Most of us have had a slice of cold pizza for breakfast, though deep down we felt a little guilty about it. Yet it turns out, it may have not been such a bad breakfast option. According to New York-based nutritionist Chelsey Amer, a slice of your favorite pizza is better for you than the average breakfast cereal.
Amer says that most cereals are high in sugar content and lack of protein and healthy fats. “You may be surprised to find out that an average slice of pizza and a bowl of cereal with whole milk contain nearly the same amount of calories,” Amer says. “However, pizza packs a much larger protein punch, which will keep you full and boost satiety throughout the morning.”
Though pizza is far from being as healthy as an egg white omelet and a piece of fruit, it is still a better option than a bowl of frosted flakes. “A slice of pizza contains more fat and much less sugar than most cold cereals, so you will not experience a quick sugar crash,” Amer says.
Yet not all pizzas or cereals are the same. According to Health Magazine’s contributing nutrition editor, Cynthia Sass MPH, RD, some breakfast cereals are preferable to a slice of pizza. “A cereal made with whole grains, nuts or seeds, and fruit with organic grass-fed milk or plant-based milk is a better choice over a grease-laden pizza made with processed meat like pepperoni on a white flour crust,” she says.
In the end, pizza is not going to become the go-to breakfast food for the health-conscious but if you must indulge, don’t feel too guilty about it. Health Magazine does recommend the following healthy breakfast options over pizza.
Oatmeal contains beta-glucan, a type of fiber that helps to lower cholesterol. It is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, folate, and potassium. Also, Greek yoghurt is loaded with calcium and has plenty of protein — almost twice as much as regular yogurt. The best option is plain, nonfat Greek yoghurt and some added fruit.
Meanwhile, eggs are a healthy source of protein and nutrients like vitamin D. As for the cholesterol, research shows that the cholesterol in food has less of an impact on blood cholesterol than previously assumed. And almond butter is a great source of protein and is packed with monounsaturated fat. It can be spread on whole grain bread or eaten a banana or an apple.