Spaghetti squash is a great alternative to pasta for anyone with gluten sensitivities, which in this present day and age is almost everyone (however to differing degrees).
For those of you trying to lose those extra few pounds, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) nutrient database, 1 cup of cooked spaghetti squash provides 42 calories, 0.4 gram of fat, 1 g of protein, 10 g of carbohydrate and 2.2 g of fiber.
In contrast one cup of cooked enriched spaghetti has approximately 221 calories, 1.3 g of fat, 2.5 g of fiber, 8 gm protein and 43 g of carbohydrate.
If you or your family members have diabetes and/or are watching your weight and your intake of carbohydrates, spaghetti squash is especially important. Believe it or not, by choosing to eat 1 cup of spaghetti squash instead of 1 cup of pasta you can actually save approximately 179 calories and 33 grams of carbohydrate.
Other beneficial nutrients in spaghetti squash:
• Great source of vitamin A , which is important for eyesight and healthy skin.
• High in potassium, an important mineral for your heart, nervous system and muscles
• Good source of vitamin C, which helps protect your body from infections.
• Good source of folate, which assists in the production and rapid division of new cells (especially important for pregnant women).
• Also a good source of vitamin B6 and manganese
What to look for when buying spaghetti squash:
• Make sure spaghetti squash is firm and has no soft spots.
• The skin should be smooth with an even color.
* An average four-pound spaghetti squash will yield five cups of cooked squash.
Once cooked, the noodle-like spaghetti squash strands are an ideal alternative to actual spaghetti, which has about FIVE times as many calories. In addition pasta has inflammatory effects on our body due to the grains. This in turn can affect our hormonal and blood sugar balance leading to weight gain!
Stay Tuned for our next article which has our mother’s helpful recipe & tips for making Spaghetti squash!