10 Incredible Benefits Of Rice

The health benefits of rice include its ability to provide instant energy, regulate and improve bowel movements, stabilize blood sugar levels, and slow down the aging process. It also plays a role in providing vitamin B1 to the human body.

Other benefits include its ability to aid in skin care, boost metabolism, regulate digestion, and reduce high blood pressure. It helps in weight loss, boosts the immune system, and provides protection against dysentery, cancer, and heart diseases.

What Is Rice?

Rice is cereal grain, which belongs to the grass species Oryza sativa and Oryza glaberrima, also known as Asian and Australian rice respectively. The grain comes in more than 40,000 varieties with different shapes, sizes, texture, aroma, and colors.

Different types of rice include white, brown, wild, jasmine, and sushirice, among others. They can be long grain, medium grain, and short grain rice.

Rice Nutrition

Most varieties contain a high amount of carbohydrates and protein. The fiber content varies according to types of rice. For eg., brown rice has more fiber than white rice and therefore, is a healthy option. It is also rich in minerals like calciumironmagnesiumphosphoruspotassiummanganeseselenium, and copper. The vitamins in it include niacinpantothenic acid, and thiamin. It is a great food for people wanting a gluten-free option and it contains negligible fat.

For most people, rice is synonymous with short-grained white rice. This variety is considered healthy as it contains most of the nutrients and is rich in omega-6 fatty acids, which are known for their pro-inflammatory properties. However, it is generally low in vitamins and minerals.

Health Benefits Of Rice

It is a fundamental food in many cuisines around the world and is an important cereal crop that feeds more than half of the world’s population. The health benefits of this widespread crop are explained below.

Provides Energy

Since rice is abundant in carbohydrates, it acts as fuel for the body and aids in the normal functioning of the brain. Carbohydrates are metabolized by the body and turned into functional, usable energy. The vitamins, minerals, and organic components found in it increase the functioning and metabolic activity of all the organs, which further increases energy levels.

Prevents Obesity

Rice forms an integral part of a balanced diet as it can provide nutrients without having any negative impacts on health. Low levels of fat, cholesterol, and sodium also help reduce obesity and associated conditions.

Gluten-free

Rice naturally does not contain any gluten and hence, causes no inflammation in the gut. This means that people suffering from celiacdisease can easily include it in their diet.

Controls Blood Pressure

Rice is low in sodium, so it is considered one of the best foods for those suffering [3] from hypertension. Sodium can cause veins and arteries to constrict, increasing stress and strain on the cardiovascular system as the blood pressure increases. This is also associated with heart conditions like atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes, so avoiding an excess of this mineral is always a good idea.

Rice2Prevents Cancer

Whole grain variety of brown rice, is rich in insoluble fiber that helps protect against many types of cancer. Scientists and researchers believe that such insoluble fibers are vital for protecting the body against the development and metastasis of cancerous cells. Fiber is beneficial in defending against colorectal and intestinal cancer. However, besides fiber, it also has natural [4] antioxidants like vitamin Cvitamin A, and phenolic and flavonoid compounds, which help scour free radicals from the body.

Skin Care

Medical experts say that powdered rice can be applied topically to cure skin conditions. On the Indian subcontinent, rice water is readily prescribed by Ayurvedic practitioners as an effective ointment to cool off inflamed skin surfaces [5]. The phenolic compounds, particularly in brown or wild variety, have anti-inflammatory properties, so they are also good for soothing irritation and redness. Whether consumed or topically applied, it tends to relieve a number of skin conditions. The antioxidant capacity also helps delay the appearance of wrinkles and other premature signs of aging that affect the skin.

