The United States celebrates National Pizza Month every October. If you don’t know the reason behind this yet, then you won’t be surprised when you get a load of these fun pizza facts.
Based on a figure released by the National Association of Pizza Operators (NAPO), the US goes through 100 acres of pizza every day. According to estimations, this means people in this North American country eat 350 pizza slices every second. This means 30 million pieces daily, 1.26 million per hour, and 21,000 every minute.
With these facts and considering that obesity prevalence in the US was at 42.4 percent in 2018, you’d immediately jump to the conclusion that pizza is not healthy. You’d say that the numbers don’t lie. But, you might like to rethink that opinion.
Pizza can be healthy. When you buy good-quality pizza, you will get food made with fresh and healthy ingredients. As a result, you will be getting some nutrients from a slice. If you’re still in doubt, let’s look further at how pizza can be good for your health.
The Tomato Sauce in Pizza Has Lycopene
Tomatoes contain lycopene. Lycopene is a carotenoid found in these yummy red fruits. This is what gives them their red color.
Pizza sauces use processed tomatoes, which is a good thing. Cooking tomatoes, instead of consuming them raw, makes lycopene digestible. The cooking process makes it easier for the body to absorb the antioxidant.
Lycopene helps lower blood pressure. This antioxidant will go through your bloodstream, thus aiding in lowering cholesterol.
Apart from lycopene, tomato sauce is also a good source of vitamins C, A, and K. These vitamins help boost your immunity and prevent iron deficiency. They also lower the risks of heart disease and help manage high blood pressure.
A Slice of Pizza is a Good Source of Protein
Protein is an essential component of good health. Wishing to get more protein in your diet so you can buff up? One delicious way to do this is through eating pizza.
According to an article on the Insider, an average pizza slice has 12 grams of protein. It will help you build muscle, strengthen blood and bones, among others. If you order a meat-based pizza, you will consume higher amounts of protein.
Fresh Veggies on Pizza Gives You Vitamins and Minerals
Some pizzas have fresh vegetables for toppings. This makes eating pizza an excellent way to consume vegetables. This is especially for picky veggie eaters like kids.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to your choice of vegetable toppings. You can go with tomatoes, mushrooms, eggplant, or bell peppers. You can also go for arugula and other green leafy vegetables. Whichever you prefer, you can be sure to get your dose of vitamins and minerals from veggie pizza toppings.
Thin Crust Pizzas are a Better-Balanced Meal
If you’re wishing for a healthier pizza option, try the ones that come with thin crusts. Thin crust pizzas offer a more balanced combination of carbohydrates, proteins, and fat. Having one slice is already a balanced meal. Pizza can even be healthier than some breakfast cereals when eaten in moderation.
Get Fiber from Your Pizza
Pizza dough made with whole wheat flour is an excellent source of fiber. Whole wheat, like oats, is rich in dietary fiber. Whole wheat flour contains 24 percent more dietary fiber than oats. It has 13.1g of fiber for every 100 grams, while oats only have 10.6g.
Eating fibrous food like whole wheat pizza will fill you up faster. This can help you eat less and curb your hunger better. Fiber also helps regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
Pizza is Rich in Calcium, Too
You can get calcium from pizza with cheese and white sauce. Calcium is essential for strong bones. Your body also needs it for proper blood clotting, muscle contractions, and nerve signals.
Within moderation, pizza can be healthy. It may come with the negative connotation of being junk food. But, the points above can provide you with a greater appreciation for it as a well-balanced meal.
However, don’t forget to enjoy your pizza in moderation. While good quality pizza can benefit your health, too much of it can still lead to health issues.