Pizza is Healthy - Is it?
Pizza or not, food is made to be enjoyed and not vilified. However, a person has to be conscious on the portion to consume, the quality of ingredients used and learn to balance out everything in daily intake.
Imagine you are eating halfway with your take away pizza straight from the box and you stumble upon this article - most of you will probably shut down your screen and enjoy to your heart's content your favorite slice of Pepperoni or Four-Cheese. But let us satisfy your curiosity first while you enjoy your usual comfort food. We will not make a villain out of our beloved Italian food but rather provide insights on the real deal with a pizza slice.
Many nutritionists and experts from the medical field will agree that pizza belongs to the not-so-healthy category of food. It contains sodium, saturated fat (both from the toppings and sauce used) and simple carbohydrates (from refined flour used in crust) that is not the ideal type of carbohydrates to be consumed. On the brighter side, there are many ways on how we can make this all-time favorite food healthy-fied!
Below are some ways to enjoy your slice of pizza without the guilt.
- When eating out or ordering for take away, always remember to not eat straight from the box. Where's the fun in that right? But it might help to better enjoy pizza if you are to eat using proper utensils and in small pieces. Take your time and savor each bite!
- If you are the type of person who cannot fulfill a week without enjoying a slice, try to make your own pizza at home. A decent oven toaster or non-stick pan can make wonderful pizza. This way, you can choose the ingredients properly - reduced sodium tomato sauce, more vegetables for toppings and minimal amount of cheese. Whole grains pizza crust can add variety also to your usual pizza nights.
- Always consume moderate portions - a slice or two of your home-made pizza is good enough for dinner or lunch. But two slices of store-bought pizza might be a different story. Restaurant-style pizza can range from 400-700 calories per slice depending on the toppings, while frozen pizza (supermarket pizza) is around 300-450 calories per slice/serving. Be mindful always of your consumption.
- When ordering out from your favorite pizza chain, choose the one with toppings that are leaner - chicken, ground beef or salami and you can also pick the one with more veggies on it -- mushrooms, peppers, olives, fresh tomato slices. These should always be on the top of your options.
- Combine your pizza slice with at least a serving of salad greens as your side dish. This way, you can skip reaching for the next slice since you will have early satiety due to the high fiber greens you have. It might also be helpful to skip the soda as a drink for your pizza. Make sure to drink 1-2 glasses of water while eating your favorite slice.
Pizza can be a healthy food. There was even one trending article in the US few months back that pizza is healthier than cereals for breakfast. What a brilliant idea, of course! But there are few reminders with regards to this - as mentioned in the list above. It will never be as bad as it seems to be if you will have your slice of pizza as your first meal of the day once or twice a month. Enjoy a slice but always be wise. Choose your toppings, have it with a green salad and you are good!