Prevents Alzheimer’s Disease

Brown rice is said to contain high levels of nutrients that stimulate the growth and the activity of neurotransmitters, subsequently helping in preventing Alzheimer’s disease to a considerable extent. Various species of wild rice have been shown to stimulate [6] neuroprotective enzymes in the brain, which inhibit the effects of free radicals and other toxins that can cause dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Diuretic & Digestive Qualities

The husk of rice is considered to be an effective [7] medicine to treat dysentery. As a diuretic, it helps you eliminate toxins from the body like uric acid, and even lose weight, since approximately 4% of urine is actually made up of body fat! The high fiber content also increases bowel movement regularity and protects against various types of cancer, as well as reducing the chances of cardiovascular diseases. Chinese people believe that rice considerably increases appetite, cures stomach ailments, and reduces all digestive problems.

Improves Metabolism

Rice is an excellent source [8] of vitamins and minerals like niacin, vitamin D, calcium, fiber, iron, thiamine, and riboflavin. These vitamins provide the foundation for the body’s metabolism, immune system health, and general functioning of the organs.

Boosts Cardiovascular Health

Rice bran oil is known to have antioxidant properties that promote cardiovascular strength by reducing [10]cholesterol levels in the body. Wild and brown rice varieties are far better than the white variety since the husk of the grain is where much of the nutrients are; ironically, the husk is removed in white rice preparation.

Rice

Relieves IBS

Rice has resistant [11] starch, which reaches the bowels and stimulates the growth of useful bacteria that help with normal bowel movements. Also, this insoluble rice is very useful in reducing the effects of conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and diarrhea.

Other Benefits

Rice can prevent chronic constipation. The insoluble fiber in it acts like a soft sponge that may be pushed through the intestinal tract quickly and easily. Brown rice and whole grains are known to be rich in insoluble fiber. However, it is also advisable to drink lots of water for relieving your constipated condition, in addition to eating fibrous foods.

Diabetics should [9] include the brown variety rather than the white one, which contains low levels of the glycemic index. As little as one cup of brown rice on a daily basis provides a person with almost 100% of their daily manganese requirement, which helps produce energy from carbohydrates and protein. It is also beneficial for normal functioning of the nervous system and the production of sex hormones.

Rice Selection

People choose different types of rice depending on their culinary needs, availability, and its potential health benefits as well. It can also be defined by the length of each grain. Asian cuisines specialize in long grained ones, whereas American countries prefer short or medium length grains.

Recent Updates on Rice

According to the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines, the nutritional value of rice needs to be improved even more so that it benefits mankind. Being the most dominant cereal crop in most of the world, it can improve the lives of millions who consume it.

Efforts are currently being made to increase the micro-nutrient value of this grain by combining traditional methods of growing crops with modern biotechnology. The institute further states that the development of rice with high iron and zinc compounds could be possible through bio-fortification. This can also induce high-quality yields, which could be eagerly accepted by farmers as well as the consumers for longer, healthier lives.

Everything you need to know about black beans

Black beans are classified as legumes. Also known as turtle beans because of their hard, shell-like appearance, black beans are, in fact, the edible seeds of the plant.

Like other legumes, such as peanuts, peas, and lentils, black beans are prized for their high protein and fiber content. They also contain several other key vitamins and minerals that are known to benefit human health.

This MNT Knowledge Center feature is part of a collection of articles on the health benefits of popular foods.

It provides a nutritional profile of the black bean and an in-depth look at its possible health benefits, how to incorporate black beans into your diet, and any potential health risks of consuming black beans.

Fast facts on black beansHere are some key points about black beans. More detail and supporting information is in the main article.

  • Among other benefits, black beans may help strengthen bones.
  • Black beans contain quercetin and saponins which can protect the heart.
  • Black beans contain around 114 kilocalories per half-cup.

Benefits

The potential health benefits of black beans include:

1) Maintaining healthy bones

black beans

Black beans are high in protein and fiber.

The iron, phosphorus, calciummagnesium, manganese, copper, and zinc in black beans all contribute to building and maintaining bone structure and strength.

Calcium and phosphorus are important in bone structure, while iron and zinc play crucial roles in maintaining the strength and elasticity of bones and joints.

