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 Five Health Benefits of Noodles

Everybody rips on college students for their eating habits: the stereotypical diet of Top Ramen noodles and, essentially, nothing else. While it's easy to fall into the trap of eating Top Ramen (considering they're, what? 33.3 cents each at the 99 Cents Store?), spending a little bit more for a bottle of soy sauce and some fresh veggies can turn that bad snack into a delicious pack of healthy goodness.

  Even without the soy sauce and veggies, though, noodles are still pretty good! After all, they've been around for thousands of years (Ore Ida's multi-flavored Funky Fries can't make a claim to that type of standing).

  In 2005, a really ancient 4,000 year old bowl of noodles was discovered in China. And since one great thing about noodles is that it takes them forever and a day to go bad, add some hot water, a little soy sauce, and I'm pretty sure that dusty Chinese meal would be just fine (you might want to rinse them first, though).

1. Noodles Fight Cancer    Please read the fine print. Although Top Ramen will probably feed cancer (wild guess), there are some noodles that have shown evidence of fighting cancer! Japanese buckwheat noodles, also known as soba, contain rutin, which shares some properties with red wine and green tea. Essentially, it has been indicated that rutin may be an antioxidant with the power to fight free radicals, which are a common cause of cancer.

2. Noodles Can Help You Lose Weight    Shirataki noodles, which are made from yams, reportedly have no calories and no carbs. They also come pre-cooked--you just heat them up and add whatever you think will make them tasty (e.g., soy sauce, salt, MSG, or whatever). So if you are looking to lose weight, you might want to head to your nearest food supplier and demand some of these yummy yamsters.

3. Noodles Can Help If you simply stick to low cholesterol or cholesterol-free noodles, you can lower your cholesterol intake when eating noodles. Generally, egg noodles will have more cholesterol, however if the egg yolk is removed, the cholesterol is removed with it. Thus, noodles with eggs may still be cholesterol-free. Look for noodles with 0g cholesterol per serving.

4. Noodles Can Cure Constipation    Having difficulty with the poops? Some noodles may be able to help! Shirataki noodles, soba noodles, and noodles pumped full of fiber are known to help with bowel movements. Consume them with a nice big glass of prune juice, maybe a prune pasta sauce, and some prunes on the side, and it should definitely do the trick. If that fails, I've heard Dulcolax is pretty good.

5. Noodles Can Be Rich inOther Nutrients    Boring, white flour pastas just aren't going to cut it if you really want to get healthy. Check out pastas made with other, plant-based ingredients, and whole wheat pastas such as those made by Barilla (Barilla Plus) and Lifestream Organic. These pastas are rich in fiber, protein, and even plant Omega-3s, adding a whole list of benefits to a single meal. Also, if whole wheat stuff totally disgusts you, top it with some good pasta sauce, or maybe a cholesterol-rich, terrible-for-your-health Alfredo sauce, and you probably won't even notice the difference.