Italian ice is a frozen treat that is also referred to as shaved ice or flavored ice. Italian ice consists of finely ground ice that is flavored with different tasting flavoring syrups. Although Italian ice is fat-free, it can be high in calories due to the sugar content, so watch portion sizes closely.
A 4 oz. serving of Italian ice contains 100 calories. If you base your diet on the recommended daily intake of 2,000 calories, then 4 oz. of Italian ice comprises 5 percent of your daily calorie intake. This is a small amount compared to some frozen desserts. For instance, an ice cream sandwich contains 240 calories.
Italian ice contains no fat. If you are following a low-fat diet, Italian ice may be a better choice than other frozen desserts, such as ice cream, which contains 7 g of fat per 4 oz. serving. Although fat is calorie dense, with nine calories per gram, it also provides benefits such as aiding in vitamin absorption and helping you feel full, notes Medline Plus. Because fat is involved in satiety, you may find Italian ice to be less filling than other, fattier desserts.
All of the calories in Italian ice come from carbohydrates. Each 4 oz. serving of this frozen treat provides 24 g of carbohydrates, with 23 g of sugar and no fiber. This is 6 g more sugar than a 4 oz. serving of ice cream contains. Italian ice does not contain any fiber, a nutrient that helps you feel full and may aid in reducing your cholesterol level, according to Colorado State University.
Italian ice does not contain any protein, a nutrient required for tissue repair and growth. Ice cream, which is made from dairy, does provide protein, but only a small amount; 3 g per 4 oz. serving. Medline Plus suggests consuming 50 to 65 g of protein each day, as your body cannot store this nutrient.
Vitamins and Minerals
Italian ice is not particularly rich in vitamins and minerals, although the exact nutritional specifications depend on the flavor. For instance, a 4 oz. orange Italian ice provides 100 percent of the daily recommended intake of vitamin C, while a 4 oz. lemon Italian ice provides 20 percent of the daily recommended intake of vitamin C. Neither flavor is a significant source of other vitamins and minerals.
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.