Roughly 99 percent of the body’s calcium supply, 60 percent of its magnesium, and 80 percent of its phosphorus stores are contained in bone. This means it is extremely important to get enough of these nutrients from the diet.

2) Lowering blood pressure

Maintaining a low sodium intake is essential for keeping blood pressure at a normal level. Black beans are naturally low in sodium and contain potassium, calcium, and magnesium, all of which have been found to decrease blood pressure naturally.

Be sure to purchase low sodium canned options and still drain and rinse to further reduce sodium content.

3) Managing diabetes

Studies have shown that individuals with type 1 diabetes who consume high-fiber diets have lower blood glucose levels. Additionally, people with type 2 diabetes may have improved blood sugar, lipids, and insulin levels. One cup, or 172 grams (g), of cooked black beans contributes 15 g of fiber.

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends 25 g of fiber per day based on a 2,000-calorie diet. This may vary depending on overall intake of calories.

4) Warding off heart disease

The fiber, potassium, folate, vitamin B6, and phytonutrient content of black beans, coupled with its lack of cholesterol, all support heart health. This fiber helps lower the total amount of cholesterol in the blood and decrease the risk of heart disease.

Vitamin B6 and folate prevent the buildup of a compound known as homocysteine. When excessive amounts of homocysteine accumulate in the body, it can damage blood vessels and lead to heart problems.

The quercetin and saponins found in black beans also aid in cardioprotection. Quercetin is a natural anti-inflammatory that appears to reduce the risk of atherosclerosis and protect against the damage caused by low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol.

Research also indicates that saponins help lower blood lipid and blood cholesterol levels, which prevents damage to the heart and blood vessels.

5) Preventing cancer

Selenium is a mineral that is not present in most fruits and vegetables but can be found in black beans. It plays a role in liver enzyme function and helps detoxify some cancer-causing compounds in the body. Additionally, selenium may prevent inflammation and decreases tumor growth rates.

Saponins prevent cancer cells from multiplying and spreading throughout the body.

Fiber intakes from fruits and vegetables like black beans are associated with a lowered risk of colorectal cancer.

Black beans are high in folate, which plays a role in DNA synthesis and repair, thus preventing the formation of cancer cells from mutations in the DNA.

6) Healthy digestion

Because of their fiber content, black beans help to prevent constipation and promote regularity for a healthy digestive tract. They also provide fuel for the healthy bacteria in the colon.

7) Weight loss

Dietary fiber is commonly recognized as an important factor in weight loss and weight management by functioning as a “bulking agent” in the digestive system. High fiber foods increase the sense of fullness after eating and reduce appetite, making an individual feel fuller for longer, thereby lowering overall calorie intake.

Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like black beans decreases the risk of obesitydiabetes, heart disease, and overall mortality while promoting a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy, and overall lower weight.

Nutrition

According to the National Nutrient Database one-half cup (86g) of cooked black beans contains approximately:

  • Energy: 114 kilocalories
  • Protein: 7.62 g
  • Fat: 0.46 g
  • Carbohydrate: 20.39 g
  • Fiber: 7.5 g
  • Sugars: 0.28 g
  • Calcium: 23 milligrams (mg)
  • Iron: 1.81 mg
  • Magnesium: 60 mg
  • Phosphorus: 120 mg
  • Potassium: 305 mg
  • Sodium: 1 mg
  • Zinc: 0.96 mg
  • Thiamin: 0.21 mg
  • Niacin: 0.434 mg
  • Folate: 128 mg
  • Vitamin K: 2.8 mg

Black beans also offer a variety of phytonutrients like saponins, anthocyanins, kaempferol, and quercetin, all of which possess antioxidant properties.

As with many beans and legumes, black beans contain starch, a form of complex carbohydrate. Starch acts as a “slow burn” energy store that is slowly digested by the body, preventing a spike in blood sugar levels.

Diet

Black beans are available year-round and are often found in grocery stores either dried and packaged or canned. They have a dense, almost meaty texture that makes them a popular source of protein in vegetarian dishes.

