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Is Ramen Noodles Bad For You Or Good?

  • Ramen noodles are packaged instant noodles made from wheat flour, various vegetable oils and flavors.

  • The noodles are pre-cooked, meaning they have been steamed and then air dried or fried to reduce cooking time for consumers.

  • Instant ramen noodles are sold in packs with a small pack of condiments or in cups to which water can be added and then warmed in the microwave.

  • When preparing instant ramen noodles, the noodles are placed in a pot of boiling water. The noodles can also be cooked in the microwave, which is why they are often a staple food for students living in dormitories.

  • There is no doubt that ramen noodles are tasty and convenient, but their nutritional value deserves further study.

  • Although nutritional information varies between products, most instant ramen noodles are low in calories but do not contain any key nutrients.

  • For example, a serving of chicken-flavored instant ramen noodles contains (1):

  • Instant ramen noodles are made from wheat flour that has been fortified with synthetic forms of certain nutrients like iron and B vitamins to make the noodles more nutritious (2).

  • However, they lack many important nutrients, including protein, fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B12, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.

  • In addition, unlike whole, fresh foods, packaged foods like instant ramen noodles are deficient in antioxidants and phytochemicals, which have a number of positive effects on health (3).

  • Not to mention the abundance of calories a more balanced meal of protein, vegetables, and complex carbohydrates would contain.

  • Although one serving (43 grams) of ramen noodles contains only 188 calories, most people consume a whole package, which equates to two servings and 371 calories.

  • It should be noted that instant ramen noodles are different from fresh ramen noodles, which are traditional Chinese or Japanese noodles typically served in soup form and topped with nutritious ingredients such as eggs, duck and vegetables.