We've all got a few pounds we'd be more than willing to part with, but carbs are just too darn tasty. Low-carb diets are really effective, but not everyone is willing to give up the goodness that is bread, pasta, and basically everything else delicious.
I could devour a giant bowl of pasta right now and not even blink, so you see how avoiding carbs could be a bit of an issue.
But why do we avoid them? What is it about carbs that freak everyone out? Refined carbohydrates, like bread and pasta, don't contain fiber, which makes them "empty" calories. They give you a boost of energy right away, but after that they just leave your blood sugar spiked. This leads to overeating, which leads to weight gain.
But that doesn't mean all carbohydrates are bad! There's something called "resistant starch" which is a fiber primarily made up of carbs. Fiber is harder for your body to digest, so it has to increase your metabolism to get things moving. This is great, because a higher metabolism means more calories burned, which means more weight lost.
So how does leftover pasta play into this? Great question. When you heat up leftover pasta or rice, a process called retrogradation begins, which changes the actual structure of the food.
"When starches are heated, they lose their original structure and when cooled, create a new one which forms the resistant starch," Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE, told PopSugar. "Starches like white rice and pasta, when cooled after cooking, increase in resistant starch allowing fewer carbohydrates and calories to become digested."
HALLELUJAH! I'm always down to consume less carbs when eating pasta, especially if it means I can eat real pasta and not just zucchini noodles which are NOT the same.
And if you think I'm lying to you, I'M NOT. I would never lie about carbs. A study published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine saw that rice which was reheated after 24 hours had higher resistant starch and "significantly lowered glycemic response" in the adults who participated in the study. The comparison was made against freshly cooked white rice and cooked white rice that had been cooled to room temperature for 10 hours.
So there you have it! Cut down on carbs without actually cutting them out! Talk about living the dream.