A few years ago, whole grain bread and other foods were only available at select bakeries, but today even your local baniya stocks it. This is because of a growing awareness of the health benefits of whole grains as compared to refined grains.
Whole Wheat Pasta Vs Regular Pasta: Which is Healthier?
Whole grains are cereal grains that contain the outer layers or husk that covers grains along with the grain itself, while refined grains do not contain the outer layers. These outer layers contain several nutrients, which is why whole grains are healthier than refined grains.
“Whole wheat pasta has approximately 3 times as much fiber as regular pasta & so it will keep you feeling full for longer”
The outer layer in whole grains is called bran and it is a good source of fiber, which is why whole wheat pasta has approximately 3 times as much fiber as regular pasta. The fiber content in whole wheat pasta will keep you feeling full for longer and improves the secretion of gut hormones. Research shows that the high fiber content in whole grains reduces calorie intake, fat stores, and overall body weight.
“Regular pasta contains 24% more calories than whole grain pasta”
One cup of regular spaghetti contains 221 calories, while the same amount of whole grain spaghetti contains only 174 calories – this means that regular pasta contains 24% more calories than whole grain pasta. Whether you are trying to lose weight or simply maintain your current weight, these small calorie differences add up to keep your calorie count under control. Experts recommend that at least half of the grains you consume on a daily basis should be whole grains.
Vitamin & Mineral Content
“Regular pasta has less than half the amount of B vitamins & minerals as compared to whole grain pasta”
Unlike regular pasta, whole wheat pasta contains healthy carbs and is a good source of B vitamins, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorous. In fact, regular pasta has less than half the amount of B vitamins and minerals as compared to whole grain pasta.
Pasta manufacturers often add vitamins to regular pasta to fortify them, so that their nutritional value is higher. But studies show that your body does not absorb synthetic vitamins as well as they can absorb the natural vitamins present in whole grain foods.
Health Benefits Of Whole Wheat Pasta
In addition to its high fiber, vitamin and mineral content, whole wheat pasta also contains amino acids, phytonutrients and antioxidants, such as phenolics that improve overall health.
Reduces The Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes
“Whole grain pasta is high in resistant starch, which helps to prevent blood sugar spikes after meals”
Consuming whole grain pasta on a regular basis helps to reduce the risk of diabetes as it is high in resistant starch, which promotes healthy blood sugar control. Researchers found that people who consumed a meal that was high in resistant starch had a lower blood glucose response after their meal, while people who consumed a meal that was low in resistant starch experienced a spike in their blood sugar levels.
Reduces Weight Gain & Heart Disease
“Whole grain pasta reduces the risk of metabolic syndrome, helps to control weight gain, & promotes belly fat loss”
Metabolic syndrome is associated with higher cholesterol levels, increased belly fat and weight gain, and an increased risk of heart disease. Studies show that whole grain foods like whole grain pasta helps to control weight gain and promotes belly fat loss as well as reduces the risk of metabolic syndrome.
Whole grain foods like whole grain pasta are obviously a much healthier choice than refined grains. However, most people don’t have brown bread instead of white bread only because white bread is softer and fluffier; you can have white bread as an occasional treat but stick to brown bread or better still – have rotis or chapatis instead as they are the healthiest whole grain options.
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