I eat whole wheat pasta fairly often (living in an Italian region, as well). My trick, is that I never serve meat (any kind) with my pasta. Just pasta and a good, homemade marinara sauce served with a veggie loaded salad. By eliminating the meat in the sauce and/or on the side, you have already made up the extra calories in the pasta.
Another good alternative is a pasta toss with a little olive oil, fresh veggies (red onion, grape tomatoes, zucchini, garlic, mushrooms, yellow squash), a little freshly grated asiago and you're good to go... quick and easy.
Reached 30 lb. Weight Loss Goal April, 2010
Fighting The Battle to Maintain