Brown Sugar: No. Sugar is sugar. The major differences between turbinado sugar, otherwise known as “natural” or “raw” sugar, and white sugar are the size of crystals and the presence of molasses, which gives darker sugar its color. Otherwise they have about the same amount of calories and carbohydrates, says Jo-Anne Rizzotto, M.S., R.D., former education specialist at Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston.
Brown Rice: Yes. “Unlike white rice, where nutrients are stripped away, brown rice still has the whole grain in one piece, so it’s full of fiber, vitamins and minerals,” says Rachel Brandeis, M.S., R.D., an Atlanta-based spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.
Brown Bread: Not Necessarily. “Some manufacturers add caramel coloring in place of whole-grain flour to achieve a brown color,” says Brandeis. The first word in the list of ingredients should be whole, signifying that the grain is still intact. But the next doesn’t have to be wheat. Any whole grain — oat, corn or rye — is rich in fiber and antioxidants.
Brown Eggs: No. The only difference between a white and a brown egg is the color of the shell, and that’s determined by the hen’s breed. Still, not all eggs are created equal. Some farmers fortify chicken feed with nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids or vitamins, which end up in the yolk, making a truly good egg.