Rice Protein Powder Review: Does It Really Helps Fitness, Health, Bodybuilding, Weight Loss?

With so much attention on whey and casein protein, people forget that there are other supplementary sources of protein. One of them is rice protein.

There’s a good chance you haven’t really heard of rice protein before today.

If you’ve been looking for protein powder supplements, you may have probably just encountered whey and casein protein as your moan options.

So what exactly is rice protein?

The simple answer is that it’s protein that comes from rice.

It’s therefore a plant-based protein that suits vegetarians and even vegans, since it doesn’t come from cow’s milk.

It’s also an option for the lactose-intolerant, as whey and casein has traces of lactose.

Is There Actual Proof that Rice Contains Protein?

Does rice have protein?

It’s an understandable question, because rice is mainly known for its carbohydrate content.

It has virtually no fat at all, but it does have a small amount of protein.

Various studies have used brown rice protein, so we know for a fact there is protein in brown rice. (1)

A larger amount of rice is however needed to extract useful amounts protein from rice to make rice protein powder.

In 100 grams of cooked short-grain white rice you get 100 calories and 28.7g of carbs.

You only get 2.4g of protein.


Species / Types of Rice with Highest Protein Quality

We also have to account for the fact that there’s not just a single type of rice.

Each type offers different amounts of protein if you take it as part of your meal.

Here are the amounts of protein you get with one cup of the following rice types:

  • Cooked wild rice. 5g of protein per cup (13% DV), with 166 calories.
  • Cooked long-grain brown rice. 5g of protein per cup (11% DV), with 248 calories.
  • Cooked medium grain brown rice. 5g of protein per cup (9% DV), with 218 calories.
  • Cooked long-grain regular enriched white rice. 3g of protein (9% DV), with 205 calories.
  • Cooked rice noodles. 2g of protein per cup (6% DV), with 190 calories.

Rice Protein Benefits and Nutritional Facts

So how does rice protein benefit people?

Here are some specific benefits you will really appreciate:

  • It’s hypoallergenic

This is one of the main reasons why people go for nutribiotic rice protein.

Whey and casein protein comes from cow’s milk, so the lactose content is problematic to some people.

That’s not a problem with rice.

Other may also be allergic or sensitive to wheat and soy, and so the protein form those sources may also cause allergic reactions.

But very few people are actually allergic to rice.

  • Easy to digest

Many types of protein powder can cause digestive upset in some consumers.

This is so common that many of the best brands include digestive enzymes to counteract this problem.

But it’s not a problem with rice protein at all, as it’s easier to digest.

  • Vegans can use this with no qualms

Vegan diets often exclude not just animal products but also their by-products as well.

That’s why whey and casein protein aren’t compatible with many vegan diets.

WHY? Because it comes from cow’s milk.

On the other hand, rice is plant based.

The manufacturers of rice protein powder are also very careful not include any sort of animal by-product into their formulas.

As vegans are more likely to have problems with potential protein deficiency, protein from rice can certainly help to make sure that vegans still get their daily protein needs.

  • Very mild and subtle taste

It tastes like the rice from which it came.

This lets you mix this with recipes and shakes with no unpleasant resulting flavors.

On the other hand, pea protein may be completely vegan too but its taste is much stronger.

It can really mess up the taste of your shake or baked goods. So of you like to experiment with your protein powder, this is best in terms of flavor.

Editor's Pick: Check out this full guide about organic protein brands
  • It’s fast-absorbing

It’s similar to whey protein in this regard, as your body can absorb the protein quickly.

This makes it a great post-workout supplement, it will feed your rebuilding muscles with protein.

  • Help you lose weight

This can make you feel fuller faster and for a longer period of time.

It makes you less likely to have cravings for sweets in between meals, and you’re likely to eat less during your meals.

  • It has health benefits

These include improving your heart and liver function and regulating your cholesterol.

If you’re looking to improve your health and cholesterol levels, this protein is a good choice.

  • Helps to normalize blood sugar

Protein can reduce the severity of insulin spokes and blood sugar crashes.

When taken with carbs, the protein slows the absorption of these foods and it prevents the mental fog that sometimes results.

