Family • Graminiaceae / Poaceae - Oryza sativa Linn. - RICE - Ku-ya

Scientific names

Oryza aristata Blanco
Oryza sativa Linn.
Oryza glutinosa Lour.
Oryza montana Lour.
Oryza praecpx Lour.
Jing dao (Chin.)

Common names

Ammai (Ibn., It.)
Pagai (Ilk.)
Pagei (Bon.)|
Palai (Tag.)
Palay (Tag.)
Parai (Bik.)
Pai (Sul.)
Rice (Engl.)
Ku-ya (Chin.)

Other vernacular names

AFRIKAANS: Rys ITALIAN : Riso, Risone.
ARABIC: Al ruzz, Arruzz, Eruz. JAPANESE: Gemmai, Hakumai, Raisu, Suitou, Ine.
ARMENIAN: Brinz. NEPALESE: Caamal, Dhaan.
CHINESE: Ya zhou zai pei dao, Dao zi (seed), Mi (polished grain), Shui dao, Zhan dao, Zhan nian. PORTUGUESE: Arroz, Arroz em casca, Arroz paddy.
DANISH: Raa ris, Ris, Uafskallet ris. SANSKRIT: Vrihi.
DUTCH: Padie, Rijst. SERBIAN: Pirinač
FINNISH : Kuorimaton riisi, Raakariisi, Riisi. SLOVAKIAN: Riža.
FRENCH : Riz, Riz cargo, Riz commun, Riz cultivé, Riz non décortiqué, Riz de plaine, Riz paddy, Riz vêtu. SPANISH: Arroz, Arroz con cáscara, Arroz con cáscara asiático, Arroz irrigado.
GERMAN : Gemeiner Reis, Paddy-Reis, Reis, Rohreis. SWEDISH: Paddyris, Ris.
HUNGARIAN : Hántolatlan Rizs. TAMIL: Pacharisi, Risi.

Rice is a grass species with erect, cylindrical, hollow, jointed and striate stems, from 1 to 1.5 meters. Leaves are flat, with long close sheaths, prominent ligule. Leaf blade is linear, 15 to 30 centimeters long, up to 2 centimeters wide, with rough and serrulate edges armed with minute forward prickles. Panicles are 20 to 30 centimeters long, at first erect, drooping and nodding as the grains ripen. Spikelets are laxly disposed, stalked, one-flowered, 7 to 9 millimeters long, awned or awnless. Fruit (grain) is enclosed in, but not adhering to, persistent pales, oblong, ovoid, or oblong-ovoid, smooth, and somewhat compressed.


Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) The evaluation of antianaphylactic effect of Oryza sativa L. in rats / Hyung Min Kim et al / The American journal of Chinese medicine / 1999, vol. 27, no1, pp. 63-71 • DOI: 10.1142/S0192415X99000094

(2) Effect of Oryza sativa extract on the progression of airway inflammation and remodeling in an experimental animal model of asthma / Planta medica .2006, vol. 72, no5, pp. 405-410

(3) Sorting Oryza names / Authorised by Prof. Snow Barlow / Maintained by: Michel H. Porcher / MULTILINGUAL MULTISCRIPT PLANT NAME DATABASE / Copyright © 1997 – 2000 The University of Melbourne.

(4) A study of Hassawi rice (Oryza sativa L.) in terms of its carbohydrate hydrolysis (in vitro) and glycaemic and insulinaemic indices (in vivo). / Al-Mssallem MQ, Hampton SM, Frost GS, Brown JE. / Eur J Clin Nutr. 2011 May;65(5):627-34. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2011.4. Epub 2011 Mar 2.

(5) Effect of Processing on Nutritional Value of Rice (Oryza sativa) / Aadil Abbas, Shahzad Murtaza, Faiza Aslam, Ayesha Khawar, Shakeela Rafique and Sumera Naheed / World Journal of Medical Sciences 6 (2): 68-73, 2011

(6) Rice-Traditional Medicinal Plant in India / M. Umadevi*, R. Pushpa, K.P. Sampathkumar, Debjit Bhowmik / Journal of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry, Vol 1, No 1, 2012

– Extensively cultivated in the Philippines.
– Not a native of the Archipelago, of prehistoric introduction.


– The rice bran contains 20 percent oil and a higher percentage of protein than the polished variety.
– Of the 7 percent proteins in rice, 0.14 is a globulin, 0.04 an albumin, and the remainder, a protein (oryzagenin) similar to the glutenin of wheat. soluble in dilute alkali.

