stop you from getting minerals and takes longer to cook. White rice is less full of good things but easier to digest and gives quick energy. The best choice for you may depend on what you like, what you want, and what you need. You can also enjoy both kinds of rice in a balanced way as part of a healthy diet.


Dr. Karuturi Subrahmanyam, MD, FRCP (London), FACP (USA)

Internal Medicine Specialist


Kify Hospital

Danavaipeta

Rajahmundry

Phone : 85000 23456

Comments


bottom of page