Is Rice Flour Good for You?
Table of Contents
Rice flour is a low-carb, gluten-free alternative to wheat. It’s high in fiber and protein, but the downside of most rice flours is that they contain phytic acid, which can inhibit nutrient absorption when consumed on its own. However, combining it with other ingredients like psyllium husk or beta-glucan creates a more bioavailable supplement that promotes weight loss.
Rice flour is an alternative if you want to eliminate wheat flour and/or gluten but aren’t sure where to start. Rice powder, often known as gluten-free flour, is manufactured from finely milled rice. It’s a staple cuisine in Southeast Asia, Japan, and southern India and comes in both white and brown rice varieties.
Rice flour is a fantastic wheat flour alternative since most wheat flour includes gluten, a protein that may irritate the digestive system or worsen gluten intolerance. In addition, because of its capacity to prevent liquid separation, rice flour is a common thickening agent. As a result, it’s fantastic in soups, sauces, and gravies, and it’s also popular in crackers, cakes, and dumplings.
Is rice flour, on the other hand, healthy? That is a fantastic question. On the plus side, it’s rich in fiber and may help protect the liver, but it lacks the nourishment that other flours do.
Is Rice Flour Beneficial to Your Health?
Rice flour is a good option for gluten-free cuisine, which is becoming more popular. However, it’s crucial to note that certain foods may be nutritionally deficient.
Many gluten-free bakery-type items are lower in protein, fiber, and minerals and have a higher glycemic index than gluten-containing meals. Nutritional benefits may be improved by adding rice and buckwheat flour, egg white, or whey protein.
At the same time, several studies demonstrate that adding mineral-dense components like amaranth, buckwheat, or flaxseed flour to some of the newest gluten-free goods improves the glycemic index significantly.
- Fiber content is high
- It has the potential to improve liver function
1. It’s high in fiber that’s good for you
If constipation is a problem, rice flour — specifically brown rice flour — may help, as well as nuts, beans, and vegetables like cauliflower and potatoes — all of which are high in fiber.
A high-fiber diet not only aids the body in the elimination of waste but may also aid in the reduction of cholesterol and control of blood sugar levels. In addition, diverticular disease, colon disorders, type 2 diabetes, and hypertension may all be reduced with it.
2. Excellent Gluten-Free Alternative
Rice flour is manufactured from a gluten-free grain, making it a healthier option for those with gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease. Gluten is a protein that may be found in grains like wheat and rye.
Celiac disease is a digestive disorder that causes the immune system to malfunction when it comes into touch with gluten. If someone has a slight allergy to gluten, avoiding it might help with digestion. Rice flour may aid by acting as a substitute.
3. May aid in the maintenance of healthy liver function
Choline is found in rice flour, and it aids in the movement of cholesterol and triglycerides from the liver to where they’re required in the body. As a result, choline may aid in the maintenance of a healthy liver.
Choline is necessary to keep membrane components in good working order. Hepatocellular carcinoma is a cancer that develops due to chronic liver illness, and its prevalence is on the rise. In mice, a diet low in choline and rich in fat caused fast progression of liver fibrosis, according to a research published in the International Journal of Experimental Pathology. Because rice flour includes choline, it may be an excellent alternative for maintaining liver health.
Cons of Rice Flour
- Folate deficiency
- There are fewer phytonutrients.
1. Has a lower folate content than whole wheat flour
While whole wheat flour and rice flour have equal nutritional qualities, whole wheat flour outperforms rice flour in terms of folate. In terms of thiamine, niacin, and riboflavin, both grains are almost identical, and they both contain vitamin E, but whole wheat provides 14 percent of the daily recommended folate.
Folate is vital because it aids in the removal of homocysteine from the bloodstream. This procedure has the potential to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Why is folate so important during pregnancy? It’s necessary for the formation and proliferation of new cells, which is advantageous during pregnancy.
2. Phytonutrients are less abundant than in whole grain wheat
Lignans are key cancer-fighting phytonutrients found in both rice flour and whole grain wheat flour, although whole-grain wheat flour contains 30% more. Lignans may help the body’s estrogen levels balance out. Lignans-rich foods may help decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and cholesterol levels.
