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Ice cream, a food that can replace a meal or just a sin of gluttony?

Ice cream, a food that can replace a meal or just a sin of gluttony?

June 17, 2020
Ice cream is good for the mood, it is fresh and tasty but it should be taken into account that it is very caloric, contains little protein and zero fiber and could worsen acne
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Einstein loved ice cream. Unfortunately, his ice cream ended up inexorably on his shirt or even on the floor. In fact, as the astronaut Charles Pete Conrad told in an interview with Oriana Fallaci reported in the book If the sun dies, the great scientist loved to eat ice cream, especially strawberry ice cream, while walking or even jumping. Ice cream has always been the joy of children and adults, we eat it to cheer us up, to celebrate important occasion, to refresh ourselves and sometimes even to replace lunch. But can ice cream be considered like a pasta dish? What are its properties? Let's understand better!

Ice cream, nutritional values ??- It is easy to say ice cream but you just need to go to the ice cream shop near your house or to the supermarket to realize that the choice ranges between artisanal or industrial ice cream, regular or with little sugar, low fat, with syrup or without, with fresh fruit or chocolate drops and so on and so forth. In general, ice cream contains carbohydrates, around 20%, but these can also exceed this value, proteins, about 3%, fats, between 10 and 20%, sugar, which is important to allow the cream to ice, you can find it in an amount that is around 20%, less if the ice cream is low in sugar, cholesterol, but also calcium, sodium and potassium (FDA Database). Ice cream has 0 fiber. The calories per 100 grams of product vary between 170 and 220 Kcal depending on whether the ice cream contains less fat and sugar or, on the contrary, is soft and creamier, characteristics associated with a higher content in fats and sugars (FDA Database). It should therefore be considered that ice cream sold as light actually brings a number of calories that does not differ much from regular or even softer ice cream. Ice creams prepared with fresh milk are rare and of high quality but it is still possible to find them, often now fresh milk is replaced by milk powder, cream may also be used but also plant based oils and hydrogenated fats, present especially in industrial ice cream. Given the presence of milk, both fresh and in powder form, and cream, the ice cream contains lactose, unless you read the contrary on the label, therefore be careful in case of lactose intolerance. Ice creams can also contain fruit, cocoa, dried fruit, food coloring, glucose syrup and other additives to give flavor but also to emulsify and stabilize the compound.

Organic and vegan ice cream, are they better?

The idea that organic is always synonymous with healthy must be reduced. Of course, in an organic ice cream the aromas must be natural and carob seed flour is the preferred ingredient to stabilize the ice cream, however the organic ice cream may contain lactose, just like a normal ice cream, and is always prepared with sugars and fats. And what about vegan ice cream? Also in this case it is not said that it is better, in fact hydrogenated fats can be used. These fats are connected to an increased risk of developing heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Therefore, it is always necessary to read the label with attention (Dhaka et al, J Food Sci Technol., 2011).

Ice cream, a sin of gluttony that however brings a good mood

Ice cream can be eaten, it is not a food that should be absolutely avoided but it should be considered a prize, a cuddle, to be included every now and then in your diet. In fact, as we have seen, it is low in protein and fiber and very caloric and therefore can hardly replace a meal. Not only that, when eaten in large quantities and in predisposed people it could worsen acne (Ismail et al, BMC Dermatol., 2012). But it's good for the mood, yes, it is. In fact, as evidenced by scientific research (Casas et al, Clin Transl Oncol, 2012), eating ice cream counteracts anxiety and depression. This has been observed in sick people for whom ice cream has become a gratification, but it applies to all of us!

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