– Malted rice is peptic, carminative and tonic.
– Nutritional benefits: Excellent source of carbohydrates; good energy source; low fat, low salt, and no cholesterol; good source of vitamins and minerals, gluten-free.

Parts used
Grains, polishings, roots and rhizomes.

Partial List of Seeds

Edibility / Nutrition
– Rice is staple food for more the 60% of the world population.
– Rice is a staple article of diet, and polished in preparation for eating.
– Polished rice is deficient in vitamin B and has been cause of beriberi.
– From the polishings is prepared an extract called tiki-tiki, a wonderful source of vitamin B, both a preventive and cure for infantile beriberi.
– Rice bran is a healthy additive to the making of muffins, cakes, cookies, providing both fiber and nutritive value.
– Rice wine, tapoi, is prepared from rice.

– Decoction of roots and rhizomes for anuria.
– Lye from burned culms is considered abortive.
– Decoction and poultices of grains are emollient.
– Poultice of soft rice, applied to back and chest for coughs and bronchitis.
– Rice water used as an enema.
– Rice, boiled, drained and mashed, is made into a paste or moulded into balls and applied to boils, sores, swellings, and skin blemishes.
– Sticky glutinous rice used to treat upset stomachs, heartburn, and indigestion.
– Extracts of brown rice have been used to treat warts, breast and stomach cancers. Also used for indigestion, nausea, and diarrhea.
– In Cambodia, hulls of mature plants used for treating dysentery.
– In Malaysia, boiled rice greens used as eye lotion and inflammation of inner body tissues.
– Dried powdered rice used for skin ailments.
– In India, rice water is prescribed as ointment to counteract inflamed surfaces.


– Oil and furfuran: Rice oil and furfural is obtained from crude rice bran. Rice bran oil is used as edible oil, in soap and fatty acids manufacturing. Also used in cosmetics, synthetic fibers, detergents, and emulsifiers.
– Cellulose: Rice hulls are made into cellulose products, like rayon.
– Rice mill fuel by-product of carbonaceous ash is a source of sodium silicate, soap, pigments, carbon.
– Fuel: Rice husks is used as fuel.
– Paper: Rice straw can also be a source of paper. Used in board and paper manufacturing, packing and building materials, and as an insulator.
– Also used in making compost and chemical derivatives.
– Brooms: Bundled rice straw used in the making of brooms.
– Ashes of hulls used for cleaning of discolored teeth.
– Beri-beri: From rice polishings, bran is extracted and used as an excellent source of vitamin B to prevent and cure beri-beri.

Study Findings
• Antianaphylactic: The evaluation of antianaphylactic effect of Oryza sativa L. in rats: Study showed the extract of OS possess antianaphylactic activity by inhibition of release of mast cells in vivo and in vitro.
• Diabetes: An investigation of indigenous plants used as traditional phytotherapies for the control and treatment of diabetes. There is a plenitude of folkloric hypoglycemic plants; Oryza sativa is one of them. In the investigation, the “Antidiabetic Flour” is obtained from 6 plants in equal amounts of 2 Kg from each plant: the dried underground part of Daucus carrota and the seeds of Oryza sativa, Cicer arietinum, Hordeum vulgare, Triticum aestivum and Zea mays. In a dietary regimen for diabetes, bread from this mix is eaten every morning with fresh cow’s butter for 2 months.
• Asthma: Effect of Oryza sativa extract on the progression of airway inflammation and remodeling in an experimental animal model of asthma: Ethanolic extract of black rice may play a role in attenuating the progression of airway inflammation and suggests a potential for OS in the asthma prevention and treatment.
• In vitro Carbohydrate Hydrolysis / Glycemic and Insulinemic Indices: Study of Hassawi riceshowed a similar GR (glycemic index) to UBR (Uncle Ben’s Rice), although with a lower insulin response. There were differences in RAG (rapidly available glucose) and SAG (slowly available glucose). Differences may be important in terms of metabolic impact and outcome on diabetes.
• Processing Effects: Study evaluated effects of processing on rice. A decrease in minerals occur during milling. Mineral content is decreased in processed rice. Results suggest milling should be designed to remove the pericarp but to retain the other contents and as much aleurone layer as possible.
• Antioxidant and Nutrient Analysis of Ten Cultivars: Study evaluated ten medicinal rice cultivars from South Indian states for phytochemical content, nutrient analysis, phenols and antioxidant property. Kullakar showed the highest flavonoid content. Njavara yellow the highest phenol content, with high protein content.

Commercial cultivation.