The Junky Truth About Frozen Yogurt

What's the truth about this innocent-looking cup of yogurt?What's the truth about this innocent-looking cup of yogurt?By Joy Johnston, for Sharecare

As the temperatures rise, so does our desire for a refreshing, tasty treat. If you're trying to be health-conscious and opt for a serving of frozen yogurt instead of a scoop of ice cream, you may be surprised to learn the surprising truth about the health benefits of frozen yogurt.

Related: Try this mind trick to lose more weight.

The frozen yogurt craze has taken America by storm, fueling a billion-dollar industry. One reason for the dessert's rise in popularity is the common belief that frozen yogurt is healthier than ice cream. Sharecare nutrition expert and Dr. Oz Show guest Samantha Heller sets the record straight:

1. Serving size matters. The American Diabetes Association recommends choosing a frozen dessert that contains 3 grams or less of fat per 4-ounce serving (1/2 cup). Some popular frozen yogurt shops offer cups in only one size -- large -- and charge by the ounce. Left to their own devices (and cravings), many people dish up a portion that easily equals the sugar contained in a candy bar.

Watch out for these 2 sneaky diet busters!

2. Think of toppings like candy. Piling candy on anything loads on the calories. And yes, those sprinkles, chocolate shavings, gummy bears, and marshmallows count as candy. If you want to top off your frozen treat, opt for fruit and nut selections (in moderation).

3. Don't bank on probiotics. Whatever its faults, frozen yogurt is redeemed by a healthy dose of probiotics, right? Not so fast, says Heller. The freezing process affects the amount of probiotics in the finished product. Yogurt found in grocery stores must contain a minimum of 100 million probiotic bacteria per gram to use the term "live active cultures" on labels. But frozen yogurt must contain only 10 million bacteria per gram. If you really want a probiotic boost, take probiotic supplements, which boast more than a billion bacteria per gram.

Which probiotic supplement is your best bet?

Joy Johnston is a senior web producer at Sharecare.

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