  • Can be tailored for the needs of women

Most women don’t really need massive doses of protein.

As rice isn’t really noted for protein content, it’s easier to provide more modest amounts of protein for women.

  • The top rice protein powder nutribiotic brands are pure and clean

They’re not like soy protein that contains phytoestrogens and are often derived from genetically modified soy.

Nutribiotic Rice Protein, Vanilla, 3 Pound
Top Rice Protein Powder Brand

Rice Protein vs. Whey Protein: Are There Any Differences?

In many ways, rice and whey are similar.

They can provide ample protein for muscle-builders, and they can both work for weight loss programs as well.

Vegetarians can use either of them too.

The nutritional states are also similar.

They have similar protein amounts per serving, and the same calorie content. They both offer very little carbs and almost no fat.

However, one of the biggest differences is how they affect people, particularly the lactose-intolerant.

As whey protein comes from cow’s milk, there will be traces of lactose that may undermine users who are sensitive to lactose.

In contrast, the protein in rice doesn’t have any trace of lactose at all.

In fact, very rarely does it contain any ingredient that can cause allergic reactions of any sort. Even digestive issues are rare, unlike with other types of protein.

Another huge difference between the two is that whey often isn’t allowed in vegan diets.

Many vegan diets don’t allow for any sort of animal by-product. Whey protein comes from cow’s milk, so its use may be against the vegan rules.

Rice protein, on the other hand, is an acknowledged vegan supplement as it is entirely plant-based.

Manufacturers know this, which is why they don’t add ingredients that may violate vegan precepts.

Pea Protein vs. Rice Based Protein: Are There Any Difference?

Both are vegan protein supplements, so you may think that there’s really no practical difference between the two types.

They both offer similar amounts of proteins and calories, and they’re both low in fat and carbohydrates.

Both are gluten-free, easy to digest, and allergy-friendly.

They’re used by athletes, and many meat-eating folks like them too.

The main difference is with their amino acid profiles.

Rice does not contain a full amino acid profile.

It is low when it comes to lysine. On the other hand, pea protein is rich in lysine.

Pea protein does contain a full amino acid profile, but it is still low in methionine.

However, you do find adequate amounts of this amino acid in rice protein.

These differences in amino acid profiles explain why rice protein and pea protein are often paired together.

You’re not forced to just choose one over another.

You can take both, and you create a full amino acid profile when you do.

The other difference is with taste, but then that’s an individual preference.

Rice protein has a more subtle taste so it can mix with just about recipe or shake.

Pea protein, however, often has a rather strong taste that may not mix well with others.


Should You Make Rice Protein At Home or Purchase Powder?

If you’re a person who likes to cook their own meals, then you may be wondering if it is at all possible you can make your own rice protein powder at home.

This is especially true if you don’t like a few of the ingredients of some of the brands.

Here are the steps you need to take:

  • To make your own rice protein powder, we suggest you start with brown rice. Turn it into a powder using a strong blender or a coffee grinder. It is crucial that you grind them well and really fine.
  • You can leave it unflavored, as it'll not alter the taste of your shakes, baked goods, or food recipes.
  • If you do want to flavor it, you may want to add powdered chocolate or vanilla. You can also add powdered extracts with the flavors of edible fruits. Other options include adding several drops of liquid flavoring extract such as almond.
  • Now you may want to think about adding other ingredients for their nutrients. For healthy fats, add finely ground wheat germ or nuts. For fiber, put in oats. Powdered matcha tea or spirulina will add more nutrients and antioxidants.
  • You’ll have to store this mix in a tightly sealed container, and put it in your fridge. You may have to limit yourself to a small batch as the protein powder mix may degrade quickly.

As you can see, it takes a lot of time and effort to make your own rice protein powder, and you need to buy a lot of stuff.

You’ll also have to do this frequently.

You can save yourself all that trouble (and probably money) by just buying protein powder online.

Any Rice Protein Side Effects?

On the whole, protein from rice doesn’t really result in side effects at all.

There may be some issues with stomach upset if you take too much of it, but this is a problem with all types of protein powders.

