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Is Brown Rice Ok on The Candida Diet?

Posted 2/18/2024

Written by Dan Jackowiak Nc, HHP

Brown rice is considered a whole grain rice with the inedible outer hull removed. It has an outer brown pigmented layer and has more nutritional value compared to white rice. Rice is considered an ancient food and was first cultivated in China around 6,000 years ago. But recent studies and archaeological discoveries reported that rice seeds are 9,000 years old. It has a long and demonstrated history and it was the staple food only in Asia. Arab travelers introduced rice into ancient Greece and Alexander brought it to India. From India, rice finds its way into every other corner of the world.


From India, the Moors brought rice to Spain in the eighth century during the conquests in addition to France. Spanish people during the colonization of the America's, introduced rice into South America in the 17th century. Export data indicates that Vietnam, Thailand, and China are the 3 largest exporters of rice. [Source]

Nutrient Profile of Brown Rice


Studies show that long-grain Brown rice consists of 5g of protein in one cup while a cup of medium-grain cooked brown rice contains 4.5g of protein according to the USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory. 100 grams of brown rice consists of 2g of protein. [Source]


One cup of long-grained brown rice contains 52 grams of carbs. It also consists of fiber and sugar content. One cup of long-grained brown rice consists of 3.5 grams of fiber and 0.4g sugar. [Source]


Brown rice contains saturated fats, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. There is a total of 0.9 g of fats included in one cup of long-grained brown rice. Saturated fat is 0.2g, polyunsaturated fat and monounsaturated fat is 0.3g respectively.

Vitamins and Minerals:

Thiamine (Vitamin B1): 12% of the RDA is Vitamin B1, which is helpful to the heart, muscle, and nerve functioning. It is also responsible for efficient glucose metabolism.

Niacin (Vitamin B3): Vitamin B3 makes up 15% of the RDA. B3 helps in the lowering of LDL cholesterol, improves heart functioning and boosts the brain, and improves skin function.

Pyridoxine: (Vitamin B6): 14% of the RDA comes from Vitamin B6. It reduces the risk of Alzheimer's disease, improves brain functioning, and decreases the symptoms of depression.

Pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5): Vitamin B5 is 6% of the RDA. B5 helps in the production of sex and stress-related hormones in the adrenal glands and helps in the proper functioning of the central nervous system and liver.

Iron: Iron makes up 5% of the RDA. Iron is the main element of hemoglobin, this protein is responsible in transporting oxygen.

Magnesium: 21% of the RDA comes from Magnesium. This mineral is effective against type-2 diabetes, helps boost immunity and improves cardiovascular health

Phosphorus: Phosphorus amounts to 16% of the RDA. This mineral is essential for the maintenance of body tissues and is responsible for their development and growth.

Zinc: 8% of the RDA comes from Zinc. Zinc is responsible for wound healing, improved metabolism function and enhanced immunity.

Copper: The Copper amount is 10% of the RDA. Copper is an element that is helpful for improved heart function, improves immune function, and bone health.

Manganese: 88% of the RDA comes from Manganese, which is responsible for development, growth, a healthy metabolism and has antioxidant properties.

Selenium: Selenium amounts are 27% of the RDA. Selenium plays an essential role in better immune function. It is also an antioxidant and helps to reduce the risk of cancer and is very important for better thyroid health.

Health Benefits of Brown Rice

Helps in Weight loss:

Studies show that brown rice helps in weight loss because brown rice is enriched in fiber, on the other hand, white rice, white bread, and white pasta contains less fiber and may cause weight gain problems. Fiber keeps the body fuller for a longer period of time and fiber-rich foods helps person consume fewer calories overall. Studies suggest that women who ate brown rice experienced lower blood pressure and CRP (a marker of inflammation in the body)

Improves Heart Health:

Brown rice benefits heart health due to its fiber content. In one study it is reported that people who ate fiber-rich diets may help to reduce the risk of heart disease, respiratory disease, and cancer. In another study, it is suggested that people who consume a high amount of whole grains such as brown rice had a 21% lower risk of coronary heart disease as compared to those who ate the least whole grains.

Besides fiber, brown rice also contains “lignans”, these compounds are effective in reducing the risk of heart disease. Lignan rich diets help in reducing cholesterol, blood pressure, and artery stiffness.

Magnesium is also present in brown rice and it also improves heart function. Studies show that dietary magnesium is associated with a 7-22% lower risk of stroke and heart failure.

Good choice for people with diabetes:

Less refined grains help in decreasing blood sugar levels and insulin spikes. In one study it is reported that those people who consume brown rice every day experienced a decrease in post-meal blood sugar level and hemoglobin A1c (a marker of blood sugar control) as compared to those who ate white rice.

Studies also reported that brown rice has a lower GI (glycemic index) and has less impact on blood sugar level.


Brown rice is usually gluten-free. Some people are intolerant to gluten and experience bloating, vomiting, and stomach pain, but brown rice is gluten-free and helps a person overcome these problems, which makes it a safe choice for those who can’t consume gluten.

Bad Health Effects of Brown Rice

Brown rice contains anti-nutrients such as arsenic and phytic acid.


Arsenic is a toxic element and long-term consumption of this causes heart disease, cancer, and type-2 diabetes. This problem will not occur if you consume brown rice on a moderate basis. So if you are a regular consumer of brown rice then only a few servings per week should be consumed to avoid arsenics harmful effects.

Phytic acid:

This affects the absorption of calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc. If you consume brown rice on a longer-term basis it may cause mineral deficiencies. [Source]

Brown Rice & The Candida Diet

The following information is provided by the USDA for a 1 cup serving of cooked medium-grain brown rice.

  • Calories: 218
  • Fat: 1.62g
  • Sodium: 1.95mg
  • Carbohydrates: 45.8g
  • Fiber: 3.51g
  • Sugars: 0g
  • Protein: 4.52g

Looking at the above nutrition facts about brown rice, we see 1 cup of cooked rice contains 46g of carbs which is to much at one time when following a candida diet.

Looking at the label on the right from an Uncle Ben's brown rice bag. You see that a 1 cup cooked serving comes in at 36g of carbs, this is still to many carbs. I suppose a person could eat a ½ cup instead bringing that carb load down to 18g, which is under the generally recommended 20g per meal.

The glycemic index for brown rice is on the higher end of medium at 68, low and generally acceptable foods are under 55. Sugar itself has a glycemic load of 65 so you can see that it is not a good idea to be consuming brown rice on the candida diet.

However, if you decide to give that ½ cup cooked serving a try, I would wait at least  four weeks before I did it. Then pay really close attention to any bad reaction. If you have a bad reaction then you are going to have to avoid brown rice until you get your candida yeast over growth under control.

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