Cutting Calories at the Ice Cream Truck
The sound of the ice cream truck may be music to your ears, and surprisingly, it's not necessarily a hazard for your waistline! "The ice cream truck is a wonderful place to be for grown-ups," says Liz Vaccariello, author of 400 Calorie Fix and Editor-in-Chief of Prevention magazine. "One of the reasons is because everything is pre-portioned and packaged, so you’re going to do a lot less damage than you would at an ice cream parlor or at home."
In terms of calories, Liz advises to go with fruit flavors. "They're about 30-50 calories less than your vanilla or your [chocolate] ice cream. So go for your strawberry or your regular berry; plus, it has a little fruit in it!”
Light ice cream
"Don't be fooled by the idea of light ice cream," Liz warns. "All they've done is taken out some of the fat, so the calories are going to be virtually the same. One large soft serve light chocolate ice cream cone is about 444 calories; that’s not insignificant, that’s an entire meal!"
Liz says that while toppings may seem harmless, they're actually a big factor if you're trying to lose or maintain your weight. "Two tablespoons of either rainbow-colored or chocolate sprinkles are about 110 calories ... that's on top of your ice cream [calories]," she points out. Liz adds that there is a better choice - Heath bar topping. "I’ve been avoiding it for years, but it’s actually one of the best topping choices. It's toffee, but they're going to put less over it. [With] sprinkles, they cover the whole thing and it's pure sugar. You’re going to get a lot more impact in terms of flavor from the Heath bar topping and fewer calories."
"Your cone choice can make or break you," Liz warns, noting that a wafer cone is your best bet at 20 calories, sugar cones come in at 60 calories, and a waffle cone can cost you 160 calories. And the one to look out for is the chocolate-dipped waffle cone at 320 calories. "It’s like having a candy bar on top of your ice cream!"
Liz gives the OK to go to town on Popsicles. "Only 30-40 calories for a little Popsicle," she says. "If you like a Creamsicle, that’s about 70 calories, and Fudgesicles, about 60 calories."
Ice Cream Sandwich
"This is one of the best choices if you want ice cream in the package," Liz says about the 110-calorie treat. "You're only going to have about half a cup of ice cream between the little layers of chocolate." However, Liz says to look out for the Chipwich. "You have a chocolate cookie cake that’s surrounding the ice cream. And with the chocolate chips, that's going to add about 200-300 calories."
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