Good News – Eat your rice guilt-free!

“I have stopped eating rice” say all weight watchers and diabetics!

Obviously, we know it is the right thing to do since rice is a primary cause of weight gain and fluctuations in blood sugar levels! Have you ever wondered why?

It is because the Glycemic Index (GI) of rice is very high! Goodness…that is such a complicated scientific term to use, isn’t it? Speaking in plain terms, GI is nothing but a measure of how fast and how much a food raises your blood glucose levels!

The body breaks down carbohydrates from the foods we eat and converts them to glucose. After eating, the time it takes for the body to convert carbohydrates and release glucose into the bloodstream varies, depending on the type of carbohydrate. Some foods cause the blood glucose level to rise rapidly; others have a gradual effect. Foods with higher GI values raise blood sugar more rapidly than foods with lower GI values. An increase in the blood sugar levels can lead to fat storage, diabetes etc.

Don’t be disappointed! It doesn’t mean you need to stop eating your favourite rice or carbs.

We have some good news for you!

The glycemic index of individual foods is not a perfect system for evaluating foods since it does not evaluate all of the foods within a meal.

If you pair high GI foods with low GI foods (especially protein, fibers and fat) in the right proportion, it lowers the GI of the overall meal. What we are trying to say is if you pair rice, which is a high GI food with a low GI food like rajma, dals, etc., which are a rich source of fiber and protein, it will make a balanced meal.

So if you were to add vegetables (of course not potato! As it is, another high GI food), eggs, meat, pulses or ghee to a small portion of rice (small/ medium bowl), the overall GI of the meal gets lowered and it causes the rice to digest slowly. It will not raise your blood sugar as quickly as plain white rice.

Pairing rice with any of these will lessen the spike in blood glucose.

Nutrients Sources Food Items
Fiber Vegetables Veg Biryani
Masala Rice
Protein Egg/ Lean Meats/ Fish Bhurji Pulao
Chicken Biryani
Fish Curry with Rice
Legumes and Pulses Rajma Chawal
Dal Rice
Fat Oil/ Ghee Fried Rice
Ghee Chawal

It is not a co-incidence that certain foods are paired together, it is not ONLY about taste!!

The next time, just plan your meals accordingly and include low glycemic index foods with your side of rice to avoid a surge in your blood sugar.

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