So you’ve decided to adopt a flexitarian diet, and now you’ve come to the realisation some of your favorite foods may be in jeopardy! Argh! Never fear though, I explain below why you can still enjoy pizza on a flexitarian diet. Phew! Let’s get into it.
What is a flexitarian diet?
A flexitarian diet is a type of eating plan that focuses on plant-based foods, with the occasional inclusion of meat, poultry, and fish. The term “flexitarian” is a combination of the words “flexible” and “vegetarian,” and it refers to a diet that is mostly plant-based but allows for the occasional inclusion of animal products.
The term first appeared in the book, “The Flexitarian Diet: The Mostly Vegetarian Way to Lose Weight, Be Healthier, Prevent Disease and Add Years to Your Life.” written by registered dietitian Dawn Jackson Blatner, back in 2009.
It actually makes a lot of sense, and isn’t as restrictive as many other diets. If you’re considering following a flexitarian diet, here are a few things to keep in mind:
A flexitarian diet is primarily centered on plant-based foods, such as vegetables, fruits, grains, herbs, legumes, and nuts. These types of foods are rich in nutrients and can help to support a healthy lifestyle.
Occasional inclusion of animal products
While a flexitarian diet is mostly plant-based, it allows for the occasional inclusion of animal products, such as meat, poultry, and fish.
The exact frequency and amount of these foods can vary depending on the individual and their goals. It could be just the concept of Meatless Mondays extended to 4-5 days per week, for example.
There are a number of potential health benefits associated with following a flexitarian diet. These benefits may include improved heart health, lower risk of type 2 diabetes, and reduced risk of certain types of cancer.
One of the benefits of a flexitarian diet is the variety of foods that are included. This can make it easier to stick to the diet long-term and ensures that you are getting a wide range of nutrients.
For us, it also means that pizza on a flexitarian diet is a possibility, which is lucky.
In addition to the potential health benefits, a flexitarian diet may also have environmental and sustainability benefits. By including more plant-based foods in your diet and reducing your consumption of animal products, you can help to reduce your carbon footprint and support more sustainable food systems.
Overall, a flexitarian diet is a flexible and sustainable approach to eating that can provide a range of health benefits. By focusing on plant-based foods and allowing for the occasional inclusion of animal products, you can create a healthy and varied diet that meets your individual needs and goals.
Can you eat pizza on a flexitarian diet?
Pizza can be a tasty and satisfying food, and it can be included in a flexitarian diet as long as you choose your toppings carefully. A flexitarian diet is a type of eating plan that focuses on plant-based foods, with the occasional inclusion of meat, poultry, and fish.
If you’re following a flexitarian diet and want to include pizza in your meal plan, here are a few things to consider when choosing or making pizza on a flexitarian diet:
Choose your crust wisely
When choosing a crust for your pizza on a flexitarian diet, opt for a whole grain or vegetable-based crust to increase the nutrient content of your meal.
Whole grain crusts are a good source of fiber, while vegetable-based crusts can provide additional nutrients such as vitamins and minerals.
Load up on vegetables
Vegetables are an important part of a flexitarian diet, and they can be a delicious and nutritious topping for pizza. Some good options to try include bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, and tomatoes. You can also try using beans, nuts, and seeds as protein sources.
Include hard cheeses
Hard cheeses, such as mozzarella, cheddar, and parmesan, are generally considered safe to eat on pizza on a flexitarian diet.
These pizza-perfect cheeses are made from pasteurized milk, which reduces the risk of bacterial contamination.
Use plant-based proteins
If you want to include protein on your pizza, opt for plant-based proteins such as tofu, tempeh, or beans. You can also try using nuts and seeds as a protein source.
Avoid processed meats
In general, you should always be avoiding overly processed meats. These processed meats, such as pepperoni and sausage, may be high in sodium and preservatives and should be avoided while following a flexitarian diet. These types of meats may also be contaminated with bacteria that can cause illness.
Yes, turns out that you can consume pizza on a flexitarian diet, just by being clever with what ingredients you choose, and to always eat pizza in moderation. Yep, no eating it for three nights in a row I’m afraid.
Pizza can be a tasty and satisfying part of a flexitarian diet as long as you choose your toppings wisely. By loading up on vegetables, using hard cheeses, and opting for plant-based proteins, you can create a healthy and delicious pizza that fits in with your flexitarian lifestyle.