Every now and then, my wife and I would end up having takeaway pizza at night. But as slowly but surely both of us started becoming more and more health conscious, we began to wonder if pizza is bad for cholesterol.
Most commercial pizza chain-made pizzas increase your fat intake and cholesterol levels after consumption. This could lead to several cholesterol-related health issues. It is advised to avoid having pizza that has a calorie count higher than 150 per slice if you are suffering from high cholesterol.
However, this is not all the information there is to it. Continue reading the article to find out more about it.
How Bad Is Pizza For Cholesterol?
Some pizzas are bad for people with high cholesterol because of their fattening ingredients.
This is because most fast food chain pizzerias use industrially formulated ingredients such as
- Processed olives
- Cured meat
Eating pizza with such ingredients is likely to increase your total cholesterol, LDL, and body fat. Which in the long term can lead to heart risk, as per researchers.
But that is not all; such pizzas also have higher calories, saturated fat, and salt. All of these increase your fat intake, further increasing your blood cholesterol.
All of which can lead to the development of fat in your arteries. This keeps growing and eventually makes it difficult for blood to pass through your arteries leading to a stroke or heart attack.
Can People With High Cholesterol Eat Pizza?
The answer is both yes and no. You might ask how.
Well, it all rounds up to what type of pizza you have and how much you have.
Remember, a fast food chain pizza such as Pizzahut or Domino will not be the same as an authentic local pizzeria like Massonni regarding being cholesterol friendly.
Most fast-food chains use ingredients that are formulated and have preservatives in them, which makes the foods much more fatty and bad for people with high cholesterol.
At the same time, an authentic local pizzeria makes pizza with organic ingredients, low-fat butter, and cheese. It is more likely to be less harmful to people with high cholesterol.
So, to sum it up, it depends on where the pizza is from. If you have high cholesterol, try eating pizza with low fat and a calorie count below 150.
Are All Pizzas Bad For Cholesterol?
No, not all pizzas are high in cholesterol. Some pizzas can be relatively healthy to eat if you have high cholesterol.
It all sums up whether you make smart choices for your health or not. Choosing which ingredients to use and what type of dough and crust to have; are a part of deciding whether the pizza is bad for cholesterol or not.
However, to identify a pizza that will not increase your cholesterol levels, you first have to know which pizzas are bad for cholesterol.
What Pizzas Are Bad For Cholesterol
Now that you have an idea about the harm pizza can do to a person with high cholesterol. Let us tell you about some pizzas you should avoid if you have high cholesterol.
1) Papa John’s Pepperoni, Sausage, and Six Cheese Pizza
This is one of the must-avoid pizzas if you are someone with high cholesterol levels. This pizza has a blend of 6 types of cheese, which leads to high amounts of total and saturated fat.
Eating this pizza will most likely increase your cholesterol levels further. So, we suggest avoiding it.
2) Domino’s Cali Chicken Bacon Ranch Pizza
We strongly suggest not eating this pizza at all costs if you suffer from high cholesterol. A slice of this chicken and bacon-filled pizza contains 270 calories which is 120 calories higher than the recommended amount for people with cholesterol.
Such high calorie indicates the pizza is filled with ingredients such as cheese, greasy meat, etc. All of which contribute to increasing its fat count. Which leads to pizza becoming less and less cholesterol friendly.
3) Little Caesars’ DEEP!DEEP! Ultimate Supreme Pizza
The third pizza on this list is the Little Caesars deep dish pizza. It is one of the worst pizzas you can have while suffering from high cholesterol. Each slice of this pizza has 393 calories and is filled with fat.
But that is not even the most harmful factor about this pizza. This pizza contains 42 grams of carbs in each slice. That is exceptionally high.
As per several medical institutes, getting more than 60% of your daily calorie from carbohydrates will increase your cholesterol levels. It’s because your liver thinks it needs to make more cholesterol.
Remember, the three pizzas we mentioned are one of the most harmful ones, but other than that, several different pizzas are bad for cholesterol.
A clever way to identify them is by seeing whether they have calories higher than 150 or not. How much total saturated fat they have and the number of carbs in it.
