Surprise! Pasta Is Actually Good for You

woman eating spaghetti

So you know how for the past few years, experts have been warning us all off pasta? And telling us that chowing down on a plate of carbs is bad for our weight, bad for our blood sugar, just bad in general? Well, it turns out that's not entirely true.

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Surprised? Yup. Us, too. But on the plus side, we can all stop pretending that we like brown rice fettuccine and black bean rotini.

Because it just ain't happening.

A study conducted in (where else?) Pozzilli, Italy, recently found that eating pasta isn't the diet saboteur we all thought. On the contrary, enjoying a plate of linguine or egg noodles regularly may actually reduce weight and abdominal obesity.

Skeptical? Us, too. But this isn't a teeny-tiny study that only looked at a few people with "skinny" genes who carb-load before marathons. Researchers analyzed the eating habits of over 23,000 people.

Their conclusion: Pasta is a fundamental element of the Mediterranean diet, which puts an emphasis on eating plant-based foods -- including fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, and ... pasta. It's already known that people who follow the Mediterranean diet have a lower risk of cancer, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's. And women also have a reduced risk of breast cancer.

So now, here's just another benefit to eating Mediterranean. Eating REAL pasta rather than, say, shirataki noodles, which look quite normal but squeak when you eat them, can contribute to a healthy BMI, lower waist circumference, and better waist-hip ratio.

More from CafeMom: 10 Crazy Good Crock-Pot Pasta Recipes for Fast & Fabulous Dinners

What can we say? Science is always right until it decides it's wrong.

This enlightening news doesn't mean, however, that we should all load our plates of pasta with buttery, high-calorie cream sauces or gooey cheese every night of the week. And let's admit it, we Americans tend to think bigger helpings are better.

(Spoiler alert: They're not.)

Moderation is still key when it comes to eating pasta. That means keeping your serving size to 1/2 to 1 cup. And adding extra veggies and protein to your plate to round out your meal, stabilize your blood sugar, and avoid falling into a carb coma later.

If you can train yourself and your fam to get used to the chewy bite of whole-wheat pasta, it's still worth doing so. You'll get more fiber, more protein, and, depending on the brand, maybe even a bonus of healthy omega-3s.

Either way, your veggie spiralizer can go back in the box. Buon appetito!

 

 

Image via Richard M. Lee/Shutterstock

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