As a Registered Nutritional Therapist I spend my life trying to get people to eat less pasta!
Don’t worry, there are alternatives!
Pasta is refined wheat and it releases energy fast. That’s great if you’re about to run a marathon but what about if you’re working from home and moving less? Refined means many of the beneficial nutrients have been removed.
When pasta is digested it breaks down into energy in the form of glucose, when levels are too high in our bloodstream the body releases insulin to pack away the excess. It packs it away as fat. In the long term this continued process may contribute to diabetes type 2 in some people, in the short term it may contribute to energy dips, cravings, emotional lows and lack of resilience. These can make it difficult to maintain a good weight.
There are many alternatives to pasta and they all have nutritional benefits, these include:
Cold pasta, a bit better because of its resistant starch - who eats that though?
Wholegrain rice - it has more fibre and other nutrients. Microwave packets are great if you’re short on time, but cooking your own is cheaper.
Quinoa - good as a base in cold salads with sweetcorn and herbs.
Barley - good in soups.
Buckwheat - find it in the health food shops.
Lentils - dried, cans and packets
Beans - even baked beans are good food (low sugar, low salt if you’re keen!)
Vegetables - courgettes make courgette and cauliflower makes cauliflower rice (available in packets too!).
Porridge is also nutritious and better than pasta, there’s no rule saying you can only eat it for breakfast either!
Other great cupboard staples include oily fish which contains omega 3. Salmon, sardines, mackerel and pilchards are always in my cupboard.
If you’d like nutrition advice contact me Joanne Hart, Registered Nutritional Therapist BSc(Hons), and yoga teacher (BWY Dip).