First it was Vitamin C. It was believed to have great antioxidant properties, and I’m sure it does. It was also thought to help cure a cold, but that was later proven not to be true. But thousands of people still stock up on orange juice and Kleenex when they get a cold. As far as colds go, chicken soup is probably the best treatment. At least it has decongestant properties.
The next craze was Vitamin E. In addition to helping your heart, it was believed that large doses of the vitamin had all kinds of amazing health benefits from helping your sexual health to cleaning out your arteries. But then they found that Vitamin E in large doses may not be so good after all. It even worsened heart disease in some groups of people.
In the Vitamin category now Vitamin D is the hero. It’s hard to get adequate levels of the vitamin unless you are out in the sun a lot. So a lot of people have low levels. Vitamin D is now thought to boost your immune system and ward off certain types of cancer.
Other health food heroes are blueberries for brainpower, pomegranate juice for antioxidants, green tea, and fish oil for its omega 3 fatty acids for good heart health. Throw in dark chocolate and Acai berry and you are good to go as far as diet goes, that is until something new comes out.
Guess what? Something new has come out: Black rice. According to Medical News Today: “As well as being cheaper than blueberries, black rice has more anthocyanin antioxidants, vitamin E antioxidants, less sugar and more fiber than blueberries, a presentation at the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) revealed.”
At one point in Chinese history, black rice was considered the emperor’s rice and no one else was allowed to consume it. If they did, they faced a death sentence.
Brown rice is actually just black rice with the outer hull removed. But that’s where most of the antioxidants are. It also contains all of the fiber which can aid in digestion. Black rice also has pigments that may be healthier than some of the artificial coloring agents that are on the market today.
Unrefined rice is one of the largest food staples in developing countries around the world. When you refine rice and turn it white, all you really have left is the starch. So the next time you eat in a Chinese restaurant and the waiter asks: “Would you like rice with that?” Answer “Yes, make mine black.”