White rice vs brown rice-which one is better for you?

The above is a debate that is almost as heated as Hillary vs. Bernie, Trump vs. sane people. In the blue corner, you have white rice, void of its hull and all fibers; in the red corner it is brown rice, full of fiber and vitamins.

At first glance, it seems like an unfair fight. White rice carries fewer vitamins then brown rice and causes a higher insulin spike when consumed. Win by KO, McGregor style?

Not so fast, I am afraid.

Let’s tackle the insulin issue first. To begin with, insulin is the most anabolic hormone since it carries nutrients into the muscle (therefore stating the process of muscle growth = gains), so there is no need to shun it. White rice has a  higher GI reading than brown rice (glycemic index measures how much insulin is released as a result of consuming a certain aliment), which makes it a great post workout choice. Secondly, most people eat rice with another macronutrient, resulting in a lower GI.

What about the fiber and mineral part? True. Brown rice carries more fiber but it is also rich in phytic acid. In my opinion, it is not a matter of whether or not you have a problem with phytic acid, it is whether or not the greater amount of nutrients in brown rice are actually off-set by its phytic acid content. For those who don’t remember, phytic acid binds to important minerals and prevents their absorption. So most of the extra nutrients that brown rice carries are not really being digested, so that is a wash.

In the grand scheme of things, the differences between brown and white rice are so minuscule, they will not affect your physique one way or another, so just go by personal preference. If anything, it is an example as to how the fitness world is obsessing about a small detail thereby losing focus of what really matters such as total amount of carbs consumed for the day. Trust me, as a personal trainer in NYC I pretty much deal all day woth people suffering from information overload. But I digress…

I, personally, cannot stand the taste of brown rice, but maybe that is why my physique is lacking…