weight loss

Does rice make you gain weight?

Written by hana

If someone wants to lose weight, the first piece of advice they often hear is to avoid rice because it will make them fat. However, is rice really worth the poor nutritional status it was getting? First, let’s get some facts straight!

Rice is a staple food and a rich source of carbohydrates in our country, and it is neither fat nor harmful to health. However, it has a bad reputation because people consider it to be the main culprit behind many health disorders, including obesity and diabetes, among many others. So the question now is whether rice is the real culprit for weight gain. Or is it the way people consume it? Let’s find out!

Weight management and rice

According to research, rice is an important part of a balanced and nutritious diet. It is low in fat and sugar, easy to digest, gluten-free and a good source of B vitamins.

In addition, being one of the energy-dense foods, some rice varieties are a storehouse of other beneficial nutrients such as magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, selenium and iron.

Rice is a high-carbohydrate food that provides the body with energy. The fiber in rice helps regulate digestion, and the protein helps build and repair tissues.

Here’s how rice helps maintain optimal weight:

  • The amino acids present in rice help break down the fat content stored in the body.
  • The B vitamins in rice play a vital role in fat metabolism and prevent bloating and mood swings.
  • Eating rice helps balance hormone levels, which is crucial in reducing belly fat.
  • Rice also helps regulate leptin resistance, which prevents an individual from overeating and gaining weight.
  • Studies show that some types of rice have probiotic benefits, and are favorable for gut bacteria, which ultimately helps achieve an optimal outcome in shape, size, and immune function.

Brown rice versus white rice

The usual healthcare debate revolves around the healthy choice between brown and white rice. What type of rice is more nutritious, brown or white?

Brown rice Unrefined, which means it contains more fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals and has higher antioxidant properties. On the other hand, brown rice contains some anti-nutrients such as phytic acid, which can be reduced by increasing the soaking time and temperature. In addition, its high fiber content can make it difficult for people with gut issues.

Heavy processing often kills off the nutritious coating of white rice, leaving it lacking in vitamins and minerals. Since white rice is refined, excessive consumption may lead to obesity and other chronic health issues. However, when it comes to losing weight, it is not suitable or harmful for weight loss. Make sure you take it in the right amount, based on your work and lifestyle.

Will rice cause weight gain?

The prevalence of obesity and other related diseases, such as heart disease, is increasing in India. It makes people more aware of their nutritional composition and habits and dispels myths.

Weight gain depends on the portion of food one eats and not on the type. All foods benefit health in one way or another, but quantity can negate the benefits.

Likewise, rice can cause you to gain weight when you consume more than you need. As a high-carbohydrate food group, the glycemic index of rice is slightly high, at 64. As a result, it may increase your blood sugar level and affect insulin function.

HealthifyMe note

Rice is one of the foods that give energy, and when taken in the right proportions and the right combination, it will help in losing weight. In addition, adding brown rice to a daily diet will lower total cholesterol levels and make one feel full for a long time. As a result, it will help you lose weight. However, the amount of consumption and the foods you eat with rice can greatly affect your weight loss journey.

Health tips to include rice in your diet

Simply put, rice can be an important part of a balanced weight loss plan. The key is to use healthy grains of knowledge. Here is a list of effective ways to safely use rice in your daily diet without hampering your weight management.

Practice portion control

Rice is healthy, but contains calories. Hence, it is necessary to adjust the portion control as per the needs of your body so that you do not end up with excess calories. The correct portion size is to 1 cup, which typically contains 200 calories. It may vary depending on the type of rice you have chosen.

Pair it with vegetables

Rice is often classified as a “bad” food due to its high glycemic index. This means that the rice will digest quickly, causing a sudden spike in blood sugar. Therefore, you will feel hungry in a short time, and you will consume more calories. Pairing it with vegetables that are high in fiber and low in calories will help manage that blood glucose spike.

Choose healthy cooking methods

Rice in its form can be healthy. But when you make it into fried rice or add butter, heavy cream or margarine, it will result in more fat, sugar and calories to increase your weight when you eat it regularly. Hence, make sure to boil plain rice to reap the maximum benefits.


Sustainable weight loss should be an ideal combination of regular exercise and a balanced diet. You don’t have to give up your favorite food like rice if you’re trying to shed a few pounds.

In short, rice, a versatile food, alone will not lead to weight gain or may aid weight loss. It has to do with the entire meal or added food sources affecting the process.

When you can watch the serving size and type of rice and cook it in healthy ways, you don’t have to cut rice out of your diet to achieve your weight loss goals.

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