In recent years, plant-based diets have become increasingly popular, as more and more people are looking to move away from traditional diets that are high in animal-based proteins. This popularity has led to the introduction of many new types of plant-based products, including a number of different varieties of pasta.
Lentil pasta is one popular alternative to regular pasta which is made from lentils, a type of legume. In this article, we’ll take a look at how healthy lentil pasta is, whether or not it is a good alternative for weight loss, and what health benefits it may have to offer.
What is lentil pasta made of?
Lentil flour is commonly the only ingredient used to make lentil pasta. Some brands do, however, use additional ingredients such as kale and spinach as well as quinoa flour, pea flour, and rice flour.
Some of the most popular lentil pasta brands include Trader Joe’s, Barilla, Tolerant and supermarkets-own brands such as Tesco. It seems that red lentil pasta is the most popular type of lentil pasta.
The mentioned brands also use a very short list of ingredients in their lentil pasta. Barilla Red Lentil Penne and Tesco Red Lentil Pasta contain only red lentil flour, while Trader Joe’s Red Lentil Pasta and Tolerant Organic Red Lentil Penne contain 100% organic red lentil flour.
The nutritional profile of Lentil pasta
Even though lentil pasta is commonly made using only lentil flour, it’s always a good idea to take a look at the complete nutritional profile to get a clearer picture.
Red lentil pasta typically contains around 180 calories per serving (56g), which amounts to around 330 calories per 100g. On the other hand, green lentil pasta and yellow lentil pasta are slightly more caloric, as they contain between 340 and 370 calories per 100g.
Much of the popularity of red lentil pasta comes from the fact that it contains fewer carbs than regular pasta. Red lentil pasta contains around 34 grams of carbs per serving (56g), which is around 61g of carbs per 100g of pasta.
In comparison, yellow lentil pasta contains 53g of carbs per 100g and green lentil pasta contains 62g of carbs. So, if you are trying to reduce your carb intake, yellow lentil pasta will be the best choice, as long as it’s made only from yellow lentils.
Red lentil pasta is surprisingly high in protein. It contains around 13g of protein per 2oz serving (56g) and around 23g of protein per 100g. Yellow lentil pasta has the same amount of protein while green lentil pasta has slightly more (25g per 100g).
This makes lentil pasta a great plant-based alternative to animal protein.
When it comes to fibre, red lentil pasta contains approximately 6g of fibre per 56g serving and 11g per 100g of pasta. Green lentil pasta has the same amount of protein while yellow lentil pasta has slightly less (9g per 100g). A good amount of fibre is an important part of any healthy diet and red lentil pasta can certainly help to contribute to your daily fibre goals.
Red lentil pasta contains various minerals, including phosphorus, potassium, and perhaps most notably, iron. Red lentil pasta contains around 6mg of iron per 100g of pasta. This amounts to about 35% of the daily recommendation for iron intake.
Health benefits of Lentil pasta
Let’s explore the various health benefits of lentil pasta and how it can help you improve your overall health.
One of the main reasons why lentil pasta is so popular is because it has a high protein content. Protein helps build muscle mass, improve bone strength, increase metabolism, and boost immunity.
A single serving of lentil pasta contains roughly 13 grams of protein, making it an ideal choice for people who are looking to get enough protein in their diet. It’s also great for those who want to reduce the amount of meat they eat but still get adequate amounts of protein in their diet.
High in fibre
Lentil pasta is especially high in fibre, which has been linked to many health benefits, including improved digestion, reduced blood sugar levels, and lower cholesterol levels. Fibre helps slow down the digestion process, which makes you feel full longer and encourages weight loss.
Lentils are also very nutrient-dense foods; they contain a variety of vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc, vitamin B6, folate, phosphorus, thiamin (vitamin B1), niacin (vitamin B3), riboflavin (vitamin B2) and pantothenic acid (vitamin B5).
These vitamins and minerals are essential for proper body function and play an important role in maintaining good health. Eating foods that are rich in nutrients helps ensure that you’re getting all the necessary vitamins and minerals your body needs to stay healthy.
Low glycemic index
Several studies found that lentil flour triggers a smaller glycemic response than whole-wheat flour. Since lentil pasta has a lower glycemic index, meaning that it is digested slowly, it helps to promote feelings of fullness and satisfaction for a longer period of time.
May reduce menstrual bleeding
A study also found that roasted lentil flour can effectively aid in menstrual bleeding reduction. While lentil pasta is rarely roasted, the many unknown benefits of lentils could help to improve the overall quality of life.
The health benefits of lentil pasta mean that it can be a delicious and safe addition to almost any diet.
Lentil pasta vs Regular pasta
Red lentil pasta is an excellent choice for health-conscious shoppers. It is a great source of plant-based protein and is lower in carbohydrates than regular pasta.
One serving (56g) of red lentil pasta provides around 180 calories, 34 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of fibre, and 13 grams of protein. On the other hand, regular wheat pasta typically contains around 200 calories, 42g of carbs, and around 7g of protein per serving (56g).
The soluble fibre in red lentil pasta content helps to regulate digestion and promotes satiety, making it a great option for those who are looking to manage their weight. It also contains essential vitamins and minerals such as iron, potassium, and zinc. Red lentil pasta is a nutritious and delicious way to enjoy a healthier version of a classic dish.
All things considered; red lentil pasta beats regular pasta if health is your primary concern. Lentil pasta is a great way to add more protein and fibre to your diet without sacrificing great taste. It’s a healthier, more nutritious alternative to regular pasta, and can help you stay full for longer.
Is lentil pasta good for weight loss?
Lentil pasta is a good alternative to consider for those looking to manage their weight. It is high in fibre and protein, both of which can help you feel fuller for longer.
It also has a low glycaemic index, which means it can help regulate your blood sugar levels. As a result, it can help you avoid cravings and overeating. Still, it is not significantly lower in calories than regular pasta, so moderation is advised.
Is lentil pasta low fodmap?
Green, yellow and red lentil pasta are all considered low FODMAP. However, it is important to watch portion sizes, as eating too much of any type of pasta may cause digestive distress. Additionally, it is important to check the label for added ingredients that could contain FODMAPs.
Can lentil pasta cause bloating and gas?
Foods high in fibre can typically cause bloating and gas. Lentil pasta is no exception. Keeping portion sizes small might be a good idea if too much fibre causes you bloating and digestive troubles.
Is lentil pasta good for you?
Overall, lentil pasta is an excellent option for anyone looking to get more plant-based protein into their diet. It is lower in calories and carbohydrates than traditional pasta, and its high fibre content makes it an incredibly filling and satisfying meal.
Lentil pasta also has a lower glycaemic index, making it a healthier choice for those with diabetes or pre-diabetes.
Last but not least, lentil pasta is incredibly easy to cook and can be used in a variety of recipes. Whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, or just trying to eat healthier, lentil pasta is certainly worth a try.