When it comes to rice and roti, the debate goes on as to which is better and healthier? Eating either of them will not adversely affect your health, if consumed properly. Rice is the more commonly eaten food across the world; whereas, roti is unleavened bread that is mostly associated with Indian food.Roti can be made from whole wheat flour or flours of other whole grains. Rice also comes in different varieties; from brown, red and black to different processing methods that give parboiled or polished/milled rice. In this article, we'll talk about whole wheat rotis and milled rice as they are commonly consumed in urban India.
Nutritional Facts And Values In Rice And Roti
|Portion size-30gm||Energy Kcal||Carbs gm||Protein gm||Fat gm||Fibre gm||Folate µg||Phosphorus mg|
|Parboiled Milled rice||105.4||23.1||2.34||0.165||1.1||2.9||42|
|Raw Milled Rice||109.6||23.4||2.38||0.156||0.84||2.7||28.8|
So let's compare rice and roti based on the health benefits of each nutrient:
Calories In Roti | Calories In Rice
When trying to maintain weight or for diabetics, calories are an area of focus. Weight-for-weight the calorific content is similar of both rice and roti. With both providing almost the same amount of calories, what comes into play is the quantity you consume. Depending on the total daily calories you wish to consume, choose the amount accordingly and spread it evenly through the day so that the body stays energised.
According to celebrity nutritionist Pooja Makhija, "Carbs don't make you fat, but wrong choices can. Carbs are known to give you energy through the day. They are also important for the metabolism of fats. If you want to fight fat, you need carbs to burn them. Complex carbs from foods like whole grains, brown rice and lentils should make up at least 60% your daily meals. If you're not eating enough carbs, you will not be able to sustain the weight loss and eat more to make up for the lack of calories."
Carb In Rice | Carb In Roti
Carbohydrates are the chief source of energy for our body and are needed throughout the day. Carb energy helps keep our body less stressed. The carbohydrate content of all cereal grains is marginally different. But what makes the difference here is the polishing during milling that takes away the fibre from rice and makes its carbs more available, causing a higher post-meal sugar and more insulin in the blood to handle it. This is one of the risk factors for diabetes and once the carbs are metabolised, the insulin takes a while to return to base line promoting hunger and an urge to eat more, which may lead to weight gain. On the other hand, the amylopectin present in rice is easier to digest and this makes it a good choice for babies. Rotis score here with a higher satiety value weight-for-weight.
(Also Read: Roti Or Rice: Which One Is A Healthier Option?)
Protein In Rice | Protein In Roti
Typically cereal grains are not eaten for their protein content as the quality of proteins is not good. When it comes to protein, roti provides more quantity but the quality of rice proteins is better as it contains more of the amino acid Lysine. When eaten in combination with pulses, the protein quality of the meal improves. Apart from this, rice is gluten-free, while wheat contains gluten, which cannot be consumed by patients of celiac disease.
Fat In Rice | Fat In Roti
Most of the cereals are low in fat. Both roti and rice can be eaten without guilt if fat calories are what you are counting.
Fibre In Rice | Fibre In Roti
This is where the roti wins big. It is high in fibre, mostly insoluble fibre, even when compared to brown rice. The benefits of fibre are well researched. Fibre in your food means there is a slow absorption of sugar into the blood and it is like a sustained release, which helps maintain satiety for longer. Fibre also adds bulk and helps achieve early satiety, further helping you maintain weight by not overeating. Fibre adds bulk to the stools, prevents constipation and is food for good bacteria to thrive and grow in our intestines. Fibre is also documented to protect against the risk of heart diseases, Type-2 diabetes, and colorectal cancers. It also helps control cholesterol, and lowers blood glucose levels by preventing spikes in blood sugar post a meal.
Folate In Rice | Folate In Roti
A water soluble B vitamin critical for making DNA in our body, necessary for formation of new blood cells and to prevent neural birth defects is present in both roti and rice, but again roti makes the mark as compared to polished milled rice in terms of quantity.
Phosphorus In Rice | Phosphorus In Roti
An important mineral found in every cell of our body, phosphorus is required for maintaining bone health, kidney function, muscle contraction, normal heartbeat, and nerve signalling among others. Roti is a better source as compared to polished rice, and brown rice is also a good source of phosphorus.
So basically, whole wheat roti is winning here because it is being compared with the much-processed milled white rice. When compared with milled white rice, brown and parboiled rice are healthier choices. Also, ensure that you combine it with good low-fat proteins, fill up half your plate with vegetables and eat at the right time.
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About Rupali DattaRupali Datta is a Clinical Nutritionist and has worked in leading corporate hospitals. She has created and lead teams of professionals to deliver clinical solutions for patients across all medical specialties including critical care. She is a member of the Indian Dietetic Association and Indian Association of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition.