We talk about yogurt like it’s just one thing, but all it takes is a visit to the cooler parts of the supermarket to see how much variety there really is. When you want to make yogurt part of your diet, you need to know what exactly you’re dealing with. Yogurt can vary quite a bit in terms of nutritional value, not counting what you may or may not add to it when eating.
To put yogurt into a few general groups, you need to understand how it’s made. Adding certain bacteria to milk and various ways of fermenting and straining the mix create yogurt. You can use whole milk or low fat, you can use bacteria that stay active (probiotic) or bacteria that doesn’t, and you can strain it and other steps to make it into Greek yogurt. Also, many flavored yogurts have a lot of added sugar or artificial sweeteners to change the taste. That’s about 5 types of yogurt overall.
When comparing yogurts, the first thing to do is try and rule out any yogurts with a lot of extra sugar in them. There are vitamins and such in these types of yogurt, but they are cancelled out by the damage the added sugar has on your Insulin Efficiency. Artificial sweeteners can also be problematic.
After that, it’s best to have the added fat, protein, and vitamins A and E found in yogurt made with whole milk. You might also get a brand fortified with vitamin D for added benefit. This doesn’t mean yogurt made with low-fat milk is bad, just that it doesn’t have as many of the nutrients.
Not all yogurts are probiotic, but it can be very helpful to your digestive system, which can affect numerous other aspects of your health. By improving the bacteria naturally present in your gut, probiotic yogurt can help with weight control, a boosted immune system and an improved metabolic rate.
When buying probiotics, be sure to look for “active and live cultures” on the label.
Yogurt is a great source of protein as well. All yogurt has protein, but Greek yogurt has the most. This results in better appetite suppression compared to other yogurts. If you’re something of a yogurt lightweight, Greek yogurt can be a bit strong to the palate at first. However, one of the best parts of eating yogurt is putting on your toppings!
Greek yogurt can be used as a substitute for sour cream or served with olive oil, itself a very healthy substance, but you can instead add all kinds of berries, fruit and other healthy foods to complement the flavor.
It’s difficult to stick to a healthy diet if you don’t like the foods you’re eating. While Greek yogurt may be objectively the healthiest of the yogurts, it also depends on what you like. So long as your yogurt isn’t pumped full of extra sugar, all yogurt is healthy. Try out new types and combinations to find out what you like best and add some variety to snacks and meals.
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