Do you like to eat rice? If you are like at least half of the world’s population who eat rice as a regular staple in the diet, then you probably do (Hu et al., 2014; Qian et al., 2016). If you only like to eat white rice, which has been milled or processed to not only remove the inedible hull, but the rice bran powder, too, then you are missing out on some very important and beneficial nutrients and dietary compounds.
If you decide to switch from white rice to brown rice, the additional rice bran nutrition may help you reduce the risks of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and undesirable weight (Kazemzadeh et al., 2014; Kim et al., 2011; Sun et al., 2010). Rice does not necessarily have to be brown to be a whole grain, as rice comes in other colors, such as red and black, but if you are only eating white rice, then you are not eating one of Mother Nature’s most wholesome foods - rice bran.
Many people across the world are making the mistake of milling the bran off the kernel and feeding it to animals! While it is great to keep all animals healthy, in reality, humans should be enjoying this nutritional powerhouse, known as rice bran, for themselves.
You may not have previously thought about the different parts of the rice kernel. You may just enjoy eating your rice! Nonetheless, the rice kernel has a few different main parts. The hull is the indigestible outer shell of the rice kernel that has to be removed, so that we can eat the rice.
Rice bran makes up the outer layers of the edible part of the rice kernel. This small part of the rice kernel is where most of the nutritional benefits are found, as it is packed with hundreds of amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, secondary metabolites, and cofactors, among others (Zarei et al., 2017).
Rice bran is usually a shade of brown, and it is less than 10% of the total weight of the rice kernel. The endosperm is the big white interior of the rice kernel, which is mostly digestible starch, and it is what we call white rice after the rice bran is removed through the milling process. The germ and awn are the other two parts of the rice kernel that are also removed during the milling process.
As noted above, rice bran is loaded with amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals, making it a nutritional powerhouse. The combination of all of these different nutrients and dietary factors creates important benefits. For example, rice bran may help to counteract the effects of cancer (Henderson et al., 2012; Verschoyle et al., 2007), type 2 diabetes (Cheng et al., 2010; de Munter et al., 2007; Qureshi et al., 2002), and obesity (Ham et al., 2015). It may also help to promote lipid metabolism (Kuriyan et al., 2005; Qureshi et al., 1997; Shibata et al., 2016; Wang et al., 2015), improve immune function (Wang et al., 2015), and help to combat infection from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, human rotavirus, and human norovirus (Goodyear et al., 2015; Kumar et al., 2012; Lei et al., 2016; Yang et al., 2015). Thus, you can see just from these few studies that rice bran uses are impressive for supporting people with health challenges, for helping regular physiological processes work better, and for preventing infections.
Rice bran should be part of your regular diet, unless you have some sort of allergy or sensitivity to any part of rice, which is exceedingly uncommon. You may be wondering if rice bran is gluten free? Even though rice is a grain, rice and rice bran are gluten free, so you do not have to be concerned if you have issues with gluten, such as having celiac disease or inflammatory bowel disorder.
If you do not want to give up white rice, but want to take supplemental brown rice, then make sure that the rice bran powder has been stabilized to prevent it from oxidizing and going rancid. In that case, or even if you do regularly consume brown or other whole-grain rice, Daily Brain Care is your go-to source for getting a high-quality stabilized rice bran to give you regular functional and supportive benefits from this amazing food. You only need a couple of grams per day to support you.
Enjoy rice bran as part of your overall approach to optimal health!
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de Munter JS, Hu FB, Spiegelman D, Franz M, van Dam RM. Whole grain, bran, and germ intake and risk of type 2 diabetes: a prospective cohort study and systematic review. PLoS Med. 2007 Aug;4(8):e261. doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0040261. PMID: 17760498; PMCID: PMC1952203.
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Lei S, Ramesh A, Twitchell E, Wen K, Bui T, Weiss M, Yang X, Kocher J, Li G, Giri-Rachman E, Trang NV, Jiang X, Ryan EP, Yuan L. High Protective Efficacy of Probiotics and Rice Bran against Human Norovirus Infection and Diarrhea in Gnotobiotic Pigs. Front Microbiol. 2016 Nov 2;7:1699. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.01699. PMID: 27853451; PMCID: PMC5090003.
Qian, Qian & Guo, Longbiao & Smith, Steven & Li, Jiayang. (2016). Breeding high-yield superior-quality hybrid super-rice by rational design. National Science Review. 3. nww006. 10.1093/nsr/nww006.
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Verschoyle RD, Greaves P, Cai H, Edwards RE, Steward WP, Gescher AJ. Evaluation of the cancer chemopreventive efficacy of rice bran in genetic mouse models of breast, prostate and intestinal carcinogenesis. Br J Cancer. 2007 Jan 29;96(2):248-54. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6603539. Epub 2007 Jan 9. PMID: 17211473; PMCID: PMC2359993.
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Zarei I, Brown DG, Nealon NJ, Ryan EP. Rice Bran Metabolome Contains Amino Acids, Vitamins & Cofactors, and Phytochemicals with Medicinal and Nutritional Properties. Rice (N Y). 2017 Dec;10(1):24. doi: 10.1186/s12284-017-0157-2. Epub 2017 Jun 2. PMID: 28547736; PMCID: PMC5453916.
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