In fact, too much of anything can just be bad.

The most like way you’ll end up with side effects is if you’re allergic to rice or specifically brown rice.

This may cause you to experience a bloated feeling, flatulence, or diarrhea. You may even exhibit hives and rashes.

But allergy to rice is extremely rare especially outside Far East Asia (China, Japan, and Korea).

It’s more likely that if you show allergic reactions to brown rice protein powder, you’re actually reacting to some of the additives that came from other sources than rice.

Some have also expressed worries about heavy metals in rice, although these fears are generally not warranted.

But if you want to be sure you don’t suffer from rice protein powder side effects, you can always opt for organic rice protein powder.


Top 7 Organic Rice Protein Powder Brands without Negative Effects

So to be on the safe side (is there any other side?), you may want to start with these organic rice protein powder brands.

As they’re all “organic”, they don’t have any additives that may not be entirely healthy for you.

1.  Nutribiotic Rice Protein, Vanilla  (Order Here: AMAZON)

Nutribiotic Rice Protein, Vanilla, 3 Pound While the Nutribiotic Rice Protein does have a mild flavor, the vanilla at least still tastes good enough for most people.

This offers a highly concentrated form of protein, with 80% protein per serving.

  • A single heaping tablespoon of this gives you 12g of protein. If you want to use the rice protein for muscle building, you can always add another tablespoon.
  • Each serving has just 60 calories, so it’s great for those who are trying to lose weight.
  • It also has zero total fat, zero cholesterol, and just 2g of carbs. It’s virtually pure protein in other words.
  • You also get iron and phosphorus.
  • This did not use any chemicals during the processing. It has no pesticides, herbicides, CNOs, and PCBs (which can cause acne and skin rashes).  (2)
  • It is easy to digest. That’s often a problem with other protein powders, but not with this one
  • It tastes great, and it isn’t chalky at all.

Mind you, the vanilla taste here isn’t really strong. But that’s part of the rice protein appeal—the flavor isn’t strong enough to put you off.

You do need to take note of the lid on the container.

It’s been designed to keep the inner seal inside the container when you open the lid. This is to make sure that when you close the container, it’s actually sealed.

A lot of people who have switched from whey protein love this rice protein. That’s because unlike the whey protein it doesn’t cause any adverse GI issue at all.

So try this in the morning, and you can take it as a snack as well. You can even mix this with chilled decaf coffee for later in the day or night.

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2.  Growing Naturals Organic Rice Protein  (Order Here: AMAZON)

Growing Naturals Organic Rice Protein Powder, Try this in the Vanilla Blast flavor, and you really will have a blast.

Just blend a scoop with 6 to 12 ounces of chilled water or non-dairy milk and you’re good to go. You can also sprinkle this into your sauces, baked goods, and shakes.

Growing Naturals also make raw pea protein. Combining that with the organic rice protein will give you that complete amino acid profile you need.

  • This offers 24g per serving, and that’s ample rice protein for bodybuilding when you take a serving after a workout.
  • Each serving only has 110 calories.
  • You also get zero cholesterol, zero total fat, and a total carbohydrate amount of just 4g.
  • According to the label, this rice protein isolate has all the necessary essential and non-essential amino acids you need.
  • This also contains iron.

Many who cannot take whey protein due to digestive issues switch to this particular rice protein instead.

Blend this into a smoothie and it’s terrific.

It doesn’t have a strong flavor at all, so your smoothie or shake flavor remains unchanged with this addition.

When you also compute the cost with the amount of protein you get, you also realize that you really get your money’s worth.

Add the fact that it doesn’t cause stomach upset, and you really get a lot of value for your money.

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3.  NutriBiotic Rice Protein – Raw Vegan Plain  (Order Here: AMAZON)

NutriBiotic Rice Protein Powder Raw Vegan Plain Now if you insist on going unflavored, this may be an option you’d enjoy.

You can add it to water, but it may be better for taste if you add it to rice milk or any beverage you like.

It goes well with a smoothie too.