Rice flour comes in three varieties: brown rice flour, sweet rice flour, and white rice flour. Surprisingly, white rice is descended from brown rice. When the husk is removed, something happens.
The husk stays intact in brown rice, providing extra fiber and nutritional benefits, such as enhanced calcium and zinc. Brown rice flour has a nutty taste and is best used in conjunction with other flours to prevent a crumbly, dry texture.
Sweet rice flour is made from sticky short-grain white rice that contains more starch than white or brown rice. It’s popular in Asian cuisine. Though all three can thicken, the sweet rice variety may be a preferable option with its sticky-like, starchy components.
A cup of white rice flour (158 grams) comprises approximately:
- Calorie Count: 578
- carbs: 127 g
- Protein: 9.4 grams
- Fat: 2.2 grams
- Fiber: 3.8 grams
- Manganese: 1.9 milligrams (95 percent DV)
- Vitamin B6: 0.7 milligrams (34 percent DV)
- Selenium: 23.9 micrograms (34 percent DV)
- Niacin: 4.1 milligrams (20 percent DV)
- Thiamine: 0.2 milligram (15 percent DV)
- Phosphorus: 155 milligrams (15 percent DV)
- Magnesium: 55.3 milligrams (14 percent DV)
- Pantothenic acid: 1.3 milligrams (13 percent DV)
- Copper: 0.2 milligrams (10 percent DV)
- Zinc: 1.3 milligrams (8 percent DV)
Brown rice flour (158 grams) includes approximately:
- Calorie Count: 574
- Carbs: 121 grams
- Protein: 11.4 grams
- Fat: 4.4 grams
- Fiber: 7.3 grams
- Manganese: 6.3 milligrams (317 percent DV)
- Vitamin B6: 1.2 milligrams (58 percent DV)
- Phosphorus: 532 milligrams (53 percent DV)
- Niacin: 10 milligrams (50 percent DV)
- Thiamin: 0.7 micrograms (47 percent DV)
- Magnesium 177 milligrams (44 percent DV)
- Zinc: 3.9 milligrams (26 percent DV)
- Pantothenic acid: 2.5 milligrams (25 percent DV)
- Copper; 0.4 milligrams (18 percent DV)
- Iron: 3.1 milligrams (17 percent DV)
- Potassium: 457 milligrams (13 percent DV)
- Vitamin E: 1.9 milligrams (9 percent DV)
- Riboflavin: 0.1 milligrams (7 percent DV)
- Vitamin B12: 25.3 micrograms (6 percent DV)
Other Flours vs. Rice Flour
Rice flour has less yeast, which means you may need extra baking soda while baking. White rice flour has a silky smooth texture and a bright white hue that distinguishes it from the competition. It’s available at Asian markets and natural food shops, but if you have a coffee grinder or a powerful blender, you can make it yourself.
Rice flour and all-purpose white flour may be substituted with no difference in most cases since they operate similarly in the kitchen. Soups, sauces, gravies, and roux may all benefit from the use of rice flour or all-purpose flour as thickening agents.
Pea flour, chickpea flour, coconut flour, amaranth flour, arrowroot flour, quinoa flour, carob flour, einkorn flour, and even nut flours are among the many options. Basically, you can make flour out of almost any dry item, but is it suitable for baking? Chia seeds, for example, may be ground into chia flour, but can it perform as well as rice flour? Not at all. While chia flour may be used in a variety of applications, baking is not one of them.
Baking using chia flour had positive outcomes, according to research. However, when a smaller quantity was blended with rice flour, the results were much better. Using no more than 14 percent whole chia flour in a rice flour-based, gluten-free bread will improve the texture and wetness, while using more would degrade the bread’s quality. The good news is that, like many other flour alternatives, chia flour may improve nutritional value by raising ash, fat, protein, and dietary fiber levels, as well as offering a variety of other nutrients.
Rice flour is easy to come by and can be found in most supermarkets and health food shops. It’s available in single-serving packs or in bulk. Rice flour is also available at Asian specialty shops.
