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Pizza is bad for health. But, do you know how bad?

by Medindia Content Team on  January 20, 2003 at 5:11 PM General Health News   - G J E 4
Pizza is bad for health. But, do you know how bad?
The fact that eating pizzas is bad for health is almost an established truth now. However, many of us do not understand the extent of damage a single serving of pizza could do to our overall health. A recent study conducted by a consumer activist group, called the Centre for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), which involved 36 pizza restaurants in America and studied 15 varieties of pizzas and looked at dietary information provided by four famous pizza chains, revealed that a single serving of almost all varieties of pizza can deliver more fat than a cheese burger.
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The study suggests that the culprit that plays havoc in all pizzas is :Cheese! Greater the amount of cheese on your pizza, more the amount of crust in your arteries. The following statistics may help you understand what a pizza really delivers. A single serving of a plain cheese pizza equals of half a day's worth of saturated fat. Three slices of the most popular pizza at Pizza Hut -- the Pan Pepperoni Pizza delivers 690 calories, 1,620 mg of sodium, and 33 grams of fat -- including 13 grams of saturated fat. Two slices of the Pizza Hut Stuffed Crust Pepperoni Lover's pizza delivers more than just love with 25 grams of saturated fat.

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The study with all of its alarming facts also offers some good news for compulsive pizza eaters. The study suggests that if you decide you have to eat a pizza, its better you choose a veggie pizza with healthy toppings. The second best is chicken or ham and if you must order meat, pepperoni has less fat than sausage or beef. Ordering a pizza with half cheese or no cheese at all is a healthier option. However, one should be careful while ordering veggies, because some of them automatically come with cheese. So, it is wise to make a special request for a cheese-free pizza with some Parmesan cheese sprinkled over the top before it's put in the oven.

CSPI's study included a "best bites" rating in which, Pizza Hut's Hand Tossed Veggie Lover's pizza, California Pizza Kitchen's Tricolor Salad Pizza, Domino's Hand Tossed Cheese pizza with half the cheese (must be special ordered), and Papa John's Original Crust Garden Special, found a place. The study also added that eating a salad would cut down on the number of slices you eat. However, choosing other side orders like buffalo wings and cheese breads would only do more damage than good.

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