If you are using canned black beans, be sure to select those with no added sodium and to drain and rinse them.

When preparing dried black beans, it is important to sort them, picking out any small rocks or other debris that may have wound up in the package. Wash and soak them in water for at least 8 to 10 hours before cooking to achieve optimum flavor and texture.

You can tell they are finished soaking when you can split them easily between your fingers. Soaking dried legumes reduces the amount of time needed to cook them, and also helps remove some of the oligosaccharides that cause gastrointestinal distress. Soaking beans for longer periods can help to reduce phytates, which may reduce mineral absorption.

Quick tips:

black bean tacos

Mix black beans with vegetables, cheese, and salsa to create a delicious taco salad.

  • Make a hearty black bean soup by blending cooked black beans with onions, tomatoes, and your favorite spices
  • Add black beans to burritos
  • Blend cooked black beans with garlic, onion, fresh cilantro, and lime juice for a quick and easy bean dip
  • Mix black beans, onions, lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, sharp cheddar cheese, and salsa together for a simple taco salad

Try these healthy recipes using black beans:

Risks

Legumes contain oligosaccharides known as galactans – complex sugars that the body cannot digest because it lacks the necessary enzyme – alpha-galactosidase.

Because of this, eating legumes, including black beans, is known to cause some people intestinal gas and discomfort.

If you experience these symptoms associated with legume intake, you may consider slowly introducing them into your diet. Another option is to soak beans longer, opt for sprouted beans, or drain the water used to soak dried legumes. This removes two oligosaccharides, raffinose, and stachyose, and eliminates some of the digestive issues.

It is the total overall eating pattern that is most important in preventing disease and attaining good health. It is better to eat a diet with a variety than to concentrate on individual foods as the key to good health.

Organic Black Beans is available to purchase at SFMart.com

This article is originally posted on Medical News Today

10 Amazing Benefits Of Sesame Seeds

Sesame seeds are extremely beneficial for health, but are often overlooked. They include the ability to prevent diabetes, lower blood pressure, prevent a wide variety of cancers, build strong bones, protect against radiation, increase heart health, help cure sleep disorders, improve digestion, reduce inflammation, boost respiratory health, strengthen your oral health, aid in healthy growth, improve circulation, detoxify the body, and eliminate depression and chronic stress.

Sesame seeds are derived from an unremarkable plant of the Sesamum genus and bears the scientific name of Sesamum indicum. Sesame seeds are considered the oldest oil seed crop in the world, and have been cultivated for more than 3,500 years. Evidence of their native forms are both in Africa and in India, places where they are still widely cultivated. It is extremely resilient, and grows in places where many other crops fail, which is why it was so heavily relied on throughout the ages.

Although it is a seed, it can still bother people with nut allergies, and it has a distinctly nutty flavor. Many of the health benefits are derived from the oils, which are found in higher concentrations in sesame seeds that in any other oilseed crop in the world. The sesame plant is no more than 3 feet tall, and the seeds are released from small pods along the plants’ axes.

The seeds themselves are very small, only 3-4 mm long and 2 mm wide, yet 3.85 million metric tonnes are produced every year! The seeds comes in a wide variety of colors, depending on the variety or strain of the sesame plant. The seeds can be purchased either shelled or unshelled. They are commonly added to salads, as an ingredient or topping for bread and grain products, crackers, sushi, cakes, soups, breading for fish and meat, and a wide variety of other applications. You can find sesame seeds in almost every cultural cuisine in some way. This wide spread is due to its availability, health benefits, and pleasant flavor.

Nutritional Value Of Sesame Seeds

The many health benefits of sesame seeds are due to its nutritional content, including vitamins, minerals, natural oils, and organic compounds which consist of calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, copper, zinc, fiber, thiamin, vitamin B6, folate, protein, and tryptophan. The wide range of health benefits are explained in greater detail below.

