Diet Detours: Making smart pizza choices

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Pizza may taste good, but can it also be a healthy mealtime option? (WPVI)

Pizza may taste good, but can it also be a healthy mealtime option?

Dietitian Emma Fogt says it's all about the choices you make, saying "pizza doesn't need to be an unhealthy food at all."

The trick is to avoid the slices can turn a healthy meal into a downright diet trap.

"It all depends what you are putting on top of the pizza and how much cheese you eat," says Fogt.

Emma says multi-meat combos - slices with add-ons like sausage, pepperoni, bacon and beef - can be waistline busters.

"All four of these can add anything up to 40 to 80 calories each just to a slice of pizza," said Emma.

Gooey cheese may taste good but Emma says, "Any extra cheese you're putting on the pizza can add a hundred two hundred calories, three hundred calories easy."

For our first match up we ordered two popular pies from Pizza Hut: the Meat Lover's Stuffed Crust and the Supreme Thin and Crispy.

Although both pies are loaded with lots of meat, it's the crust that steers you off course.

"They are very much different in calories and fat," said Emma. Pointing to the Meat Lover's Stuffed Crust, she said "This also has a thicker crust, a stuffed crust with a lot more meat on top."

"We are talking about 430 calories a slice and 24 grams of fat!" she continued.

That makes the Meat Lovers Stuffed Crust our first diet detour. Emma gives the Supreme Thin and Crispy, with only 300 calories per slice, our first green light.

Next up, we ordered "John's Favorite" from Papa John's. It comes smothered with six cheeses, pepperoni and sausage.

We put that up against a plain cheese pizza.

Emma says this is a case when the calories all come down to the cheese.

We know the green light is going to be the cheese pizza, but how much damage are we doing with John's Favorite?

"We are looking at about 400 calories," said Emma.

Emma says Johns Favorite Pie is "not favorable to your diet." It also packs 21 grams a fat a slice -- making it our next diet detour.

She says stick to a slice of cheese pizza, which has half the fat, making it the healthier choice.

Next, we placed an order at Domino's, where they are serving up pan pizzas. We ordered one with pepperoni.

Emma says, "Pan pizza has a lot more calories, and obviously a lot more fat."

But, Emma says, pepperoni lovers can still have their pie and eat it too. Just skip the deep dish crust, which gets Emma's last Diet Detour.

"The best option hands down is your thin crust pizza," she said, "and lots and lots of veggies."

So load on the veggies! Emma also points out a lot of pizza parlors like Domino's let you customize your own pie.

You can even add lean meats like chicken.

She says opt for low fat cheeses. Goat or ricotta cheese are good choices.

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