Rice for Health
Rice is consumed by about 50% of the global population. Being the staple food of Asians, it constitutes 50-60% of their total calorie intake and 30% of their total protein intake. Ancient Asian civilizations have long valued the importance of rice in sustaining human health and nutrition. Due to the Green Revolution, however, many traditional rice varieties have disappeared from our tables to be replaced by polished white rice from a narrow range of commercial high-input varieties. Yet the truth is that different rice varieties are good are health as they contain a wealth of nutrients like while many like brown rice have low glycemic index. Also rice is not meant to be eaten alone but with a range of other food such as vegetables, meat and fruit to ensure a balanced diet. This paper discusses the value of rice; how it is central to our right to health and to safe, adequate, and culturally appropriate food; and how we should save rice diversity for good health and nutrition. It was written by Willhelmina R. Pelegrina, former Director of SEARICE.