Black Rice May Be The New Blueberry

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A new research from Louisiana State University indicates that black rice may be the new blueberry as far as antioxidants. In fact, not only it is higher in anthocyanin antioxidants, it is cheaper as well.

Black Rice has more anthocyanin antioxidants than blueberries

"Just a spoonful of black rice bran contains more health promoting anthocyanin antioxidants than are found in a spoonful or blueberries, but with less sugar and more fiber and vitamin E antioxidants," Zhimin Xu, PhD, of Louisiana State University Agricultural Center, says in a news release.

"If berries are used to boost health, why not black rice and black rice bran?" suggested Xu, associate professor at the food science department at Louisiana State University Agricultural Center in Baton Rouge. "Black rice bran would be a unique and economical material to increase consumption of health-promoting antioxidants."

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Black rice is rich in anthocyanin antioxidants, substances that show promise for fighting cancer, heart disease, and other health problems, Xu says. He adds that food manufacturers could use black rice bran or bran extracts to boost the health value of breakfast cereals, beverages, cakes, cookies, and other foods.

The black rice is known as “forbidden rice” in ancient China because nobles kept all the grain for themselves, due to its rarity and high nutritional value.

Researchers have more good news about black rice and state that it is an economical way to acquire antioxidant. Oxidation in the body produces oxidants produces free radicals that damage cells. Antioxidants break this chain of reactions.

Black rice isn't currently grown on a commercial scale in the U.S., but Xu hopes that his research will spur farmers in the Southeast to start growing it.

"Black rice bran would be a unique and economical material to increase consumption of health promoting antioxidants," Xu says in a statement. Because black rice is the new blueberry.

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