Rice Bran Oil: 8 Health Benefits, Uses, And Side Effects

A healthy alternative to your regular cooking oil, especially if you want to make fries

Medically reviewed by Staci GulbinStaci Gulbin, RD, LDN
By Ravi Teja TadimallaRavi Teja Tadimalla, Professional Certificate In Food, Nutrition & Health  • 

It is an undeniable fact that cooking oil greatly impacts your health. With increased health consciousness, less refined and low-fat oils, like rice bran oil, are gaining popularity. The benefits of rice bran oil have been well researched in recent times. The oil also adds a unique flavor to your dishes. Understand more about this oil, its benefits, and if it is worth the hype. Continue reading further.

What Is Rice Bran Oil? How Is It Good For You?

Rice bran oil is the oil extracted from the rice husk or the hard outer brown layer of rice. Rice bran oil has a high smoke point (450o F) and is quite suitable for dishes involving high temperatures.

The goodness of rice bran oil comes from its components. It contains y-oryzanol, a potent antioxidant, and other organic chemical compounds like tocopherols and tocotrienols, which have properties of vitamin E. Most of the benefits of this oil come from these compounds, which is what we will discuss now.

What Are The Benefits Of Rice Bran Oil?

1. Rice Bran Oil Boosts Heart Health

Also known as a heart-friendly oil, it can lower cholesterol levels – thanks to the optimum levels of oryzanol. In fact, this antioxidant reduces cholesterol absorption and increases cholesterol elimination. This oil also has the best combination of monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and saturated fats amongst all vegetable oils.

One Iranian study states that taking rice bran oil as part of a healthy diet can cut the risk of cardiovascular disease (1). In another interesting study, we find that it is rice bran oil, and not fiber, that has more effects on cholesterol reduction (2).

2. Can Be Beneficial For Diabetics

Image: Shutterstock

In one study, rice bran oil was found to lower blood sugar levels by as much as 30% (3). Certain sources even tout rice bran oil as the most nutritious food on the planet.

Rice bran wax, which is produced from rice bran oil, is used as a substitute for carnauba wax in cosmetics.

3. Aids Weight Loss

Rice bran oil may help with weight loss.

Image: Shutterstock

As it has the ability to lower cholesterol levels, rice bran oil may also aid weight loss (4). It is also rich in natural antioxidants (like oryzanol) that boost metabolism and contribute to healthy weight loss (5).

4. Treats Dark Spots

Using rice bran oil topically has its benefits (6). It evens out the skin tone and reduces dark spots. It also helps treat the puffiness around eyes.

5. Helps Treat Eczema

The moisturizing properties of rice bran oil may help treat dry skin and eczema (7). Other dry skin conditions like dermatitisi  XSkin conditions that may cause inflammation and dry, swollen, and itchy red patches or blisters. , rosaceai  XA skin condition, affecting mostly middle-aged people, that causes facial redness along with small red, pus-filled bumps. , and even rashes could also be treated with rice bran oil.

6. Treats Acne

Image: Shutterstock

The oil contains oleic and linoleic acids in a balanced ratio, and this can help treat acne. This is because acne-prone skin is usually deficient in linoleic acid. The oil also contains palmitic acid, another essential fatty acid for healthy skin.

7. Helps Delay Aging

This can be attributed to the presence of squalene in the oil, which tightens skin and boosts skin health. As a consequence, it slows down wrinkle formation and delays skin aging due to its natural moisturizing action.

Quick Tip
Gamma oryzanol, which is a fat fraction of rice bran oil, is available as an over-the-counter drug in China for high cholesterol and menopause.

8. Boosts Hair Growth

Rice bran oil may boost hair growth.

Image: Shutterstock

Rice bran oil contains inositol, a carbohydrate compound that prevents dandruff and reduces split ends. It also promotes hair health. The oil contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids (though omega-3 is only in small amounts) that help prevent premature graying of hair.

Studies show that linoleic acid and oryzanol also boost hair growth and strengthen your tresses (8).

These are the ways rice bran oil can keep you healthier. But there is something else we need to know – the many other nutrients in the oil that do the job well.

What Is The Nutritional Profile Of Rice Bran Oil?

