In 2013, a new product hit the shelves promising that it looks like basmati rice, is easier to cook than basmati rice, and tastes like basmati rice.
It’s called Slim Rice, but is not made with any kind of rice.
It’s made of water and konjac root.
There have been other rice-substitution products made since.
What is Slim Rice?
Slim Rice is a brand made by the British company Eat Water promising to be a zero-carb, gluten-free substitute for basmati rice to help you lose weight by suppressing your appetite. It is made only of water and konjac root. Eat Water also makes substitute spaghetti and penne.
Cooking with Slim Rice
Slim Rice comes ready cooked, so you do not have to wait for it to boil. It’s packed in water.
Open the pouch into a strainer.
Don’t use a colander, since the holes will be too big for rice-sized pieces.
Rinse well with cold water to remove the smell. You can then heat in a microwave for one minute or heat in a pan for one to three minutes.
By itself, Slim Rice is practically tasteless.
It does absorb flavors from other foods, making it a low-calorie and gluten-free addition to a stir-fry, curry, soup, risotto, or just about any other dish where the rice is completely soaked by a broth or sauce.
Advantages of Slim Rice
One advantage to Slim Rice is that it cooks quickly. You don’t have to wait around for 20 or 30 minutes for it to boil.
Slim Rice even cooks faster than bags of ready-cooked frozen rice that you heat up in a microwave.
Another advantage is that it is much lower in calories than regular basmati rice.
A 3.5 ounce (100 gram) serving of basmati rice is 350 calories. A comparable serving of Slim Rice is only 7.7 calories.
Diabetics are always concerned about spikes in their blood sugar levels after they eat.
Since Slim Rice is low in calories and carbohydrate-free, there is relatively little to cause any rise in blood sugar.
What you add to the rice could still cause a rise in blood sugar.
Slim Rice is supposed to help curb snacking, which could lead to spikes in blood sugar.
Arguably, the main advantage of Slim Rice is that it fills you up.
This is because konjac root quickly absorbs water and swells up. Once it’s in your stomach, it swells out to fill you up.
This is how Slim Rice and its sister product Slim Pasta got its name. “Slimming” is the UK word for “dieting.”
It’s not named because the rice is thinner than ordinary rice.
Uses of Konjac Root and Choking Hazards
The only other ingredient than water in Slim Rice is the root of the konjac plant (Amorphophallus Konjac).
This is a plant that grows in Asia. Unlike many other kinds of edible roots like potatoes or yams, konjac does not contain any carbohydrates.
It does contain fiber, which makes it the main ingredient in the dietary fiber supplement glucomannan, also known as konjac glucomannan or KGM.
It’s used for constipation, diabetes and high cholesterol.
It’s been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) mainly by making the powdered root into a gel.
It’s been used to treat everything from coughs to tumors.
However, there haven’t been a lot of clinical studies showing if these treatments are effective.
Studies that have shown KGM is effective in these areas:
- Reduce phlegm production.
- Lower cholesterol in the plasma.
- Improves the body’s ability to metabolize carbohydrates.
- Makes you have bowel movements regularly.
Konjac root powder being used as food is nothing new.
It’s been used by food manufacturing companies for years as a thickener, since it does not have any taste to clash with the other ingredients.
It’s also used as flour, tofu, gelatin, candy, drinks, shirataki rice and shirataki noodles.
They are also sometimes used to make the “bubbles” in bubble tea, but usually the bubbles are made with tapioca.
Unfortunately, solid capsules or pills made of konjac root and some candies have been a choking hazard.
Some candies and noodles made of konjac root have been banned in some countries.
However, Slim Rice has not been banned and has not proven to be a choking hazard.
Any kind of rice, no matter what it is made of, can be a choking hazard for children under one year old.
Problems with Slim Rice
Besides it’s lack of taste and unusual smell when you open up a packet, Slim Rice has come under fire by nutritionists for its almost complete lack of nutrients. Slim Rice is 97% water.
The National Obesity Forum states that you don’t do your body any good by eating heavily processed diet foods, since you are not eating the nutrients you need to stay healthy.
They recommend that instead of Slim Rice, eat a small portion of brown rice or whole-wheat pasta.
Since brown rice and whole-wheat pasta has a taste, you need to use less sauce or other ingredients that you need to make Slim Rice somewhat edible.
Brown rice contains not only carbs, fiber and fat, but protein and three kinds of B vitamins.
Whole-wheat pasta contains carbs, protein, zinc, magnesium and iron.
Frequently Asked Questions About What is Slim Rice
Does Slim Rice Taste Like Rice?
Slim Rice does not have much of a taste at all since it’s mostly made of water. It is chewier than rice.
What Does Slim Rice Smell Like?
When you open up a packet of Slim Rice or Slim Pasta, it usually smells like rubber or starch. Slim Rice needs to have the water in the packet drained. Then, rinse well in cold water to remove the smell.
Is Slim Rice Good for Weight Loss?
Slim Rice can keep you feeling fuller for longer, so you can curb snacking. However, you still need to diet and exercise in order to lose weight.
The Least You Need to Know
Slim Rice gets is supposed to be a basmati rice substitute for dieters.
It’s made of 97% water and konjac root. Many people complain that it has no taste at all, and has a peculiar texture.
Nutritionists claim that Slim Rice does not provide any healthy nutrients.
Although water is good for you, it’s not good to have a diet mostly consisting of water.