“We are launching this social media campaign to challenge everyone towards becoming RICEponsible. This is to help our farmers and our country, while promoting better health,” Pascual said.
Pascual, a rice ambassador, said that rice should be consumed on appropriate quantity and through their better forms such as brown rice and rice mixes. As rice has too much starch and sugar, overeating it could cause Type 2 diabetes and trigger auto-immune diseases.
Brown rice or unpolished rice has more dietary fiber, polyphenols, and antioxidants particularly rice oils than white rice. Rice blended with corn grits is also richer in dietary fiber, potassium, and vitamins A, B6, and C than plain rice. Other than corn grits, rice could also be mixed with saba, kamote, and adlai.
Meanwhile, Dr. Flordeliza Bordey, deputy executive director for development of Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), said that “the challenge is very timely with the coming of holiday seasons, reunion, and other festivities.”
As recommended by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute, PhilRice promotes the right amount of rice on every meal; rice should only be a third of the plate.
To join the challenge, participants must prepare the healthiest and most balanced meal; take a photo of the meal with the right amount of rice, rice mix, brown rice, pigmented rice, or other sources of carbohydrates; then post it publicly on Facebook with the #RICEponsiblePlateChallenge and tag the Be RICEponsible FB account. The post must also be captioned with age, sex, and brief meal description.
With around P25,000 in prizes, the challenge runs from Nov. 6 to 30 while winners will be announced on Dec. 18. Freebies and consolation prizes will also be given away.
Entries will be judged based on nutritional quality, 40%; food combination, 30%; visual appeal, 20%; and FB shares and like, 10%. Sharing and liking entries of the shortlisted entries on FB ends on Dec. 8, 5pm.