I feel a little bad writing this article because I know it is going to burst a lot of bubbles. Especially since it’s almost Summer time and what could be more satisfying than a delicious frozen treat.
Well folks, the new Fro-Yo craze is just CRAZY. There have been so many Fro-Yo places opening around me, my head is spinning. You can make a lot of money when you feed people chemicals and not real food and the creators of these companies and products know this.
I can hear your moaning now – but they said it was “organic”, it contains that “healthy bacteria”, but … but … but “It’s all natural”….NO.
Please don’t give into the hype! Frozen yogurt is a highly processed product.
Even when they market all these little buzz words, these places are still serving processed dairy products with harmful additives that could affect your health. None of the places that have opened recently near me are “certified organic” which means they can add whatever they want to that delicious frozen mixture.
Let’s look at some facts about some of the questionable ingredients I’ve found –
1. At Yoforia – The slogan on the wall in their store says “I’m homemade, organic and delicious” – it should be “I’m homemade in a laboratory with artificial transfat, GMOs and petroleum ridden blue food coloring!” This is what I found when I researched what was exactly in my favorite flavor and I almost cried. I’d been eating this stuff every time I passed it at the Mall! The worst part is that they take pride in providing their ingredients on the side of each cup – however, they fail to put what else is in your yogurt if you pick any other flavor other than plain. What jerks, right?
Does this ingredient list look “homemade, organic and delicious” to you?
Some Facts about food coloring:
Blue 1 is used to color candy, beverages and baked goods and may cause cancer. Blue 2, found in pet food, candy and beverages, has caused brain tumors in mice.
Red #40 is used in cherries (in fruit cocktails), baked goods and candy. It causes thyroid tumors in rats, and may cause them in humans as well, and linked to hyperactivity in children.
Yellow 5 & 6 are the third most often used food colorings, it is found in many products, including baked goods, candy, gelatin and sausages. It can contain small amounts of carcinogens and linked to hyperactivity in children.
Ingredients in TCBY Butter Pecan Frozen Yogurt:
Skim Milk, Maltodextrin, Polydextrose, Non Fat Dry Milk, Contains 2% or Less of: Erythritol, Maltitol Syrup, Emulsifier and Stabilizer (Propylene Glycol Monoesters, Mono & Diglycerides, Guar Gum, Locust Bean Gum, Carrageenan), Natural & Artificial Butter-Pecan Flavor (Propylene Glycol, Water, Alcohol, Caramel Color), Condensed Skim Milk, Calcium Carbonate, Caramel Color, Whey Protein Concentrate, Disodium Phosphate, Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Vitamins A & D. Milk cultured with the following live active cultures: B. lactis, L. acidophilus, L. bulgaricus, L. lactis, L. casei, S. thermophilus, L. rhamnosus. Contains: Milk.
Ingredients in PinkBerry Cookies and Cream Yogurt:
Nonfat milk, sugar, cookies n cream (sugar, enriched flour [wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin moninitrate [vitamin B1], riboflavin [vitamin B2], folic acid), soybean and palm oil with TBHQ for freshness, cocoa processed with alkali, invert sugar, contains two percent or less of degerminated yellow corn flour, corn starch, chocolate, salt, leavening [baking soda, monocalcium phosphate], artificial flavor, soy lecithin, whey), nonfat yogurt (pasteurized nonfat milk, live and active cultures), nonfat yogurt powder (nonfat milk, culture), dextrose, carrageenan, guar gum, maltodextrin, mono- and digylcerides, rice starch
2. The majority of brands (Pinkberry, Frozen Isle, TCBY, etc.) are using dairy that is not certified organic – this means their yogurt is full of potential antibiotics and growth hormone that conventional dairy farms use on their cows. Also those cows are likely fed genetically modified feed. The reason they have to inject these cows with antibiotics is because they feed the cows corn (which is cheaper than grass!) and this causes the cow to be sick. The growth hormone just beefs up the cow (pun intended) to get bigger when it’s time to use them for their meat. It’s a sad and cruel process not just for the cows, but for humans too. The antibiotics and growth hormones are passed down to us in the form of their milk and this causes a multitude of problems including leading to many types of cancers. If you’d like to learn more about this – I highly recommend reading “The China Study” by T. Campbell, it’s fascinating to say the least.
3. The added sugar content of all these places is just ridiculous – For their standard serving size (about 5 ounces) it starts at 20 grams. I know milk has naturally occurring lactose sugar which should account for about a third of that – but why are they adding three additional teaspoons of just pure processed sugar to my yogurt! Many brands (TCBY, Frozen Isle, etc) use genetically engineered corn syrup and other processed sugars too. Processed sugar makes your skin dull, causes weight gain, and creates an inflammatory response in your body. When your body is inflamed, you can start to develop all sorts of ailments like asthma, arthritis, or even cancer.
4. Probiotics are important and I’m glad folks are starting to learn more about why you need healthy bacteria in your gut. In Chinese Medicine, they believe that most diseases start from the gut. It’s all about whether or not your healthy bacteria can crowd out the bad. You don’t need to get your probiotics in the form of sugar filled yogurt or any yogurt for that matter.
I take a probiotic everyday first thing in the morning for my insurance that I have a belly full of good bacteria. You can find it in the refrigerator section at vitamins stores or natural food markets and make sure to choose one with an enteric coating that allows the pill to slowly be absorbed by your body throughout the day.
OK, enough said. For now.
With that, I am going to leave you with a few alternatives to icky freaky froyo.
Option 1: Below is a delicious homemade recipe for the most delicious frozen treat, it’s using all whole ingredients and contains a special ingredient “cardamon” which has detoxing compounds, aids in digestion and helps with bloating. Not to mention, it adds a depth of flavor like you are eating something very sinful. This tastes just as sweet as froyo and contains no added sugar.
Food Babe’s Mango Lassi
- 5-6 ounces of organic greek yogurt or almond yogurt (my favorite!)
- 1/2 cup frozen mango (you can add more if you want)
- Pinch of ground cardamon (or 1/4 tsp)
- Splash of fresh orange juice
- 1/8 – 1/4 cup water
- A couple of ice cubes
- Blend all ingredients and serve!!!
Option 2: When you are feeling lazy and need a quick treat – I love buying good organic vanilla frozen yogurt you can get a natural foods stores in the freezer section. I like to top it with one crushed almond windmill cookie and a few organic chocolate chips. Tastes just like one those high calorie chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches you can get at the gas station.
Option 3: When you really can’t resist while outside your home, get the plain Fro-Yo with no added flavorings. Remember this already has A LOT of sugar, so be cautious about which toppings you decide to add and choose non-sugary items like chopped nuts. Also keep your portion size under control – it’s really easy to add more than 5 ounces in those huge cups at the self serve places.
If you think this information can benefit a Fro-Yo lover in your life – please share this with them, maybe they’ll make you a mango lassi 🙂
Cheers to a great summers ahead…
P.S. If you ever see me at any Fro-Yo shops, I am probably having an out of “Food Babe” experience and need to be knocked upside my head. Just do it – I won’t sue you.