How much Cholesterol does A Slice Of Pizzas Have
Most pizza lovers question whether pepperoni pizza is bad for cholesterol or not, whether cheese pizza is high in cholesterol or not etc. The table below will answer all those questions so that you don’t have to ever wonder about such questions again.
|Pizza Name||Cholesterol Per Slice|
|Domino’s Cali Chicken Bacon Ranch Pizza||42mg|
|Little Caesars’ DEEP!DEEP! Ultimate Supreme Pizza||280mg|
|Papa John’s Pepperoni, Sausage, and Six Cheese Pizza||45mg|
Which Kind Of Pizza Cheese Is High In Cholesterol?
Excluding other ingredients, cheese plays a vital role in either making the pizza cholesterol friendly or harmful. Here is a chart showing all the commonly used pizza cheeses and the amount of cholesterol they have in them.
|Cheese Type||Cholesterol Per 1oz||Saturated Fat per 1oz|
What Are Some Low-Cholesterol Pizza Toppings?
There is no fundamental reason that having high cholesterol should stop you from having something as delightful as pizza. But what do you do about the high cholesterol they contain, you may ask?
Certain toppings are low in cholesterol and other pizza toppings with healthy cholesterol. Here are some of them.
Vegetable toppings like peppers, eggplant, potato, etc. contain no cholesterol making them extremely cholesterol friendly.
Moreover, they are filled with rich fiber, vitamins, and other essential minerals. Using vegetables as the topping will make the pizza healthy and low in cholesterol.
It might sound odd to many people how a fish can be good on pizza. But trust us when we say this: Sardines used in pizza are cured to the point they lose their fishy smell and taste. They are left with a tangy and umami-filled taste.
In addition to that, sardines contain 131 mg of healthy cholesterol alongside 63% vitamin D. Thus; it is a good choice if you are looking for low cholesterol topping.
This fungus can be a blessing to everyone with high cholesterol. This is because mushrooms contain 0 mg of cholesterol.
So, you can use this as a topping as much as you like without worrying about your cholesterol level rising.
Tips On Making Cholesterol friendly pizza
If you are suffering from high cholesterol and wondering whether you can have pizza, fear not; we have just the solution for you.
Here are some tips and tricks that you can use to make a cholesterol-friendly pizza at home and eat it without even worrying about your cholesterol level rising.
Use Low In Cholesterol Cheese
First and foremost, the tip we got is to stop using the cheese we mentioned above. Instead, try using cholesterol-friendly cheese such as
- Cottage cheese
- Ricotta cheese, and
- Nonfat cheese
These are low in fat and cholesterol, so eating them will not raise your cholesterol levels.
Whole Wheat Dough
Whole wheat flour is known for being rich in fiber. It is incredibly healthy as an ingredient and is known for lowering LDL cholesterol levels. Making it very suitable for people with high cholesterol.
Use Low-Fat Meat
Remember not all meat is the same. The beef itself can have several variations; some may be low in fat, whereas others can be very high in fat. It is crucial to make sure you buy low-fat meat as it is more cholesterol friendly.
- How to lower cholesterol in pizza?
The best way to lower cholesterol in pizza is by using vegetable toppings. As vegetables contain 0 cholesterol, it is incredibly healthy and cholesterol friendly. You can also use low-fat meat, whole wheat dough, etc.
- Can I eat pizza with high cholesterol?
If it is a pizza made with cholesterol-friendly ingredients or is a local pizzeria-made pizza with fresh organic ingredients, then yes, you can.
- Is a slice of pizza bad for you?
The answer to this question depends upon the pizza’s calories, cholesterol, sodium, and fat. It may not be the best if it is high in all of those.
So, is pizza bad for cholesterol? Yes and no. At the end of the day, it really depends upon what type of pizza it is and what ingredients it has.
It is not hard for cholesterol if it is made with veggies and has whole wheat dough. However, if it is from a restaurant filled with fat and calories, it is bad for cholesterol.
Remember, even if it is a cholesterol-friendly pizza, always have it in moderation. Excess of anything can cause harm.