Ten times more antioxidants than brown rice. Image Credit: Suzy Hazelwood / Pexels. White rice consumption did not show these effects. The activation of the enzymes enhances amino acids including gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) that have been shown to help protect against certain cancers. People who eat red or black rice have shown a reduction in the progression of atherosclerotic plaque development, induced by dietary cholesterol. This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. And, along with other compounds found in the rice bran, which is what makes brown rice brown, gamma oryzanol may inhibit human cancer cell growth through antioxidant means, anti‑proliferative and pro-cancer cell suicide mechanisms, immune system modulation, and increasing barrier protection. The Adventist Health Study found that brown rice was one of four foods associated with significantly decreased risk of colorectal polyps, which can turn into colorectal cancer. That’s why I, or rather my rice cooker, has always cooked red, black, or purple rice with a handful of lentils or split peas thrown in for good measure, since they cook in the same time frame. Xu has said: "Just a spoonful of black rice bran contains more health promoting anthocyanin antioxidants than are found in a spoonful of blueberries, but with less sugar and more fiber and vitamin E antioxidants.". We don’t yet have clinical studies, but these pigmented rice varieties have everything that brown rice has, plus five times more antioxidants and a variety of extra benefits. That was a surprise; I’ve been using black, but I just switched to red. The Effects of Too Much Arsenic in the Diet, Cancer Risk from Arsenic in Rice and Seaweed. The steaming does not precook the rice, so it can take about 20 minutes to cook parboiled rice. Eating beans, chickpeas, split peas, or lentils at least three times a week was associated with 33 percent lower risk, but brown rice seemed to garner 40 percent lower risk, and that was just a single serving or more a week. During this refining process, however, white rice is stripped of iron, vitamins, zinc, magnesium and other important nutrients. The three steps include soaking, steaming and drying, and then removing the husk of the rice. The research indicates that this may be due to the lack of antioxidants in white rice that are present in red and black varieties of rice. Eating cooked green vegetables every day was associated with 24 percent lower risk, which was as much as eating dried fruit just three times a week. The other human study reported increased muscle strength after supplementation with a brown rice compound in hopes that it could provide a side effect-free alternative to anabolic steroids. We think it might be the fiber. It is also a key staple of a plant-based approach to eating, along with other whole grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes. Black rice has quite a higher content of anthocyanin compared to wild rice. White rice is a common staple in many cultures, especially Asian and Pacific cultures, including Hawaii. Anthocyanins are what make blueberries blue and red cabbage red. Black, purple, and red rice—and their pigment compounds—have been found to be involved in a variety of antioxidant, anti-cancer, anti-heart disease, anti-diabetes, and anti-allergy activities, but these were all studies done in a lab. Comparative nutrition studies on red, black and white varieties of rice suggest that pigments in red and black rice varieties may protect against chronic diseases. Anthocyanins not only provide the rice's unique color, but also deliver protective antioxidant properties and anti-carcinogenic activities, which aid in cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer prevention. Black derives its rich color from phytochemicals, anthocyanins and tocols, which are located in the inner portion of the rice bran. The protein, fiber, and health-promoting and protective bran also stays in the rice. The grains become glutinous and sticky when cooked, which is why it is also called "sticky rice." White rice does not show the health benefits demonstrated by whole grain rice since many of the health promoting nutrients and phytochemicals are lost in the milling process. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, The essential guide to taking care of your mind and body, this study published in Advances in Nutrition in 2012. But why don’t most people even choose brown over white? The protective benefits have been linked to the phytochemicals present in the rice bran portion of rice. Brown rice undergoes only minimal processing. Chinese black rice, aka forbidden rice, grown in Zhezhiang in northern China and eaten as juk (congee or porridge), is firm, not sticky, and cooks more quickly than brown rice. Written By Dr. Greger has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, testified before Congress, appeared on The Dr. Oz Show and The Colbert Report, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous "meat defamation" trial. FACLM Brown, Black, Purple, and Red (Unlike White on) Rice. It also has a lower glycemic index than white rice. This process enhances the nutrition density by driving certain nutrients from the bran to the endosperm, making it about 80 percent nutritionally similar to brown rice but with a better source of fiber, calcium, potassium, and B-6 than regular white rice. Naturally pigmented rice, such as black rice and red rice, may be even more nutritious than brown rice.