Nutritional constituents and health benefits of wild rice (Zizania spp.)

Nutr Rev. 2014 Apr;72(4):227-36. doi: 10.1111/nure.12101. Epub 2014 Mar 28.


Wild rice (Zizania spp.) seems to have originated in North America and then dispersed into Eastern Asia and other parts of the world. Nutritional analysis shows that wild rice is rich in minerals, vitamins, protein, starch, dietary fiber, and various antioxidant phytochemicals, while it is low in fat. Wild rice has been recognized as a whole grain by the US Food and Drug Administration; in the North American marketplace it is currently sold as and considered to be a health-promoting food. Recent scientific studies have revealed antioxidant and lipid-lowering properties of wild rice, while others have documented cardiovascular benefits associated with the long-term consumption of wild rice in experimental settings. The present review article summarizes various features of wild rice and its cultivation, including its plantation, harvest, nutritional composition, and biological properties. While evidence for the cardiovascular benefits of wild rice consumption is accumulating, additional studies are warranted to determine the clinical benefits of regular consumption of wild rice.

Keywords: Menomin; Zizania spp; health benefits; nutritional values; wild rice.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Agriculture / methods*
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage
  • Antioxidants / analysis*
  • Dietary Fiber / administration & dosage
  • Dietary Fiber / analysis
  • Food, Organic*
  • Humans
  • Oryza / chemistry*
  • Vitamins / administration & dosage
  • Vitamins / analysis*


  • Antioxidants
  • Dietary Fiber
  • Vitamins