For rice lovers, this could be the answer to all their prayers. A new study from the College of Chemical Sciences in Colombo, Sri Lanka discovered that changing the way rice is cooked may lower its calorie count and making it less likely to lead to weight gain. Accordingly, it involves adding coconut oil and refrigerating it overnight.
One cup of medium grain rice contains about 246 calories and this new method will cut that into just 147 calories per cup. According to the research presented at the American Chemical Society's national meeting, using coconut oil and a refrigerator can cut calories by as much as 60%.
The method works by changing the rice's chemical composition of digestible starch to indigestible starch and this will prevent the rice from being absorbed and metabolized during digestion.
"After your body converts carbohydrates into glucose, any leftover fuel gets converted into a polysaccharide carbohydrate called glycogen. Your liver and muscles store glycogen for energy and quickly turn it back into glucose as needed. The issue is that the excess glucose that doesn't get converted to glycogen ends up turning into fat, which can lead to excessive weight or obesity," says lead researcher Sudhair James, of The College of Chemical Sciences, Sri Lanka.
"If rice is cooked using this method, it might reduce the calories by about 50-60 per cent," he added as reported by Yahoo Health.
This cooking method entails adding a teaspoon of coconut oil to boiling water. Then, a cup of rice would be added and cooked for about 20 to 40 minutes or until it is already cooked. After that, it will be refrigerated for 12 hours or overnight before eating it.
"The cooling is essential because amylose, the soluble part of the starch, leaves the granules during gelatinization," James says.
He added, "Cooling for 12 hours will lead to formation of hydrogen bonds between the amylose molecules outside the rice grains, which also turn it into a resistant starch."