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Yes, Blotting Your Pizza Saves Calories

It may not look cool, but taking a napkin to that greasy slice actually does cut the fat—and it makes a big difference over time.
Jarren Vink

"I see people blotting pizza, and it just looks silly to me. Does it really help save calories?" — Chuck D., Parma, Ohio

It sure does. “Imagine holding a piece of oily pizza vertically so the oil drips into a measuring spoon. You’ll save calories for every quarter-tablespoon collected,” says nutritionist Marisa Moore, R.D.N. “So blotting the excess can certainly save some artery-clogging fat calories.” 

Jim White, R.D.N., of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, agrees: “Blotting could save as much as 20 to 40 calories per slice,” he says. And over time, that can make a big difference. 

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How big? Let’s calculate: Data show that the average person eats 6,000 slices of pizza in a lifetime. Let’s leave off the thousand or so you’ve probably already eaten, and start with 5,000. Assuming that from now on you blot about 30 calories of oil off each slice, that’s 150,000 calories you’ll save; divide that by 3,500 (the number of calories it takes to gain or lose a pound), and you’ll save more than 42 pounds—four pants sizes—in a lifetime. 

Of course, that’s if you decide not to show off for the chicks: A new Cornell study found that men ate 92% more pizza when women were around. 

Any way you slice it, that’s just wrong.

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