(NaturalNews) The first thing you should do is find rice that contains relatively low arsenic levels. There have been reports of high arsenic content in rices grown in the USA, especially where cotton used to be grown with arsenic laced pesticides that have seeped into the same soil used for growing rice. Rice from China has cadmium issues as well.
According to Consumer's Report, it appears that organic basmati white rice from India, sold at Target and Trader Joe's, has the lowest levels of arsenic, and white rice generally has less arsenic than brown rice.
But there's an even better, safer type of basmati (long-grain) white rice that is imported from India and recommended by Ayurvedic doctors as the most digestible and nutritious type of white rice known as parboiled basmati rice.
It's not boiled or precooked the way we normally think. Parboiling rice is a method of removing the bran from rice while retaining most of the nutrients lost with other bran removal processes.
Parboiled rice contains more fiber, magnesium, calcium, potassium, vitamin B3 (niacin) and vitamin B6 than regular white rice. So it's closer to brown rice nutritionally but easier to digest.
Parboiled rice is harder to find than other organic basmati white rice, because it's sold in international, Asian or Indian specialty food stores. But parboiled basmati white rice can also be purchased online.
The parboiling processing explained
Here's an excerpt from the SFGate online magazine:
Unlike brown and white rice, the process [of bran removal] for parboiled rice begins before the hull is removed. The complete grain of rice is soaked, steamed and dried, then the hull is removed to make parboiled rice.
The steaming enables the rice to absorb nutrients and changes the starch so that it cooks into a firmer, less sticky dish of rice than regular white rice. The steaming does not precook the rice, so it still takes about 20 minutes to prepare. [Emphasis added]
The first step is to thoroughly rinse the rice's protective mineral oil coating by running water turned up high through the rice in a strainer, which you shake rapidly from side to side. When the water turns clear, the rice is clean.
Unless you have or can afford an expensive aluminum rice steamer, Teflon and plastic-free stove-top cooking will be fine. Tap water is usually fluoridated and contains a fair share of arsenic as well.
So use only either real spring water or water purified with a combination of both carbon filter and reverse osmosis processing. Most health food stores and regular supermarkets have machines that process tap water with that purifying combination for 25 to 50 cents per gallon.
All you'd need for steaming your rice is a heavy, medium-sized stainless steel, ceramic or Pyrex glass pot with a heavy lid that seals well.
Stove-top cooking parboiled basmati white rice is the same as cooking other rices. Use a two to one ratio of water (with a pinch of sea salt) to rice. When it comes to a boil, place the tight sealing heavy lid onto the pot and bring the heat down to low.
Cook for 20 to 30 minutes without peeking into the pot and releasing the steam. It should be done by then. If there's still any water showing, continue for a few minutes more. Enjoy a tasty, more nutritious, relatively arsenic-free rice they way you'd like.
About the author: Paul Fassa is dedicated to warning others about the current corruption of food and medicine and guiding others toward a direction for better health with no restrictions on health freedom. You can visit his blog at http://healthmaven.blogspot.com