Ice Cream Now Considered Extremely Healthful Food
( Originally Published 1936 )
It is curious and amusing to look at the history of some of our foods today.
The tomato was at first supposed to be poisonous. I can remember when the little wild tomatoes (about the size of a small plum) were pointed out to us children to avoid. If we ate one it would kill us. The truth is these little tomatoes are perfectly delicious. And tomatoes in general are among the most healthful of foods—the juice is as rich as orange juice in vitamin C.
So with ice cream. It was the American dish. The things that foreign doctors, especially English doctors, said about it would make your hair stand on end. It froze the stomach. Congealed the digestive juices. In a well known textbook on medicine, dyspepsia was referred to as the American disease, and the probability was suggested that our gallstones depends on circumstances. Not every case of gallstones liking for ice cream, and especially soda water and ice cream soda, was the prime cause of our bad digestions.
But ice cream has made its way. To show how it is now regarded we may refer to an article by Professor W. H. E. Reid in a medical journal entitled "Ice Cream, America's Most Excellent Health Food."
Ice cream is quite a complete food. It contains the essential foods —protein, fat and carbohydrate—as well as vitamins and minerals.
The protein is in the best form of muscle building. There is sugar and butter fat for energy, and it contains all the food elements of milk, and hence can be classed as a protective food.
Ice cream is especially rich in lime. One-half pint of ice cream contains as much lime as one and a half pounds of bread, four pounds of meat, or three and a half pounds of potatoes. Children, of course, require high amounts of lime in order to produce bone and other tissues.
But best of all its qualities today is praised its digestibility—the very thing it was supposed to lack in the early part of its career.
Dr. McCollum, the well known nutritional expert of Johns Hopkins university, says:
"There are many mothers who testify that their children dislike milk as a beverage, and ask how it is possible for them to introduce a sufficient amount of dairy products into their diet. One of the answers to this question is ice cream. Almost without exception people of all ages like it."