Rice, Health & More
The more you know about rice, the more you love it.
Information About Food And ArsenicA:
Seeing headlines linking food and arsenic can be scary, so we understand your concern. Because arsenic exists naturally in soil and water, trace amounts can be detected in many food and beverage products. Arsenic is in the air, water, rocks and soil, which is why some plants, including rice, absorb it. Extremely low levels of arsenic have been present in rice and other grains for thousands of years.
The US Food & Drug Administration (FDA), the agency responsible for overseeing the safety of our food supply, has been testing for arsenic in food products for decades as part of its standard monitoring and testing protocols. Based on its historical and ongoing research of the US rice supply, the FDA determined that there is no need for consumers to change their rice consumption or eliminate rice from their diets.
Rice has been considered a healthy part of a diet rich in grains for thousands of years. Nonetheless, we are always interested in knowing what we can do to make it safer. Continuous evaluation of sound science and partnership with regulators, including the FDA, is our common practice. At Mars, the safety and quality of our products is our top priority and they are safe to consume.
For more information call our toll-free number 1-800-548-6253, Monday to Friday, from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (EST) or click here for more facts about arsenic in rice.Q:
How do I read the Nutrition Facts Label?A:
Here are some definitions of the more important items on the label. SERVING SIZE: A serving size is based on the amount a person can typically eat and is usually described as either "pieces" or "cups."
SERVINGS PER CONTAINER: Some foods contain more than one serving in a package. The Nutrition Facts Label focuses on the calories and nutrients of one serving. So even though an Ben’s Original™ Rice Product may feed three, only the single serving size (1 cup cooked) is measured.
CALORIES & CALORIES FROM FAT: Calories represent the amount of energy you can get from a serving of a particular food item. The label also tells you how much of the calories indicated come from the total fat count of the product.
NUTRIENTS: Separated into two groups, the nutrients listed first (fat, cholesterol, and sodium) are the ones many people are concerned about in their daily diet. Eating too much fat, cholesterol and sodium can increase your risk of chronic disease, heart disease, cancer or high blood pressure.
FAT: Fat content is broken down into "total fat", "saturated fat" and “trans fat” grams. This is important information when you are trying to stick to a low-fat diet. Don't just look at the total fat, because this includes many fats that are essential for good health. Saturated fat and trans fat, on the other hand, are the fats you want to limit.
TOTAL CARBOHYDRATES: This item is also broken down into two components: "dietary fiber" and "sugars." Products containing high amounts of dietary fiber can boost your overall health. Sugars, however, should be consumed in moderation.
PROTEIN: A good source of protein is important to your health. Look at this item to determine the amount of protein a food product contains.
VITAMINS: Vitamins A and C are listed because many Americans don't get enough of these important substances. Check your food label to make sure you consume adequate amounts of these vitamins.
CALCIUM: A product containing ample amounts of calcium—a crucial nutrient—can help maintain bone health.
IRON: Low iron can cause some health problems and conditions, including chronic headaches, fatigue and anemia. Iron is particularly important for women and vegetarians.
FOLATE: This nutrient helps support a healthy heart. And since it helps prevent neural tube defects in babies, it's also beneficial for women who are (or who are trying to become) pregnant. Many Ben’s Original™ Rice Products are an excellent source of folate.
THIAMIN: Thiamin (vitamin B1) helps body cells convert carbohydrates into energy. Essential for the functioning of the heart, muscles and nervous system, Thiamin is found in enriched rice, breads, cereals, pasta, lean meats, fish, dried beans, peas and soybeans. Thiamin is naturally found in whole grains.
References: Guidance on How to Understand and Use the Nutrition Facts Panel on Food Labels, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, June 2000.
Nutrition Guidelines: Breakfast and Nutrition, Food Insight, July/August 1990.Q:
How should I store my Ben’s Original™ Brand Products?A:
DRY PLAIN RICE PRODUCTS
Uncooked plain dry rice will keep almost indefinitely on the pantry shelf. The rice should be kept in a cool, dry, insect-free area at a temperature of less than 80°F, with no foods or materials nearby whose aromas can be absorbed.
For best cooking results and flavor, we recommend that the shelf life of Ben’s Original™ Brand Dry Rice Products be followed. In the refrigerator, uncooked rice can be stored 6 months to a year, and in the freezer for 1 to 2 years. When freezing rice, be sure you remove excess air from the container to avoid freezer burn. To cook raw rice that has been previously frozen, thaw to room temperature prior to cooking.
Cooked plain rice products must be kept warm at 160°F if being left out for serving. Cooked plain rice products can be stored in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days, and in the freezer for 6 months. Again, make sure it's isolated from any strong aromas. When freezing rice, be sure you remove excess air from the freezer-safe container to avoid freezer burn.
DRY BROWN RICE PRODUCTS
Since the outside bran layer of each grain has more natural oil on it, uncooked brown rice can become rancid faster than white rice Therefore, the recommended shelf life for this product is 16 months. Refrigerator storage is recommended for longer shelf life. It can be stored in the freezer for 1 to 2 years. When freezing rice, be sure you remove excess air from the freezer-safe container to avoid freezer burn. To cook raw rice that has been previously frozen, thaw to room temperature prior to cooking.
Cooked rice can be stored in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days and in the freezer for 2 months. When freezing rice, be sure to remove excess air from the container to avoid freezer burn.
DRY SEASONED RICE PRODUCTS: Ben’s Original™ LONG GRAIN & WILD RICE AND COUNTRY INN® RICE
Uncooked Seasoned Dry Rice Products have a shorter shelf life than Plain Rice Products and will keep on the shelf for 12 months. The rice should be kept in a cool, dry, insect-free area at a temperature of less than 80°F, with no foods or materials nearby whose aromas can be absorbed. We do not recommend storing Seasoned Dry Rice Products in the refrigerator. For best cooking results and best flavor, the shelf life of Ben’s Original™ Brand Dry Rice Products should be followed.
Cooked Seasoned Rice Products can be stored in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days and in the freezer for 3 months. Again, make sure it's isolated from strong aromas. When freezing rice, be sure you remove excess air from the freezer-safe container to avoid freezer burn.
Ben’s Original™ READY TO HEAT RICE POUCHES We do not recommend that unopened Ben’s Original™ Ready to Heat Rice Pouches be stored in the refrigerator or freezer. Once the product has been opened, it can keep in the refrigerator for approximately 3 to 5 days.Q:
Should I rinse my rice before or after cooking?