Jun 17, 2019 | Updated: 11:38 AM EDT

Is Pizza a Better Alternative than Breakfast Cereal?

Jun 14, 2019 08:57 AM EDT

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In late 2018 a nutritionist created a commotion with the claim that pizza would make a healthier breakfast than a cereal. Chelsey Amer is the expert who made the claim, saying in part that "pizza packs a much larger protein punch, which will keep you full and boost satiety throughout the morning."

This is irresistible. It's affirming, and it feels like it just makes sense, given Amer's point about protein. However, Australia's News.com.au has weighed in on the question and found the truth may be a little less cut and dried, writing that "it depends on what sort of pizza and breakfast cereal we are talking about."

Noting that most popular cereal in the United States is heavily processed and mostly made of sugar, News.com.au's Susie Burrell writes that there are still plenty of healthy cereals on the market and their ingredients include "oats, muesli and bran flakes, which can be teamed with protein-rich toppings," like greek yogurt.

Burrell continues to say that, "recent Australian data exploring the diets of breakfast cereal consumers published in the journal Nutrients, revealed breakfast cereal eaters have lower BMI's, have healthier diets throughout the day, consume more whole grains and dietary fiber and consume the lowest amount of added sugars each day."

"So while there are some sugary breakfast cereals out there, this does not mean that all breakfast cereal is a poor breakfast option," she adds.

Basically, then, saying that pizza beats cereal as a nutritious way to begin the day is at best imprecise. Everything depends on the type of pizza or the type of cereal you choose, and what you add to it. So choose one or the other, but choose wisely. Whatever you do, just don't skip breakfast completely.

Another recent study found a correlation between skipping the first meal of the day and an elevated risk of early death from cardiovascular disease. After a person's age, sex, race, socioeconomic status, diet, lifestyle, body mass index and disease status were taken into account, the study found that those who never had breakfast had an 87 percent higher risk of cardiovascular mortality compared with people who had breakfast every day.

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