Are Rice and Beans Good for Weight Loss?

The most important factor in losing weight is consuming fewer calories than your body will burn. To go into a caloric deficit is the goal of all weight loss diets. One question that many who want to lose weight ask is rice and beans are good for weight loss?

Consuming rice and beans as part of your daily diet can help you lose weight. The nutritional aspects of beans combined with the fiber they provide make it an excellent weight loss food. Besides being nutritious, they can additionally be used in various recipes such as soup and salad.

For those interested in incorporating rice and beans into their diet, it is important to select the proper types. This is because not all rice and beans are alike. Some may have higher sugar or carbohydrate content which makes it more difficult to lose unwanted fat.

What are Rice and Beans?

Rice and beans are one of the most popular dishes around the world. Mostly because both ingredients are easy and affordable to obtain. But they also contain nutrients and benefits to your health that are important in any weight loss diet.

Rice and beans are simpatico in terms of weight loss because they both bring different amino acids together to create a complete protein. And while low calories are central to losing weight, it must be paired with the right proteins, fiber, and nutrients to fuel the body.

Otherwise, you are consuming empty calories. Without the proper balance of nutrients that assist your body to burn calories, you may not gain the full effects of a calorie deficit diet. But what makes rice and beans so effective in helping people to lose weight?

Weight Loss Advantage for Rice and Beans

Rice: Rice has the advantage of being free of gluten and non-allergenic. This makes it a perfect addition to a weight loss program. Because rice is part of the grass family, it is widely available and in different varieties.

Of the different varieties of rice, white rice may be the one type to avoid because it contains more calories and sugars which make it more difficult to burn unwanted fat. 

Brown rice is the preferred type of rice for weight loss. At 103 calories per half cup, it offers plenty of nutrients and complex carbohydrates while helping people to burn away the fat. Complex carbohydrates are important to a weight loss diet because they are slow to digest. This makes brown rice ideal for losing weight.

Beans: Most varieties of beans have three of the essential elements for proper weight loss.

  • Low in Calories
  • High in Fiber
  • High in Protein

While the low calories are obvious, the high fiber content helps regulate the blood sugar so that your body does not store the energy provided by the beans as fat. And protein is used by the muscles and not stored as fat.

Of the many different types of beans, black beans are the most preferred for weight loss. Because black beans are higher in antioxidants than any other type of beans, this not only slows down premature aging, but can also detoxify the sulfides often found in beans that cause disorientation, headaches, and stomach issues.

Other types of beans that are recommended for consumption include the following.

  • Cannellini
  • Garbanzo
  • Kidney
  • Pinto

In truth, most beans when purchased fresh or dry are quite suitable for weight loss diets. Only beans served in cans are of concern because of the higher sodium content. Too much sodium may cause health issues and interfere with the weight loss effects of beans.

When to Eat Rice and Beans

For those looking to reduce weight, you can eat rice and beans for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Because of the complex carbohydrates present, rice and beans provide the energy needed without the high number of calories.

As with any food, you should avoid eating before going to bed. The body will tend to store the calories as fat when you sleep.

One recommendation is to consume rice and beans with your meal at lunch and dinner. By splitting a single cup of black beans combined with brown rice, you can feel fuller and more satisfied which in turn reduces the feelings of hunger.

About the only time to cut down on rice and beans is if you are already consuming lots of fiber. Too much fiber consumption may cause digestive issues. It is recommended that you do not take fiber supplements if you are regularly eating rice and beans.

Why Choose Rice and Beans for Weight Loss

The key to any weight loss diet is sticking to it day after day. The issue with most foods is that they become tiresome rather quickly. Since you can use different types of rice and beans along with various spices, you can mix up the variety and stick to your diet.

There are good reasons why those on a low calories diet should consider rice and beans.

  • Low Calories
  • High Fiber
  • Low Sugars
  • High Complex Carbohydrates
  • Affordable & Easy to Prepare

The final attribute may be the most attractive part of adding rice and beans to your diet. Being cheap and easy to make helps people stick to their low-calorie diets.

One interesting study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that beans or legumes contribute to weight loss. This is because legumes along with chickpeas, lentils, and dry peas contain pulses which are non-oil seeds. The resulting study showed that people who consume pulses regularly enjoy faster, more sustainable weight loss.

In addition, fiber helps people feel fuller. The result is that less snacking occurs which compliments the low-calorie approach.

Are rice and beans good for weight loss? The combination of low calories, high fiber, complex carbs, and proteins augments a weight-loss diet. The result is that rice and beans make it easier for you to achieve your weight loss goals.