Health Benefits Of Sesame Seeds

Blood Pressure: The natural oils of sesame seeds have been connected to a reduction in hypertension in a number of research studies, which reduces the strain on your cardiovascular system, and helps prevent various cardiac conditions. Furthermore, magnesium has long been known as a vasodilator (an agent that reduces blood pressure) and sesame seeds are packed with this essential mineral, containing up to 25% of your daily requirement in a single serving.

sesameseedsCancer Prevention: With the wide range of essential vitamins and minerals contained in sesame seeds, it is no surprise that it has been linked to a reduction in the risk of cancer. Beyond the role of these more common minerals, including the powerful anti-carcinogenic effects of magnesium, sesame seeds also contain phytate, an uncommon cancer preventing compound that functions as an antioxidant and reduces the impact and effects of free radicals, the dangerous byproducts of cellular metabolism that have been connected to many forms of cancer and various other conditions like heart diseases, premature aging, and cognitive malfunctions. Specific cancer prevention that sesame seeds have been linked to include leukemia, breast, lung, pancreatic, colon, and prostate cancers.

Diabetes Management: The components of sesame seeds, including the vital magnesium, have been connected to reducing the chances of diabetes and managing the symptoms in patients having already developed the condition. Furthermore, it has been shown that sesame seed oil can positively effect the impact of various diabetic medications like glibenclamide in patients suffering from Type 2 diabetes. It improves this oral medication’s functionality and further regulates the insulin and glucose levels in the body, thereby helping to manage the symptoms of diabetes.

Bone Health:  The impressive levels of essential minerals like zinc, calcium, and phosphorous that are found in sesame seeds can be a major boost for your body’s bone health. These minerals are integral parts in creating new bone matter, and strengthening/repairing bones that may be weakened by injury or the onset of debilitating bone conditions like osteoporosis.

Digestion: These little seeds pack a significant amount of fiber inside of them, like many other seeds and nuts. Fiber is an important element in healthy digestion, as it bulks up bowel movements and helps them move through the digestive tract, as well as stimulating peristaltic motion as food moves through the smooth intestine. This can reduce conditions like constipation, as well as diarrhea, while simultaneously protecting the health of your colon and reducing the chances of gastrointestinal diseases and cancer. Fiber also works for your heart, by scraping out dangerous LDL cholesterol from arteries and blood vessels, thereby protecting against atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes.

Anti-Inflammatory Qualities: The high content of copper in sesame seeds has a number of valuable functions, including the reduction of inflammation in joints, bones, and muscles, thereby reducing the associated pain of arthritis. Furthermore, copper is an essential mineral for strengthening blood vessel walls, bones, and joints. Finally, copper is necessary for the proper uptake of iron, a key component of hemoglobin. Therefore, proper copper content in the body maximizes circulation and ensures that the organ systems of the entire body receive enough oxygen to function properly.

sesameseedinfo02Radiation Protection: One of the unusual organic compounds in sesame seeds is called sesamol, and it has been associated with protecting DNA from the harmful effects of radiation. This radiation could come from accidental sources, or from the treatment of cancer with chemotherapy and radiotherapy. By protecting DNA from mutation due to radiation, sesame seeds can boost strength and reduce the chances of contracting other forms of cancer due to cellular mutation.

Oral Health: Perhaps the most notable effects of sesame seeds are its powerful effects on oral health. The process called oil pulling, in which certain amounts of sesame seed oil is swished around the mouth, can have a strong antibacterial and astringent effect on all aspects of oral health. It is also closely associated with reducing the presence of the Streptococcus bacteria, a common bacteria that can wreak havoc on your oral cavities and other parts of your body.

Skin and Hair Health: As mentioned, sesame seeds contain high levels of zinc, a vital component in the formation of collagen, which strengthens muscle tissue, hair, and skin. Also, sesame seed oil has been shown to reduce the appearance of burns and marks on the skin, as well as reducing the signs of premature aging.