Nutrition Facts Serving Size 218g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 1927 Calories from Fat 1927
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 218g 335%
Saturated Fat 43g 215%
Trans Fat
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 0mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 0g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Sugars 0g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A 0%
Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 0%
Iron 1%
Calorie Information
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Calories 1927(8068 kJ) 96%
From Carbohydrate 0.0(0.0 kJ)
From Fat 1927(8068 kJ)
From Protein 0.0(0.0 kJ)
From Alcohol 0.0(0.0 kJ)
Fats & Fatty Acids
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Total Fat 218 g 335%
Saturated Fat 43.0 g 215%
Monounsaturated Fati  XA type of healthy dietary fat found in olive oil, nuts, and seeds that reduces bad cholesterol levels in the blood. 85.7 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 76.3 g
Total trans fatty acids ~
Total trans-monoenoic fatty acids ~
Total trans-polyenoic fatty acids ~
Total Omega-3 fatty acids 3488 mg
Total Omega-6 fatty acids 72816 mg
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Vitamin A 0.0IU 0%
Vitamin C 0.0 mg 0%
Vitamin D
Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol) 70.4 mg 352%
Vitamin K 53.9 mcg 67%
Thiamin 0.0 mg 0%
Riboflavin 0.0 mg 0%
Niacin 0.0 mg 0%
Vitamin B6 0.0 mg 0%
Folate 0.0 mcg 0%
Vitamin B12 0.0 mcg 0%
Pantothenic Acid 0.0 mg 0%
Choline ~
Betaine ~

There are other ways you can use rice bran oil.

Any Other Uses Of Rice Bran Oil?

Rice bran oil in a bowl

Image: Shutterstock

  • For Cooking

Rice bran oil is particularly effective in high-heat cooking, given it has a high smoke point. You can use it while stir-frying or sautéing. It also has a light flavor and a clean texture and doesn’t overpower the food.

  • For Making Soap

Another interesting use of rice bran oil is in the soapmaking process. It is made with a combination of rice bran oil and other oils, along with organic shea butter and sodium hydroxide. You also add distilled water.

Sounds cool, doesn’t it? But wait – not everything is rosy about this oil. There is a shady side to it as well.

What Are The Side Effects of Rice Bran Oil?

  • Issues During Pregnancy And Breastfeeding

Though safe in normal amounts, we aren’t sure if the oil can be taken in larger amounts during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Hence, stay safe and take the oil in moderation after consulting your doctor.

  • Gastrointestinal Issues

In case you have digestive tract issues like ulcers, indigestion, or any other type of digestive issue, stay away from the oil. The fiber from the rice bran might block your digestive tract and cause complications.

We are not sure if the same is the case with the oil as well. So, stay safe and avoid use.

Rice bran oil is one of the most nutritious cooking oils available. The health benefits of rice bran oil can be attributed to its essential fatty acids, potent antioxidants, minerals, and vitamin E. These nutrients help promote heart health. The oil is also beneficial to your hair and skin. Rice bran oil may even help manage diabetes and weight. However, excess intake may cause gastrointestinal issues. If you experience any adverse effects, limit its use and seek medical advice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is rice bran oil healthier than olive oil?

Both rice bran and olive oils are healthy. Rice bran oil has a higher vitamin E content, while olive oil has a high vitamin K content (9), (10). Rice bran oil has a longer shelf life and is budget-friendly compared to olive oil.

Which is best: sunflower oil or rice bran oil?

While sunflower and rice bran oils are nutritious, their nutritional values differ. Rice bran oil is high in vitamin K and the antioxidant oryzanol compared to sunflower oil (9), (11), (12). This may make rice bran oil more effective in managing cholesterol levels and improving overall heart health.

Key Takeaways

  • Rice bran oil is high in antioxidants that may reduce cholesterol levels and boost heart health.
  • The natural antioxidants in this oil aid weight loss and are beneficial for those with diabetes.
  • In addition, it helps treat eczema and dry skin conditions due to its moisturizing properties.
  • However, excess consumption of this oil may cause gastrointestinal issues like indigestion and ulcers.


Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

  1. “Effect of low-calorie diet with…”. US National Library of Medicine.
  2. “Rice bran oil, not fiber…”. US National Library of Medicine.
  3. “Rice bran lowers diabetic blood sugar”. WebMD.
  4. Pigmented rice bran and plant…” US National Library of Medicine.
  5. Evaluation of γ-oryzanol accumulation and…” US National Library of Medicine.
  6. Rice water: a traditional ingredient with…” Cosmetics, MDPI Journals.
  7. Amended final report on the safety…” US National Library of Medicine.
  8. “In vivo hair growth…”. US National Library of Medicine.
  9. “Oil, rice bran”. U.S Department of Agriculture
  10. “Olive Oil”. U.S Department of Agriculture
  11. “Sunflower oil”. U.S Department of Agriculture
  12. “Study on the composition of rice bran oil…”. Springer Link

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