Low-carb diets like Whole30 and Keto diet have become very popular recently. There’s always this assumption that if you want to lose weight, you must avoid refined carbs such as pasta. Well, although to some extent this is true, a new research published at the BMJ Open is proving otherwise. The study done by Canadian researchers at St. Michael’s Hospital looked at evidence from 30 randomized trials.
The trials involved a total of 2,488 participants who all ate pasta exactly three times a week as part of their daily carbohydrates intake. The participants also followed a low-glycemic index diet. The glycemic index is a measure of the rate at which your body breaks down food to produce glucose. Pasta has a low glycemic index. This means that when the body breaks down pasta, it leads to a small increase in glucose levels in the blood compared to other refined carbohydrates such as white bread or rice.
In the Canadian study, the participants ate 3.3 servings of pasta on average every week. This was roughly equivalent to half a cup of cooked pasta. The study found that participants were able to lose 0.5 kg on average over 12 weeks. Dr. John Sievenpiper, a clinical scientist at the St. Michael’s Hospital and lead researcher in this study, said that the findings clearly show that eating pasta doesn’t make you gain weight or increase body fat.
Dr. Sievenpiper added that contrary to popular belief, eating pasta actually led to slight weight loss among the participants. This means that pasta can be part of a healthy diet plan for people who want to lose weight. The researchers, however, concluded that there was a need for more research on this matter. According to them, the same exact clinical trials could be done on other popular foods to find out more about low GI diets and their effects on weight loss.
Following a low-carb diet to lose weight has often been opposed by medical experts. In fact, several studies show that people tend to lose more weight with a low-fat diet than with a low-carb diet. In addition to this, it has been observed in previous research studies that reducing carbohydrate intake can slow down the metabolic rate. This makes it harder for the body to get rid of fat too.
St. Michael’s Hospital study shows that eating carbs ranked low on the glycemic index can offer more benefits than cutting carbs completely. Sadly, this information is not available to most people. The general trend at the moment involves cutting out whatever carbs you are eating and hoping to burn fat naturally.
Despite these findings, there’s no generally accepted way of losing weight, especially when you consider the many diets available. Different people respond differently to various diets. There’s clearly a need for further research in this area just to make everything clearer.