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Making a Healthier Homemade Pizza

Author: Disabled World : Contact: Disabled World

Published: 2015-01-20


Homemade pizza can be less expensive while being healthier and better tasting.

Main Digest

Pizza has enormous potential to be a healthy thing to eat, but has unfortunately been ruined by the fast food industry. Pizza can be healthy if made in the proper way, but fast food industry today has hijacked a potentially healthy meal and turned it into a food that should be eaten rather sparingly instead. Fast food pizza is unhealthy because of the ingredients it contains.

Fast food pizza is made with a white crust that is filled with refined carbohydrates. Refined or processed grains are essentially, 'stripped,' of the majority of the healthier ingredients in pursuit of supposed, 'taste.' People are left with a grain that contains plenty of empty calories, yet little in the way of any nutrients such as fiber, minerals, or vitamins. Fast food pizza is also totally loaded up with cheese, salt and fatty meats - all of which can increase a person's risk for cardiovascular disease. Pizza is still one of the most popular foods in American culture and if you like pizza do not stop eating it, just make your pizza healthier for you to consume.

Making a Healthier Pizza

One major fast food pizza chain claims to offer people better ingredients and therefore a better pizza. While better ingredients will make a better tasting pizza, only healthier ingredients can make a pizza that truly is healthier. In order to keep pizza as a delicious meal in your diet, make your own pizza by using healthy and fresh ingredients. Homemade pizza can be less expensive, a very real bonus, while being healthier and even better tasting. What follows are some ways to make a healthy pizza at home.

The Crust: A crust that is 100% whole wheat will provide you with the most benefits. Such a crust is at times difficult to find and do not always taste the best. If availability or taste concerns you, try a crust made from a mix of whole and white grains. You can also sprinkle flax seed and wheat germ on your crust. Flax seed and wheat germ add omega 3 fatty acids, fiber, as well as a wide variety of other vitamins and minerals into your pizza with very little change in either the texture or the taste.

Fresh Vegetables: Using fresh vegetables as toppings on the pizza you make for yourself will help to increase the amount of vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants you eat. Healthy and popular choices include bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, olives and mushrooms.

Lean Meats: One of the largest issues with fast food pizza is that some of the most popular toppings are fatty meats such as sausage, ham and pepperoni. While making your own pizza, use lean meats such as low-fat ground beef, chicken, or turkey. Be sure to go easy on the cheese.

Pizza has all the right ingredients, potentially, to be very healthy. The kind of pizza you can find at a take out or eat-in restaurant is usually not very healthy at all due to the use of refined carbohydrates, salt and saturated fats it contains. The pizza you can make in your own home out of fresh and healthier ingredients is; however, a very tasty and healthy alternative to fast food pizza. In America, each person consumes around 45 slices of pizza every single year. Even though pizza can be healthy if you make it the right way, the majority of the pizza people buy counts as junk food because of the high amount of fat, salt and refined carbohydrates it contains.

Pizza and Refined Carbohydrates

Pizza crust is commonly made with refined flour, which is a type of flour made from grains that have had their bran and germ removed. Refined flour lowers the amount of vitamins, fiber and minerals in the flour, thus making it less nutritious for human consumption. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends limiting consumption of refined grains and getting at least 50% of your grain servings every day from whole grains.

Consuming refined grains such as those found in fast food pizza increases a person's risk for abdominal fat, to include the more risky type of abdominal fat called, 'visceral abdominal fat,' according to a study published in, 'The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, from November of 2010. Visceral abdominal fat increases a person's risk for heart disease, breast cancer and Type II diabetes according to the Harvard Medical School.

Pizza and Fat Content

Ohh, the cheese to be found on fast food or any pizza; people love cheese. The truth of the matter? The cheese found on pizza is high in saturated fat, something that increases a person's risk for high cholesterol and heart disease. Every 5-ounce serving of cheese on a pizza contains 18.5 grams of fat - or 28% of a person's daily value for fat. Saturated fat makes up approximately 6 grams of this fat, or 33% of a person's daily value. Adding meat to your pizza will indeed increase the fat and saturated fat in your pizza because meat is yet another major source of saturated fat.

Pizza and Salt Content

A very basic fact concerning salt? Eating too much salt may increase a person's risk for high blood pressure. An average person in America eats 3,400 milligrams of salt every single day instead of remaining with the recommended limit of 2,300 milligrams. A 5-ounce slice of cheese pizza contains 675 milligrams of salt, or 29% of a person's recommended daily limit of salt.

Consider making your own pizza at home, it is fairly easy to do. Cooking your pizza yourself permits you to control the ingredients that are included, thus making it healthier. Make a thin, whole-grain crust and top it with a low-salt tomato-based sauce along with a small amount of low-fat cheese and plenty of healthy vegetables that are fresh. When you order out, skip the extra cheese and the fatty sausage or pepperoni. Ask for extra vegetables and a whole-grain thin crust instead.

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