Despite being less popular than brown rice or wild rice, black rice, (known as forbidden rice) is an ancient grain that has even more impressive health benefits than most other closely related rice varieties. Not only is it the type of rice that is richest in powerful disease-fighting antioxidants, but it also contains dietary fiber, anti-inflammatory properties, and has the ability to help stop the development of diabetes, cancer, heart disease and even weight gain.
Black rice has been eaten in regions of Asia for thousands of years; in fact for centuries it was reserved for only Chinese royalty. Today this type of rice is picking up in popularity and popping up in more health food stores across the US, Australia, and Europe, as people discover the numerous health benefits that whole grain black rice has to offer.
An analysis of 12 different varieties of rice found that the antioxidant content of black rice was about six times higher than other varieties of rice. Black rice has also been found to rival blueberries in terms of antioxidant power. That is some fact, given that blueberries are known as one of the best antioxidants when compared with 40 other fruits and vegetables. Black rice bran has less sugar and is rich in fiber and vitamin E antioxidants.
While inflammation is a healthy bodily response to foreign bacteria and viruses, sometimes inflammation can get out of control, which is most definitely not a good thing! This type of chronic inflammation is believed by many experts and medical doctors to be at the core of many of today’s common diseases, from asthma to arthritis to cancer. Researchers carried out tests on both black rice bran and brown rice bran, which showed that while brown rice bran didn’t suppress inflammation, the black rice bran did! This led the researchers to suggest that black rice may be a useful ‘therapeutic agent for the treatment and prevention of diseases associated with chronic inflammation’.
The liver is one of our biggest organs, responsible for converting the nutrients from our food into materials that our body can use. It also regulates hormones and plays a vital role in detoxifying our body. According to some studies, researchers were led to believe that black rice may play a role in preventing fatty liver disease, most likely due to its high antioxidant content.
It’s true that certain foods rich in anthocyanin can boost your memory. There are many studies which link the main antioxidant in black rice with better memory.
It goes without saying that keeping a healthy heart is vital for overall health. Some studies seem to suggest that black rice decreases atherosclerotic plaque in the arteries. When this plaque builds up, it causes the arteries to harden and gets blocked. It’s a major risk factor for heart attack and a stroke. Researchers conclude that the antioxidant anthocyanin in black rice may play a role in reducing atherosclerosis.