If you’ve had any chance to check out my first Weekly Food Log post, I’m sure you quickly noticed how much I love ice cream. It’s kind of a problem 😂. But earlier today I took a trip to my local health food store and came across Arctic Zero! I’m aware that many people in the health and fitness world have probably already heard of this ice cream before but I hadn’t. I literally stopped in my tracks when I read the front cover:
I decided to look a little closer to make sure I was reading correctly:
Yup, that’s right: 150 CALORIES PER PINT. I then expected it to have some range of ingredients I couldn’t read and lots of “sugar alcohols”, so I looked at the nutritional label on the back:
To my surprise, there was only 5 g of actual sugar and no actual sugar alcohols! And on to the ingredients list!
All of the ingredients are pretty straightforward in my opinion. I didn’t know what chicory root was, so I looked it up. It seems to have plenty of health benefits, as posed by this article. Although it has all of these benefits, I was curious as to why it was seen in ‘fit frozen dessert’. According to this article, it adds a creamy texture to certain foods, i.e. ice cream. The only health detriments the same article provided were that in excess it can cause an upset stomach.
Monk fruit concentrate was another ingredient I’d never heard of before. Well much to my surprise, the monk fruit has its own website, providing a detailed summary of what it is along with where it comes from and what it is used for. Simply, it is a fruit whose concentrate is used to naturally sweeten foods.
Now that I knew that Arctic Zero was relatively natural, had some nutritional value, and was low in calories, I decided to leave the store with the ‘fit’ ice cream and give it a try tonight after dinner. At first I tried the frozen treat directly out of the ice box — bad decision. It was very bitter and flaky. I went online to read up on it and found that everyone says a little time in the microwave fixes the problem instantly. So I microwaved the pint for 30 seconds, and just as promised, it tasted MUCH better. No bitterness, and instead of flaky, I got a nice creamy texture. It had a hint of a sweetness to it but without the overbearing aftertaste most ‘healthy’, low calorie options offer.
Would I try it again? Yes, for sure! It is worth the money for me because I can only eat 1/4 pint of any ice cream in a sitting, and I will only eat one portion per day. Since Arctic Zero claims their pint has 4 servings per container, I can make my pint last 4 days and only have it only cost me 35 calories each night for dessert (which is definitely something I could get used to). One drawback to the Arctic Zero brand is that it comes with some controversy. After doing a bit of digging, I found that almost four years ago the company was in hot water when the Today show called them out for boasting their ice cream contained a calorie amount that was actually 46-68% lower than its actual value per serving. Now this may seem alarming, but if you do the math, that still keeps you at a smaller caloric intake per pint of Arctic Zero than your regular pint of Blue Bell. But Arctic Zero fired back at the Today show, stating that the show’s calculations were wrong and Arctic Zero’s were right (find the rebuttal here).
All in all, no ice cream or ‘fit cream’ can be perfect. The best option is to create it yourself at home with natural ingredients for a true low calorie and great taste treat. But until I get the ability to do that, Arctic Zero can sustain my sweet tooth just fine.