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  • Cooking rice with coconut oil and refrigerating for 12 hours could reduce calories by 50-60 percent

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    Tuesday, February 23, 2016 9:49 am Email this article

    Scientists found that by cooking rice in water with coconut oil added, then refrigerating it for 12 hours, increased resistant starch in the rice and reduced absorbable calories by 50-60 percent.

    They added a teaspoon of coconut oil to boiling water.

    Then, they added a half a cup of rice.

    They simmered this for 40 minutes, but one could boil it for 20-25 minutes instead, the researchers note.

    Then, they refrigerated it for 12 hours.

    This procedure increased the resistant starch by 10 times for traditional, non-fortified rice.

    How can such a simple change in cooking result in a lower-calorie food?

    Team leader Sudhair A. James, who is at the College of Chemical Sciences, Colombo, Western, Sri Lanka. explains that the oil enters the starch granules during cooking, changing its architecture so that it becomes resistant to the action of digestive enzymes.

    This means that fewer calories ultimately get absorbed into the body.

    “The cooling is essential because amylose, the soluble part of the starch, leaves the granules during gelatinization,” explains James.

    “Cooling for 12 hours will lead to formation of hydrogen bonds between the amylose molecules outside the rice grains which also turns it into a resistant starch.”

    Reheating the rice for consumption, he notes, does not affect the RS levels.

    He explains that starch can be digestible or indigestible.

    Starch is a component of rice, and it has both types.

    Unlike digestible types of starch, resistant starch is not broken down in the small intestine, where carbohydrates normally are metabolized into glucose and other simple sugars and absorbed into the bloodstream.

    Thus, the researchers reasoned that if they could transform digestible starch into resistant starch, then that could lower the number of usable calories of the rice.

    He says that the next step will be to complete studies with human subjects to learn which varieties of rice might be best suited to the calorie-reduction process.

    The team also will check out whether other oils besides coconut have this effect.


    Anon. New low-calorie rice could help cut rising obesity rates. Press Release, 2015 Mar 23; American Chemical Society: http://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/pressroom/newsreleases/2015/march/new-low-calorie-rice-could-help-cut-rising-obesity-rates.html

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