Rice diet: Benefits, effectiveness, recipes

The rice diet is a high carbohydrate, low fat, low-protein diet for losing weight. This diet has a calorie deficit, reduced sodium and mindfulness. It may help people lose weight and improve their health.

The rice diet was developed by a Duke University researcher in Durham, North Carolina in the 1940s.

Learn more about the rice diet, including how to follow it, potential risks and benefits, and what you can eat.

In Kempner’s original cohortAlthough the rice diet didn’t cure everyone, 107 of the 192 participants experienced a significant improvement in bloodpressure. Many also saw a reduction in the following:

  • Their heart size
  • Retinopathy refers to a retina-related disease
  • serum cholesterol levels, which is the amount of total cholesterol in a person’s blood, including high- and low-density lipoproteins and triglycerides

It is important to remember, however, that people with malignant hypertension had an average life expectancy of 6 months in those days.

The Rice Diet SolutionAccording to authors, the diet can help people lose weight quickly and safely. Males lost an average of 30 lbs in the first four weeks while females lost an average of 19 pounds.

They also claim that the rice diet can make you feel more alert and focused.

The Rice Diet Solution explains why the diet works for weight loss.

  • Salt stimulates appetite and is important for reducing weight.
  • The diet does not include saturated fats but instead contains fiber rich carbohydrates which help people feel full.
  • it’s easier to limit calories as the diet consists of low-calorie foods

The book also provides four key points to make the diet work.

  1. Mindful eating and understanding the nutritional contents of food.
  2. Relaxing and making time to do activities such as conscious breathing, Tai Chi, or journaling.
  3. Taking regular exercise.
  4. Support in relationships and communities.

The rice diet can help you lose weight through a calorie deficit and reduced fat and processed food, as well as lifestyle changes such exercise and mindfulness. Some people may also see health benefits from it, as it reduces sodium and saturated oils.

Some people might find the rice diet difficult or too restrictive. This can lead to problems when dining out and nutritional deficiencies.

Low protein can lead to muscle loss or a lack of amino acids that are necessary to synthesize proteins. Healthy fats are essential for proper functioning, and a lack of them could cause health problems.

The Rice Diet Solution also notes that people taking medications for diabetes or high blood pressure should consult their doctor before they start the diet.

Sometimes, a doctor will need to adjust the dosage of medications like lithium or warfarin. People who have had surgery to their colon, ureteral diversion procedures or impaired kidney function, should not eat the diet.

Talk to your doctor if you feel dizzy or unwell while on the rice diet. While the rice diet is suitable for vegetarians and vegans, it may be beneficial for someone who follows this diet.

The Rice Diet Solution updates Kempner’s original guidelines and offers information about the diet.

Kempner’s guidelines

Kempner’s original rice diet consisted almost entirely of fruit and rice, totaling 2,000 calories a day.

Kempner’s rice diet was dramatically lowHigh in complex carbohydrates, salt, and protein.

A person must follow the rice diet. consume:

  • 4-5% of daily calories are from protein
  • 2-3% of daily calories can be obtained from fat
  • 150 mg (mg), sodium daily
  • Fluid intake should be limited

A typical diet in the United States is 25% protein, 25% fat and 50% carbohydrates.

Guidelines for The Rice Diet Solution

The Rice Diet Solution, published in 2006, aimed to help readers lose weight by following a similar diet to Kempner’s original rice diet.

It is important to note, however, that Kempner did not develop the rice diet to aid weight loss but to address “malignant hypertension, renal failure, heart failure, and their combinations.”

The authors explain that the diet is low in sodium and low in fat and recommend that people avoid high-sodium processed foods as well as adding salt to their meals.

The Rice Diet SolutionThis article describes the three phases of the diet: detox, losing weight, and maintaining the weight loss. The diet increases calories gradually from less than 1,000 to more than 1,200 calories per daily. The authors emphasize that one does not have to track calories as the meal plans determine serving sizes.

In addition to the 1,000–1200 calories per day, people can also choose from any fruits or vegetables they wish to eat, but should not add extra fat to their meals.

The diet recommends that people consume between 500 and 1000 mg of sodium each day, with a minimum of 300mg per day. People who do not eat dairy products can eat 2 slices of regular white bread or add 200m of sodium from another source to ensure adequate intake.

It is important to remember that the book doesn’t specify the amount of sodium in particular dairy products. This means that it may be difficult to calculate the exact amount of sodium needed to supplement.

Talk to your doctor if you have concerns about your sodium intake. They can then work with their doctor to maintain their sodium intake within the limits agreed upon by both of them, while also following the rice diet as closely or comfortably as they feel is possible.

The diet recommends that people eat specific amounts of different food groups, such as starches, vegetables, or protein. Starches include cereal, beans, and rice. Protein sources can include animal products like fish and chicken as well as vegetarian products like beans and eggs.

