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Whole Grain Pasta : Any Healthier?

A lot of people, including myself, question whether whole grain pasta is really a healthier alternative to the refined, “whited out” version of pasta.  I can tell you from experience that from a taste standpoint, whole grain pasta really does not taste any different than regular pasta.

This is one of the few foods that I can tell almost no difference in the way it tastes from the less healthy version that is stripped of any beneficial fiber and other vitamins and nutrients that are stripped of the hull of the grain, which contains that majority of the fiber, antioxidants and vitamins in the grain.

I really do feel that eating whole grain or enriched flax pasta, or even these newer quinoa based pastas, are better for you. They are slightly lower on the glycemic index since they are not absorbed and injected into the blood stream as quickly as refined pastas are.

This spikes your blood sugar quickly and increases risk of obesity and diabetes by making your appetite unpredictable.  At least with whole grain pasta, you are also getting some extra vitamins and antioxidants.  I like to eat the flax seed enriched ones since they have the added benefit of omega 3 fatty acids as well as an increased presence of filling fiber.

Eating too much pasta is still not a good thing for the waist line.  It still can cause ebbs and highs in the blood sugar, which increases the appetite, and makes you eat more than you need to. 

If you are eating whole wheat pasta, then the whole wheat grain should be the first ingredient in the pasta.  This means that it truly contains the most whole grain it can.  Whole wheat flour contains more antioxidants, and is part of a heart healthy diet that helps lower cholesterol and improve overall health by increasing the antioxidant levels in the blood.

Antioxidants, as you well know by now, help to reduce the circulation of cell destroying free radicals.  They can promote healthy cell regeneration and reduce the likelihood of cancer, heart disease and other diseases that are related to cell death and unhealthy cell replication.

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