If you’re like the average American, you’re getting about a third of your tomatoes from pizza when you eat out, according to a USDA survey. That’s a big deal, because almost a quarter of the vegetables we eat come from tomatoes and its many forms, including spaghetti sauces and ketchup, says the USDA’s Economic Research Services report.
We here at AICR love tomatoes, they provide fiber, vitamin C and lycopene. And AICR research suggests that foods containing lycopene lower risk for prostate cancer.
There are a lot of ways to enjoy a tomato, we’ve got 13 of them right here. And because pizza is clearly a favorite, Alice Bender, MS, RDN, gives a few ways to order and make healthier pizza.
1. Order extra veggies, whether its tomato slices or spinach, basil, garlic, peppers and onions. Skip the meat and extra cheese.
2. Go for a pizza with a thin crust, then get double sauce and a few dollops of fresh mozzarella. Complete your meal with a salad loaded with colorful veggies.
3. Involve the whole family with a make your own pizza night. Use this recipe – Grilled Pizza with Grilled Vegetables – as a starting point for putting together a healthy and delicious pizza.
The USDA analysis also says that we’re only eating about 1.5 cups of vegetables per day – government guidelines recommend two to three daily cups. From the tomatoes, about three quarters of that comes from sauces, whether eating out or at home. The government recommends 2 to 3 cups of vegetables a day, which also reduces risk of many cancers.
Have some delicious tomatoes ideas? Please share.