Rice flour is simple to make. All you have to do is crush the rice to a flour-like consistency in a high-powered blender or food processor. A grain grinder is another alternative. Wheat, rice, oats, barley, quinoa, and other tiny, hard, dry grains may be ground in a grain grinder, which can be adjusted for coarse or fine textures. When compared to purchasing it pre-ground, you will most likely save roughly 50%.
Rice flour may be used in a variety of dishes. To begin, try this:
Curry Cauliflower Florets (Gluten-Free)
- Cauliflower florets, 1 pound
- 3–4 tablespoons rice flour (brown)
- 2 eggs
- 1 tablespoon flakes of nutritional yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered onion
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic granules
- 1 pinch curry powder
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- Paprika, 1 teaspoon
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Spray with olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Using olive oil, coat a rimmed baking sheet. Remove from the equation.
- Beat the eggs in a mixing basin. Remove from the equation. Combine the rice flour, nutritional yeast, curry, turmeric, onion powder, garlic, salt, and pepper in a separate bowl.
- Pour the egg mixture over the cauliflower pieces and coat them evenly. Shake off any excess egg before adding to the dry ingredients. Using the dry mixture, coat them well. Place the coated cauliflower pieces on the baking sheet and continue with the remaining cauliflower.
- Apply a little layer of olive oil to the tops of the cauliflower pieces. Preheat the oven to 200°F and bake for 20–25 minutes, or until the pieces are soft. About halfway through, turn the pieces over. Serve when still hot.
Rice has been around for a long time – some believe it dates back to 5000 B.C. in China. Cultivation expanded fast from Greece to the Mediterranean, Southern Europe, and North Africa. Then, it expanded over Europe, reaching Portugal, Brazil, Spain, and South America.
Southern states established the rice trade on the numerous rice plantations surrounding Georgetown, Charleston, and Savannah in the United States, with the major strain of rice in the Carolinas, known as “Carolina Gold,” originating from Africa.
Rice is essential in many cultures, notably for ensuring marital fertility, which is why rice is often tossed during weddings. In addition, rice has practically become a mainstay as a child’s first solid meal.
It’s difficult to say when rice flour became a kind of flour, although it’s been used in rice noodles and Japanese delicacies for a long time.
Side Effects and Risks
Rice is usually simple to digest and may be included in a balanced diet. However, the presence of arsenic in rice has recently sparked debate. In general, if you’re concerned about overconsumption of rice flour, try utilizing a flour mix. If you feel arsenic is causing you troubles or if you’re having stomach problems, stop taking it right away and get expert treatment from your doctor.
If you’re gluten-intolerant or have Celiac disease, rice flour may be a perfect substitute for your diet. Experiment with various recipes to find which ones are the most effective. Also, remember that you may lose a few nutrients, but rice flour is a safe and tasty option in general.
On the other hand, Rice flour is gluten-free, rich in fiber, and helps protect your liver. On the negative, it has fewer minerals and phytonutrients than other flowers and has a high carbohydrate and calorie content.
Give rice flour a try if you’re looking for a gluten-free alternative to wheat flour, but don’t forget to look into other gluten-free flours like coconut flour, sprouted flour, oat flour, almond flour, tapioca flour, chickpea flour, sorghum flour, cassava flour, amaranth flour, buckwheat flour, teff flour, or even cricket flour.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is rice flour inflammatory?
A: There has not been enough research done on rice flour to confirm whether or not it is inflammatory, but most people with a wheat allergy can eat up to 1/4 cup of the flour without any reaction.
What are the benefits of rice flour?
A: Rice flour is a gluten-free grain that has protein, dietary fiber, and other nutrients. It is often used as an alternative to wheat flour because people have allergies or food sensitivities to certain flours.
Is rice flour better for you than white flour?
A: White flour is actually healthier than rice flour because it’s made from refined wheat, while brown rice contains glutens.
- is rice flour good for weight loss
- is white rice flour good for you
- is rice flour healthier than all-purpose flour
- is rice flour good for diabetics
- is rice flour good for health
The information on this website has not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration or any other medical body. We do not aim to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. Information is shared for educational purposes only. You must consult your doctor before acting on any content on this website, especially if you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition.
HOW WOULD YOU RATE THIS ARTICLE?