Why I Have Switched To Spelt Pasta
Pasta has always been a huge hit in our home. The kids often called me "The Italian Mamma" because being a working mother with four children pasta was a quick and easy meal and an easy way to use up what was left in the fridge. The downside is that it’s also full of carbohydrates, which is why I have made the switch to spelt pasta.
White pasta is not the best option for some very good reasons. During the milling process, white flour used to make the pasta is stripped down to remove the grain’s bran and germ, and with them goes the fibre, protein, iron and B vitamins, explains Florida-based registered dietitian Jaime Mass. What remains on your plate is a quick-acting carb, not altogether that different from pure sugar, spiking your blood sugar and resulting in an insulin rollercoaster that sets you up for cravings, weight gain and Type 2 diabetes.
There are many alternatives to white pasta including whole-wheat pasta (the traditional alternative to refined pasta), quinoa pasta, sprouted-grain pasta and brown rice pasta.
We have tried many of the above and still use them occasionally, but our favourite is spelt pasta because it's more easily digested than wheat and places less stress on the body. Oh, and we love the taste!
According to Nature’s Legacy For Life, spelt is an ancient, nutty-flavoured grain that's remarkably high in both fibre and protein (many brands boast up to 8 grams of fibre per serving). One plateful of whole-grain spelt pasta provides 50% of the recommended daily protein requirement for women.
But note that it is not gluten free. “Spelt is a close cousin to wheat and does contain moderate amounts of gluten,” Mass says. For that reason, it’s not suitable for people with celiac disease. However, people with mild gluten intolerances can often eat it without gastrointestinal upset. Make sure your packet says “whole grain spelt,” as some manufacturers also sell spelt pasta that has been refined.
Will you be making the switch too?
Here is my 5-minute spelt pasta. All I do is mix my homemade pesto and chopped cherry tomatoes to the cooked pasta. So easy. Here I have made it into a “healthy bowl” food with a salad of kale, quinoa, apple and slivered almonds. Also added is an easy beetroot salad I just made up of left over parsley (stalks and all, I rarely toss anything out), beetroot, pepitas, cashews and olive oil all mashed up in my Thermomix.
Or another easy spelt pasta meal with pesto (again), chopped chorizo, chopped tomatoes and a touch of cooking cream.
Carolyn Rowland is a qualified NLP Master Therapist, Advanced Practitioner of Matrix Therapies, Time Line Therapist, Practitioner of Hypnotherapy, has a Diploma for Business and Life Coaching and A Professional Image Stylist. Carolyn is happily married to her husband Simon, and raised four beautiful children, who are now young adults and a teenager.