Sophia Kamveris, MS, RDN
New in the Frozen Dessert Aisle
Last summer, I scoured the freezer section of the grocery store (brrrr) to review some of the latest ice cream delights. This past weekend, a friend saved me a trip to the store when he arrived with a treat that I wanted to share with you…avocado ice cream!
By now, we all know the benefits of avocados. While high in total fat, these gems are great sources of the heart-healthy monounsaturated fats…aka MUFAs, aka Good Fats. They have appeared in salads, tacos, smoothies, on toast, and now that are making their way into the freezer aisle.
What gives ice cream its great taste and texture is its fat content. Most dairy-based, premium ice creams (ex. Brighams here in New England) pack in 270 calories and 10 grams of saturated fats in a 2/3 cup serving. It’s the saturated fat that we worry about when we talk about about a heart healthy diet. The American Heart Association recommends that 7% of your total calories come from saturated fats. Eating that amount of ice cream can fulfill ones recommended daily intake (alone) if your goal is to eat 1500 calories a day.
There’s a lot of non-dairy desserts out there, but be careful. Coconut ice creams also have saturated fats as their base. So Delicious is a popular commercial brand; 2/3 cup of their chocolate variety has 130 calories and 8 grams of saturated fat.
Enter the new guy on the block. Cado is a family-inspired non GMO, gluten free, vegan, dairy-free, avocado-based frozen dessert. It lists its nutritional information in half-cup servings. Per FDA guidelines, the new Nutrition Facts label has changed the serving size of ice cream to 2/3 cup. So, to have a fair comparison of these products, I did the math for you! I calculated that a 2/3 cup serving of Cado provides 226 calories and 2 grams of saturated fat. Still, much lower than its icy competitors.
Cado promotes itself as containing clean, all natural ingredients. For example, in the Deep Dark Chocolate variety, the ingredients include: organic avocado puree and nonorganic avocado oil, organic cane sugar, organic tapioca starch, organic cocoa powder, organic vanilla extract, organic guar gum, organic gum acacia. As you can see for yourself, what’s not in there is corn syrup, sugar alcohol, stevia, agave, artificial flavors or colors, corn, soy, or GMOs.
A pint of Cado retails for about $5 at Target. It’s not inexpensive, but what is these days? I also think these icy desserts are occasional treats and shouldn’t be used on a daily basis.
Read the labels next time you visit the freezer section, but you might want to put a sweater on!
In good health,