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In modern dairy production, the cream is separated by centrifugal force. The butterfat content in half-and-half is 10.5 to 18%; in light (coffee) cream, 18% to 30%; in medium cream, 25 to about 30%; in light whipping cream, 30 to 36%; and in whipping cream, 36% or more.
Various types of sour cream are produced by culturing cream or milk with lactic-acid bacteria. Rennet or nonfat milk solids may be added to provide body. A variety of sour-cream products are available, but true sour cream must by definition contain at least 18% milk fat by weight. Sour half-and-half, low-fat sour cream, and light sour cream are all made with half-and-half. Fat-free sour cream is made from cultured skim milk. A cholesterol-free sour cream alternative is made with skim milk and vegetable oil.
A single tablespoon of whipped cream is relatively low in saturated fat; the trick is whether any of us can actually limit ourselves to just one tablespoonful. Here are some potential strategies for reducing the intake of saturated fats:
Make whipped cream from part-skim milk or low-fat cream. Chill the milk or cream thoroughly, and use a cold bowl and beaters; serve the whipped cream within an hour. Experiment to find a naturally low-fat product that can be used as a whipped topping.
Try a range of alternatives to whipped cream. Look for unprocessed foods such as fresh yogurt, crème fraîche, and other natural foods that are low in saturated fat and carbohydrates.
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The information presented in the Food Guide is for informational purposes only and was created by a team of US–registered dietitians and food experts. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements, making dietary changes, or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2016.
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If you have dietary restrictions and/or allergies, always read the ingredient list carefully for all products prior to consumption. If the ingredient list is not available on the product, check with the product manufacturer, or do not consume the product.