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[IP] Study warns of calorie-packed pizzas


WASHINGTON, May 17   Hold the cheese! Thats the advice for pizza lovers 
from a consumer group that says just one slice of a popular meat-covered 
pizza contains as much fat and calories as a McDonalds Big Mac.

      WHILE MOST people wouldnt unwrap and eat a second Quarter Pounder or 
Big Mac, many people reach for a second, third or even a fourth slice of 
their favorite pizza, the Center for Science in the Public Interest said 
Friday, issuing a survey of popular pies.
      The United States  where obesity has hit epidemic proportions  
orders 3 billion pizzas a year. So CSPI, which has previously taken the fun 
out of fast food and movie theater popcorn, turned its sights on pizza by 
testing 15 kinds from 36 pizzerias in Washington, Chicago and Los Angeles. 
The group also used nutritional information provided by four chains: Pizza 
Hut, Dominos Pizza, Little Caesars and Papa Johns.

       The survey found that an average serving of plain cheese pizza  two 
to three slices depending on the pie  contains about 600 calories and 25 
grams of fat, including 10 grams of artery-clogging saturated fat. Thats 
half a days serving of fat. And the news just gets worse as the toppings 
pile on.
         Just one slice of Pizza Huts Stuffed Crust Meat Lovers pizza has 
420 calories and 21 grams of fat, including 10 grams of saturated fat  
about the same as a McDonalds Quarter Pounder. The study said an average 
serving of this pizza is two slices.
       The chains Big New Yorker Sausage pizza does more damage than a 
McDonalds Big Mac. And a single piece of Dominos Hand Tossed Pepperoni is 
the equivalent of a McDonalds Egg McMuffin.

       The report warns consumers to avoid stuffed crust pizzas  an 
innovation that injects pizza into the pizzas crust.
       You need cheese stuffed into a pizza crust like you need reverse 
liposuction to force more fat under your skin, said study director and CSPI 
nutritionist Jayne G. Hurley.

        Americans love cheese, said Mike Rawlings, president of Pizza Hut. 
We respond to the voice of our customer. And frankly, I think people are a 
little tired of being told what not to eat.
       Hurley said the chains stuffed crust pizza with meat is the worst 
of both worlds with about a days worth of sodium and saturated fat in just 
two slices.
       Rawlings said his company offers a variety of pizzas for people who 
want a healthier meal.

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