Whipped cream is a popular dessert topping, and many people occasionally enjoy it on its own. It’s created by beating heavy cream with hair (usually with a mixer or whisk), and it also contains sugar. Because it’s a popular dessert topping and it’s made with sugar, it’s not considered to be the healthiest product out there— but it does, however, offer some nutritional benefits.
Here’s a look at the nutrition information of whipped cream and if it’s possible to increase its nutritional value.
Macronutrients (also called macros) are nutrients that the body needs large amounts of, and these are carbohydrates, protein, and fat, A half cup of heavy whipping cream contains 400 calories, but this isn’t the recommended serving size. However, the same half cup also contains three grams of carbohydrates, three grams of protein, and 43 grams of fat— all of which is saturated or unhealthy fat. So to receive the benefits of macronutrients, you’d have to consume half a cup to get this amount, but you’ll also be consuming 43 grams of saturated fat and 400 calories.
Micronutrients are nutrients needed by the body in small amounts, and these include vitamins and minerals. A half cup of heavy whipping cream contains the following percentages of the recommended daily value:
- Calcium: 7%
- Choline: 4%
- Phosphorus: 7%
- Vitamin A: 35%
- Vitamin D: 10%
- Vitamin E: 8%
- Vitamin K: 3%
Surprisingly, heavy whipping cream contains a lot of vitamins and minerals, but it also contains a lot of fat and some brands may have added sugar. Again, you’d have to consume a large amount to reap these benefits— but you’ll also be consuming more of the healthy parts.
Pros and Cons of Consuming Whipped Cream
For most people, consuming something such as whipped cream in moderation isn’t going to cause any health problems. However, this isn’t true for everyone, and not everyone consumes whipped cream in moderation. Here’s a look at some of the disadvantages and possible advantages of consuming whipped cream.
As mentioned above, whipped cream is high in the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. It’s also high in fat which helps the body better absorb these vitamins. However, because it is saturated fat and not unsaturated fat (the healthy fat), there’s a higher risk of developing certain medical conditions, including:
- Breast cancer in women
- High cholesterol, which leads to heart disease
- Obesity, which leads to various other health issues
- Prostate cancer in men
On the other hand, consuming full-fat dairy products has been linked to better bone health and a decreased risk of developing diabetes. However, because whipped cream can also contain a lot of sugar, the risk of developing diabetes increases again.
Can You Make a Healthy Whipped Cream?
You can try your hand at creating your own healthy whipped cream topping by using reduced-fat heavy cream and a natural sweetener. However, an easier solution would be to add more nutritional value to a traditional recipe for whipped cream. This way, you won’t have to consume a half cup to get all of the advantages (and disadvantages) of whipped cream.
For example, you could make your own whipped cream and flavor it with the juices of fruits high in vitamins A and E (e.g., kiwi, mango, oranges), which are also high in vitamin C, a water-soluble vitamin that isn’t found in whipped cream. Kiwis and mangos also contain some vitamin K, and you can use orange juice fortified with vitamin D. Depending on how much juice you add, you may only increase its nutritional value by a small amount, but it’s better than consuming a large amount of whipped cream to get these nutrients.
Create your own fruity whipped cream and use cream chargers from Exotic Whip to add nutritional value to your desserts. You can even choose to top off fresh fruit with a small portion of whipped cream, as opposed to topping off a sugary dessert with it.
Just keep in mind that moderation is key, and consuming a small amount of whipped cream isn’t harmful to most people. As long as you’re not lactose intolerant or have a dairy allergy, you’re generally safe but you should always check with your doctor to be sure. People with heart problems and/or high cholesterol should consume a lower amount of full-fat dairy products than those who do not have either of these conditions.
You should always strive to make healthy food choices, and sometimes you’re even able to increase the nutritional value of the food you’re consuming.