Last Updated on by San San
Pizza is probably one of the worst foods for those with Type-1 diabetes. Pizza is considered the perfect storm of fat, carbohydrates, and unhealthy protein. All of which are important for diabetics to be aware of. Due to the nature of pizza, and all its complexities, it has caused skyrocketing levels of blood sugars and fats in those with diabetes. So, we’re here to answer this simple yet upsetting question, can diabetics eat pizza?
I know what you are thinking… this is not the kind of information I was looking for. You can even feel upset or disappointed if this is your favourite heavy meal. This does not mean that it’s impossible to enjoy pizza as a diabetic. You do have to do some extra work and possibly a lot more investigating than you originally planned. Do not throw your hands up yet though. You can still have your slice, just not without knowing the facts yet.
You can eat almost anything with proper planning, effort, and healthy choices. This article is going to help clear up some of that, and give you some answers to the burning question – “can diabetics eat pizza?”
Alternative Pizza for Diabetics
One healthier choice when it comes to enjoying a slice of pizza is to have a cauliflower crust. Thanks to an interesting pin one fateful day on Pinterest, this choice has become popular in a short time. It provides you with a low-carb crust that is healthy in general but also less likely to mess up your levels, by causing spikes.
When considering cauliflower pizza, you should also think about the toppings that you are going to be putting on there. Just because you went with the healthier choice for a crust, does not mean you throw caution to the wind and get reckless. Consider having chicken on your pizza versus that greasy pepperoni.
Cauliflower pizza is the friendlier option for you when you have diabetes. A regular crust pizza can deliver anywhere from 30-40g of carbs per slice, while thin crusts fall in somewhere around a nice little 23g per slice. If you are a fan of those deliciously stuffed crust types, then you are getting a whopping 50g per slice minimum. A cauliflower crust pizza however slides in at an affordable 3-5g of carbs per slice. Making it a much healthier option all around.
Why is Pizza Bad for Diabetics?
In general, pizza is bad for everyone, not just the people who are diagnosed with diabetes. When you enjoy an unhealthy meal, your heart must do some overtime in those first few hours afterwards. This “overtime” period for the heart can be twice as hard if you are a diabetic. With a score of 80 on the GI Scale, (glycemic index), pizza is considered a high-glycemic food. This means a rapid increase in your blood sugar levels.
Most pizza dough contains a processed low fibre grain as its main ingredient – all-purpose flour. Fibre helps reduce the GI of foods, that is why it is important to choose options like that whole wheat crust. If that option is not available where you grab your favourite pizza from, consider changing up the toppings. Load your pizza up with veggies instead. Not only will they give you an abundance of fibre, but they come with practically no sodium or fat. Why is pizza bad for diabetics?
- 285 calories
- 5g saturated fats
- 36g carbohydrates
This is the nutritional value approximately of one slice of cheese pizza from a fast-food chain. These numbers equate to 60-80 percent of what is considered your recommended carb supply per meal, in one slice. You will also receive a whopping 640 milligrams of a little something called sodium from that same slice. This equates to approximately 28 percent of your daily dose in one slice of cheese pizza.
Naturally, once you start adding something like pepperoni to that, these numbers will dramatically change. The reason I use the term approximately is due to the large variance in these values from one restaurant to the next. Always make sure you check your local fave pizza joint for its nutritional value and ingredients.
Pizza and Type 2 Diabetes
Good news if you are a type-2 diabetic – pizza may be a good option for you. Just as long as you choose the right options. Those options would be things like choosing the thin crust over traditional, loading it with veggies rather than all those greasy high fat meaty options. Make sure you go easy on the cheese as well.
You may want to think about portion size too. Consider taking just one slice of that pizza you and your bestie are about to dive into. Grab yourself a side salad to go with that pizza, that way you can have a more balanced meal. When you eat a meal that is lower in carbs, it also helps keep blood sugar levels more in line, and where they are ideal for you.
With all that being said, you should still be wary of what you consume, and monitor your levels. After all, the goal is to be able to enjoy some delicious food and still stay safely within your levels. Don’t be afraid to opt-in for some low-fat dressing with that side salad too. Also, it would be a good idea for you to consider less sugary drink options too like water, or unsweetened iced tea instead of that soda.
Can diabetics eat pizza then? With proper planning and smart choices, yes, you can enjoy a slice of pizza. However, like anything, there are always healthier options out there available for you to choose from. If you’re keen on grabbing a slice of pizza, you can always choose to make your own pizza with healthy substitute ingredients.
Go ahead and start doing some more research. You will find there are a plethora of healthy pizza crust recipes out there for you to choose from. You can make your own cauliflower crust pizza and make it any way you desire. Load it with delicious roasted veggies, and a light sprinkling of cheese.
You will be able to make better and healthier choices if you arm yourself with information and a great ole helping of your own willpower. Pretty soon, you will discover that you can take advantage of, and enjoy fast food still, without having to worry about the toll it will take on your own health.