Too much sugar is a bad thing. But experts say that "tempting foods" like ice cream actually help us maintain a healthy diet. And in recent years, the frozen food section has undergone somewhat of a transformation. There are actually quite a few "healthy" options out there in the ice cream arena – all-fruit gelato with no added sugar, goat milk treats with more vitamin A and D than their cow milk brethren, and regular old lower fat versions with ingredients you can actually pronounce.
Trolling the aisles, looking for the perfect pint? Here are a few tips:
- Less is More. Search for brands with five to eight ingredients or less.
- Skip the Mumbo-Jumbo. You shouldn't need to be a chemist to understand the label. Search for brands with familiar ingredients – things like milk, sugar, and cream rather than gums, additives, or artificial color.
- Slim the Sugar. When in doubt, go for fruit flavors. High fruit content means less added sugar.
- High fat is bad. Some ice cream can have 20 grams and up per serving – that's more than a T-bone steak! Look for frozen yogurt, sorbet, and gelato, all of which tend to be significantly lower in fat. No or low saturated fat is best, ideally less than a gram.
We took the liberty of testing some pints here at the office (all in the name of research, you understand.) Here were some of our staff favorites:
- Laloo's: In addition to being just plain yummy, goat milk ice cream is also often easier on kids with lactose intolerance.
- Ciao Bella: Gelato is rich and creamy, but lower in fat. You'll never miss what's missing.
- Whole Fruit: All fruit, all the time. And there's even a "No Sugar Added" option. The lemon flavor is especially good. And it's less than 60 calories per serving!
Once you've found your dream pint, take it home for a family date night. Slap it between two homemade cookies and you've got ice cream sandwiches-- a real treat anytime of the year.