Sunday, November 23, 2014

Arctic Zero - My Review

In the 4 1/2 years I have spent losing nearly 400 pounds and keeping it off through diet and exercise (no pills, no surgery, no diets,) there are many foods I have stopped eating.  One of those is ice cream.  Oh sure, I could eat ice cream.  Measure the calories and put it in my food journal and so forth.  But what good is 1 serving of ice cream? 1/2 cup? Who eats that? I would just want more and more.  So I gave up and just figured I would never have ice cream again.

My friends, I have discovered the best thing since ice cream.  It is a product called Arctic Zero and if you haven't tried it, you are cheating yourself.  This is the answer to the prayers of those watching their calories everywhere.  The best part?  Go the whole pint! It is only 150 calories for the whole thing.  That's right...only 150 calories.  Really hungry? Eat 2 pints.  My record in one day is 4 pints.  That's right, I have eaten an entire 1/2 gallon of Arctic Zero in a day.

Other benefits of Arctic Zero:

  • Fat Free
  • Lactose Intolerant Friendly
  • Gluten Free
  • Natural flavors do not contain MSG or HVP
  • Low glycemic
  • Sweetened with organic cane sugar and monk fruit
  • 8g of fiber per pint! 
  • Low in calories (150 calories per pint)
  • High in protein (12 grams per pint)
  • GMO free
  • Kosher

There are 10 flavors of Arctic Zero and I have tried them all.  First, before you run out and buy Arctic Zero, you need to know a few things about it.  It is very important to set your expectations about what it is and what it is not.

  • Arctic Zero is not ice creamArctic Zero is only 150 calories per pint, which is about a third of the calories of sugar-free, fat-free frozen yogurt.  Arctic Zero tastes more like a frozen protein shake, or ice milk.  Don't go into this expecting Ben and Jerry's or Haagen Dazs.  Nor should's only 150 FREAKING CALORIES!
  • You can not eat it right out of the freezer.  The name of the game with Arctic Zero is texture, texture, texture.  For it to be right, it needs to sit and soften at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes (depending on how hard it was frozen and the temperature of the room.)  What I do when I buy Arctic Zero at Whole Foods is microwave it for 30 seconds.  This produces the same effect.  It's all about the texture and you want your Arctic Zero to be as creamy as possible. 
Also, when shopping for Arctic Zero, keep in mind these tips for best results:
  • Check the freshness date.  You want the "Enjoy By" date on your Arctic Zero to be more than a year away.  If it isn't, put that Arctic Zero back.  It's too old. 
  • Check for evidence of "temperature abuse."  If the Arctic Zero has been thawed and re-frozen, it is going to not be very good. Squeeze the you hear a crunching sound?  If so, there is ice inside and you don't want that one.  Is the Arctic Zero covered in ice?  You don't want that either.  And most of all, look under the lip of the lid.  Do you see any melted Arctic Zero seeping out?  If you do, put it back.  It's been temperature abused. 
Now that we have that out of the way, let's get on with the review.  As I said before, there are 10 flavors of Arctic Zero, all available in pints.  (Arctic Zero also makes 85-calorie, chocolate-dipped bars.  Those are not available in my area and are not part of this review.)  By the way, did I mention these pints are 150 calories for THE WHOLE THING?  Just want to get that in there.  My review Arctic Zero arrived the other day, shipped from California to South Carolina packed in dry ice.  The Arctic Zero was frozen hard as a rock when it arrived.

If you are unable to get Arctic Zero where you live, don't have any reservations about ordering it online from either or Amazon.  It will arrive safe and sound.

Here's a rundown of the flavors, along with my review:

Cookies and Cream - This contains neither cookies nor cream, but it is my favorite.  It is the creamiest of them all.  Cookies and cream Arctic Zero has a light cocoa and vanilla flavor.  It is delicious and it is my favorite.  It's also widely available at Walmart. 
Vanilla Maple - This one is really good too.  It almost has a slight butter pecan flavor to it.  It's in my top 5. 
Coconut- Sort of a vanilla ice cream with a light coconut flavor with little bits of coconut in it. 
Sea Salt Caramel - A light caramel flavored Arctic Zero. 
Orange Cream - One of my new favorites.  You know what Orange Cream Arctic Zero tastes like?  An orange Push-Up.  Remember those?  Delicious. 
Mint Chocolate - Another one of my favorites.  It tastes like Thin Mint Girl Scout cookies.  Also available at Walmart and easily found. 
Peanut Butter Chocolate - This one is an acquired taste.  Because Arctic Zero is really pushing the limits of reality with the 150 calorie limit, this has somewhat of a peanut butter taste to it. 
Coffee - I do not like coffee, but right now, this is one of my most favorite Arctic Zero flavors.  This tastes completely out of this world to me.  It's like I am cheating when I am eating this.  Like I'm really eating 1,000 calories instead of 150.  A very creamy Arctic Zero with a light coffee flavor. 
Chocolate - This is also in the top 3.  What does it taste like?  A Wendy's Frosty.  But you have to let the chocolate melt before you eat it.  Get it really soft and creamy. 
Strawberry - The Strawberry is good, but keep in mind the 150 calorie limit.  It is not an intense Strawberry flavor. 

So, to recap, here are my top 5:
1.) Cookies and Cream
2.) Coffee
3.) Chocolate
4.) Vanilla Maple
5.) Orange Cream

I also have my own homemade Arctic Zero flavor: Neapolitan.  That's right, you take the Vanilla Maple, Chocolate and Strawberry and combine them.  How about it, Arctic Zero?  Make a neapolitan flavor! 
Me at Whole Foods assembling my "Neapolitan" Arctic Zero

There are dissenting voices on the Internet questioning whether or not the 150 calorie claim on Arctic Zero is actually honest.  I am here to tell you it is.  How do I know?  Because I track my calories carefully and I have eaten so much Arctic Zero that if it was off by very much, I would have gained weight.  Arctic Zero has also had their product tested at independent laboratories and found the Nutrition Facts label to be correct.  I believe them and you should too.

The bottom line:
In the past 3 months, I have eaten probably 100 pints of Arctic Zero in all the flavors.  It is a delicious, almost sinful frozen dessert.  It has allowed me to eat an ice cream-like product without eating hundreds of calories in fat and sugar.  More people need to know about this product. 

Product: Arctic Zero Frozen Dessert
More information: Arctic Zero Online 
Cost: $4 to $5 a pint
Availability: Walmart, Whole Foods, check their online locator for other stores in your area
Rating: 5 stars out of 5!

Bryan Ganey is the author of Impossible: How I lost nearly 400 pounds without surgery, available in print and e-book from  You can find his blog at  He lives in Charleston, SC.  You can find him on Facebook and Twitter. Watch his videos covering his journey on YouTube

Stop Hating On Bananas

Bananas get a bad rap.
For some reason, it has become popular to criticize the banana as being high in sugar and high in calories. Yes, bananas do have a higher calorie and higher sugar content than some fruits. But let's not lose our minds here. Bananas are delicious and nutritious. I have had people warn me that bananas were going to make me fat. To illustrate how this is pure nonsense, I have made the following graphic to compare the poor banana with common junk food millions of people eat on a daily basis. Enjoy. Feel free to share this with your family and friends!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Training For My Century Ride: Hitting the 72 mile mark

Today I continued to train for my first Century Ride (riding 100 miles on a bicycle.) I was able to achieve 72 miles before I ran out of daylight.

As I was being driven back home after I stopped, It all hit me. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that 5 years ago when I weighed almost 600 pounds that I would one day ride my bicycle 72 miles in a single day.

No matter what anyone tells you, you can do anything you put your mind to.