Pasta keeps you slim according to bizarre study by Barilla – fools major media

Will this give you a thinner waist and a lower weight?

Will this give you a thinner waist and a lower weight?

Can pasta make you slimmer? Probably not, but after a whole lot of statistical magic from a new study (partially funded by a pasta company), the answer becomes yes.

Lots of media outlets happily publish this Barilla-funded click-bait, apparently without actually looking at the numbers in the study:

Just one tiny problem. The study data showed the opposite. Obese people – both men and women – ate more pasta! Thin people ate less pasta.

So how come the conclusion of the study and the media headlines say the exact opposite? Well the researchers made some “adjustments” to the data.

The researchers basically assumed that the participants must be lying and changed black into white (see the study data to the right) using their statistical tools. And thus, even though obese people ate more pasta in the study, the bizarre conclusion became that pasta protects from obesity.

Interestingly the actual study mentions “no conflict of interest”. But the pressrelease (in Italian) tells another story: The study was “partially supported by Barilla”, a company selling pasta.

Surely it must be a complete coincidence. Probably the researchers were not at all influenced by pasta money when they used statistical magic to turn the study’s finding around to the absolute opposite of what the data originally showed.

Of course, should you not trust this piece of Barilla-funded statistical shenanigans, you can just read the original data: Obese people reported eating more pasta. Thin people reported eating less pasta. End of story.

The latter is the only correct conclusion if you ask me. Lots of major media companies are left with pasta on their faces, after being fooled by this Barilla trick.

Want to try eating less pasta?

Low Carb for Beginners

How to Lose Weight

Interview with the Fat Emperor

The engineer who knows more than your doctor


“Italy Loses Its Taste for Pasta”

Domino’s Pasta Bread Bowl


  1. Pierre
    Here in Canada they say wheat is good for your health .

    Reply: #5
  2. Dr Jay Wortman
    The pasta makers are skilled at protecting their market.

  3. Damocles
    From the Study:

    Conflict of interest:
    The authors declare no conflict of interest.

    ... The INHES study was funded by Barilla Spa ...

  4. Mark
    I am a recovering pasta addict. There I said it! :) LCHF now for 37 months.

    Way back in the day after the American food pyramid came out it really made me scratch my head when I ate 6-11 servings of bread or pasta a day and I kept getting fatter and fatter.

    From personal experience, I can say this bizarre study is straight out of bizarro world!

  5. Mark
    They got something to sell you! It's all marketing.
  6. Mary Helen
    Pasta itself is NOT fattening; I very often witness fat/obese people consume pasta and think OMG no wonder they are so fat-- they eat too much of it with too much butter AND bread. I eat a LOT of pasta, just not all at one meal/sitting.
  7. Capt Obvious
    How nice for YOU that you have one of those metabolisms that keeps you 'thin'.
  8. Anita
    I don't eat pasta! I feel guilty just looking at it.
  9. Tom
    The difference of grams pasta per day between the groups is tiny anyway.
    Just 2-3g per day more should have an effect? I think not even the opposite conclusion of the study makes much common sense. There is only a significant correlation because of the high number of participants in my view.
  10. Brian
    The first thing I did was look at the study after hearing it. Immediately it was painfully obvious it was so very poorly constructed, the outcome was virtually assured and actually made me laugh out loud. The media jumped on it hook line and sinker without so much as a passing glance at the construct, the evidence or the sponsor of the study.
  11. Karen Quick
    I feel that when one revolves around eating simple carbs, you're bound to be obese, unless you have the metabolism of a hummingbird!! And pasta and all other simple carbs is a no-no in my books, and I'm in the midst of transforming!
  12. Amanda
    Made tons of pasta dishes, thinking it was both good for me and would an aid energy filled day. But and a big but I became so bloated I thought I'd burst, decided to make changes on Low Carb, Low fat and feeling 10 times better- and moving faster, pasta did not suit me at all it seemed to lodge in my stomach like cement I'm enjoying the freedom of over rated carbs x ps enjoying meringues as a treat exceptionally light with low fat coconut yogurt and berries ! How many carbs in this treat I don’t know ,but enjoyable all the same x
  13. David


    Honestly, this spin put out by big food is a bigger conspiracy than 9/11. And whats worse is its been going on now for 30 years.

  14. Lisa
    What's good about pasta...The toppings like a hearty meat sauce and fresh grated Parmesan Reggiano! Or a nice homemade Alfredo sauce with chicken and broccoli. No need for pasta.

Leave a reply

Reply to comment #0 by

Older posts