A Nutrition Mesage from the American Dietetic Association

As not everyone in the house is low carb, there was a box of pasta that caught my eye. It was because of a label on the back. This is what it said:

A Nutrition Mesage from the American Dietetic Association

The key to healthy eating and weight control is to consume a variety of complex carbohydrates along with moderate amounts of protein and unsaturated fats.

Carbohydrates are the brain’s and body’s preferred fuel and should make up about half of total daily calories. complex carbohydrates like pasta and other grain products, vegetables and beans also provide additional nutrients including vitamins, minerals and protein.

Weight loss diets that eliminate whole categories of foods can be detrimental to your health over the long term.

Now the ingredient label showed that after they put in the starch, they threw in niacin, iron, thiamin, riboflavin and folic acid because if they didn’t, the part of the label that gave the vitamin info would have read zero for everything.

The total carbs for 2 oz. of the stuff was 42 grams. It had a whopping 2 grams of dietary fiber. So the net carbs for 2 ounces? 40.

Now, I’m just a schmuck, and the ADA is a respected organization of registered dietitians. But if they are right, then why does the US rank 42 in life expectancy? Not eating enough pasta?

Granted, they do mention that whole grains are important – but the pasta in front of me had the ‘whole’ part of it’s grain removed before it got in the box.

I remember a friend of mine who had a heart attack after eating vegetarian for years. The dietitian who met with her after the heart attack told her that she didn’t need counseling on eating since she already ate what the dietitian thought to be a healthy diet. Why she had a heart attack remained a mystery to these medical professionals.

Hmmmm…don’t know what to make of all this.

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4 thoughts on “A Nutrition Mesage from the American Dietetic Association

  1. It was Barillo pasta and they made no special claims – that’s part of what made it seem so out-of-place.

    They seem to think of pasta as a complex carbohydrate – and so does the ADA, apparently.

    I guess to them anything that isn’t pure sugar is a ‘complex carbohydrate’?

  2. In biology, simple carbohydrates are those with one sugar molecule (“monosaccharides” like glucose) or two (“disaccharides” like sucrose) and three or more are called complex carbohydrates (“polysaccharides” like starch and fiber). Starch is digestible complex carbohydrate and fiber is indigestible complex carbohydrate. The recent popular use of complex to essentially mean covered in fiber, so slow to digest, causes this confusion.

  3. Hi Seamus,

    I think that confusion is part of the problem. ‘Complex carbohydrates’ has become a blanket term, like ‘cholesterol’ and ‘fat’ that has taken on a connotation of good or bad, but you need to dig deeper to find out if the actual thing they are talking about – the ‘type’ of fat, cholesterol, complex carbohydrate is good for you or isn’t good for you.

    Biochemistry is *not* an exact science and it’s not cut and dry. When we try to come up with simple explanations we leave out a number of critical things that are vital to a true understanding of what’s going on.

    So a pasta company states a fact that on the surface is true, but it’s a bit misleading in my estimation.

    Such is business. Caveat emptor.

    Thanks for your comment.

    LCC

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