Diabetic But Love Rice? Know How To Have It

Rice is a staple food across the world, and when it comes to India, this is mandatory for at least one meal of the day. Paired with dal, sabzi, pickle, and papad, it is a wholesome meal that can satiate your soul. But rice is often regarded as inappropriate for individuals with diabetes due to its high glycemic index (GI) and potential impact on blood sugar levels.

However, rice is one of the main sources of carbohydrates, and this nutrient is an important part of a balanced diet. According to Healthshots, approximately half of our calories must be consumed in the form of carbs, and resistant starch is one such type of carbohydrate that is good for diabetics.

What Is Resistant Starch?

Resistant starch refers to a type of carbohydrate that resists digestion in the small intestine and instead reaches the large intestine mostly intact. There, it acts as a source of nourishment for beneficial gut bacteria, promoting a healthy gut environment. Resistant starch is known to have a minimal effect on blood sugar levels, making it an excellent option for individuals with diabetes. It also promotes feelings of fullness and satiety, which can aid in weight management.

Resistant starch plays a beneficial role for individuals with diabetes by enhancing insulin sensitivity. By incorporating resistant starches into your diet, your body becomes more responsive to insulin, leading to improved management of high blood sugar levels. This increased insulin sensitivity reduces the likelihood of developing conditions like type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, and heart disease. It's important to note that various factors, including lifestyle choices, genetics, and access to medical care, influence the overall risk of these conditions. To effectively lower your risk, consult with your doctor to devise a comprehensive plan tailored to your specific needs.

Foods like oats, barley, soybeans, and green bananas are naturally rich in resistant starch. But we can also increase resistant starch in cooked foods. The most popular method for this is cooking and cooling starchy foods. This process is called starch retrogradation, and it happens when the molecule of cooked starch loses its original structure due to heating and cooling and gets recrystallized in an aligned manner. Apart from rice, you can also increase the resistant starch of potatoes, pasta, and peas using this method.

How To Cook Rice With Resistant Starch

To prepare rice using the resistant starch method, follow these steps: 

  • Choose the right type of rice: Opt for varieties that are higher in resistant starch, such as parboiled rice, basmati rice, or long-grain rice. These types tend to have a lower GI compared to short-grain or sticky rice. 
  • Rinse the rice: Thoroughly wash the rice before cooking to remove excess starch and improve the final texture. 
  • Cook and cool: Cook the rice using your preferred method, whether it's a stovetop, rice cooker, or instant pot. Once cooked, allow the rice to cool for a while. Cooling the rice increases the formation of resistant starch. 
  • Reheat and enjoy: After the rice has cooled, you can reheat it for consumption. Reheating the rice further enhances the resistant starch content, making it even more suitable for diabetics.