I scream, you scream and your trainer screams when you eat ice cream.
While there’s nothing wrong with the occasional treat (nothing is more classic than an ice cream cone in the summertime), it can be a frozen slippery slope. I’ve heard confessions from people who are hitting up the scoop shop more than twice a week, and that can be really detrimental to your fat-loss goals for reasons other than the obvious “it’s not healthy.”
Between the mix-ins, toppings and over-served portions, there could be 100 grams of sugar in one sundae. That exorbitant amount, unused for fuel, will be stored in your body as fat and leave you with a huge sugar crash, leading to irritability and cravings for the rest of the day.
Not to mention, there’s more in the ingredient list then sugar, cream, vanilla and cocoa. Did you know that some “natural vanilla flavor” is made from wood pulp? Save that for the termites.
Yes, it’s hot and ice cream is cool, and tasty. But plenty of other things are too! Here are 12 alternatives to ice cream that won’t leave you crashed on your couch riddled with guilt and regret:
- Make a smoothie. There are tons of ways to add protein powder nut milk, frozen fruit/veggies and add-ins like peanut butter or cacao to make it taste like the frappe or milkshake you’re craving.
- Eat frozen berries, cherries or grapes, straight-up from the bag or blend them up like a sorbet. Bonus for the berries, since they are lower in sugar than most other fruits.
- Slice up bananas and freeze for three different options:
- Eat in pieces for quick little bits of of “vanilla ice cream”
- Dip the frozen slices in chocolate OR peanut butter and THEN chocolate for no guilt copycat “Dibs.”
- Blend the frozen bananas with ingredients like peanut butter, cacao, chopped nuts, or coffee for a mocha.
- Freeze avocado (remember to take it out of its skin and remove the pit):
- Blend with lime for a sherbert-like citrus treat
- Blend with cacao and nut milk and fill popsicle molds
- Ever heard of an acai bowl? It’s really a smoothie in a bowl made with the Amazon-sourced acai berry (packed with antioxidants). Top it with chopped nuts, shredded unsweetened coconut or granola for that fro-yo bar touch.
- Speaking of fro-yo, instead of heading to Orange Leaf, stick plain Greek yogurt in the freezer. Eat straight up or blend.
If you have an ice cream maker, check out sources like Pinterest for healthy “ice cream” alternatives using wholesome ingredients like coconut milk and maple syrup instead of the “natural flavors” you’ll find in most store-bought ice cream.
(Kait Taylor is a certified personal trainer at Tewksbury Sports Club.)