Packing In The Pasta Without Packing On The Pounds

Our favorite carb load may not be deserving of the bad press it gets. While most refined carbohydrates are rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream, a study recently published in BMJ Open has found that pasta has a low glycemic index meaning that it causes smaller increases in blood sugar levels than other carb-laden foods.

The study reviewed and analyzed evidence from around 30 randomized controlled trials involving almost 2,500 people who eat pasta as a part of a low-glycemic diet. The people involved in the study ate an average of one and two-thirds cups of cooked pasta a week instead of other carbs, and experienced weight loss of around 1 pound over a 12-week follow-up.

"The study found that pasta didn't contribute to weight gain or increase in body fat," said lead author Dr. John Sievenpiper. "In fact analysis actually showed a small weight loss. So contrary to concerns, perhaps pasta can be part of a healthy diet such as a low GI diet."

But, you might want to wait before heading to the all-you-can-eat-pasta buffet, as the study authors stress that these results are generalized to pasta consumed as a part of a low-glycemic diet. They caution that more work is needed to find out if these results will extend to other types of healthy diets.

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