You are reading Ice cream, all the curiosities about the protagonist of the summer food


Ice cream, all the curiosities about the protagonist of the summer food

September 6, 2019

With warm weather it is the protagonist among summer foods: we are talking about ice cream, once considered just a summer dessert, and now served all year round. During summer, when the desire to eat it increases, it is a good idea to no longer consider it as an extraordinary prize, but instead give it the right place in the daily diet, without creating imbalances in the quality and quantity of nutritional needs. Dr. Martina Gozza, dietitian of Humanitas, talked about it.

Do the tastes of ice cream have different amount of calories?

There are three differentiating keys: milk, vegetable fats and fruit. Milk cream flavours contain both milk and cream: it is four times fatter, but  30% more proteic. Ice creams containing vegetable fats are similar to milk-based ones, but they contain less cholesterol with a different presence of fat-soluble vitamins. In addition, it is a different type of fats, because they are polyunsaturated. Fruit ice cream consists of fruit pulp, sugar and water, sometimes with addition of milk. They have a lower calories content (even though discreet), but also less protein and calcium, although they provide more vitamin C: fresh fruit is used, keeping intact all its nutritional characteristics. Of course, fruit ice cream tastes should be preferred to keep fit even in summer, but should be eaten in moderation.


A nourishing food

“Eating all types of ice cream – said Gozza – means to introduce substantial amounts of protein, sugar and fat, with a good dose of phosphorus and calcium which is a very useful element for young people and women in menopause, to prevent osteoporosis, and for the elderly with edentulous problems”.


What is the difference between artisan and industrial ice cream?

The differences between artisan and industrial ice cream are considerable. Artisan or creamy ice creams are produced with a slow incorporation of air, about 30-50 %, during the “freezing” phase of the mixture, resulting in a creamy, soft and, full-bodied ice cream. On the other hand, during the “freezing” process, industrial or blown ice cream introduces 100-130% of air, so it becomes very soft and light. To make a choice, an artisan ice cream should always be preferred to an industrial one, which is also of excellent quality.

The differences between fruit ice cream and milk ice cream

“Fruit ice cream would be the ideal after-dinner choice. But it is not necessary to create useless ideological barriers with other types of ice cream – said the dietician -. In fact, milk ice cream has many qualities. The energetic and nutritious contribution of a milk ice cream can replace a snack, because it does not weigh down the body and helps in providing energy to effectively resume the study or work activities. Ice cream, in general, contains plain sugars, readily energetic, useful for young people or for adults who play sport; for example, an ice cream packaged at the top of the milk and weighing 45 grams contains about 9 grams of sugars.

The importance of checking the label to know the calories

According to the nutritional label, calories are referred both to the 100 grams, and to the single portion, so that the consumer can rationally include the ice cream in the daily menu. Depending on the different content of nutrients and energy, the ice cream may find a different location throughout the day. “A strawberry ice cream, for instance, with 51 grams, provides 59 calories and, by its particular nature, facilitates the digestive processes – concluded Gozza -: just do not eat it when digestion is in progress, only for its low temperature.


The components of ice cream

Protein 0-6%

Fats 0-22%

Glycids 20-50%

Mineral salts 0.4 – 1.4%

Additives 0.2 – 0.5%

Water 20-50%

Calories 100-300 Kilocalories per 100 grams

Component in fats
Low-fat ice cream: contains less than 2% fat;

Medium-fat ice cream: contains 2 to 16% fat;

High-fat ice cream: contains more than 16% fat.


Protein component

The protein content depends on the amount of milk used, the presence or absence of eggs and biscuit or wafer.

Ice creams are also classified according to the type of caloric intake:

– Low calorie: less than 150 kcal/100 grams;

– Medium calorie content: from 150 to 250 kcal/100 grams;

– High calorie content: over 250 Kcal/100 grams.


You may also like

Do not miss our advice for your health

Sign up for the weekly Humanitas Health newsletter and get updates on prevention, nutrition, lifestyle and tips to improve your lifestyle