rice bran

Daily Wisdom: Eat More Rice Bran

An ingredient that is often discarded can benefit your gut.

Every athlete knows that education is a crucial part of performance. Sport and exercise research, insight from top trainers, science, and technology help you to better understand your body so you can craft a healthier lifestyle, workouts, and recovery plan.

In our daily news series, experts address some of the latest fitness research, nutrition, and health stories.

TODAY'S TOPIC: WHY ATHLETES SHOULD CONSUME THIS NEGLECTED FOOD

THE SCIENCE

In a recent study, researchers discovered that the part of brown rice we don’t typically eat may actually have the most health benefits. 

EXPERT INSIGHT

Rice bran, the outer coating on a grain of brown rice, "is a rich source of proteins, fats, minerals, and micronutrients such as B vitamins and trace elements,” says Iman Zarei, a Ph.D. candidate at Colorado University and one of the study's authors. "It also increases immune support in the gut that can help fight against cancers and pathogens like salmonella," says Elizabeth Ryan, Ph.D., the lead study author. “When brown rice gets processed into white rice, the rice bran is polished off,” explains Ryan. She adds that while eating brown rice is a step in the right direction, each grain only contains a minimal amount of rice bran. "To fully reap the benefits, adults need 30 grams per day," says Ryan.

THE BOTTOM LINE

"Some companies like Bob's Red Mill sell rice bran on its own, but it's still small scale and not mainstream yet," notes Ryan. But it’s important to consume it whole in order to get the highest nutritional value. Try putting the daily recommended amount in your favorite foods such as smoothies, oatmeal, or soups, suggests Ryan.