Pizza Is The Least Healthy Takeaway In UK, Study Finds
When choosing which takeaway to order, taste, price and convenience generally take priority over nutritional value.
Thankfully, scientists seek answers to the important questions we can't be bothered with, and researchers at Liverpool John Moores have figured out which takeaway is the least healthy for us - and it turns out it's pizza.
Of course, this is a generalisation, and there is huge variation from one outlet to another.
Speaking to the BBC, Dr Ian G. Davies, reader in Nutritional Science at the university, said: "In terms of the average amount of salt, fat and energy density, then yes, from our work pizza comes out as the highest compared to other takeaway food.
"It is important to note though that there is a very large amount of variability between and within takeaway meals from one establishment to another. For example, some Chinese meals are very high in salt and sugar, whereas kebabs are high in trans fats [a form of unsaturated fat].
"So it is quite difficult to state which takeaway meal is the 'worst'. One particular meal may differ in salt, fat and sugar between different outlets, which makes labelling the 'worst' even more difficult."
Dr Davies added that portion size is another all important factor when determining just how unhealthy your takeaway choice is.
He said: "From our research, the median average results show that pizza is highest in energy density, followed by English, kebabs, Indian and Chinese, but this is energy per 100g.
"When considering portion size, the pattern is similar, but kebabs tend to be the smallest portion and therefore have less overall energy.
"Pizza and Chinese meals tend to be the highest in salt, and pizza and Indian highest in total sugars.
"For fat, and especially saturated fat, it shows pizza and English meals to be the highest and Chinese the lowest. Kebabs are highest in trans fats."
A big problem with regards to pizza is the temptation to eat the entire thing.
In an experiment in BBC One documentary The Truth About Takeaways - which airs tonight (27 February) at 8pm - University of Reading Professor Gunter Kuhnle also finds a whole pizza to generally contain more calories and fat than five other takeaway options.
However, the results would be very different if people only ate the three slices recommended by that particular takeaway outlet... but who on Earth is doing that, honestly?
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