Metabolic Function: Sesame seeds contain high amounts of protein, which is broken down and reassembled from its component parts into usable proteins for the human body. This adds to overall strength, healthy cellular growth, mobility, energy levels and metabolic function.

Words of Cautin: Excessive consumption of sesame seeds can cause irritation in the stomach and colon. They can also show up on drug tests due to their small amount of THC. However, both of these things occur when it is consumed in very large amounts.

Where do sesame seeds come from?

Sesame seeds come from the sesame plant, which is native to parts of Asia and East Africa. There are many varieties of sesame seeds, and they remain one of the most widespread and popular seeds in the world. The seeds are initially in a black hull inside a pod, so once those seeds are removed, they must be hulled, stripped of their shell, so they can be added to your hamburger bun!

Are sesame seeds nuts?

Sesame seeds are not nuts, although many people treat them the same way. There is a reason for this occasional fear of sesame seeds, since many of the same allergenic chemicals and proteins found in nuts are also in sesame seeds. Therefore, if you are allergic to some types of nuts, it would be wise to speak to your allergist about sesame seeds. However, scientifically speaking, sesame seeds are just seeds!

What is sesame?

Sesame is the name for both a plant and the seeds of that plant, which we come across in culinary preparations around the world, as well as certain natural health practices. Sesame, as a word, is derived from the Latin sesamum or Arabic semsem. Both of these words provide roots for things meaning “oil” or “liquid fat”. Sesame oil and seeds are highly sought after around the world for their nutrients and components.

How to roast sesame seeds?

You can roast or toast sesame seeds very easily, simply by spreading the seeds out in a pan (no more than 1 cup at a time) and move the pan continuously, ensuring that seeds keep moving and don’t burn. You want a nice even brown color on the seeds, not black, and if you start to smell an acrid or strong smell, they’ve begun to burn. You can also set them on a baking sheet and cook them at 350 degrees for about 10-12 minutes.

Are sesame seeds healthy?

Sesame seeds are very healthy, which is one of the reasons they are so popular in culinary preparations. Sesame seeds are packed with unique organic compounds, such as sesamolin, as well as minerals like copper, calcium, iron and manganese, as well as vitamins and fiber. Sesame seeds may be small, but they pack a major health punch, and can help with everything from digestion and circulation to bone strength and inflammation.

Where to buy sesame seeds?

You can buy sesame seeds at all major grocery stores and natural health food stores. Basically, sesame seeds are available everywhere, as they are one of the most popular types of seeds in the world. Ranging from GNC and Walmart to the smallest herbalist and natural health practitioner, sesame seeds are easily sourced.

How to eat black sesame seeds?

You should soak the black sesame seeds in water overnight to make them more easily digestible, and you can then sprinkle them on your salads, in your yogurt, or even blended in a smoothie. They are rich in B vitamins and iron, as well as calcium and zinc.

What are sesame seeds good for?

Sesame seeds are particularly good for optimizing digestion. The fiber they contain can help to ease constipation and improve your nutrient retention. Sesame seeds can help to improve blood pressure, build strong bones and protect the immune system. For oral health, sesame seeds are excellent, and are commonly eaten as a digestive. Finally, they can even detoxify the body and lead to lower stress levels.

How many calories in sesame seeds?

There is a surprisingly high number of calories in sesame seeds – approximately 50 calories in a single tablespoon. However, this is due to the concentrated nature of these seeds, which are overflowing with minerals, vitamins and organic compounds that the body needs. While eating an excessive amount of sesame seeds isn’t suggested, using them sparingly in your meals and adding them to your diet when possible is a very good idea.

How to use sesame seeds?

Sesame seeds can be used in a variety of ways, either added as a sprinkled topping on salads or stews, mixed into bread, ground into a thin paste like hummus, or even blended into a powder and mixed with various smoothies. Sesame oil is also very popular and potent for natural health remedies, ranging from topical applications on the body to using the oil as a digestive or anti-inflammatory substance.

Organic sesame Seed is available to purchase at SFMart.com

This article is originally posted on Organic Facts