14 Of The Unhealthiest Store-Bought Frozen Yogurts

bowl of pistachio ice cream
bowl of pistachio ice cream - New Africa/Shutterstock

There's a lot to love about FroYo. Frozen yogurt is commonly seen as the healthy alternative to ice cream, a rich, creamy frozen dessert that's big in flavor while also delivering some all-important calcium, protein, and beneficial gut bacteria. However, aside from the fact that the frozen yogurt you're eating may not really be yogurt, it may also not be as healthy as you think. Like ice cream and other frozen desserts, frozen yogurt can get its flavor and texture from a host of additional ingredients, including added sugar, various stabilizers or thickeners, and sodium.

The added sugar levels in some frozen yogurt products can be pretty extraordinary, and contribute to some fairly worrying outcomes. It's recommended that men consume no more than 36 grams of added sugar daily, with 25 grams recommended for women. Some frozen yogurt products can deliver almost this entire recommended intake in a single serving. Other frozen yogurts also have a shockingly high level of saturated fat, presenting further concerns for your health. In this article, we looked, first and foremost, at the added sugar content of frozen yogurt products. We also took saturated fat and sodium levels, as well as additional ingredients, into account when choosing our unhealthiest options.

Read more: 10 Frozen Foods You Should Always Buy At Aldi

Kemps Moose Tracks Caramel Brownie Frozen Yogurt

kemps caramel brownie frozen yogurt
kemps caramel brownie frozen yogurt - Kemps

If Kemps Moose Tracks Caramel Brownie didn't have "frozen yogurt" displayed so prominently on its packaging, you'd likely never know it wasn't ice cream. The product has the look of a premium ice cream product, down to its generous chunks of chocolate brownie and fudge pieces. Unfortunately, though, these little pops of candy running throughout the Kemps product also spike its added sugar content through the roof. In its 86 gram serving size, this frozen yogurt has 20 grams of added sugar, making a significant portion of your daily value.

Kemps Moose Tracks Caramel Brownie also has some other nutritional aspects that we don't love. Its saturated fat content is higher than many other frozen yogurts on the market, with 3.5 grams per serving, covering almost a fifth of your daily value. Plus, this FroYo is on the salty side, packing 180 milligrams into every few scoops. High salt levels are distressingly common in sweet foods, where they can create a salty-sweet contrast that makes things taste more intense and delicious. When a dessert carries 8% of your daily value for sodium, though, it's worth thinking about whether you should switch to something else.

Kroger Deluxe Caramel Praline Low Fat Frozen Yogurt

kroger deluxe frozen yogurt
kroger deluxe frozen yogurt - Kroger

These days, frozen yogurt comes in many shapes, sizes, and flavors, with its flavors often rivaling the highest quality ice cream. So when Kroger promises a Caramel Praline Low Fat Frozen Yogurt in its Deluxe range, it's easy to view it as a great choice and a healthy alternative. With 22 grams of added sugar per serving, though, this frozen treat is far from healthy, despite being low in fat. In fact, the product has more added sugar than equivalent Kroger products: The retailer's Churned Caramel Delight Light ice cream has slightly more fat than the frozen yogurt, but less total sugar, containing 19 grams per serving.

It goes to show, then, that just because something's marketed as "low fat," doesn't mean it's healthy. All of this added sugar can create a huge impact: A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine examined the relationship between added sugar consumption and mortality risk, and found that folks who consumed higher levels of added sugar had a greater chance of death from cardiovascular disease. The study also pointed out that most US adults eat more added sugar than they should.

Noosa Chocolate Fudge Frozen Yogurt Gelato

noosa chocolate fudge frozen yogurt
noosa chocolate fudge frozen yogurt - Noosa

Noosa has made quite a name for itself in the yogurt world, with the Australian-born company having a big impact with its funky branding and delicious flavors. It's little wonder that it diversified to making frozen yogurt eventually — but whatever you do, don't expect its products to be healthy. Noosa's Chocolate Fudge Frozen Yogurt is one of the unhealthiest FroYo's we've ever seen, containing a whopping 27 grams of added sugar per serving. It may be delicious, but it'll cover more than the entire allowance for women, as recommended by the AHA, in one go.

