• Wed, Nov 3 2010

Black Rice: The Ultimate Superfood?

Check out this post about the benefits of black rice by Victoria Stein at AOL Health.

Everyone knows that brown rice is healthier than white, but is black rice the fairest of them all?

Like its paler sibling brown rice, black rice is high in vitamin E, iron, fiber and antioxidants, but a new study suggests that it may also alleviate inflammation associated with allergies, asthma and other diseases.

An overlooked variety of rice sometimes known as “forbidden rice” because only emperors were allowed to eat it, black rice is still relatively rare in the West. Both black and brown rice retain many of the nutrients lost to white rice during processing, but black or purple rice is believed to be superior to brown varieties for several reasons.

For one, black rice rivals other deeply hued foods in its anthocyanin content, a potent antioxidant that can help protect against cancer and heart disease. Anthocyanins are found in purple, red and blue foods such as berries, grapes and eggplant. According to Zhimin Xu, an associate professor at the Department of Food Science at Louisiana State University, one spoonful of black rice bran — or 10 spoonfuls of cooked black rice — contains the same amount of anthocyanin as a spoonful of blueberries. In fact, Xu believes black rice is more nutritious than blueberries thanks to its low sugar content.

Keep reading on AOL Health.

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