These are the recommended portion sizes for the diet:

  • One starch: One-third cup cooked rice or beans, half a cup cooked pasta or other grains, one slice of bread or quarter-to-one-cup cereal (not low in sodium).
  • One cup non-fat dairy: 1 cup non-fat soy, fortified milk, cows milk or yogurt
  • One cup of raw vegetables = one vegetable
  • One fruit: 1 medium-sized, one-cup grapes, or one-cup of cut fruit
  • One condiment: 1 teaspoon (1 tsp) maple syrup or honey The diet does not allow salt-seasonings or herbs.

These are the guidelines for each phase:

Phase 1: Detox

This phase involves removing excess sodium, toxins and water weight from the body. For a week, people should continue to follow phase 1.

The phase one diet includes:

For 1 day per weekFollow the basic rice diet. This includes 2 starches, 2 fruits, and breakfast, lunch, dinner.

Six days a week Lacto-vegetarian rice diet

  • Breakfast: 1 starch, 1 milk, and 1 fruit
  • Lunch: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit
  • Dinner: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit

This is an example of breakfast for 6 days during the week:

  • A quarter-cup to one-cup whole grain cereal
  • 1 cup non-fat yogurt
  • 3 prunes

Phase 2: Weight loss

This phase is designed to help someone lose weight according their personal goals. The length of phase 2 depends on the weight that someone is trying to lose. This phase should be combined with regular exercise to help people lose an average of 3.5 lbs (lbs) per week, or 14 lbs per year.

One day per weekBasic rice diet that includes 2 starches and 2 at breakfast, lunch and dinner

For five days a semaine: Lacto-vegetarian rice diet

  • Breakfast: 1 starch, 1 milk, and 1 fruit
  • Lunch: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit
  • Dinner: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit

One day per week: Vegetarian + Rice Diet (this includes rice and has 200 more calories than the lactovegetarian rice diet).

  • Breakfast: Two starches, one fruit
  • Lunch: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit
  • Dinner: 3 starches or 3 proteins, 2 dairy, 3 vegetables, 1 fruit

Here’s an example of a lunch for five days in a week:

  • 1 cup of cooked rice /beans or 1 ½ cups of any other cooked grain or pasta
  • Half a cup tomato sauce
  • 2.5 cups spinach and mandarin orange salad, with two tablespoons balsamic dressing

Phase 3: Maintenance

This phase is important for maintaining a healthy weight. The authors offer guidelines for this phase, but advise that once someone reaches their target weight, they might want to add 200 calories to include healthy fats like avocado and nuts, as well as dairy products.

One day per weekBasic rice diet that includes 2 starches and 2 fruit at breakfast, lunch, dinner

For 4 days a Week: Lacto-vegetarian rice diet

  • Breakfast: 1 starch, 1 milk, and 1 fruit
  • Lunch: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit
  • Dinner: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit

For 2 days a Week: Vegetarian-plus rice diet

  • Breakfast: 2 starches, 1 fruit
  • Lunch: 3 starches, 3 veggies, and 1 fruit
  • Dinner: 3 starches or 3 proteins, 2 dairy, 3 vegetables and 1 fruits

For example, a vegetarian and rice dinner for two days of the week might be:

  • Crispy flounder
  • 1 cup garlic red skin potatoes
  • ½ cup southwestern corn
  • 1 cup salad with balsamic vinegar dressing
  • 1 cup creamed spinach
  • 1 orange, 2 clementines

Kempner’s original diet used white rice. White rice is lower in potassiumIt is healthier than brown rice and doctors recommend it to people with kidney failure who were the original target population for the original diet.

Kempner advised his patients to take a supplement because white rice has a low amount of B vitamin thiamine.

People can choose between white and brown rice in newer versions of the diet. Brown rice is unpolished whole grains and has more B vitamins and fiber.

Some also offer research Brown rice has a lower glycemic response than white rice. This may help to balance blood sugar.

Because of its fundamental calorie deficit and reduced fat, the rice diet can help people lose weight.

The rice diet, when combined with regular exercise and lifestyle strategies such as mindfulness, journaling and support from the community, may help people make positive changes and live a more focused and healthy life.

People can also reduce their sodium intake and saturated fat intake to avoid high blood pressure and metabolic disease, such as obesity and cardiovascular disease.

Long-term rice restriction can cause nutritional deficiencies. Therefore, it is important to be aware of this and to plan for a more balanced diet in the maintenance period. Additionally, because people’s health and metabolism differ, what suits some people may not suit others.


Shimabukuro, M., et al. (2013). The BRAVO study examined the effects of brown rice on visceral obesity, endothelial function, and visceral fat.

The rice diet solution (2006).

Source: Medical News Today

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