Pizza is a dish which is relished by everyone alike, all over the globe. It is both a comfort food and a slice of heaven when it comes to celebrating your favorite occasions. However, pizza for diabetics remains a debated food item because of its high-carb and high-calorie content.
For diabetics, it is advised that they eat low carb foods and avoid food items which have a high glycemic index and a high sugar content. It does not mean that they have to say goodbye to their favorite food items. It only means that they have to prepare their favorite dishes in a healthier way, including pizza. On this National Pizza Day, BeatO Health Coach Sujata Sharma tells you how to prepare a diabetes-friendly pizza.
Why is Your Normal Slice of Pizza Unhealthy?
People with diabetes are supposed to limit their intake of refined carbs found in white flour which is used to make the pizza crust. Refined carbs can have an adverse effect on your blood sugar level.
Diabetes is associated with other complications such as Hypertension, Dyslipidemia, etc. Pizza also has high levels of sodium which can lead to a high blood pressure and can prove to be detrimental. We advise you to consult your health coach before including any ingredients.
How To Include Pizza in Your Diabetic-Diet?
Here’s how you can relish a healthier and diabete-friendly version of your favorite pizza-
- For the crust- In order to avoid a high-carb white flour crust, you can substitute it with healthier options such as almond flour or ragi flour. A crust made out of ragi or almond crust will have significantly less amount of carbs.
- For the toppings- Opt for toppings which have a low glycemic index. You can go for sun dried tomatoes, zucchini, peppers, grilled vegetables, etc. Add olives for that extra flavor. All the non vegetarian lovers can add roasted chicken rather than other food items which have a high glycemic index. To add a better flavor to your pizza, add natural herbs like oregano, basil, rosemary, etc.
- Use fresh mozzarella cheese- Mozzarella cheese has a lesser amount of sodium and fat but you should make sure that you consume it in moderation. It has little impact on your sugar levels but you should avoid making generous use of it.
- Pair it with healthy side dishes- You can make your meal more filling and healthy by pairing your pizza with some roasted chicken or grilled vegetables. Ditch those sides of french fries and onion rings and opt for healthier substitutes.
- Portion size- It is important to keep a check on portion sizes while being on a diabetic-diet. You can also opt for thin crust pizzas as they have a lower carb and calorie content.
- Prepare your pizza at home– While making your own pizza, you can have complete control over the ingredients. It is also a fun experience to prepare it all by yourself.
Ingredients to Avoid While Making a Diabetes-Friendly Pizza
A single slice of pizza can contain a high carb content and also a high calorie content if it is not prepared mindfully. You should also ensure that you are eating the right portion size. It is ok to enjoy your favorite diabetes friendly pizza in moderation but you should make sure that you avoid the following ingredients while preparing it-
- High calorie sauces like Mayonnaise or Alfredo sauce
- Processed meats like sausage or bacon
- Friend vegetables and fried chicken
- Cheese-stuffed pizza crusts
In order to enjoy your favorite food items while being on a diabetic-diet, you need to have a balanced approach towards nutrition. In order to be extra careful, you can even do a sugar check after relishing your slice of pizza. If you have any doubts about the food items that you can consume with regard to your sugar levels, you should always talk to your health coach.
To keep your sugar levels in check, consume a nutrient-dense and low-carb diet and have a regular workout regime. Also, do not forget to check your sugar levels on a regular basis. By knowing your level of glucose, you can optimize your diet and lifestyle accordingly.