Rice - traditional medicine

The uses of rice in traditional medicine are closely interwoven with its use as a food. The main rice-products used as medicines are made from brown rice and rice oil from rice bran. Some of its traditional uses are supported by scientific studies.

Rice remedies

An historical botanical sketch of a rice plant.
Rice plant, c.1886.

Rice can be used to treat skin conditions. The rice is boiled, drained and allowed to cool and mashed. The rice is made into a paste or moulded into balls and these can be applied to boils, sores, swellings and skin blemishes.

Other herbs are sometimes added to the rice balls to increase their medicinal effects. Sticky glutinous rice is often taken to treat stomach upsets, heart-burn and indigestion. Extracts from brown rice have been used to treat breast and stomach cancer and warts. They have also been used to treat indigestion, nausea and diarrhoea.

This information is provided for general interest only. It is not intended as guidance for medicinal use. Further information on using herbal medicines is available.