SEN. Cynthia Villar on Thursday made it clear that she has no intention to file a bill that would prohibit food establishments from serving unlimited rice but she is urging concerned government agencies to come up with programs that would promote healthy eating among young people.
“I am not planning to make a law banning ‘unli rice’, not at all. I just voiced out my concern that eating too much rice is one of the main causes of high blood sugar that leads to diabetes,” she explained.
Villar, chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food, was reacting to news reports claiming that she was planning to ban food establishments from offering unlimited rice to address problems on rice supply.
“I cannot prevent people from eating unlimited amount of rice. It is their choice. It was just a genuine expression of concern on my part,” the senator said.
During a recent hearing, the senator said that countries like Japan promote balanced diet that consists of a small portion of rice and a generous amount of vegetables.
Villar said she will ask the Department of Health and the Department of Education to develop a new diet program that will encourage children to eat more vegetables and less rice.
The senator cited a study claiming that eating one plate of white rice everyday increases the risk of developing diabetes by 11 percent.
Health experts are also recommending adding 20 percent brown rice to the daily white rice consumption to reduce the risk of diabetes by around 16 percent.