Nutrition · Student Life

Is Fro-Yo the Way to Go?

It may seem odd to be talking about fro-yo with winter approaching, but this frozen treat has become popular during all seasons. Between self-serve fro-yo places and brands like Ben and Jerry’s new frozen yogurt line, fro-yo is the new trend across the country. Many fro-yo companies claim frozen yogurt is healthier than ice cream, but is it true?

Frozen yogurt has less calories and saturated fat than ice cream. Fro-yo is made with milk, which is much healthier than the cream that makes up ice cream. However, fro-yo places like Pinkberry make it easy to go overboard with the portions and sugary toppings. Self-serve frozen yogurt containers are usually 16 to 24 ounces, which can mean up to 500 calories filled to the top, and that’s the yogurt alone! Add brownie pieces, chocolate chips, candy, and whipped cream and you’ve turned your “healthy choice” into a very unhealthy one.

As long as you only take one serving (1/2 cup) of frozen yogurt, it’s easy to make it a healthy snack. Many fro-yo places have healthy toppings like fruit, nuts, and shredded coconut. Like regular yogurt, many frozen yogurt brands also have probiotics. Probiotics are a type of bacteria that is good for your digestive system. Eating foods with probiotics can “re-populate” the healthful bacteria and improve digestive management and the immune system, as well as reduce lactose intolerance. Scientific research shows that probiotics may even hold the key to weight loss! Unfortunately, not all frozen yogurt contains probiotics. To be sure a brand has the healthy bacteria, look for the National Yogurt Association Live and Active Cultures seal.

So if you’re looking for a healthy treat, fro-yo is the way to go! Just remember to keep the serving size small, the sugary toppings to a minimum, and check to make sure the brand has the certified probiotics seal.

By Morgan Chamberlain