  • A single tablespoon provides 12g of protein, which is enough for most women. For men intent on building bigger muscles, another tablespoon can always be added.
  • This doesn’t contain any cholesterol at all, and it doesn’t have fat either. Even the carb content is just at 2g.
  • You also have phosphorus and iron.

Plenty of people have found this unflavored option ideal for baking.

It doesn’t mess with the flavor of your favorite baked goods. So use this for your muffins and enjoy a nice healthy snack.

It does make sense to store this in your refrigerator once you open it for the first time.

Storing it on your counter may not work, especially if you’re somewhere hot and humid. The powder can go and in a hurry.

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4.  Jarrow Formulas Brown Rice Protein Concentrate  (Order Here: AMAZON)

Jarrow Formulas Brown Rice Protein Concentrate, Like the other rice protein powder brands in this list, this is also naturally hypoallergenic. It is non-GNO, and it’s suited for even a vegan diet.

  • This comes in 3 different flavors, so at least you have choices. These include the usual chocolate and vanilla, and there’s mixed berry too. They all mix easily enough with whatever you want, though a blender may be a good idea.
  • Each serving offers 11g of protein with just 60 calories.
  • It comes with zero fat and cholesterol, and zero sugars too. The total carb content is only 3g, while the sodium content is negligible at 10mg.
  • You also get iron, calcium, and a little bit of vitamins A and C. It’s great when you get extra nutrients like this.
  • This also has a complete amino acid profile, and the quality exceeds 100% for almost all the amino acids.
  • This has no artificial sweeteners or flavors, and there are no GMOs either. This comes from organic brown rice, and it has organic gum acacia, organic guar gum, and xanthan gum as sweeteners.

This is actually less gritty than even other rice protein brands, even though you need 2 scoops for each serving.

They use a special milling step to produce a smoother texture for the powder. Just have that blender handy, just in case.

So add 2 scoops of this into your blender when it already has 8 ounces of your favorite protein liquid base.

Carefully add the powder away from the sides of the blender (as the powder will stick to the side). Serve it right away.

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5.  Nutribiotic Organic Rice – Plain  (Order Here: AMAZON)

Nutribiotic Organic Rice Protein, Plain, 3 Pound This is another high quality vegetable protein from Nutribiotic, and it is organic and suited for vegan diets.

Those who wish to make sure that they have enough protein for the day with their vegan diet can use this without worries.

  • A single serving provides 12g of protein, which works well for women and those who just want their DV protein. For those who wish to build muscle, it’s easy enough to increase the dose by adding another heaping tablespoon into the mix.
  • Each serving comes with just 60 calories. This is a godsend for those who are trying to lose weight. Even though it has few calories, the protein makes you feel full enough that you don’t crave for junk food or sugary snacks.
  • Worried about fat? Don’t worry, as it has zero fat. Those with cholesterol issues will also appreciate how this also has zero cholesterol.
  • For those who are watching their sodium intake the sodium content of this serving of protein powder is next to nothing. It’s just 10mg, and that’s less than 1% of your sodium DV.
  • The total carbohydrates also measure at just 2g. It’s great for those trying a low-carb diet.
  • It also contains phosphorus and iron.
  • This is certified organic, and the certification comes from the CCOF / USDA Organic. It comes from rice which did not use PCBs, GMOs, herbicides, and pesticides.

As this is a Nutribiotic product, you need to remember the issue with their lid container.

It’s normal for the inner seal to stay inside the lid when you first open it. The inner seal guarantees that you really seal the container when you put the lid back.

This has a plain taste, but that doesn’t mean the resulting drink you make is also tasteless. Its plain taste allows you to make your favorite shake or smoothie, as by adding this you don’t alter the flavor.

Tyr mixing 2 heaping tablespoons of this rice protein with 6 ounces of flax milk.

Add some cinnamon and about a teaspoon of molasses. Shake it really well, or else use a blender. The result will taste great, and certainly far from plain!

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6.  Naked RICE – Organic Brown Rice  (Order Here: AMAZON)

NAKED RICE - Organic Brown Rice For vegans, building muscle can be problematic.

It’s hard enough to make sure that they have enough protein for the day. It’s even more difficult to have enough extra protein for the muscles to use to get bigger.

