Eating ice cream might not be as unhealthy as you think

Who doesn’t love a scoop of ice cream?

Despite its reputation as a sweet treat to enjoy occasionally, some dietitians suggest a surprising notion: eating ice cream every day might be better for you than you think.

Traditionally, ice cream has been considered a guilty pleasure, mainly due to its high sugar and fat content. However, some nutrition experts argue that when consumed in moderation and as part of a balanced diet, a daily serving of ice cream can fit into a healthy lifestyle [1].

Like many other foods, ice cream contains a mix of nutrients. While it’s true that it’s high in sugar and fat, it also provides essential nutrients like calcium, protein and specific vitamins.

Plus, it can be a source of pleasure and enjoyment, an essential aspect of a healthy relationship with food.

The key is moderation and mindful consumption. Instead of viewing ice cream as a forbidden indulgence, it can be incorporated into a well-rounded diet alongside other nutritious foods [2].

In a HuffPost article, registered dietitian and co-founder of Culina Health Tamar Samuels shares she’s hesitant to label any food (or the frequency with which one eats it) as “good” or “bad.”

“Doing this can trigger feelings of shame, guilt and fear, potentially leading to an unhealthy relationship with food,” she said. Plus, everyone has their own nutritional needs that can vary wildly from person to person.

Portion control is crucial, as excessive food intake, including ice cream, can have adverse health consequences.

Also, the type of ice cream matters. Opting for varieties with lower sugar and fat content, such as those made with natural sweeteners or plant-based alternatives, can make daily indulgence a more health-conscious choice [3].

It’s also essential to consider individual dietary preferences and health goals. For some people, including ice cream in their daily routine might align with their lifestyle and bring them joy without compromising their overall health.

However, others may need to be more mindful of their intake, especially if they have specific health conditions like diabetes or heart disease.

Incorporating ice cream into a balanced diet doesn’t mean neglecting other nutritious foods. It’s about finding a happy medium where treats like ice cream coexist with fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins.

Similarly, enjoying ice cream in moderation can help prevent feelings of deprivation, which can lead to binge eating or unhealthy relationships with food. Allowing oneself to indulge occasionally can promote a sustainable eating approach that prioritizes physical and mental wellbeing.

Of course, moderation looks different for everyone and it’s essential to listen to your body’s cues and make choices that feel right for you. If eating ice cream daily brings you joy and fits into your overall lifestyle, there’s no need to feel guilty about it.

While ice cream may not be a healthy food per se, enjoying it in moderation can be part of a balanced diet. Daily ice cream indulging can be a delicious and guilt-free treat by practicing portion control, choosing healthier varieties and considering individual dietary needs. 

[1] https://www.huffpost.com/entry/is-ice-cream-unhealthy_l_660b0467e4b081e561ffd443
[2] https://batonrougeclinic.com/is-it-okay-to-eat-ice-cream-every-day/
[3] https://health.clevelandclinic.org/can-healthy-ice-creams-help-you-lose-weight

The information included in this article is for informational purposes only. The purpose of this webpage is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.