A pleasant and nutritious source of protein that many people like is yogurt. Yogurt, which is made from fermented milk, can be eaten as a drink, a flavored frozen dessert, a dip, or a spiced salad dressing. Many lactose-intolerant people can eat yogurt without experiencing bloating, cramps, or loose stools because the microorganisms in yogurt partially break down the sugar.
Yogurt has been utilized for a variety of medical conditions in conventional Indian medicine, from stomach flu recovery to the alleviation of sunburn. It also holds a prominent position in the cuisines of the Mediterranean and the Middle East.
What is yogurt and how is it made?
A common dairy product called yogurt is created when bacteria in milk ferment milk. Yogurt is made using “yogurt cultures,” which are bacteria that ferment lactose, a naturally occurring sugar in milk. Lactic acid is created during this process, which causes milk proteins to curdle and give yogurt its distinct flavor and texture.
You may make yogurt using any kind of milk. Options prepared with skim milk are regarded as fat-free, whilst those made with whole milk are regarded as full fat. Uncolored plain yogurt has a tangy flavor and is a thick, white liquid. However, the majority of commercial brands include extra components like sugar and synthetic tastes.
Here are six natural yogurt health advantages supported by science.
1. Some varieties may benefit digestive health
Some yogurt varieties contain live bacteria, or probiotics, that were either added after pasteurization or included in the starting culture. When ingested, these may improve digestive health.
Pasteurization, a heat treatment that destroys the good bacteria in yogurt, is a common practice. Even some yogurt types that are advertised as having “living, active cultures” frequently experience some probiotic loss as a result of different storage temperatures and other variables. Despite this, reading the label and selecting a probiotic that contains live, active cultures is still your best choice for finding the most effective probiotics.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a prevalent condition that affects the colon, has been demonstrated to have less uncomfortable symptoms when certain probiotics present in yogurt, such as Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus, are consumed.
One comprehensive review examined numerous studies in which individuals with IBS routinely ingested yogurt or fermented milk containing Bifidobacteria. They discovered that 50% of the research on the topic indicated a substantial reduction in the symptoms of IBS-related stomach pain after 2 to 8 weeks. According to a different study, yogurt with Bifidobacteria reduced minor digestive symptoms in women and enhanced health-related quality of life.
Furthermore, probiotics may guard against diarrhea and constipation brought on by antibiotics, according to a number of studies.
2. It may strengthen your immune system
Regular yogurt consumption may boost your immune system and lower your risk of getting disease-causing pathogens, especially if it contains probiotics. Inflammation, which has been associated to a number of medical diseases ranging from viral infections to gut disorders, is known to potentially be reduced by probiotics. According to research, probiotics may occasionally lessen the frequency, intensity, and duration of the common cold.
Additionally, yogurt’s immune-boosting qualities are partly attributable to its magnesium, selenium, and zinc content, which are trace elements well known for their contribution to immune system function.
Yogurts enriched with vitamin D may further strengthen the immune system. The potential of vitamin D to shield against ailments like the flu and the common cold has been investigated.
3. It may benefit heart health
One of the factors contributing to the ongoing debate about yogurt’s healthfulness is its high fat level. With only a minor percentage of monounsaturated fatty acids, it primarily consists of saturated fat. Prior to recent study, it was thought that saturated fat was the main factor in heart disease. However, low-fat and fat-free yogurt variants are still well-liked in the US. It’s crucial to consider where saturated fat comes from or what kinds of fats are replacing it when talking about how healthy it is.
Saturated fats from full-fat dairy products, including yogurt, do not have the same health benefits as those from processed fast food. There isn’t enough concrete data to say that yogurt’s fat is bad for your health. In reality, additional research is required, but it may have some positive effects on heart health. According to several studies, consuming saturated fat from whole milk products raises HDL (good) cholesterol, which may help to prevent heart disease. According to other studies, eating yogurt helps to lower the overall incidence of heart disease.
Dairy products like yogurt can also aid in lowering excessive blood pressure, a significant risk factor for heart disease. Those who have already been given a high blood pressure diagnosis appear to be most affected by the impacts.
4. You could lose weight
Some people may try any method they can think of in an effort to lose weight. Whether it’s religiously working out, keeping an eye on your diet, or typically a combination of these things. Yogurt can aid with weight loss and can also be beneficial for a healthier diet.
Yogurt can help you reach a healthy weight while still serving as a tasty snack. Regular intake of good bacteria, such as the variety found in yogurt, has been shown to have positive benefits on weight management and the GI tract.
5. You’ll have good bone health
Contrary to other things your mother frequently advised, drinking milk would help you develop strong bones. However, she may have forgotten to mention that yogurt may also help you develop strong bones. Yogurt and other dairy products are excellent providers of calcium, which is the primary mineral in bones. Yogurt is good for those with osteoporosis, according to Mango Clinic health consultant Amber O’Brien. Because it includes vital minerals, yogurt aids in maintaining bone health, according to O’Brien. “Dairy products, such as yogurt, help persons with osteoporosis maintain their bone mass.”
6. Your mood might improve
It’s simple to feel depressed occasionally when you consider the epidemic, work stress, and other factors that could depress someone. Working out, getting more sleep, and volunteering are all tried-and-true methods for boosting mood, but one unconventional method that may be the easiest to start is eating yogurt. According to Marham nutritionist Hiba Batool, “Eating yogurt for breakfast boosts mood because yogurt maintains the microbiota, which in turn sends favorable signals to the brain.”
However do you know the other side effects of eating yogurt every day?
1. You might suffer from stomach issues.
Yogurt can be good for your gut, but it can also upset more delicate stomachs. While there are yogurt substitutes for those who are lactose intolerant or allergic to dairy, yogurt should be avoided if one of these conditions applies to you. Yogurt is made by the bacterial fermentation of milk. According to Melanie Keller, a naturopathic physician and specialist in gut health, yogurt may also contribute to a condition known as small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).
The disorder known as small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) can be caused by consuming too many probiotics, according to Keller. Yogurt contains sugar and/or sugar substitutes, which can feed the bacteria and exacerbate the overgrowth.
2. You could be taking in excess sugar
Some companies heavily sweeten their flavored yogurt products. That may enhance the flavor, but it also raises blood sugar levels. Therefore, Glazer strongly advises reading the nutrition information on your yogurt before chowing down.
Dr. Amy Lee, who works as the chief medical officer for more than 30 nutrition clinics, advises consumers to always purchase plain yogurt and add their own fruits to reduce the risk of ingesting hidden sugars.
Yogurt may not be for everyone
Some people need to be cautious with their yogurt intake, as it may cause adverse effects, especially in those with lactose intolerance or a milk allergy.
-Lactose intolerance: When the body lacks lactase, the enzyme required to digest lactose, the sugar present in milk, lactose intolerance develops. Milk products can cause a number of digestive symptoms, including diarrhea and abdominal pain. Yogurt may therefore need to be avoided by persons who are lactose intolerant.
However, some lactose intolerant individuals might be able to handle it. Probiotics may help with its digestion because some lactose is broken down during creation. If you have lactose intolerance, it could take some trial and error to find a yogurt diet that works for you.
-Milk allergy: Casein and whey, two proteins that some people are allergic to, are found in milk products. In these situations, consumption of milk causes reactions ranging from hives and swelling to anaphylaxis, which can be fatal. As a result, if you have a milk allergy, yogurt is best avoided.