KLERIFYING FACT: George Washington is rumored to have spent $700 ($2,700 in today's dollars) on ice cream during one hot New York summer!
The ice cream that George Washington voraciously consumed was full of simple ingredients. Klerify has a rule of thumb: if it’s prepackaged, processed, and loaded with ingredients you don’t recognize, you can probably do better. That’s even true when you’re talking yummy treats to cool a hot summer day.
Water and sugar, plus corn and pollution
Know what’s in most popsicles (whether the Popsicle® brand or just about any other)? Water. Then corn syrup. Then high fructose corn syrup and then some actual sugar. Then a bunch of artificial flavors. That kind of straight-up-sugar-with-zero-nutrients is the worst kind of sweetener for your body and for the environment. You already know sugar is bad for your health. But did you know that industrial corn to make the corn syrup is a leading cause of habitat loss, greenhouse gas emissions, water pollution, and use of toxic chemicals? So let’s just not.
Thinking about a Nestle Drumstick, instead? Think again.
They're loaded with unethically sourced ingredients that are bad for you, like sugar, palm oil, soy oil, and high fructose corn syrup. Nestle doesn’t even participate in the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil. So, their Drumstick is not only unhealthy for you, but also for the planet. They’re beating the drum of bad health and bad planetary behavior.
Fruit juice and a freezer
It couldn’t be easier to create a healthy alternative. Just buy any brand of 100% juice (with no added sugars). Ideally, you’d buy Organic and Fair Trade so the Earth is happy, too. Then find a container, pour in the juice, and freeze. (Add gin. We don’t judge.) You can buy re-usable popsicle molds for the kiddos. For bigger kids or adults, try freezable/microwaveable coffee mugs; to thaw to edible consistency, microwave your frozen treats for 20-30 seconds and then dig in with a spoon.
Yogurt, frozen fruit, honey, and a freezer
Want something creamier? Google and Pinterest can find you a million frozen yogurt recipes. Most simply involve throwing plain yogurt, frozen fruit, and a smidge of honey (which stops ice crystals from forming) into a blender and then freezing. They're fun to make and you can be a responsible shopper!
Be smart when you buy your yogurt because milk production (the main ingredient in yogurt) can be hard on the environment. Industrial-scale dairy farms (with thousands and thousands of cows) have a big problem with manure run-off polluting local waterways. All that cow poop in one place, typically means lots of pollution. Some producers give their cows a lot of antibiotics, growth hormones, and other unpleasant things. They’re not healthy for the cows and it’s not healthy for you.
Gross cow manure from a big dairy farm!
Feeding all those cows requires a lot of grain and grass from big farms, which don’t always farm in an ecologically responsible manner. Those big farms mean reduced habitat for wildlife, lots of chemical fertilizers and pesticides which leads to dirty water and air for us.
Great brands like Stonyfield and Organic Valley source milk from farms that are good stewards of the environment and create a lot of great jobs. These organic farms do not use nasty pesticides and let their cow outside to roam on real grass fields!
Healthy, fun loving organic dairy cows!
Klerify Shopping Guide for Frozen Treats:
If you can buy locally produced, Fair Trade, and Organic juice, yogurt, and honey, that’s icing on your fro-yo cake.
Yogurt for do it yourself treats:
Green yogurt brands: Stonyfield (https://www.stonyfield.com), Wallaby Organic (https://wallabyyogurt.com)
Yellow yogurt brands: Dannon (http://www.dannon.com)
Red yogurt brands: Chobani <https://www.chobani.com/>, Yoplait <https://www.yoplait.com>
Bob Nichols / Photo courtesy of USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Dairy manure
By Lynn Betts, photographer [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons