3 excellent reasons to eat ice cream - Dr. Oz approved!

When there's a food we all "scream" for, you know it's got to be delicious. But oftentimes, great flavor doesn't equal great for you. Ice cream is one of those indulgences we've put into the category of "bad for us" even though we could eat it by the pint if left alone with our boyfriends "Ben" and "Jerry."

But before you throw in the butter pecan-stained towel, hang onto your spoon because there are some excellent reasons to enjoy a serving of ice cream regularly, and not just because it's so darn cold and creamy.

Here are 3 benefits to eating ice cream that will surprise even the person for whom 31 Baskin Robbins' flavors aren't even enough. You'll look at your favorite dessert in a whole new light (and not the one you see every time you open the freezer with temptation).

1. Helps With Weight Loss… Really

When one hears the words "ice cream," weight loss isn't the next obvious thought. But it's true, to a degree, that eating a modest portion of full-fat ice cream a few times a week can aid in weight loss.

As per Dr. Oz, "A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that women who ate at least one daily serving of full-fat dairy products, such as ice cream, gained less weight than those who didn't." He adds that slow-churned is healthiest (and sounds the yummiest).

By allowing ourselves to relish in the enjoyment of the rich "mouth feel," the satisfaction and satiation from the fat, and by savoring every spoonful, we feel less deprived and tame our craving. Eating the non-fat, chemical-filled garbage that tries to pass itself off as anything but a let-down is no match to the real deal. So enjoy a genuine bowl of ice cream when you want some. Just because something's marked "lite," it won't necessarily make you any lighter.

2. Boosts Libido

As if a hot fudge sundae weren't seductive enough, who knew that eating it could enhance our sex drive? If TV's Dr. Oz says it can, who's to question it? As per our now favorite doctor, "It (ice cream) has fairly high levels of calcium and phosphorus, both of which help build your muscles' energy reserves and boost your libido."

So go on and split a banana split with your partner and burn off the calories with an extra helping of "dessert"… a roll in the hay. Oz adds that women may want to go for vanilla ice cream as their aphrodisiac of choice, as men were found to have an increase in arousal when they whiffed a vanilla scent during a study by Chicago's Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation.

Sexy, sweet, and satisfying (in more ways than one). No wonder the ice cream truck driver is so popular!

3. Chock Full of Vitamins

Ice cream is no empty calorie sugar bomb void of any nutritional value. It's actually full of important vitamins our bodies need to be healthy. According to Stanpac, "Ice cream happens to be a huge source of vitamins A, B-6, B-12, C, D, E, and K." That's like a one-a-day in an ice cream cone!

Stanpac also notes, "Ice cream also contains riboflavin, thiamine, niacin, calcium, and phosphorous." When it comes to nutrition jam-packed into a delicious frozen confection, it seems almost ridiculous to pass up the stuff. Maybe the saying ought to go, "A scoop of ice cream a day keeps the doctor away!"

Not that you really needed an excuse, but go ahead and enjoy a nice bowl of chocolate chip cookie dough or mocha almond fudge. You've got 3 more great reasons to do so!

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