Does Pasta Have Good Carbohydrates In It?
Pasta has earned the reputation of a villain in the recent past. People are blaming it for the rise in obesity all around the world. This is because it has carbs in it and carbs are shunned by many health experts.
But why should we vilify pasta because of carbs? Pasta is a traditional food of Italians. It is eaten on an average at least once daily in Italy. You won’t believe that the region has the lowest rates of obesity in Europe! The fact is that pasta has been a healthy carb and a main component of the Mediterranean diet. This diet is considered to be the best kind of lifestyle diet for the maintenance of healthy weight. What do you feel? Does Pasta Contain Good Carbohydrates ?
How did the reputation of pasta go down the drain?
The basic reason for pasta getting such a bad rap is the misconception that pasta is similar to bread made from wheat. Do you know that pasta is made from durum? It is a totally different species when compared bread wheat. Durum is an older species of wheat and a hybrid of wild grasses. On the other hand, modern wheat bread is the one more domesticated. Doesn’t this answer your question- ‘Does Pasta Contain Good Carbohydrates ?’
Secondly, pasta is criticized because of the way we process it. We over cook it and there is a salty and fatty sauce. Doing so turns the otherwise healthy pasta into something that is less desirable.
History of pasta
It is said that pasta made out of semolina, the flour of durum, was consumed all over the Mediterranean region in the Roman era.
It developed as an Italian staple in the 12th century. Pasta has changed a bit over the last 800 years. It was the food of peasants in Italy, which means that it was everyone’s food. Before the world got introduced to tomatoes, it was served with olive oil, garlic and local veggies.
It has a low GI
Pasta is healthy as it has a low GI (glycemic index). The GI of a food tells you how fast the sugar from carbs is absorbed by the bloodstream. Foods with higher GI spike the blood sugar levels. This burdens the pancreas leading to obesity and diabetes. The GI is from 0 to 100. Pasta is low on the GI, it is about 25 to 45 based on the type. This range is similar to that of most fruits and veggies. Pasta is welcome in a South Beach diet not due to being low in carbs but because it is considered to be a good carb.
Compare pasta to white bread that has a GI of 75 and corn flakes having a GI of 80! What do you say now?
Research on pasta
Research says that there are benefits of having pasta in your diet. Pregnant women who had a pasta-centric Mediterranean diet were blessed with healthier babies compared to those who ate more meat and potatoes. Research also found that people felt satiated with less calories upon eating salad with pasta. Indian researchers say that bringing pasta to India and supplementing it with nutrients and iron can help fight undernourishment and nutritional diseases.
More studies done recently reaffirm that a low GI Mediterranean diet leads to healthier blood sugar levels and cholesterol. It is also said to maintain lower weight.
Right way of cooking and eating
Pasta should be cooked till it is slightly firm. Over cooking can raise its GI. Adding fatty meats and loads of cheese on top of it makes it unhealthy. Like other foods, even pasta should be consumed in moderation. Maintain portion control.
Hope you liked reading this post ‘Does Pasta Contain Good Carbohydrates‘ !
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