In Canada, researchers at St. Michael’s Hospital found that unlike most refined carbohydrates that are rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream, pasta has a low glycemic index, meaning it causes smaller increases in blood sugar levels than those caused by eating foods with a high glycemic index.
“The study found that pasta didn’t contribute to weight gain or increase in body fat,” said lead author Dr. John Sievenpiper, a clinician scientist with the hospital’s Clinical Nutrition and Risk Modification Centre. “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.”
The authors stress that these results are generalizable to pasta consumed with low-glycemic index foods as part of a low-glycemic index diet. More work is needed to determine if the lack of weight gain will extend to pasta as part of healthy diets.