Skooter reporting 03/16/12
I’ve been avoiding white rice in my diet since I was diagnosed as a diabetic. If there is no brown rice available, I’ll be forced to consume white rice on limited amount (one cup per day). On Thursday, health researchers said they had found a disturbing link between higher consumption of rice and Type 2 diabetes, a disease I’m afraid that is becoming an epidemic in some countries.
However, they cautioned that more study is required to probe the seeming association and diets that are disreputably high in sugar and fats should remain on the no-go list.
"What we've found is white rice is likely to increase the risk of Type 2 diabetes, especially at high consumption levels such as in Asian populations," Qi Sun of the Harvard School of Public Health told AFP.
"But at the same time people should pay close attention to the other things they eat. It's very important to address not just a single food but the whole pattern of consumption," he said.
Qi Sun’s team said the connection materialized from an analysis of four earlier published studies conducted in China, Japan, Australia and the United States. In these studies, it monitored 350,000 people over a period from four to 22 years. More than 13,000 people developed Type 2 diabetes.
In the studies performed in China and Japan, subjects who ate most rice were 55 percent more likely to develop the disease than those who ate least compared to the United States and Australia, where consumption of rice is far lower, the difference was 12 percent.
On average, participants in the two Asian countries consumed three or four servings of rice per day, in contrast to the Western countries they only ate one or two servings a week.
It is known that white rice is the dominant form of rice eaten in the world. White rice is machine produced polished look by hulling and milling, leaving a grain that is chiefly starch.
I prefer brown rice, because it has more fiber, magnesium and vitamins, and a lower "glycaemic index," meaning it has lesser sugar content than white rice.
Sun acknowledged that the study was limited, including full details about what the participants ate in addition to rice. But he said he saw uniformity across these studies, and there is biological probability that supports the link between white rice consumption and diabetes.
"More trial data are needed to corroborate or refute our observations," Sun said.
Diet, obesity and lack of exercise are factors in Type 2 diabetes. There are at least 350 million adults worldwide affected by diabetes , according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).