Just in time for National Pasta Month in October, a new study came out that suggested that pasta can be part of a healthy diet without packing on the pounds. Researchers at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto conducted trials with close to 2,500 people who consumed pasta (instead of other carbohydrates) as part of a healthy, low–glycemic index (GI) diet. Unlike most “refined” carbohydrates, such as white bread and white rice, pasta has a low GI, meaning the body digests and absorbs it more slowly, causing a gentler and smaller rise in blood sugar levels.

Participants on average ate 3.3 servings of pasta per week and experienced a small weight loss (about 1 pound) over a 12-week period. Lead study author Dr. John Sievenpiper says: “We can now say with some confidence that pasta does not have an adverse effect on body weight outcomes when it is consumed as part of a healthy dietary pattern.” Can you say “spaghetti time”?

Read more about pasta and discover some healthy, delicious recipes courtesy of Barilla.