It’s good news for pasta lovers as a new Italian study finds that it can help you lose weight.

Scientists at the Neuromed Institute in Pozzilli, Italy, discovered that pasta is not fattening and can reduce the likelihood of obesity. 

The study of 23,000 people, published in the Nutrition and Diabetes journal, said that pasta consumption is associated with better weight management because it forms a part of the much-lauded Mediterranean diet.

“Results have shown that pasta is associated with a lower body mass index, a lower prevalence of obesity and a lower waist and hip circumference, when it is eaten according to an individual’s caloric needs and in the context of a Mediterranean diet,” Licia Iacoviello, head of the Laboratory of Molecular and Nutritional Epidemiology at the Neuromed institute, explained to Metro.

Investigators tend to believe that those eating less pasta actually substitute it with less healthy foods. They hope people will abandon the concept of “low carbohydrate and high protein diet” and return to a Mediterranean one that has a “protective role against weight gain and obesity, as well as providing important health benefits against chronic diseases and related comorbidities.”

Iacoviello added: “We will continue to analyze the association between the Mediterranean diet and its components with health status, metabolic features and diseases.”

-Dmitry Belyaev