Celebrate National Pasta Month with Recipes to Fit Your Diet

An estimated 45 million people make healthy lifestyle changes every year by integrating foods in their diet that offer unique health benefits. Luckily, pasta is a great staple to accommodate many other healthy foods like fresh veggies and lean proteins, and fits into so many diets and lifestyles, according to the National Pasta Association.

In honor of National Pasta Month, the NPA are pulling out a recipe for every type of diet to demonstrate that pasta fits into a healthy lifestyle.

“Pasta is one of my favorite foods to recommend as a nutritionist because of its versatility and ease to fit into many different dietary needs and restrictions,” says DC-based registered dietitian, Diane Welland. “You can customize a pasta meal as much as you want – there really are no wrong combinations.”  Welland offers the following tips on how to fit pasta into your specific diet:

Mediterranean Diet – Pasta is a mainstay in the Mediterranean Diet, which is characterized by an abundance of plant-based foods like vegetables, beans, lentils, nuts, and grains. The Mediterranean Diet has been linked to countless health benefits like a reduced risk of both heart disease and cancer.

Mediterranean Diet recipe: Spaghetti with Pomodoro Crudo

DASH Diet – Designed to prevent high blood pressure, this diet focuses on foods with low sodium and rich in nutrients. Six to eight servings of grains are recommended per day, alongside four to five servings of fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes.

DASH diet recipe: Kale and Whole Wheat Rotini Pasta

MIND Diet – A fusion between the Mediterranean Diet and the DASH diet, the MIND diet prioritizes three servings of whole grains a day, which can come in the form of pasta.

MIND diet recipe: Chicken Pasta Power Bowls with Avocado Dressing

Vegetarian Diet – Pasta is a vegetarian staple meal. Instead of adding meat, try loading up your pasta dish with healthy veggies and nuts for added protein you might not get otherwise.

Vegetarian diet recipe: Power Crunch Pasta Salad

Vegan Diet – Made from grains, pasta itself is a vegan food. It’s easy to keep meals vegan by avoiding adding in any dairy or meat products.

Vegan diet recipe: Vegan Bolognese Sauce Over Rigatoni

Gluten-Free Diet – Countless people follow a gluten-free diet, but that doesn’t mean they have to skip pasta. There are plenty of gluten-free recipes choose from, all using gluten-free pasta.

Gluten free diet recipe:  Poached Salmon and Pasta Shells

Dairy-Free Diet – Skip the cheese and cream and you’re golden to stick to a dairy-free diet while eating pasta!

Dairy-free diet recipe: Smoked Chicken, Artichoke, Wilted Arugula and Lemon Bucatini

If you’re looking for creative pasta recipes to fit in your day-to-day life, visit www.PastaFits.org and sort the recipes by category. You can also sort by cook time and cuisine type to find exactly what you’re looking for. Share your recipes with us using #mypastafits.

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