Frozen Yogurt: The Calorie Culprit?

When you’re craving something cold and sweet, ice cream seems so taboo.  Many people turn to frozen yogurt to satisfy their craving for a creamy treat. Frozen yogurt is healthier than ice cream, but is it really the ‘health food’ that most people claim that it is?

Calorie Content

Most frozen yogurts contain around 20-30 calories per ounce, adding up to a minimum of 160 calories in an 8 oz serving, if you aren’t careful.  Not so bad calorie wise, but be sure to do your homework. Some frozen yogurts don’t provide the calorie savings that you would think, especially from some of your favorite ice cream shops. Be sure to check the nutrition info before you indulge. Some frozen yogurts contain almost 200 calories in only a 1/2 cup serving–and be careful of serving sizes!

If you regularly indulge in a sweet treat at night, a small portion of frozen yogurt isn’t a bad idea. Rich in calcium, it helps you get your daily dose of the bone strengthening nutrient. But, watch your portions! Try putting a small scoop in a small bowl or teacup. You’ll trick your mind into thinking that it’s a larger portion, especially if you eat it slow. Go for a rich flavor like chocolate to get lots of flavor to satisfy your tastebuds.

Keep Toppings Off Limits

This probably goes without saying, but any calories that you are saving by choosing fro-yo over ice cream are out the window if you are topping your tasty treat with chocolate, candies or yummy sauces. Seemingly healthier toppings like graham cracker crumbs or fruit sauces pack on unnecessary calories. Even adding a sugar cone can make your best intentions a waste. Stick to a cake cone for only 20 calories and choose delicious fat free or nearly fat free flavors. Those choices will keep your calorie intake down.

Moderation Is Key

As with all sweet foods, moderation is crucial when it comes to frozen yogurt. Even the lowest calorie, low fat varieties can have tons of sugar. So if you indulge, keep your sugar intake low for the rest of the day. Be sure to do some comparisons between double churned or light ice cream and your frozen yogurt choices when you do decide to indulge. You may find that some of your ice creams are a better calorie option than the yogurt variety.

Benefits

Some studies show that the lactose in frozen yogurt is more digestable than the lactose in milk, and therefore, in ice cream. So, if you are lactose intolerant, this may be the choice for you. Some frozen yogurt also contains probiotic (healthy) bacteria to aid digestion and treat many digestive and urinary tract inflammation or infections.

Keep it occasional, and you are in the calorie clear. Be sure to check the calories and sugar content of your yogurt to make the right choice.  Watch your portions, and enjoy!

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