Any self-respecting health snob knows that you should always choose brown rice over white rice when given the option. Right?
As it turns out, white rice may not be as bad as we think. White rice that has been cooked and then cooled is full of something called resistant starch. Resistant starch is a compound similar to fiber in that it doesn't get fully broken down by our digestive system. It "resists" digestion in the small intestine and travels straight into the colon where it's fermented by our gut bacteria.
Benefits of Resistant Starch:
- Gut health: Similar to fiber, resistant starch can help alleviate GI issues such as irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, and loose stools. It also serves as food for the friendly bacteria that live in the large intestine.
- Weight management: Resistant starch gives us greater feelings of satiety, which means less calories consumed overall. It also promotes the release of leptin, which is our "fullness" hormone, and again, reducing cravings and calories consumed. It helps balance blood sugar which is also necessary in order to lose weight.
- Healthy Immune System: Because most of our immune cells reside in the gut, improving our overall gut health with resistant starch leads to increased production of immune cells.
Where to Find Resistant Starch:
- Greens bananas or plantains
- White rice that has been cooked and then cooled
- White potatoes and yams that have been cooked and then cooled
Now that we can stop feeling bad about eating white rice (and we all know how delicious white rice is), I have the perfect recipe for RS-rich cold white rice- sushi bowls! I love sushi, but it's one thing that I'm just not willing to try to make on my own. So if I can throw all the ingredients into a bowl and eat it that way, then I'm calling that a win.
Homemade Sushi Bowls
Time: 10-15 minutes if rice is prepared in advance
Serves: 1 bowl
- 1/2 cup white rice, cooked and cooled (cauliflower rice is a great sub for people looking for lower carb options)
- Protein: If you really want to make it taste like your favorite sushi, grab some sushi-grade fish (don't just use any raw fish!). I lightly seared some ahi tuna for mine, and I've also used crab meat when I'm willing to spend a couple extra dollars.
- Veggies: Good options for sushi veggies are cucumbers, carrots, and green onions. You really can put whatever veggies you like, and I even added red bell peppers just because I like the taste!
- 1/4 avocado
- 2-3 sheets nori or other seaweed
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce, tamari, or coconut aminos
- Juice from a 1/4" thick lemon slice
- Wasabi to taste
The best way to make this bowl is to prepare the rice the night before and allow it to cool in the fridge. When you're ready to eat, chop up your veggies and combine them with the rice, protein, avocado, and crumbled nori sheets. Pour oil, soy sauce, and lemon juice over the top and stir well to mix flavors. You can either stir in the wasabi or add a small amount to each bite.
You can also mix all the ingredients excluding the nori sheets, and then roll up your sushi bowl in the nori and eat it like a wrap!