Frozen Yogurt Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

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Max Falkowitz

A staple on date nights, family outings, and after-dinner treats, you can find frozen yogurt in specialty shops across the country and in almost every grocery store. It's available in standard flavors (chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla) and more creative ones, offering something for everyone.

The nutrition in frozen yogurt is widely variable from one brand or product to the next. Though this sweet treat is often touted as being healthier than ice cream, this isn't necessarily the case. Instead, it's more about choosing the one you enjoy most as, in moderation, both can fit into a healthy diet.

Frozen Yogurt Nutrition Facts

This nutrition information is for one cup (174 grams) of frozen yogurt in flavors other than chocolate, which is higher in calories, and is provided by the USDA.

  • Calories: 221
  • Fat: 6.3g
  • Sodium: 110mg
  • Carbohydrates: 37.6g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugars: 34.6g
  • Protein: 5.2g

Carbs

Frozen yogurt contains a high amount of carbs, the majority of which come from sugar. You can find low or no-sugar frozen yogurt brands on the market, but most contain higher amounts of fat to help overcome the lower level of sweetness created by the lack of sugar. Some also contain sugar-free substitutes, which can cause gastrointestinal issues.

Frozen yogurt is considered a low glycemic food on the glycemic index, though it is still recommended as a "sometimes food," or a food that should only be eaten occasionally.

Fats

Most of the fat in frozen yogurt comes from the milk it is made with, which could be either liquid milk or powdered milk, depending on the brand. To reduce the fat content of frozen yogurt, look for “non-fat milk” on the ingredients list.

Protein

Because frozen yogurt contains dairy, it does provide a small amount of protein. The milk supplies whey and casein, both of which are considered high-quality proteins containing essential amino acids.

Vitamins and Minerals

Micronutrients found in frozen yogurt include calcium (174 mg), potassium (271 mg), vitamin C (1.2 mg), and magnesium (17.4 mg). It also contains trace amounts of iron, zinc, copper, fluoride, selenium, and a variety of B vitamins.

Calories

The amount of calories in frozen yogurt varies by brand but is typically around 200 to 250 calories per cup. This includes brands labeled as low fat and no-sugar-added.

Keep in mind that just because a food has more or less of a certain macro or micronutrient, that doesn't need to determine whether we eat it or even how much of it we eat. It is our overall dietary choices that make the most impact.

Health Benefits

The nutritious ingredients found in frozen yogurt contribute to its health profile. Here is a closer look at some of the health benefits you may get from eating frozen yogurt.

May Include Probiotics

When it comes to probiotics, yogurt is often a staple that people look to provide what they need. Case in point: it accounts for the largest share of probiotic sales. 

According to a review published in the journal ISRN Nutrition, probiotics can provide the following health benefits:

May Be Easier to Digest

If you experience gastrointestinal issues when consuming ice cream, frozen yogurt might serve as a less painful substitute. According to the Journal of Dairy Science, frozen yogurt contains no more than 10% milkfat and a minimum acidity of 0.3% lactic acid.

Comparatively, in ice cream, the milk fat content is at least 10% to 16%, while the lactic acid percentage can hit as high as 1%.

May Improve Bone Health

The calcium found in yogurt can help muscles and cells work properly. As the body ages, hormonal signals take calcium out of the bones daily in an effort to regulate blood calcium levels. Consuming calcium products helps keep your bones strong, especially as you grow older.  

May Protect Against Depression

In a study of 105 females between the ages of 41 and 57, researchers found that those consuming the least amount of calcium had higher self-rated depression scores. One cup of frozen yogurt provides 174 mg of calcium or almost 20% of the recommended daily intake.

May Help Prevent Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis is a disease in which bones weaken, making them more prone to fractures and breaks. This health condition is a serious issue in the country, affecting more than 10 million adults over the age of 50—most of whom are women.

Following a diet that includes calcium may help prevent or stave off an osteoporosis diagnosis for as long as possible. Frozen yogurt also contains a small amount of vitamin D, a nutrient that aids in calcium absorption.

Allergies

Because frozen yogurt is made with milk, it is not suitable for someone with a milk allergy. There are non-dairy frozen yogurts available but be sure to read the label, especially if you have other food allergies (like soy, peanuts, or tree nuts) because these ingredients could be present as well.

If you suspect that you may have an allergy to milk, talk to a healthcare provider about your symptoms. Signs of an allergic reaction include rash, hives, swollen lips or tongue, difficulty breathing, and more. A healthcare provider can help determine if you have a true food allergy or food intolerance.

Adverse Effects

Those who are lactose intolerant (unable to fully digest sugar or lactose in dairy products) might be able to eat frozen yogurt in small quantities without experiencing bloating, pain in the stomach, and diarrhea. Try a small amount at first to see how your body responds.

Although most frozen yogurt brands contain less dairy than ice cream, you may still experience serious gastrointestinal issues after consumption. If your reaction is severe, speak with a healthcare professional to learn more and to create a diet that reduces your gastrointestinal distress.

Varieties

When shopping for frozen yogurt—whether in a grocery store or at a specialty market—you can choose from dozens of varieties. This includes no-sugar, fat-free, low-sugar, and non-dairy options. Flavors range from one fruit (such as strawberry) to a variety of inventive, colorful options.

Selecting a fruit flavor will at least get you some extra vitamins and minerals, making your dessert a little more nutritious than candy-based choices. And if you visit a frozen yogurt shop in which you add your own toppings, piling on fresh fruit and nuts is a great way to add nutrients. 

Storage and Food Safety

You can store frozen yogurt in the freezer in a number of ways. You can place it in an air-tight container, for instance, or scoop the product into a plastic bag that is tightly shut. You can also put frozen yogurt in an ice-cube tray for smaller serving sizes.

The yogurt can stay in the freezer for up to 2 months. Do not leave it out of the freezer for more than 2 hours or you risk bacteria growth and potential food poisoning. Bacteria grow best at temperatures between 40 °F and 140 °F and make you extremely sick.

 

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13 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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