As for this frozen yogurt's creaminess, it's provided by an extraordinary amount of saturated fat. Each serving has a whopping 9 grams of saturated fat in it, almost half of your daily value. Now, it's important to note that Noosa's serving size is significantly larger than other products, but it's also worth recognizing that if a package recommends we eat the whole thing in one go, we're probably going to, right? The exact role of saturated fats in health is disputed, with a study published by the journal Nutrition Reviews suggesting we may need to reassess our opinions about it. Until we know more for sure, though, it's probably best to keep your intake low where possible.

Simple Truth Sea Salt Caramel Frozen Greek Yogurt Bars

simple truth yogurt bars
simple truth yogurt bars - Kroger

Simple Truth? Simply sugary, more like. Okay, that's not the best wordplay in the world, but you'll see what we mean when we break down the nutritional content of the brand's Sea Salt Caramel Frozen Greek Yogurt Bars. The Kroger-owned product line focuses on offering items that are free from a host of artificial ingredients, flavors, and preservatives, but the retailer still manages to pack 12 grams of added sugar into each of these dessert bars. While this covers 24% of your daily value according to the nutritional label, if you follow the recommendations for added sugar limits, it's way more than that.

It's also worth noting that the serving size for these frozen Greek yogurt bars is just 66 grams, making almost a fifth of the product pure added sugar. All that sugar will do your teeth no favors. When you consume sugar, it reacts with the bacteria in your mouth, causing it to eat away at your tooth enamel, contributing to decay. Remember, it's not just added sugar that does this — natural sugars can too, and with this product containing 17 grams of sugar overall, your mouth isn't going to thank you.

Favorite Day Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Frozen Yogurt

favorite day frozen yogurt
favorite day frozen yogurt - Target

Offering your favorite cookie dough ice cream in frozen yogurt form is a smart move on behalf of food manufacturers, with some folks likely assuming that they're getting a healthier choice by buying it. In the case of Favorite Day Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Frozen Yogurt, though, it may not be as healthy as you think. The Target-produced dessert is chock-full of added sugar, with 18 grams of added sugar per ⅔-cup serving. It also has a fair amount of saturated fat, packing in 3 grams for every few scoops.

Somewhat incredibly, this frozen yogurt has more added sugar than its ice cream counterpart: Favorite Day Cookie Dough Ice Cream has 16 grams of added sugar which, while not much less, is definitely more palatable. When you consume high levels of added sugar, it passes through your liver and converts into fat. This fat build-up, though, can then have a subsequent effect on your blood pressure and risk of heart health, as well as your potential to develop type 2 diabetes, per Harvard Health Publishing.

Blue Bunny Vanilla Bean Frozen Yogurt

blue bunny vanilla bean frozen yogurt
blue bunny vanilla bean frozen yogurt - Blue Bunny

Blue Bunny is a major name in the frozen dessert market, and the company has made its name by producing an almost-endless amount of ice creams. It's also added frozen yogurt to its output, but we've gotta be honest with you here: Its options aren't that healthy. Blue Bunny's Vanilla Bean Frozen Yogurt, for instance, is still high in added sugar and contains 14 grams of added sugar per serving. It also has a fairly high total sugar content, packing 21 grams into its ⅔-cup serving size.

As a processed dessert, it's hardly surprising that this frozen yogurt is full of sugar, but the amount is still pretty shocking. It's useful to remember that sugar isn't just added for flavor. It shows up in processed foods to help its texture, improve its shelf life, and crucially, to help foods freeze better. Unfortunately, though, with all of those culinary benefits come an impact on your nutritional intake and your potential health, so it's important to keep an eye on your intake.

Yasso Sea Salt Caramel Greek Yogurt Bars

yasso greek yogurt bars
yasso greek yogurt bars - Yasso

There are a few differences between Greek yogurt and regular yogurt, with the former generally having a higher protein and lower carb content. However, these nutritional goodies aren't that useful when Greek yogurt is used to make products like the Yasso Sea Salt Caramel Greek Yogurt Bars. Each of these bars is fairly high in added sugar, and contain 12 grams per 65-gram serving. They also have a small, but noticeable sodium content, packing in 115 milligrams per bar — not a huge amount, but enough to mention for a sweet product.

