Pasta Tastes Great... But is Also Good For Your Health
The Mediterranean Diet is a nutritional model with a wide variety of foods
of vegetable origin that, according to many authoritative scientific studies, has
positive effects on physical and mental health and wellbeing.
This dietary model includes fruits, vegetables, breads, refined and whole grains,
potatoes, beans, lentils, nuts and seeds, along with one of its main pillars: pasta.
Since the 1960s, pasta has been re-assessed as a key food for a well-balanced
diet thanks to its nutritional value and other advantages. These include its
versatility and digestibility, the latter is due to the transformation that takes place in
the carbohydrates during the cooking process. Moreover, it is a very filling food with
a relatively low calorie content.
PASTA HELPS YOU STAY HEALTHY
Complex carbohydrates in general, and pasta in particular, should be the basis of a
healthy diet for people who wish to stay in shape. Obtaining 60% of our daily energy
needs from carbohydrates allows for a significant reduction in fat and protein intake.
This leads to eating more healthfully with less fat (especially saturated) and
cholesterol intake, thereby reducing the risk of related diseases.
WHAT ABOUT HIGH PROTEIN DIETS?
We can reduce but never eliminate the sources of ‘energy’ that our body needs to
function well. Complex carbohydrates are the best example of this and are fundamental,
even when a person is on a diet. While this seems contrary to what some ‘fad’ diets
would have people believe, those diets often promise miracles that they cannot deliver and can
actually create more problems than they claim to solve.
Pasta contains complex carbohydrates and, therefore, satiates hunger for a long
Pasta is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, which are better than simple
sugars in providing slow-release energy. Contrary to common beliefs, carbohydrates
do not cause weight gain. Many studies have shown that weight gain and obesity
are caused by consuming excess calories and not carbohydrates. Thanks to
its essential nutrients, guidelines for healthy eating based on a 2,000-calorie- a-day
diet advise having pasta every day and making it 45% to 64% of the total calories
derived from such nutrients, along with other grains at every meal.
Carbohydrates have the lowest glycemic index (GI).
Sugars from carbohydrates are a fundamental source of energy for our brains and
muscles and pasta is different from other types of carbohydrates because it has a
low GI. Maintaining a low GI is an effective way of fostering heart health and
preventing some of the most common cardiovascular diseases.
Source of folic acid
Pasta contains a lot of folic acid, which is an essential vitamin for women in their
fertile years. On average, a portion of dry pasta provides 100 mg of folic acid, which is about 25%
of the recommended daily intake (RDI).