Can you eat rice and pasta and still lose weight? The answer lies in something called resistant starch.

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Carbohydrates have gotten a bad rep – a really bad reputation. Carbs are not all created equal. Sugar and highly refined grains and foods made from white flour should be off the menu or at least consumed infrequently. What should be on your grocery list are whole grains; think brown rice and whole-wheat pasta.

I recently attended a professional seminar on pasta. The way pasta is made the protein component of wheat wraps itself around the starch portion and when that pasta is dried, it is metabolized slower than would be expected given the amount of carbohydrate in this food. To give your pasta an even bigger health boost, cook it, chill it, then reheat it. This creates something called resistant starch.

Resistant starch is a type of starch that is resistant to digestion. It acts much like fiber and passes through the GI tract. The benefits of resistant starch are lower insulin sensitivity, lower blood sugar levels, reduced appetite and improved digestion.

What about rice? Do the same choose brown rice, cook, chill, reheat steps for rice for a dish that your body metabolizes much slower. Some studies have shown that the calorie savings can be substantial by adding the step of chilling and reheating as it creates resistant starch.

Lots of good news here about these high carb foods. However, it is not a license to eat all you want. Portions are still key. Measure your cooked rice or pasta and store it in the refrigerator in single serving containers (or the number of servings you would need for one meal for your family’s size). Add lots of vegetables and choose brown rice and whole-wheat pasta.

Here are some delicious new recipes at to get you started! Be sure to add the cook then cool step to create resistant starch.

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