There are a few extra grams of sugars inside each bar, too, bringing its full total up to 16 grams. Interestingly, on FDA Nutrition Facts labels, total sugars don't have a daily value percentage, as there's no recommendation for how many you can consume. It stands to reason, though, that you should try to keep an eye on how much sugar you're eating, whether natural or added. Although added sugar is generally seen to be unhealthier, having too much of anything may affect the equilibrium of your diet.

Friendly's Vienna Mocha Swirl Frozen Yogurt

friendly's vienna mocha swirl frozen yogurt
friendly's vienna mocha swirl frozen yogurt - Friendly's

One of the best things about frozen yogurt is how versatile its flavor can be. This is proved by Friendly's Vienna Mocha Swirl Frozen Yogurt, which combines coffee, fudge, and chocolate flavors in every bite. Sadly, though, all of that flavor comes at a cost to your added sugar intake, and this FroYo has a lot of it. With 17 grams of added sugar per serving, each ⅔-cup will knock out over a third of your daily value.

Importantly, this frozen yogurt is also one of the fattiest on the market. Each serving has 4.5 grams of saturated fat, providing 23% of your recommended daily value. It's really the sugar content we're most concerned with here, however. Because dietary sugars are processed through the liver, the organ can be put under significant strain when you eat too much of them. Over time, this can lead to the development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, per a study published in Hepatology Communications. The impact of this disease can be pretty severe, and lead to a host of associated illnesses and conditions, making controlling your added sugar intake very important.

Ben & Jerry's Half Baked FroYo

ben & jerry's half baked froyo
ben & jerry's half baked froyo - Ben & Jerry's

The undisputed champions of the store-bought ice cream market, it's no wonder that Ben & Jerry's also wants to corner sales on frozen yogurt. Its knack for putting out FroYo versions of its ice cream favorites has helped this, and helped to create an illusion of a healthier product with the same flavors. If you're buying its Half Baked FroYo, however, don't expect it to be much healthier. While this product might have less added sugar than the ice cream version, it still has 24 grams per serving, with 30 grams of total sugars, and 2 grams of saturated fat.

While the added sugar content is, of course, pretty concerning, don't forget about the notable amount of saturated fat in it too. Debates continue to rage about the true role of saturated fats in the diet, but the fact remains that consuming it has been associated with a higher level of LDL, or "bad" cholesterol. This cholesterol can affect your cardiovascular system pretty significantly, and contribute to a higher risk of heart disease, per the AHA. Although 2 grams may not seem like that much, saturated fats can add up quickly, so make sure to prioritize low saturated fat foods where possible.

365 By Whole Foods Market Mango Greek Yogurt Low Fat Dessert Bars

365 whole foods yogurt bars
365 whole foods yogurt bars - Whole Foods Market

Frozen yogurt dessert bars are all the rage, and 365 by Whole Foods Market has definitely caught onto the zeitgeist. Its Mango Greek Yogurt Low Fat Dessert Bars certainly seem like they're healthy, with the word "organic" loudly displayed on the box and the packaging promising just 80 calories per bar. If you look at the nutrition facts label, though, you'll see that things aren't totally smooth sailing. Each bar comes with 9 grams of added sugar in a 60-gram serving size, which covers almost 20% of your daily value, and more than that if you follow the AHA guidelines.

It would be unfair of us not to point out that this amount is lower than a lot of other frozen yogurt dessert bars out there. That doesn't necessarily make this a healthy choice, though. Instead, it might be worth looking for dessert bars that are even lower in sugar. Clio's Zero Sugar Mixed Berry Greek Yogurt Bars can be a great choice here. Sweetened with erythritol, each bar has 7 grams of protein and is totally keto-friendly, even with a generous coating of chocolate on the outside. Sign us up!

