Good news for pasta eaters! Pasta consumption in both children and adults is associated with better diet quality and nutrient intakes than that of those adults and children who do not eat pasta, say researchers.
When evaluating the weight parameters, no associations were observed in male adults and children. In adult women, however, pasta-eaters showed a beneficial weight-related outcome.
According to the study published in the Journal ‘Frontiers in Nutrition’, pasta consumption in adult females was associated with reduced waist circumference, body weight and body mass index (BMI).
“Pasta can be an effective building block for good nutrition throughout the lifecycle as it serves as a perfect delivery system for fruits, vegetables, meat, fish and legumes,” said Diane Welland, Director of Nutrition Communications for the National Pasta Association in the US.”
Think of pasta as a canvas from which you can add almost any nutrient-dense, fibre-rich food you and your family like, to create memorable and delicious meals,” Welland added.
The study examined the association between pasta consumption, shortfall nutrient intakes as defined by the 2015 dietary guidelines and diet quality in comparison to non-pasta consumption in the US population with children aged between 2-18 years and adults above 19 years.
Pasta consumption was defined as an all-dry domestic and imported pasta/noodle varieties made with only wheat and no egg. From the analysis, researchers identified a number of key positive nutritional dietary patterns associated with those who eat pasta as part of their diet compared to those who don’t eat pasta.
The analysis underscores the nutritional importance of grains such as pasta as consistent with a healthy diet. It shows that pasta-eaters have better quality diets than those who don’t eat pasta.
The findings showed that no significant associations were seen with body weight, waist circumference and body mass index in children and adult males. In adult women aged between 19-50 years, pasta eating was associated with lower body weight and waist circumference.
“Pasta is a convenient, nutritious, easy-to-prepare meal for both young and the old and pleases even the pickiest of eaters,” the study authors wrote.