Refined carbohydrates and sugars stop you from losing weight. Eating foods high in refined carbohydrates can affect satiety, and it hinders your weight loss process by making you eat more throughout the day. As they do not have any dietary fiber, your stomach does not feel full, and you crave more food.
Refined carbohydrate foods also tend to be high in glycemic index, a measure of how quickly a food causes our blood sugar levels to rise. Foods high in the glycemic index increase your blood glucose levels, and the excess glucose is converted into body fat. If you keep consuming foods high in the glycemic index, you are storing more fat than a person consuming the same number of calories but choosing foods low in glycemic index1.
To maximize weight loss, focus on foods high in complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, pulses, legumes, millets, whole fruits and vegetables. Avoid foods high in simple carbohydrates such as white bread, pasta, noodles, white rice, bakery items, fruit juices and processed foods.
So if you are a rice eater, the most convenient way to reduce refined carbohydrates in your diet is swapping white rice with brown rice.
100 grams of cooked white rice provides 87 kcal and less than 2 grams of protein. In contrast, the same quantity of brown rice provides 86 kcal, 2.3 grams of protein, 1.2 grams of fiber, and other nutrients such as phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, riboflavin, and niacin in trace amounts.
Also, brown rice or any whole grain is relatively low in glycemic index, making it easier to lose weight.
What if you don't like the taste of brown rice? There is a workaround for that. As white rice is your primary source of carbohydrates, eat it along with other foods that contain healthy fats and enough protein. This meal should have 50 to 60% carbohydrates, 20 to 30% fats, and 10 to 20% protein. A meal with this sort of carbs, protein, fat composition is called a balanced meal. Here are some examples of meals that are balanced vs. high in carbohydrates.
The colourful doughnut chart indicates your meal's macronutrient composition in %carbs, % protein, and % fat. The next question you would have is how to know the macronutrient composition of your meal. Log the food you ate on the Hint app and check the macros chart. Keep logging your meals regularly to eat your favorite white rice and lose weight the healthy way.
- Greger, Michael. How Not to Diet: The Groundbreaking Science of Healthy, Permanent Weight Loss (p. 144). Pan Macmillan.