Reuters Health


Soaking brown rice for a day before it is cooked may be an inexpensive and easy way to turbocharge the nutritional value of this staple food, Japanese scientists have found.
Soaking the rice stimulates the early stages of germination, when a tiny sprout, less than a millimeter tall, grows from the grain. “The birth of a sprout activates dormant enzymes in the brown rice all at once to supply the best nutrition to the growing sprout,” said Dr. Hiroshi Kayahara, a professor at Shinshu University in Nagano.
Sprouted rice contains more fiber, vitamins and min erals than non-germinated rice, Kasayara and his colleagues report. The germinated rice also contains triple the amount of lysine, an amino acid needed for the growth and repair of tissues, and 10 times more gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), which can benefit the kidneys.
The researchers soaked the brown rice in warm water for 22 hours to make it sprout. The sprouted rice is not only enriched, it is also easier to cook because the hard outer husk has been softened, Kayahara noted, and it tastes sweeter. White rice will not sprout when soaked, he added.