Rice is an important element to any weight management plan. It is low in calories (there are only 100-115 calories per half cup serving) and brown rice is a whole grain and considered a source of fibre.
Nutrition and physical activity scientists and athletic coaches all agree that we eat too much of everything. However, when dieting, we often try to change our body weight via poor nutritional strategies including:
- eliminating food groups (rice/breads/cereals, animal products)
- drastically cutting nutrients (carbohydrates or fats)
- restricting caloric intake below the daily requirement to support a sedentary lifestyle
Poor dieting habits can result in chronic fatigue, reduced motivation, staleness or a loss of interest in physical activities/sport, irritability, crankiness (with friends, family and training partners), poor endurance performance, increased risk of injury and compromised immune function. All of this can lead to inconsistent performance both on the job and in your personal life.
Research from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has found that carbohydrates, like rice, play a key role in mood1 by regulating the production of mood-elevating neurotransmitter, serotonin, in the brain2 . Serotonin is the brain chemical that regulates mood and controls appetite.
Meal Planning Suggestions
Planning your meals helps ensure you are getting the nutrients your body requires. The delicious and well-balanced rice recipes below will help you to stay focussed on your goal to maintain a healthy weight and mind:
Priority Checklist for Weight Management
Written by the team of Registered Dietitians and Sport Nutrition Specialists of Peak Performance www.peakperformance.ca.
- Attenburrow M, Williams C, Odontiadis J, et al. The effect of a nutritional source of tryptophan on dieting-induced changes in brain 5 HT function. Psychol Med 2003:33:1381-86.
- Markus C, Panhuysen G, Tuiten A, et al. Does carbohydrate-rich, protein-poor food prevent a deterioration of mood and cognitive performance of stress-prone subjects when subjected to a stressful task? J Psychiatry Neurosci 1993: Nov: 18(5):235-44.
- Wurtman RJ and Wurtman JJ. Brain serotonin, carbohydrate-craving, obesity and depression. Obesity Research 1995: 3; 477-480.