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5 Ugly Side Effects of Eating Too Much Pasta, According to Science

Buon appetito—in moderation.
FACT CHECKED BY Olivia Tarantino

Many people will agree that there is nothing better than a pasta meal. From spaghetti to tagliatelle, there aren't many foods that are as enjoyable to eat as a satisfying bowl of noodles.

But just like most foods, too much of a good thing can be not-so-great. Yes, eating pasta can give you energy and is loaded with important nutrients, but overdoing it on the never-ending pasta bowls can wreak havoc on your health.

If you are grabbing for your pasta bowl more times than you want to admit, here are five ugly side effects you may experience over time. Read on, and for more on healthy eating, don't miss Eating Habits to Lose Abdominal Fat As You Age, Say Dietitians.

You may increase your risk of developing diabetes.

pasta with meat sauce entree

There are many factors that play into the development of diabetes, including family history and lifestyle choices. And according to some studies, high-carbohydrate diets are linked to an increased risk of developing diabetes. Since traditional pasta is a source of carbohydrates, eating large portions frequently could load your body up with too many carbs and put your body in danger.

You may miss out on key nutrients.

eating pasta

If you are eating pasta as your meal multiple times a week, you may be lacking variety in your diet, and thus may be missing out on key nutrients.

Instead of eating the same thing over and over again, switch it up to make sure you are getting all of the vitamins and minerals that your body needs. You can also try new bean-based pastas to get more fiber and protein in your diet. Check out The 10 Best High Protein Pasta Brands at Your Grocery Store.

You may be at an increased risk of developing heart disease.

Avocado sauce herb pesto pasta

If you are choosing the white variety of refined pasta—oftentimes the white variety—you may have an increased risk of developing heart disease if you eat it too often.

In one study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, a high-carbohydrate diet, namely from refined grains, is linked to an increased risk of heart disease.

You may have an elevated blood pressure.


In one study published in Metabolism, habitually eating refined carbs, like refined pasta, is linked to an increase in blood pressure. Having high blood pressure can put your body at risk for developing conditions like heart disease. Better to save your pasta meal for an occasional meal to help keep your blood pressure in check. And skip out on The Worst Drinking Habits for Blood Pressure, According to the Mayo Clinic.

You may eat too many calories, and therefore gain weight.

pasta eating

While eating pasta in the right portions is not directly linked to weight gain, this food is one that tends to be overeaten. One serving is considered to be about ½ cup, yet many people tend to eat a whole lot more than that – especially if dining at a restaurant. Eating too much pasta can cause you to take in too many calories, and in turn, put on unwanted weight.

When you are eating pasta, be sure to stay mindful of the portion size to help prevent overeating. You can also try these 11 Mindfulness Hacks to Eat Less, According to Experts.

Lauren Manaker MS, RDN, LD, CLEC
Lauren Manaker is an award-winning registered dietitian, book author, and recipe developer who has been in practice for almost 20 years. Read more about Lauren
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