Saturday, 3 March 2012

Watermelon + Bad, Brown Rice = Bad, Beet Kvass = Good

Blue rice in Nasi Kerabu. No, I don't think they use brown rice.

For the past 2-3 months I have been buying brown rice to mix in with our Ponni low-carb rice, as a little experiment to see whether we/I could tolerate brown rice. Although brown rice is definitely not Paleo nor Primal, the recent debate on safe starches had me pondering my way of eating: what if I can actually tolerate brown rice, and what if I have been missing out on its purported health benefits all this while? I am aware of the anti-nutrients in unprocessed grains, so I made sure to soak the brown rice at least 30 minutes prior to cooking. What I usually do is have a small tupperware of brown rice soaking in my fridge so I'll be able to cook rice in a jiffy.

Then a couple of weeks ago I came down with a bad case of diarrhea due to watermelon. I had avoided this fruit for years because it makes me throw up. Well, this time having a pre-dawn meal of homemade watermelon juice caused gastric pains an hour before breaking fast. After iftar things headed steadily south, literally. About 2 weeks before that I had stopped taking my daily yoghurt because I was bored of it. Instead I turned to tapai a few days a week, whereas I used to eat yoghurt daily.

So my gut flora weren't what they used to be, and possibly my eating brown rice was slowly eroding my gut flora. Why do I say this? Yesterday for the first time in weeks I had white rice, without any brown rice mixed in. And afterwards I was struck by how great my stomach felt. I hadn't realised I was having flatulence all this while. This is really weird for me because I normally pay close attention to my gut (literally). Just to test things further, tonight I had brown rice again. Not long after dinner, the symptoms reappeared: bloating, stomach distension.  I had a sip of my newly-prepared beet kvass, it tasted like salty beetroot. About half an hour later I burped out most of the gas, and my bloating reduced considerably.

I feel so much better now.

So no more brown rice for me I guess. It will make great bird seed.

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