Changing How Rice is Cooked May Reduce Its Calories

by Mark Lange, PhD

Researchers from the College of Chemical Sciences in Sri Lanka used a specific heating and cooking regimen to increase the levels of resistant starch in rice by at least ten-fold.  Because resistant starch is not digested, it lowers the calories by bout 50-60%.

In this method, they added a teaspoon of coconut oil to boiling water before adding a half cup of rice.  The rice is simmered for 40 minutes (or boiled for 20-25 minutes) and then after cooling the rice is refrigerated for 12 hours.

This simple cooking method causes the coconut oil to enter the starch granules, changing its structure and making it more resistant to the body’s digestive enzymes.  Cooling the rice after cooking is essential because this causes formation of hydrogen bonds between the amylose molecules which turns it into a resistant starch.  In the end, the rice delivers fewer calories because the body does not break down and absorb the resistant starch.