Is Pizza a Health Food or Junk Food?

health food junk food imageThe question on whether pizza is a health food or junk food is a serious debate today given the obesity epidemic sweeping this country.

In answering this question we’ll try to remain impartial – after all most would say we have an incentive to keep you coming back for more pizza – right?

Well yes and no.

Our job is to give you the best pizza we can once you’ve decided to purchase so you continue to look to us for your pizzeria needs. We want to see you keep coming back and remain healthy so you can.

Let’s breakdown each major component of U.S. favorite dish and cover the good and the bad.


Pizza dough comes in all types and makes – most pizzeria places offer gluten-free dough now. The healthiest normal dough crust is crisp and thin and our version at La Befana Pizzeria is called Neapolitan-style and we also offer gluten-free pizza.

Dough made with whole grain as in whole-wheat crust includes the fiber, vitamins and minerals lost in the refining process. Whole grain crust is by far the healthiest kind and La Befana looks towards its customers to dictate our offerings including whole-wheat pizza.


The tomato sauce on your pizza contains lycopenes which are rich in antioxidants and because it’s a sauce makes it easier for the body to absorb. The strongest evidence suggests tomatoes helps in reducing the risk of prostate cancer.


Cheese as most people know contains calcium and is a source of protein which is good – but is also high in fat. Now our body does need fat – not all fat is bad – and it depends how much cheese and fat you consume in a week as to whether you tell your local pizzeria to go easy on the cheese or take it normal.

Most pizza places will put less cheese on for you if you ask them including us at La Befana.


Finally we come to the toppings and this where you can easily tip the scales from “health” to “junk.”

Meat toppings generally have a lot of fat and salt added in the processing of them and are going to tip the scale to junk status while vegetables and fruits such as green and red peppers, onions, broccoli and olives, pull the needle back over to a healthy pizza.

Now we’ve given you good and bad let’s put this into perspective.

Most families eat pizza once a week. It’s reserved for the day when you don’t feel like cooking or high activity level when there’s no time to cook. So while every pizza you buy isn’t going to be a healthy one, the concern is what you eat the rest of the week. Be balanced on your meals so you can enjoy your pizza.

Once you’ve decided on a pizza for your meal you can influence whether it’s a healthy or junk food version. Less cheese and meat and more vegetables is going to create a healthy pizza.

What’s your take on this issue? Leave your comments below to offer your opinion.

If you’d like to learn more about to create your own health pizza then check out this article:

La Befana Pizzeria serves gourmet pizza in Allston and Watertown and surrounding neighborhoods and you can order online here.

La Befana Pizzeria Team
15 N. Beacon Street
Allston, MA 02134

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