But then that’s why there’s Naked Rice.

  • A serving of this rice protein provides a hefty dose of 25 g. That’s comparable to what you can get with high quality whey protein. It’s even more protein-rich than some servings of meat.
  • It also helps that it offers 4.9g of BCAAs. These can improve your workout results and boost muscle recovery.
  • At the same time, you don’t get a lot of carbs at just 4g, and there’s zero sugars added. Total fat is minuscule at 0.5g.
  • It also contains just 120 calories, so it’s like drinking a cup of coffee and calling it a snack. It can work very well for you if you’re trying to lose weight.
  • This is designed to fit a vegan diet, and there are no ingredients here that will go against vegan rules.
  • The amino acid profile here also resembles whey protein.
  • This doesn’t contain GMOs, soy, or gluten.
  • The taste is quite neutral, so you will want to mix this with a flavored smoothie or shake. You can also use this for your vegan banana oatmeal cookies. If you’re a baking aficionado, you’ll like how versatile this is.

Some experts have worried about the presence of heavy metals in rice, which may then appear in the rice protein as well.

But this is made from organic rice. It has been tested by third parties for heavy metals, and it has passed those tests.

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7.  NOW Sports Sprouted Brown Rice  (Order Here: AMAZON)

NOW Sports Sprouted Brown Rice Are you worried about taking too much protein?

Or are you worried about taking in too much calories with your protein?

Either way, your worries can disappear with the NOW Sports Sprouted Brown Rice.

  • This offers a very modest amount of protein, as it only gives you 4g of protein per tablespoon.
  • However, this only has 15 calories! So if you’re trying to lose weight, then you can carefully monitor your calorie intake with this.
  • What if you’re trying to build muscle? You can simply add more tablespoons to your serving. So if you want 24g of protein all at once, you just need 6 tablespoons.
  • With 6 tablespoons, you only consume 90 calories. Comparable servings of protein powder with similar protein content often come with more than 120 calories.
  • This does not contain common allergenic ingredients such as wheat, gluten, soy, milk, egg, fish, shellfish, or tree nut.

However, when you do use this as a protein supplement and take in multiple tablespoons, you will really need a blender to have everything mix properly and smoothly.

Try this recipe for a delicious treat. Mix the following ingredients into your blender:

  • 6 tablespoons of Now Sports Unflavored Sprouted Brown Rice Protein
  • 1 scoop of Now Sports Unflavored Pea Protein
  • 16 ounces of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 stevia packet
  • 1 tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 frozen strawberries
  • 1 banana
  • (optional) 1 teaspoon of milled flax seed

Just blend all of these really well, until everything is smooth. Now you have a thick creamy protein shake without texture or taste issues to worry about.

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Where to Buy Rice Protein Powder?

Though it may seem difficult to buy rice protein powder because they’re not so common, it’s actually easy. You can just go online.

You may go to each individual seller’s website, but this is an inefficient use of your time and effort.

You’re better off going to an online retail platform where you may even find all of these protein powders in one site.

These platforms can be GNC, Walmart, or even Costco, but your overall best option will be Amazon.com.

It’s an extremely reliable and secure website, and this is why it’s one of the most famous brands in the world.

You can rely on the Amazon reviews as they’re fairly objective, and they’re also numerable. You will have a fairly accurate idea of how good each of these protein powders really are.

All the brands mentioned on our list are also all available on Amazon, and they have all the flavors and sizes too.

The prices are great as well.

Conclusion

If you’re a vegan, lactose-intolerant, or experience GI issues with casein and whey protein, you do have the option to switch to rice protein instead.

You may even prefer the subtle taste of rice protein especially if you find the others too sweet or strong.

It’s a very clean type of protein, and it can help with muscle-building or with weight loss. If you just want to be healthier, rice protein powder is a great option as well.


REFERENCES:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5302255/
  2. https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxfaqs/tf.asp?id=140&tid=26
  3. https://mybodylife.com/mass-nutrition-guide-mass-gains/
  4. https://mybodylife.com/vega-one-one-plant-based-protein-powder-review/

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