Home » Al dente pasta is not fattening and is more digestible: here’s why

Al dente pasta is not fattening and is more digestible: here’s why

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Al dente pasta is not fattening and is more digestible: here’s why

What is the best way to eat pasta and why is it preferable al dente?

Pasta is the main ingredient of Italian cuisine, a product available in a thousand different ways and recipes, exported and loved all over the world. But what is the right way to eat it? Is it preferable to cook it al dente like we Italians do or overcooked like we sometimes eat it abroad? Is al dente pasta less digestible and fattening or is it quite the opposite? Let’s try to find out the truth.

The best way to eat pasta is al dente, not only because it is tastier, but also because it is more digestible and less fattening. Of course, we must add that there are no foods that make you lose weight, that the relationship with weight depends on how much pasta you eat and how you season it, and that you must always remember to combine a healthy diet with physical activity. Net of all this, al dente pasta is less fattening for some scientific reasons. First of all, the starch found in the pasta is not dispersed in the water, it is retained by the gluten network and therefore becomes assimilable gradually. In this way, those glycemic changes that lead to accumulations of sugars and therefore fat do not occur and also prolongs the feeling of satiety.

Furthermore, al dente pasta encourages longer chewing which has a positive effect on digestion, as underlined by the Veronesi Foundation: “The work of chewing causes juices containing the ptyalin enzyme to come out of the salivary glands which act on the complex starch chains, reducing them to less complex structures and facilitating the subsequent completion of digestion, which takes place in the duodenum and in the various segments of the small intestine”. So not only is it less fattening but it is also more digestible.

See also  Medicair Sud Srl/Ministry of Health

Slower digestion promotes a slower absorption of glucose which makes up starch leading to a lower glycemic index which promotes the feeling of satiety, thus decreasing the desire for more food. At the same time, however, we must not make the opposite mistake by eating raw pasta which is difficult to digest and unhealthy. So you need to find the ideal cooking time by following what is indicated on the packaging and tasting it before draining it. You also need to remember to turn it to hydrate the starch granules without them becoming sticky. Overcooked pasta is not recommended for those who must follow a low-calorie diet.

Al dente pasta has a glycemic index of 45 which is considered low while overcooked pasta has 70 which is high, so just a few minutes are enough to overturn the impact that pasta has on our body. The quality of the pasta helps to define an al dente pasta because good quality durum wheat holds up better when cooked. An al dente pasta must not melt in the mouth but must offer a certain resistance, it must require prolonged chewing which triggers the enzymes in the mouth, favoring digestion.


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