It is the main carb served at cook shops across Jamaica, chicken (of the many styles) and, pork and… yup you guessed it rice.
Rice is the number one staple in Jamaica, with it being cheap, readily available and relatively simple to cook, but what you probably don’t know is that it’s not very healthy, particularly the white variety.
The below are ten things no one tells you about rice and maybe why you want to skip it all together and opt for bananas and ground provisions instead.
It’s full of sugar
A lie! Yup, Rice is primarily a carbohydrate/starch. That means both table sugar and starch in staples, like rice and noodles, are converted into sugars in the blood when they are consumed.
It is linked to higher levels of diabetes
Several studies have shown that large quantities of white rice increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. According to one study, the diabetes risk rises by about 10% with each increased serving per day of white rice, this is one of the reasons diabetes rates tend to be higher among Asian populations.
It ranks high on the glycemic index
White rice ranks 70 and above on the glycemic index (GI).The GI is a scale that ranks a carbohydrate-containing food or drink by how much it raises blood sugar levels after it is eaten or drank. Essentially rice can quickly raise blood glucose to very high levels and eating a lot of high-glycemic foods can increase insulin resistance leading to diabetes.
It could be toxic
Arsenic is one of the world’s most toxic elements. The chemical has become more popular in the food chain due to pollution. Arsenic is known to accumulate in white rice at higher levels than in other crops.
It’s historical known as “famine food”
You may be surprised to know that Africa and not Asia is one of the oldest producers of rice, it originated near the Niger-river delta. It was primarily grown to sustain the population in times of famine because of its long shelf life and was used by Africans to conquer famine.
It can trigger enterocolitis syndrome
Rice is one of the most common triggers of enterocolitis syndrome (FPIES). FPIES is the inflammation of the small and large intestines and is common among babies and small children.
It can make you fat
The Chinese eat a lot of rice and they are slim, right? Traditionally the Chinese ate mainly unrefined starch, like brown rice, and were known to consume high amounts of vegetable which seems to help prevent weight gain. However, all carbs help you put on weight, especially when the portions are high, how much rice is in your box food, versus meat? How much do you move?
Reheating it can make you sick
Also known as fried rice syndrome, rice left out in room temperature can cause a food borne disease. Rice can contain spores of bacteria that can survive when rice is cooked. If left at room temperature, the spores can grow into bacteria and result in illness for the consumer.
It is devoid of any real nutrients
It is the least nutritious rice out and the most popular. It is a refined grains which means it just brown rice stripped of its nutrients leaving behind the “starchy white endosperm”. As a result of the process in which it is made, the majority of the grain’s B vitamins, minerals and fiber are are also removed.
Bad for female health
White rice has been known to alter estrogen levels, in fact all things white, like bread flour and pasta, can negatively affect women with fibroids. The high levels of estrogen is known to increase the size of fibroids. It can also throw off hormone levels in general.