You probably already know that rice is one of the most versatile foods on Earth. You can eat it in so many ways, from savory side dishes to sweet desserts. There are so many different varieties of rice, too, including everything from basmati and jasmine to arborio and Wehani. However, you might be confused about whether or not Mexican rice is healthy or not. After all, it’s a type of rice that’s associated with very different cultures and cuisines. In general, rice is a pretty safe food to eat as long as you watch your portion sizes and keep an eye on added sugars and fats. Here’s everything you need to know about eating it if you’re trying to stick to a healthy diet plan.
Is Mexican Rice Healthy?
There’s no definitive answer, as it depends on the ingredients and preparation methods used. However, a basic Mexican Rice recipe usually includes white rice, tomatoes, onions, garlic, chili peppers, and spices. It can be made with or without oil and topped with chicken, steak, or shrimp. So it can be a relatively healthy dish if made with fresh ingredients and without too much-added fat or sodium.
How Is Mexican Rice Made?
1. It’s a Whole Grain
Mexican rice is made from brown rice, which is basically the same thing as white rice. If you’ve ever eaten brown rice before, you know that it can be pretty bitter if you don’t cook it long enough. Mexican rice is no exception. It’s very similar to regular brown rice, but it has a few extra ingredients added to make it taste better. If you want to enjoy authentic Mexican flavors in your dish, stick with brown rice and avoid the white versions.
2. It’s High In Fiber & Antioxidants
In general, brown and wild varieties of rice are higher in fiber than their white counterparts. In fact, some varieties contain as much as double the fiber! This makes them more filling and helps them keep you feeling full for longer periods of time. The antioxidants also add to their health benefits because they help combat free radicals that can damage your body on a cellular level. You might be wondering why you’d want to eat rice with less fiber and antioxidants when you can just eat white rice. The answer is that brown and wild varieties of rice are also known for their anti-inflammatory properties, which reduce the likelihood of a lot of chronic diseases, including cancer and diabetes.
3. It’s Low In Calories & Fats
When it comes to calories, brown rice is actually one of the lowest-calorie choices out there. However, don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s not healthy! Brown rice contains more nutrients than its white counterparts because it contains more fiber and antioxidants. In fact, some experts suggest that brown rice has more protein than other types of rice because they contain less starch and water!
4. It’s Gluten Free & Nutrient Rich
If you have Celiac disease or are gluten intolerant, then Mexican rice might not be the best choice for you. However, if you don’t have any of those conditions and simply want to eat foods that are free from gluten, then brown rice is a great choice! It’s also one of the most nutrient-dense foods out there. In fact, a cup of brown rice contains as much protein as 3 cups of chicken or 5 eggs! That’s no joke.
5. It’s Low In Sodium & High In Potassium
Brown rice is low in sodium because it contains only a small amount of sodium per serving. If you want to stay away from high-sodium foods, then you should definitely consider eating brown rice instead of white rice. They are also high in potassium, which can help lower blood pressure and improve heart health by helping to keep your heart rhythm steady. Studies have shown that people who eat more potassium tend to have lower blood pressure levels than those who don’t eat enough potassium.
Is Mexican Rice Healthy?
1. It’s a Whole Grain
Most people think of rice as a type of grain, but it actually isn’t. Rice is actually just a seed, and some types of rice are seeds while others are grains. However, all types of rice are whole grains that contain all eight essential amino acids and provide fiber. Plus, they’re low in calories and high in carbohydrates which can help keep you full until your next meal. You should eat whole grains as an important part of your diet because they have lots of health benefits, including preventing heart disease and diabetes.
2. The Rice Is Healthy When Prepared Without Added Sugars
You probably already know that rice is a very versatile food to cook with and eat on the side for many different dishes. However, you might be surprised to learn that it can be prepared without added sugars such as brown sugar or honey (especially if you choose the white variety). While this doesn’t make it completely healthy, it does make it a little better than other types of rice.
3. It’s A Whole Grain That’s Low In Calories And High In Fiber
One of the best things about rice is that it’s low in calories and high in fiber. If you’re trying to lose weight or eat a healthier diet, you should be eating more whole grains and less refined grains such as white flour, white bread, and pasta. Rice is one of the best whole grains to eat because it has all eight essential amino acids that your body needs for healthy growth and repair. Plus, all types of rice are low in calories (about 100 calories per cup) and rich in carbohydrates that can help keep you full until your next meal.
4. It Contains Few Fats And Calories
The good news about eating rice is that it doesn’t have many fats or added sugars compared to other types of grains like wheat or oats. White rice has only about 4 grams of fat and about 110 calories per cup. Brown rice has a little more fat and calories, but it’s still very low. Plus, brown rice is also a whole grain, so you can eat it as part of a healthy diet plan.
Pros Of Eating Mexican Rice
1. It’s Delicious
One of the biggest reasons people love Mexican rice is that it’s so flavorful. You can use it to make a variety of different dishes, from traditional Mexican dishes like burritos and enchiladas to Tex-Mex dishes like quesadillas and tacos. The rice itself is a great base for many delicious meals, especially if you top it with your favorite meats, vegetables, and sauces.
2. It’s Economical
Mexican rice also comes in handy if you live on a budget. You can easily make a large batch of this healthy meal at home and then freeze the leftovers in smaller portions for easy reheating later on. This makes it an ideal meal for those who have limited storage space and struggle to afford expensive grocery bills every month. Plus, it doesn’t require any special equipment or cooking skills, making it easier to cook than most other types of rice out there today.
3. It’s Easy to Make
Mexican rice is also very easy to make. You don’t even need to boil it first, since it cooks quickly and doesn’t need any special equipment to prepare. In fact, you can use it as a base for many different types of meals throughout the day, whether you want to make a healthy breakfast or add it to your favorite Mexican dish at lunchtime. You can also use it to make a variety of other dishes, including burritos and taco salads. The possibilities are endless!
Cons Of Eating Mexican Rice
1. High in Saturated Fat
When you think about Mexican rice, you probably automatically think of the traditional dishes that involve it. You might be surprised to learn that this type of rice is typically high in saturated fat. This is especially true if you’re eating it out of a restaurant or homemade dish. In fact, some people have reported enjoying the taste of Mexican rice but not the fact that they’re getting so many grams of fat into their system.
2. High in Sodium
If you’re trying to keep your sodium intake low while eating a healthy diet, you might want to steer clear of Mexican rice. While this dish may be delicious, it also comes with a lot of sodium and other preservatives that add up over time and may not be good for your health in general. If you eat it often enough, these additives may even cause problems with your kidneys or heart over time if not eaten in moderation.
3. High Fats and Added Sugars
Many people enjoy Mexican rice because it’s a flavorful way to add some flavor to their meals. However, you need to be careful when eating this type of rice because it’s often loaded with added sugars and fats. Even if it doesn’t have these ingredients in large quantities, they are likely to present in small amounts. These added sugars can lead to weight gain and obesity over time, especially if you eat them on a regular basis.
Mexican rice is a very well-known dish that’s often used as either a side or as the main dish itself. It’s a very simple dish to make, and it’s often paired with many different types of dishes, including everything from tacos to enchiladas. Mexican rice is not a very healthy meal, but it’s not an unhealthful one, either. It’s not the healthiest choice for vegans or vegetarians, and it does have a rather high amount of sodium. Overall, Mexican rice is not a very healthy meal, but it’s not a completely unhealthful one, either.