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Healthy Pasta Recipes – 3 Quick To Cook Tasty Meals With Asparagus, Clams, Green Beans & More
Is pasta good for you? There are two answers to this question “Yes” and “No”. As with most foods, pasta is no different. As long as the pasta is the best kind, cooked right, and you don’t eat bad foods with it, then yes, it’s fine.
Things to look at that can ruin good wholesome food for you.
If food is overcooked losing all its goodness, that food, if you will, becomes useless. Then there’s the matter of beautiful foods. Don’t fall into the trap that just because something looks nice means it’s good for you. Most fancy dressings and condiments are unhealthy and fattening and something that dieters need to avoid.
For those who are watching their weight, even though the way a particular food is cooked plays an important role in maintaining its goodness, a lot depends on eating the right food to be classified as healthy and not fattening.
If you want to change your diet and eat healthier, keep in mind that no matter how much something is promoted as good for you, it’s no guarantee that it is. Too much of a good food can cause considerable damage especially when eaten with bad foods.
If you ask someone where pasta comes from the likely answer is Italy, while this is easily understood with Italians eating a lot of it, however, according to Greek mythology it credits the Greek god Vulcan for inventing a gadget that made the first spaghetti from pasta strips. But then other studies trace pasta’s roots back to the Etruscans in 400 BC, where the first lasagna was thought to be made with wholemeal spelled flour.
Who cares where it comes from, as long as we have it now, so let’s go ahead and enjoy it.
Is pasta a healthy food?
The unhealthy side of pasta would include that it’s made with white flour and swimming in a thick creamy sauce. Al dente whole-grain pasta with unsweetened tomato sauce is by far the healthiest option. Al dente wholemeal pasta is fabulously rich in fibre, vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids. It is gradually absorbed into the bloodstream and not listed to cause a blood sugar spike.
The nutrition benefits, gradual absorption, and fiber content help protect against insulin resistance, constipation, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.
Pasta is quick and simple to cook but is high in carbohydrates, so keep portion sizes reasonable and add more lean proteins and veggies to your plate.
Indulge your body with the healthy benefits and try the quick meals to prepare tasty pasta dishes below.
Farfalle with Zucchini Pesto and Parsley and Almonds
1 lb. Butterflies
1 clove of garlic
1/3 cup toasted unsalted almonds
1 1/2 cups flat leaf parsley leaves
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 pound (2 medium) zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise 1/8-inch thick
Chopped red pepper
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the farfalle and cook until al dente. Drain the butterflies. In a blender, blend the garlic. Add the almonds and blend until coarsely chopped. Add the parsley and 1/2 cup of the olive oil and process until the parsley is finely chopped. Add the Parmigiano-Reggiano and blend until the pesto is blended. Add salt and pepper and scrape the pesto into a large, shallow serving dish. In a large skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the zucchini and cook over high heat until soft and golden in spots, about 5 minutes. Add the crushed red pepper and season with salt and pepper. Transfer the zucchini to the bowl with the pesto. Add the farfalle, mix well and serve.
Penne with Asparagus, Sage and Peas
1/2 kg pennette
2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 pound thick asparagus, cut into 1-inch lengths
2 cups of chicken broth
10 ounces shelled English peas or frozen snap peas, thawed
1/4 cup thick cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
1/2 cup fresh grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for serving
Salt and pepper
Add the penne to a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and asparagus and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the stock and boil over high heat until reduced by half and the asparagus is soft. Add the peas and cream to the pan and boil over high heat until the sauce thickens, 3 minutes. Stir in the penne and cook until heated through. Remove from the heat and add the butter, sage and 1/2 cup of the cheese. Salt and pepper to taste. Put the pasta in the bowls and serve immediately.
Spaghetti Clams and Green Beans
10 oz of green beans
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 large (1/2 pound) cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
Kosher salt and ground pepper
1/2 glass of dry white wine
24 (2 lbs) small neck clams, washed
10 large basil leaves, torn
3/4 lb spaghetti
grated Parmigiano Reggiano, for serving (optional)
Add the green beans to a large pot of boiling salted water and cook until soft. Using a slotted spoon, remove the beans and set aside. Bring the water back to a boil. Using a large skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper and cook over medium heat until fragrant, about 60 seconds. Add the chopped tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to break down, about 5 minutes. Add the white wine and the clams and bring to the boil. Cover the pan and simmer until the clams open. Remove the pan from the stove and add the green beans and basil.
Add the spaghetti to the boiling water and cook until al dente. Drain the spaghetti reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking water. Put the spaghetti back into the pot and add the clam and green bean sauce and the cooking water from the pasta set aside. Stir over medium heat until the sauce coats the spaghetti, approx. Transfer the spaghetti and clams to shallow bowls and serve.
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