We sent Studio 5 contributor, Ashley Kewish out for a tough day of taste-testing and to find answers.
Can Frozen Yogurt Really Be Healthy?
Yes! Frankly, all foods can fit into a healthful diet… in moderation. Moderation in this arena means 1 cup (usually a small size). Frozen yogurt has healthy attributes — offering protein, probiotics, and 20% of your daily need for Calcium and Vitamin D (nutrients we need more of!). But it can also be high in sugar, with the average serving containing 10 teaspoons of sugar (40 grams).
Yogurt is unique because it’s one of the few foods that removes the fat without adding sugar and fillers. Fat-free yogurt is really just that: fat free! If you can keep it to one (1-cup) serving without sugar toppings, then enjoy nonfat yogurt and don’t worry about sugar-free. But, if you add toppings, I recommend ordering the sugar-free yogurt to keep the sugar content as low as possible. Sugar-free yogurt contains small amounts of sugar alcohols and/or manufactured dextrins, so it’s not something I’d order everyday.
Nutritionally, frozen yogurt has as much sugar, calcium and protein as regular yogurt. It doesn’t need to be a “dessert-only” food, but should be eaten in moderation… like everything else! 🙂 I’d count it as your sugar-fix for the day.
Does Frozen Yogurt Have the Same Healthy Probiotics as Regular Yogurt?
Yes, frozen yogurt also contains live active cultures/probiotics, but the actual amount is uncertain. Manufacturers don’t clearly list probiotic amounts on the nutrition label and there are no general recommendations for a “healthy” daily dose of probiotics. Effective levels range widely, depending on the strains and the health goal. To make sure your frozen yogurt contains yogurt produced by traditional fermentation and has a significant amount of live and active cultures, look for the NYA Live & Active Cultures seal.
What About Toppings! Healthier Options?
Frozen yogurt, by itself, is a sensible snack. But adding toppings (or increasing size) can take it from a sensible snack to a dietary catastrophe! A small frozen yogurt with a couple spoonfuls of sweet toppings can go from 220 calories to 500 calories – in seconds!
In general, the toppings add:
• Fruit: 10 calories per scoop
• Candy: 50 – 70 calories per scoop
• Whole almonds or pecans: 70 calories per scoop
• Chocolate: 100 calories per scoop (serving)
• Mixed, chopped nuts: 170 calories per scoop
For the healthiest toppings, try to:
• Choose just one!
• Choose fruit (berries or kiwi) and/or one scoop of WHOLE almonds or pecans
• Only choose chopped nuts if you can afford the calories (they are calorie dense but offer protein, fiber,
vitamins and minerals)
• Save chocolate and candy for special occasions
Ashley Kewish visited three locations. They are: Juicy Berry located in the Gateway, Spoon Me located at 532 East 400 South, and Yodipity located inside The Market at 1500 Snow Creek Drive in Park City. Yodipity is offering Studio 5 viewers a 25% discount if they come in and mention that they saw them on the show.