Let’s Agree. We Indians love rice, it is our staple and we take pride in our delicious, earthy and aromatic rice-based dishes. It is not just in India, rice is that quintessential food in many South East Asian countries and it is the backbone of our agrarian society, helping the economy to flourish.

And if you are on a weight loss program and were asked to stop eating rice, don’t lose heart. According to a recent study presented at the European Congress On Obesity in Glasgow, UK, obesity levels are substantially lower in countries that consume high amounts of rice (150 grams per day, per person), even as countries with lesser intake of rice (14 grams per day, per person) record higher obesity levels.

Speaking at the Congress, Professor Tomoko Imai from Doshisha Women's College of Liberal Arts, Kyoto, Japan who led the research said, “Given the rising levels of obesity worldwide, eating more rice should be recommended to protect against obesity even in western countries.”

Well, this study gave us some hope that we are eating right. But do you know that there are more than 40,000 types of rice varieties and all these are divided under 2 two major subspecies.

In this article, we will tell you 4 popular varieties of rice that not only satisfy your craving for carbs but also help you in losing weight.

Brown Rice:

Brown rice is the most recommended variety for those hoping to lose weight. Loaded with dietary fibre, brown rice boosts metabolism and has 111 calories for every 100 grams. Though it may take a little longer time to cook when compared to white rice, make it your staple to reduce bad cholesterol, improve gut health, for ample amounts of vitamin B and to prevent the risk of stroke, heart disease, type 2 diabetes.

Red Rice:

Red rice is quite similar to brown rice in colour but it is a minimally processed variety. Rich in manganese and antioxidants, this variety of rice is strongly recommended for diabetics and obesity patients. Studies reveal that regular consumption of red rice is highly beneficial for those suffering from asthma as it improves oxygen circulation. A powerhouse of soluble and insoluble fibre, eating red rice can keep away your hunger pangs for longer hours, thus contributing to your weight loss.

Black Rice:

Black rice may not be a popular variety in India, but the trend is catching up. Also known as wild rice, it is unpolished, and it is a storehouse of folate, zinc, phosphorous, niacin and vitamin B6. It is a natural detoxifier, loaded with fiber, prevents risk of diabetes and obesity.

Bamboo Rice:

Bamboo rice is a rare product as it is harvested for every 40 years. That’s right, it is mostly grown in the hilly terrains by the tribal community and it is their secret ingredient for maintaining good health. Low on glycemic index and rich in vitamin B, this rice grown out of dying bamboo shoot works as a miracle medicine for those suffering from joint pains. Add it to your dosa batter, stir into your payasam to get the best of its benefits.