In Asia, parts of Africa, and Latin America, many people consume rice since this is their staple food. The other countries have different types of staple food in comparison. In this article, you will learn is white rice bleached and whether it is safe to consume.
Some people have never consumed white rice, whereas, in Asia, lunch will be primarily white rice with other curries. If you have never had the experience of eating white rice and would like to know is white rice bleached, then you are in the right place as this article will help you learn more about white rice.Cooking rice is not a challenging process, but you cannot eat it alone; hence you can include it in biriyani, milk rice, or consume it with meat and vegetables. Let’s look at the process of making white rice and whether it is bleached.
Is White Rice Bleached
Since the whole grain is brown, most people are confused about whether is white rice bleached. Apart from whole brown grain, you also have purple, red, and black. It is a common misconception among many people that white rice is bleached, which is not true.
Some studies mention that white rice evolved from wild red rice many years back. The natural color of the whole grain white rice will be tan, red, or sometimes black.
When manufacturing white rice, it is sent to further processing, where the removal of bran and germs takes place, and this is how the rice gets the white color. Whereas when you consider brown rice, it has its natural color as they do go through this further milling process.
There are different steps when milling the rice. In the next section of the article, let’s look at how the modern milling process takes place to produce white rice.
White Rice Milling Process
The paddy is sent through the complete milling process to obtain high-quality white rice. If you have visited a rice mill, you might have witnessed the milling process. If you don’t know about it, continue reading to understand the process.
Initially, the paddy brought from the agricultural land may contain straw, soil, weeds, and other inert material. It is necessary to remove these foreign materials by subjecting the paddy to the pre-cleaning process. The pre-cleaning process will increase the efficiency of hulling and the milling recovery.
After the pre-cleaning, the rough paddy rice will have the husk, so the next phase is to remove the husk from the paddy. The paddy is sent between two abrasive surfaces, and the machine will remove the husk using friction.
Even after removing the husk, there will be some paddy still with the husk. So, in this phase, you can separate the unhusked paddy with the brown rice by using the paddy separator. If you have an excellent husker, the amount of unhusked paddy will be low. This will not be more than 10 % in most mills.
Whitening or Polishing
After unhusking, you will get the brown rice. To obtain white rice, you must send it through a further milling process. In this stage, the bran and germs present in the brown rice are removed. Two to four machines will connect in series, and this white rice is sent into each machine for polishing. This series connection of machines will help to reduce the number of grains breaking.
Separating White Rice
An oscillating screen sifter will separate the white rice into head rice, large, broken rice, and brewers. You will not obtain 100% whole kernel, but it will be 75% to 80% or sometimes more, and this is what you call the head rice.
The mixing of rice will contain head rice which is 50% to 60%, while the larger broken rice is 5% to 10%, and the small broken kernel must be 10% to 15% to approve that the mill is high-quality rice. These standards may change according to different countries, so rice mixing must occur according to the standards.
Before weighing and sending the rice to the market, the mills will send the final polishing where the whitening machine will mist water on the rice to increase the luster.
Finally, you must weigh the rice. Some countries sell 50kg sacks while others sell 20kg, 10kg, and even 5 kg. So, according to the weight available in the market, the mills will produce the sacks and deliver them for sale.
This is the complete process of producing white rice, and now you might have an understanding that white rice is not bleached. Some people say that the white rice is bleached and it is harmful for consumption, but there is no bleaching process during manufacturing.
Why White Rice is Not Recommended
Sometimes your doctor, dietician, or even parents will say not to consume white rice. If you are wondering why this is, here are a few reasons.
When producing white rice to increase the shelf life, it goes through processing, reducing the fiber content. Hence when you consume white rice daily, it may cause constipation.
Glycemic Index is High
The white rice will contain a high glycemic index which means it can quickly convert the carb into its sugars by processing, and the bloodstream will help to absorb this sugar into the body. Hence eating white sugar regularly may increase blood sugar and cause unhealthy fluctuation in the sugar level.
White rice is refined where the fiber content is very low while it is rich in the carb. Therefore, consuming food containing high carbs may lead to chronic disease and obesity.
As mentioned above, white rice will undergo more processing than brown rice, which provides a white color, and the rice will taste good. When you consume a meal with white rice, it will fill the tummy, but the nutrition level is very low.
Eating White Rice Will Not Work for Losing Weight
When you are following a diet plan for losing weight, and if you are consuming white rice daily, then this may help to gain fat. Hence you must take brown rice instead of white rice, or the best option is to cut off the rice. If you reside in a country where the staple food is rice, then neglecting it will be hard, so you may try using brown rice.
We hope this article on is white rice bleached was informative.
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