Is Pizza Healthy For You?

It's no secret that people want healthier food. But when it comes to pizza, many people would say that you have to sacrifice taste in order to make it "healthy". Is pizza healthy for you? The short answer is pizza is what you make it. Depending on the ingredients you use, pizza can be greasy junk food or a fresh combination of ingredients. If you're looking to keep your pizza healthy, here are a few tips.

Consider the crust. If possible, opt for a vegetable-based crust - broccoli and cauliflower are the most popular choices. Veggie-based crusts can be gluten-free and paleo-friendly in addition to being delicious! Sweet potato, kale, spinach, and zucchini are other common vegetables used to make pizza crusts. Your dietary needs and taste preferences should help you determine which type of pizza crust is best for you. The great news is that many of these crust options are available at many local eateries, including CRISP in Walpole, MA. Next time you're there, make sure to ask for their famous gluten-free and delicious cauliflower crust!

Spoon the sauce. Jarred pizza sauces are usually loaded with sodium and other preservatives. Consider making your own sauce out of fresh ingredients. Go beyond red sauce - try pesto or olive oil and fresh garlic as your pizza base.

Spice it up. Adding spices instead of greasy toppings can help make your pizza healthier. Chiles and red pepper flakes are perfect for those that like extra heat. Basil, garlic, and oregano are good choices for those who prefer more subtle flavors.

Be picky about toppings. What you choose for toppings can make all the difference if you're striving for a healthier pizza. Pick leaner, less salty meats like grilled chicken, lox, turkey bacon, and chicken sausage. Try to stick to lower fat cheeses like goat, gorgonzola, feta, and fresh mozzarella. Load up on flavorful veggies like arugula, spinach, butternut squash, sun-dried tomatoes, capers, and artichoke. Nuts and beans can also be added as a topping to add flavor. Be creative!

Feeling fruity? Although it's hard to imagine, fruits often make wonderful, sweet, and healthy pizza toppings. Common choices include blueberries, pineapple, avocado, apple, grilled peaches, pears, and figs.

Serve with salad. Pizza pairs beautifully with a fresh salad. In addition to the extra leafy greens a salad provides, it also serves as a tasty appetizer. Caesar and Antipasto salads are most commonly paired with pizza, but you can also get creative with lettuce-less salads, too!

Portion control. Although it can be tempting to make any size pizza a personal pizza, pay attention to the serving size. Knowing how much is in a portion can help you control the number of calories, sodium, or other metrics that you are tracking.

In the end, whether or not a pizza is healthy is truly up to the person doing the ordering. Many restaurants have a variety of crust and topping options to accommodate a variety of dietary needs, so don't be afraid to ask about alternative options. Come visit us at CRISP at 1049 Main Street, Walpole, MA 02081 (508)-734-6541