Noosa Out Of This Swirl Lemon Bar Frozen Yogurt Gelato

noosa lemon bar yogurt gelato
noosa lemon bar yogurt gelato - Noosa

Noosa's products don't exactly hold back when it comes to sugar and saturated fat. This is clearly seen in its Out Of This Swirl Lemon Bar Yogurt Gelato, a frozen yogurt product that contains 27 grams of added sugar and 8 grams of saturated fat per serving to create its lemon bar flavor. While we can appreciate that these nutritional aspects are partly what makes this product so delicious, when you're dealing with quantities that cover most of your daily value in a small amount, you have to wonder whether you can get those same flavors elsewhere.

High-fat foods are well known for being hyperpalatable (that's scientific speak for "really tasty"), but this hyperpalatability can create problems. Foods, like other substances, can be addictive, and fat's richness and tastiness can contribute to this, according to research published in the journal Nutrients. Developing dependence or addiction for high-fat foods can then create further problems and negative health outcomes.

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Kemps Peachy Keen Frozen Yogurt

kemps peachy keen frozen yogurt
kemps peachy keen frozen yogurt - Kemps

Peach flavors go exceptionally well with yogurt, so it was only a matter of time before a food manufacturer made a frozen yogurt with its fruity notes. If you're expecting the nutritional benefits of peach in Kemps Peachy Keen Frozen Yogurt, though, you might be left downhearted. This frozen yogurt is packed with added sugar, and provides 22 grams per serving, stirred into the product in the form of liquid sugar and corn syrup, as well as being a component in its peach swirl. Each ⅔-cup serving also has 2 grams of saturated fat — a small, but noteworthy amount.

We spend so much time thinking about what sugar does to our bodies, that we often forget to consider what it does to our brains. Importantly, that effect can be profound. Our brains need glucose to function properly, and it plays an important role in memory and focus. Interestingly, though, having too much glucose can be just as impactful on memory as having too little. A study published in The Journals of Gerontology found that when older adults ate more sugar, they had more trouble remembering things.

Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia FroYo

ben & jerry's cherry garcia froyo
ben & jerry's cherry garcia froyo - Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's do a great job of offering something for everyone, with products catering for ice cream and frozen yogurt lovers alike. So when it started offering its famous Cherry Garcia flavor as a frozen yogurt, we were right on board — until we saw its added sugar content. Each portion of Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia FroYo has a whopping 22 grams of added sugar per serving, enough to cover a huge amount of your daily value in a single ⅔-cup portion. It also has 3 grams of saturated fat per serving, accounting for 15% of your daily value, and not a lot else going for it nutritionally (although we do like the 6 grams of protein in every portion).

It's probably not surprising that a frozen dessert is high in added sugar, but it doesn't always need to be this way. Halo Top's Strawberry Ice Cream, for example, has the same serving size as this Ben & Jerry's product, and has a grand total of 4 grams of added sugar, which is less than a fifth of the Cherry Garcia amount. It also has just 1 gram of saturated fat. While it may not be a straight swap, flavor-wise, for Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia, it goes to show that there are options out there if you wish to keep your added sugar and saturated fat content down.

Favorite Day Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

favorite day vanilla frozen yogurt
favorite day vanilla frozen yogurt - Target

How unhealthy can vanilla FroYo be? As it turns out, pretty unhealthy. Favorite Day's Vanilla Frozen Yogurt is a strong example of a product that's way unhealthier than it looks, with each serving containing 15 grams of added sugar — roughly 30% of your FDA-approved daily value. Aside from this, it has 2.5 grams of saturated fat, covering 13% of your allowance.

We're also slightly unsettled by the presence of carrageenan on its ingredients list. This additive shows up pretty much everywhere, and is particularly common in smooth, scoopable products due to its ability to thicken and emulsify. However, ongoing research has found carrageenan can have an inflammatory effect on the gut, and may contribute to bloating or symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, per Healthline. It's worth remembering that carrageenan doesn't have any nutritional benefit, and nor do foods necessarily need it — and there are a host of additives out there that are used instead of carrageenan, that don't have the same controversial reputation. If we were you, we'd give this product a miss.

Read the original article on The Daily Meal