Quinoa and Rice: Which is Healthier?

Quinoa and Rice: Which is Healthier?


Rice is the most consumed cereal in the world. For centuries, it was also the only cereal that different populations could eat. Today, the range of possibilities has definitely expanded. An example of a healthy alternative to rice , and brown rice , which has taken the place of the cereal in many recipes and preparations, is quinoa . Both grains have health benefits, albeit different properties.

Quinoa: benefits

One could argue that comparing quinoa to rice isn’t entirely correct. In fact, quinoa is not actually a grain. It is the seed of an annual herbaceous plant in the family Chenopodiaceae and a relative of beets and spinach . From the grinding of quinoa seeds, a flour containing mainly starch is obtained , which allows this plant to be classified as a cereal in its own right, even though it does not belong to the botanical family of grasses. Quinoa is known as a pseudocereal because it is eaten just like a grain and has a similar nutritional profile .

Rich in nutrients , it has significant health benefits. It’s a complete protein: One cooked cup of quinoa has 8 grams of protein . Quinoa is one of the few plant-based sources of complete protein . This means it contains all nine essential amino acids the body needs, yet is higher in calories than other sources of protein.

It’s gluten -free . Quinoa is naturally gluten-free. It is essential, however, when buying from large retailers, to pay attention to the labels , as the product of some brands can undergo cross-contamination with other cereals such as wheat during processing. If you have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity , use only certified gluten-free brands.

It is rich in fiber . One cup of quinoa contains 5 grams of dietary fiber , more than white or brown rice . Fiber helps prevent constipation , control blood sugar levels and lower cholesterol . Fiber also contributes to a prolonged sense of satiety, promoting weight control .

It is rich in minerals . Quinoa is an excellent source of: iron , magnesium , phosphorus , manganese , zinc . It also contains calcium , potassium and selenium .

It could be good for the intestines. Quinoa can help protect the gastrointestinal tract. The polysaccharides in the quinoa cell wall have shown gastroprotective activity against acute gastric injury .

Rice – benefits

Rice is a staple food for several populations around the world. There are several types, but the most popular ones are white rice and brown rice. White rice is the less nutritious of the two. The husk, bran and most of the germ have been removed. Many brands of white rice are fortified to restore nutrients lost during processing. The husks are removed from the brown rice, but the healthy bran and germ remain. White and brown rice are low in fat and sodium . They are free from cholesterol and trans fats . Other health benefits are as follows..

It is naturally gluten free. Like quinoa, rice is a great option if you’re on a gluten-free diet . Beware of flavored rice or rice used in sushi , they may contain gluten-based ingredients.

It is a good source of minerals. Rice is an excellent source of: phosphorus, manganese, selenium and magnesium. Contains minor amounts of copper , calcium and zinc.

It’s easy to digest. White rice is known to be delicate and easily digestible , indicated for gastrointestinal disorders. It is part of the BRAT diet ( bananas , rice, apples and toast ), a diet that is sometimes suggested as an anti- emetic and anti-diarrheal.

Brown Rice: beneficial properties

Whole grains like brown rice can help with high blood pressure by helping to maintain a healthy weight , increase potassium, help the body use insulin effectively , and reduce damage to blood vessels .

Helps control blood sugar . Compared to white rice, brown rice helps control blood sugar , and is therefore more suitable in the diet of people who have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes .


Rice and quinoa can both be included in a balanced and healthy diet. White rice is great for gastrointestinal upset, but brown rice is a healthier choice overall, especially since the fiber helps prevent blood sugar spikes. The health benefits of quinoa and brown rice are similar. They’re both gluten-free, a good source of minerals and fiber, and both support healthy digestion. Both ingredients can be substituted for white rice in most recipes.



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