Photo retrieved from: http://www.eatthis.com/ways-to-cut-pizza-calories/ on 3/9/18
Pizza… that hot (or cold) slab of deliciousness, dripping with meats, cheeses and flavorful sauce is a favorite food for many of us. In fact published data shows that Americans go through 300 billion pizzas each year. According to the Washington Post, this equates to 100 acres of pizza each and every day! OK so we LOVE our pizza... now what?
When we think of health foods, pizza doesn’t generally top the list and for good reason. The average pizza is calorically dense and loaded with sodium. Many pizzas are heavily processed and pack more carbs into a couple of slices than we might need for the whole day. And, as if we needed another reason to bypass this popular food, a University of Michigan study (2015) found pizza to be addictive. No wonder it can be hard to stop at one or two slices!
Before deciding to banish pizza altogether consider the following:
Instead of ordering the extra thick crust (or even the hand tossed crust), try the extra THIN crust. This is a great way to slash carbs!
Always pair up the pizza with a big salad… or other veggie option, such as raw carrots, pepper strips, broccoli, radishes, etc. with your favorite dip. Going heavier on the veggies can help fill you up, while eating LESS of the pizza.
Consider adding at least 2 or 3 veggie toppings to the pizza itself. Spinach, peppers, onions and tomatoes are some of popular options to think about.
Or, try making pizza at home!
Start by purchasing an extra thin ready – made pizza crust (preferably whole grain).
Brush the crust with extra virgin olive oil.
Add a thin spread of spaghetti sauce (choose one that does NOT have high fructose corn syrup).
Top with fresh garlic.
Sauté any veggies that you are using and add these to the pizza.
End with a generous sprinkle of shredded cheeses (Italian blend, mozzarella, parmesan, etc.).
Bake according to directions on crust.
Random Pizza Dilemmas Solved:
Pizza may be adapted for low carb eating plans. A delicious “crust” can be made of cheeses, eggs and Italian seasonings. Some other recipes call for using cauliflower in the “crust”. Google “low carb pizza crust recipes” for ideas.
Even vegans may enjoy pizza. That’s right! Instead of cheese on the pizza, a delicious alternative can be made by blending cashews, nutritional yeast, salt and garlic powder. Here is the recipe: https://simpleveganblog.com/vegan-parmesan-cheese/
And YES… pizza may be eaten for breakfast! A slice or two of thin crust pizza with veggies is an absolutely better choice than a sugary cereal or a toaster pastry.