Why is brown rice syrup bad, and why then would large nutritional supplement companies make it the main ingredient in many food supplement shakes? Surely they are more aware than the man on the street, of the latest research on sugar substitutes.
The global rice protein market is expected to reach USD 198.5 million by 2025, according to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc. Growing global food and beverage industry has been one of the major drivers of the rice protein market. Increased consumption of functional foods such as sports & energy drinks, energy bars, and dietary supplements have also contributed to the industry growth.
Brown rice syrup is a sugar derived from large quantities of brown rice. It converts to glucose in the body, and contains very little nutrients.
A recent U.S. Department OF Health and Human Services ( https://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodborneIllnessContaminants/Metals/ucm367263.htm) report warns of the danger of limiting your grain intake to rice. The reason for this warning is due to the high levels of inorganic arsenic that occurs in rice.
Inorganic arsenic is readily absorbed by rice from fertilisers and pesticides in the environment, and is more toxic than organic arsenic. The report warns to be careful of baby foods with a high content of rice. There is a real fad for cutting out wheat from our diet at the minute, but even if you are celiac and therefore must cut out wheat, be sure that you substitute carefully.
My personal interest in this subject stems from a major effort to make my own diet as clean and healthy as I possibly can at the minute. I recently became aware of a so-called ‘detox diet’ advising the use of nutritional supplements to support the body through a detox liver cleanse. The main ingredient in these supplements was actually rice syrup powder. The second largest ingredient was rice protein concentrate. Any concentrated form of rice product should surely be avoided, though reading the FDA’s report, eating boiled rice a couple of times a week should be okay. My new rule to live by is, ‘Read ALL manufactured food labels very carefully, and eat everything in moderation.’
The FDA report leaves one in no doubt that rice syrup is not a wise substitute for sugar, and has got me scanning all that miniscule text on ingredient labels very carefully. Beware of drinks that contain high levels of rice syrup powder as a sweetener – sugar is definitely the lesser of two evils in this case. Best stick to raw honey, Stevia or foods that are naturally sweet if you are cutting out regular sugar from your diet.