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Up Your Game, Back to Basics
Our imaginations are easily captured by tales of foods that fueled the Aztec empire or drove Incan warriors to feats of untold strength and courage. However, there is one seemingly simple food that has not received the attention that it truly deserves.With so many incredible new superfoods coming into mainstream awareness, certain superfoods and their benefits are often overlooked. Our imaginations are easily captured by tales of foods that fueled the Aztec empire or drove Incan warriors to feats of untold strength and courage. There is one seemingly simple superfood however that has not received the attention that it truly deserves.
Oryza sativa or Asian rice is a cereal grain that has been cultivated for over 7000 years. Although it is the second largest consumed carbohydrate in the world, in many health circles rice and particularly white refined or polished rice is not particularly recommended and rightly so. Those in the know turn to brown rice as a healthier alternative, yet few are aware that one can consume the stabilized bran and germ polishings of brown rice as one of the most nourishing and powerful substances for a host of incredible health benefits.
The nutrition found in rice is concentrated in the bran and the germ, which comprises the outer layer of the kernel. The outer husks of the grain are initially removed in the first milling to produce brown rice. The milling then continues in the production of polished white rice. It is ironic that white rice is often enriched or fortified in order to replace the nutrients that are lost in the milling process. The bran and the germ however that are removed contain over 65% of the nutritional value that is in the rice.
As nutrient dense foods, rice bran and germ polishings contain a broad spectrum of vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, essential amino acids and over 100 antioxidants. One of the richest natural food sources of B vitamins with considerable amounts of thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5) and pyridoxine (B6), E vitamins, both tocopherols and tocotrienols, it is truly a remarkable food.
Rice bran and germ polishings contain over 100 protective antioxidants such as lycopene, lutein, zeaxanthin and polyphenols like alpha lipoic acid and proanthocyanidins.
These antioxidants are anti-inflammatory, immune enhancing, cholesterol reducing and detoxifying. One 28 gram serving size provides an ORAC (Oxygen radical absorbance capacity) of 5,740. This is a measurement of the antioxidant capacity of a food. This is 27 times the ORAC of blueberries.
Rice bran and germ polishings also contain other unique nutritional compounds such as cholesterol lowering gamma-oryzanol, an abundance of anti-inflammatory phytosterols such as beta-sitosterol and campesterol and powerful polysaccharides, which demonstrate enhanced immune function. The synergy and the interplay of these incredible nutrients gives rice bran and germ polishings its potential as a powerful superfood with a wide range of health benefits.
The slightly sweet and creamy taste can be enjoyed directly out the bag or can be easily incorporated into a variety of recipes from smoothies to salad dressing to adding it to yogurt, cereal and more.