6 Surprising Health Benefits of Wild Rice

Although there is ‘rice’ in the name of ‘wild rice’, it is actually the seed of a semi-aquatic marsh grass. It is an unprocessed and unpolished whole grain and its’ nutritional value is quite better than other cereal grains consumed widely, which makes it a good choice for a well-balanced diet. Today, we are going to peep into the most common benefits of wild rice through this article.

Health Benefits of Wild Rice

  1. Provides Ample Nutrition

Here is a brief overview of nutrients provided by wild rice:

  • Carb, Protein, Fat and Fiber:

Wild rice comprises a good balance of carbohydrates, proteins and dietary fibers with very little fat. The protein quality profile of wild rice is awesome as it contains large amount of essential amino acids, especially methionine and lysine. In fact, the amount of protein present in a cup of this rice (6.5 gm.) is almost double than that of brown rice. It is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates (35.0 gm. per serving), while the presence of fat in it is considerably low (only 3.0 gm. per serving). TH dietary fiber content of wild rice is 3.0 gm. per serving, which is as much as 12% of our daily requirement.

  • Vital Vitamins:

Wild rice is one of the richest sources of vitamin. It consists of a variety of vitamins, such as vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E and plenty of B-vitamins, which are important for achieving a robust immune system. According to researchers, a cup of wild rice has almost 0.08 mg. vitamin B1 (thiamin), 0.14 mg. vitamin B2 (riboflavin), 2.1 mg. vitamin B3 (niacin), 43 mg. vitamin B9 (folate / folic acid) and 16.7 mg. choline (certain B-complex vitamin). Apart from these, it also contains vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 (pantothenic acid) in significant amounts.

Also Read – Brown Rice Vs. White Rice – The Most Efficient Pick for Weight Loss Here

  • Essential Minerals:

If compared with other rice variants, wild rice will always top the chart in term of micronutrient content. It is loaded with minerals that are essential for a good health. Studies have found that a single cup of wild rice comprises 166 mg. potassium, 134 mg. phosphorus and 52 mg. magnesium. It also holds 7%, 15% and 23% of our daily requirements of iron, zinc and manganese, respectively.

Wild Rice

  1. Reduces Oxidative Stress

Wild rice has amazing antioxidant properties, which can reduce free radicals from our body and keep oxidative stress at bay.  A study conducted by the scientists at the University of Manitoba revealed that this grain is as much as 30 times more antioxidant than its’ white counterpart. These qualities of wild rice are so strong that you can avert premature aging as well as a number of diseases even when you include it in a high fat diet.

  1. Takes Great Care of Heart

Wild rice is a complete heart-healthy food. It has only 5 mg. of sodium per cup of serving, which keeps the blood pressure under control and reduces the risks of developing fatal heart diseases to a great extent. Being loaded with dietary fibers and 0% cholesterol, it also helps in lowering the levels of bad cholesterol as well as other lipid measures in our body. Moreover, the quantity of linolenic acid (an essential omega-3 fatty acid) present in wild rice is quite beneficial.

  1. Good for Diabetics

Even though rice is a restricted food on a diabetic diet, wild rice is a good exception to it. As said before, it belongs to the grass family which produces edible grains with very little sugar content (1.2 gm.). Hence, when these unrefined rice grains are consumed in moderation, they do not cause spikes in the levels of sugar in our bloodstream. In short, patients of diabetes mellitus can eat wild rice in small quantities without any worry.

Wild Rice

Also Read – Why Brown Rice is a Healthier Choice than White Rice? Here

  1. Promotes Weight Loss

Who says that skipping rice is mandatory for losing weight and staying fit? You can certainly replace your regular polished rice with wild rice even when you are on a weight loss diet. It is a food with appreciably low Glycemic Index (GI) and lots of complex carbohydrates, which provide all necessary nutrients to the body without making it bulky. It has also been found that one cup serving (165 gm.) of cooked wild rice yields as less as 166 calories, which is great for maintaining a healthy body weight.

  1. Perfect Diet for Bodybuilders

A bodybuilder’s diet should comprise plenty of complex carbohydrates as well as tons of proteins so that he can remain energetic all through the day for his workout and build his muscles effectively.  The huge complex carbohydrate content of wild rice is enough to generate the surge of energy required for intensive workouts without experiencing energy-crash. In addition, it is a protein-rich cereal grain, which can further be consumed with other protein-packed food items. Therefore, wild rice is actually an absolutely perfect choice for bodybuilders.

Apart from all these, wild rice is totally gluten-free, which makes it one of the best and safest whole grain choices. So, include it in your diet today and make your health better.

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About the author


A digital media professional, an ardent beauty lover and a passionate foodie - this is what describes Nilankeeta in a nutshell. She is in a serious relationship with music and can't think of a life without family, friends, and online shopping. When not working on projects or experimenting with foods or humming a new tune, you can find her relishing sarcastic stories saturated in humor and wit.