5 do’s and don’ts to eat ice cream on a diet

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I scream, you scream…you know the rest! It’s that time of year, but it’s also bathing suit season, and ice cream can be easy to overdo. If it’s one of your can’t-live-without foods here’s how to enjoy it in balance:

Frozen yogurt may be lower in calories and fat than hard ice cream, but just one cup of fat free soft serve frozen yogurt packs about 40 grams of sugar, the amount in 4 (single stick) frozen popsicles or 10 teaspoons of table sugar. That sugar can actually stoke your sweet tooth, and if you don’t feel satisfied you may eat twice as much, which means even more calories—a half cup of ice cream is about 250 calories but a cup of frozen yogurt is about 350.

If you’re going to go for the real deal look for homemade style brands made from simple ingredients: milk, cream, sugar, eggs and flavorings like vanilla bean (not ingredients like corn syrup or mono and diglycerides). To curb the calories stick to a half cup serving, about the size of half a tennis ball, and pump up your portion by topping it with a cup of fresh berries or grilled in-season fruit like peaches, plums or apricots.

There are a few amazing brands of coconut milk ice cream on the market now, my personal go-to when I need an “ice cream” fix. Coconut milk ice cream packs about the same number of calories as cow’s milk ice cream, and it’s high in fat, but studies have found that coconut fat may actually aid weight loss. That’s because the type of fat coconut contains, called medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), are metabolized differently than other fats. MCTs have also been shown to help raise “good” HDL cholesterol and coconuts provide antioxidants similar to those in berries, grapes and dark chocolate. READ MORE…

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