Although Italian dining is not typically synonymous with healthy eating, it should be. Like all types of cuisine, there are plenty of rich Italian dishes but there is also a plethora of healthy options in the traditional Italian kitchen. At Picazzo’s we are proud to offer an eclectic menu boasting a variety of healthy, nutrient rich Italian dishes. Not convinced that delicious Italian food can also be healthy? Let’s take a look at a few of the heart healthy ingredient that make up many of the Italian dishes on our menu:
High in monounsaturated fat, olive oil has been proven to lower LDL, also known as “bad” cholesterol, and raise HDL or “good” cholesterol. This tasty oil can be used to dress salads, season foods, roast vegetables and even to replace less healthy cooking oils. Olive oil is used prevalently in Italian cooking. Here at Picazzo’s we are proud to use gourmet olive oil from the Queen Creek Olive Mill in our kitchens.
Packed with antioxidants, vitamin C, potassium, lycopene and so much more, tomatoes are a staple in Italian cooking. Low in calories, this succulent fruit adds flavor and so much more to your plate. At Picazzo’s we source locally grown, organic tomatoes whenever they are available.
Leafy greens are full of essential nutrients including vitamins A, C and K and tons of fiber. Leafy greens include: kale, collards, chard and spinach. Often used in traditional Italian salads and also sautéed in olive oil, leafy greens are a major component in Italian cooking.
The antifungal and antibiotic benefits of garlic were recognized by the ancient Greeks and Romans. Modern science has identified anticancer characteristics in garlic that may help to lower the risk of breast, colon and skin cancer. Packed with manganese, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C, garlic delivers a whole lot more than flavor.
Healthy Italian Eating
These are just a handful of examples of healthy ingredients found in Italian cooking. When eating out or serving up dinner at home, be sure and select dishes that include these healthy foods. Avoid cream sauces, high-fat meats and other dietary no-no’s and rest assured that you’re getting your Italian fix the healthy way.
Award Winning Italian Restaurant: Tempe, Paradise Valley, Scottsdale, Sedona & Flagstaff
As we kick off the school year, many of us are concerned with diet and nutrition. After all, studies have proven that a healthy diet is essential to success in school. Next time you’re planning a meal out with the family, we encourage you to visit one of our 5 locations. We proudly maintain healthy Italian restaurants in Tempe, Paradise Valley, Scottsdale, Sedona and Flagstaff. Do you, or a loved one, follow a gluten free diet? We have you covered! Serving up 87 gluten free options, including pizza and pasta, there is no need to sacrifice flavor when it comes to your favorite Italian foods. Come visit us tonight and discover why we are considered a favorite Italian restaurant in Tempe, as well as all of the communities we proudly serve.
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