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Ice Cream Truths

I am in flight from family reunions in Vermont and Michigan, heading back to my coveted home of Santa Rosa.  Feeling lighter of spirit after spending time with my family I am glad there is no additional airline fee for the extra 5 lbs. of luggage on my girth!  Zerona laser here I come…

I recently posted on Facebook a photo of my extended family smiling outside a Ben & Jerry’s ice cream parlor in Burlington, VT.  Ice cream spontaneously creates smiles and laughter.  A welcome pleasure of life!

But of course excess (as observed in any Tom family reunion) can also be detrimental.  So how do we enjoy a more frequent “luxurious treat” without losing our boyish/girlish figure and health?

I found help in an article entitled The Skinniest Scoop from EatingWell July/August 2011.

–          I learned that Gelato is not as healthy an alternative due to the addition of egg yolks and even cream.

–          “Dairy Free” is also high in calories, so unless one is lactose intolerant or vegan it may not be the wisest choice as a frequent treat. 

–          My daughter, an ice cream aficionado, was right all along.  “Slow Churned” ice cream does have much fewer calories and fat than regular ice cream because it is mixed with air.

–          Sorbet may have lots of hidden sugars, so look for products with fruit listed first.

–          Frozen yogurt is still the overall winner for lowest calories and fat content.  But, that is only if you don’t add my favorite toppings of Heath Bar pieces!

Below in decreasing order are the calorie and fat content of our favorite treats.  This is for a ½ cup of vanilla flavor.

1)      Super Premium Ice Cream           200-250 calories, 8-10 g sat. fat

2)      Gelato                                                  170-220 calories, 2-7 g sat. fat

3)      Premium Ice Cream                        130-150 calories, 4-5 g sat. fat

4)      Dairy Free Ice Cream                      130-210 calories, 0-7 g sat. fat

5)      Sorbet                                                  120-140 calories, 0 g sat. fat

6)      Slow Churned                                    100-110 calories, 2 g sat. fat

7)      Frozen Yogurt                                    90-100 calories, 0 g sat. fat (nonfat)

120-180 calories, 1-1.5 g sat. fat (low-fat)

Now I have to investigate if my favorite frozen yogurt “Tartilicious” is nonfat or low-fat!

I hope the above helps you to choose wisely when you deserve a treat for yourself.  Slow Churned and Frozen Yogurt get my votes for more frequent treats.  I will save my Ben & Jerry for special indulgences.  Now, how often do I deserve special indulgences is another question…..

In Beauty and Health,

Dr. Tom