Noodles are common in many Asian cuisines and are also a staple food in many countries around the world. In Asian cuisines, noodles are often served in soups or stir-fried dishes. There is some debate as to how long noodles have existed, but according to research, the first noodle recipes were recorded at least 1,500 years ago. 

These recipes were found on an ancient clay tablet unearthed from China’s Shaanxi Province. My time at portia seafood noodles is here to resolve the debate about whether or not noodles are healthy for us and if there is any truth to the claims that noodles will ruin your health. Noodles are made from dough which is then cut into strips or pieces and cooked briefly in boiling water until done depending on the type of noodle/dish being prepared.

Common Myths About Noodles :

1. Noodles Are Carbohydrates :

As mentioned, noodles are made from dough which is then cut into strips or pieces and cooked briefly in boiling water until done depending on the dish being prepared. The main ingredient in noodles is flour, which is made from wheat. Wheat-based products can also be categorized as whole grain cereals. Whole grain cereals are carbohydrates because they contain two components: a starch and a protein. 

The starch component of whole grain cereals gives them their energy value (approximately 450 kcals per 100 grams) and includes both the complex carbohydrates that release energy slowly over time and simple carbohydrates that release energy quickly (2). In short, the main ingredient in noodles is not carbs but starch which makes them a source of carbohydrates.

2. Noodles Ruin Your Diet :

Noodles are made from wheat and wheat products are quite low in fat and high in protein and vitamins, which makes them attractive to health enthusiasts as a low-fat diet option for diabetics. Noodles are also rich in dietary fiber (6 grams) which means that they tend to fill you up more rapidly than other refined carbohydrates (white bread, cookies, bagels, white rice etc.). 

However, with all of this good nutrition that comes with noodles there are still strong myths and misconceptions about the nutritional value of noodles. Noodles are commonly thought to be a low-nutrient food, but this is not the case because they vary greatly from one type of noodle to another. 

For example, Wonton or egg noodles have little in the way of vitamins and minerals (only about 15% of the Daily Value for protein and 3% for iron) but instant noodles (mainly noodles used in Asian grocery stores) have more fibre (4 grams per 100 grams) and are higher in calories and sodium than regular wheat pasta.

3. Noodles Are High in Fat and Low in Protein :

Many people consider noodles to be unhealthy for them because of their fat content, but this is simply not the case. Noodles are a low-fat and high protein food. Wonton noodles are one of the lowest fat food items in a restaurant (only 0.5 grams per 100 grams) while instant noodles contain a little more fat (2.6 grams). 

As far as protein goes, Wonton noodles contain 17% of the Daily Value while instant noodles have only 7%. On average, people need at least 50 grams of protein per day to maintain muscle mass and support other bodily functions. Wonton and egg noodles will not meet this requirement for most people, but instant noodles contain about half that amount and can be eaten with vegetables to make a complete meal.

4. Noodles Are Bad for Your Bones :

Many people associate noodles with having a negative effect on their bones, but this is not necessarily the case. A study published in the British Medical Journal determined that there is little to no evidence to support claims that eating carbohydrates such as noodles will reduce bone density and cause brittle bones. 

Although people who follow traditional Asian diets may find that they have reduced bone density, this is often due to low calcium intake, which could be remedied with calcium supplements. Since many Asian cuisines include a high amount of calcium in their dishes and are high in protein there are very few concerns at all when it comes to consuming noodles.

5. Noodles Are Bad for Your Digestion :

Noodles are typically served with a bowl of soup or stir-fry sauce that may contain those same harmful ingredients (glutamates and nitrates) found in processed meats. This makes many people fearful that eating noodles will result in digestive problems, however, it is important to remember these two factors: 1. The quality of the food people are eating (more expensive = better nutritionally speaking) 2. Weight gain vs weight loss concerns/symptoms

6. Noodles Are Bad for Your Heart :

A common misconception is that noodles contain some sort of heart-damaging substance which will cause heart disease. In the case of pasta, the media makes it seem like there are a ton of different varieties of pasta (fresh and durum wheat, egg noodles etc.), but in reality all varieties come from a common grain called wheat. Wheat is known to have quite a few health benefits including improving heart health. One possible benefit is that because wheat has two components: starch and protein it is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates which promote longevity. 


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