Healthy living is closely related to healthy diet and as one of the nutritious foods, yogurt is supposed to be on your daily diet if you want to do healthy living in all out way. The best thing about yogurt is, you could consume it in anytime you want like during breakfast to accompany your toast, during your lunch with your fruit salad or even at dinner as desert. Yogurt is also considered to be healthy snack you could consume anytime you feel like snacking. Moreover, yogurt is not only a delicious but also packed with nutrients so there are a lot of benefits of yogurt for health.
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What is Yogurt?
Yogurt is kind of food that is produced from the fermentation process of milk using yogurt culture like Lactobacillus. The fermentation process will give yogurt the unique texture and flavor and the Lactobacillus bacteria is making yogurt contains a lot of nutrients that are good for human health. The name of yogurt comes from Turkish language but when it comes to the spelling, some countries are also using yoghurt or yoghourt. If you believe that yogurt is part of modern world and then you’re wrong because even around 5000 BC, people of Mesopotamia has put yogurt as part of diet, some ancient documents from India to Greece also mentioned a certain dairy product similar to yogurt.
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Nutritional Value of Yogurt
|Yogurt (Plain – Skim Milk)|
Serving Size: 1 Cup
|Calories||137 – 7%|
|Protein||14 g – 28%|
|Carbohydrate||18.8 g – 6%|
|Vitamin A||17.2 IU|
|Vitamin C||2.2 mg – 4%|
|Vitamin K||0.5 mcg – 1%|
|Thiamin||0.1 mg – 8%|
|Riboflavin||0.6 mg – 34%|
|Niacin||0.3 mg – 2%|
|Vitamin B6||0.1 mg – 6%|
|Folate||29.4 mcg – 7%|
|Vitamin B12||1.5 mcg – 25%|
|Panthothenic Acid||1.6 mg – 16%|
|Calcium||488 mg – 49%|
|Iron||0.2 mg – 1%|
|Magnesium||46.5 mg – 12%|
|Phosphorus||385 mg – 38%|
|Potassium||625 mg – 18%|
|Sodium||189 mg – 8%|
|Zinc||2.4 mg – 16%|
|Selenium||8.8 mcg – 13%|
|Omega 3 Fatty Acid||2.5 mg|
|Omega 6 Fatty Acid||9.8 mg|
|Cholesterol||4.9 mg – 2%|
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As one of the popular dairy product, surely you are wise enough to keep yogurt in your fridge because yogurt could be a delicious food that you could consume directly or mix it with your favorite recipes. While you’re enjoying the tasty flavor of yogurt, your body is also enjoying all the benefits of yogurt for health like in the list below.
- Promotes Healthy Bones
It is a common knowledge that all foods that are rich of calcium is excellent for healthy bones and yogurt is not the exception. Consuming yogurt could help you maintaining the stock of calcium in your bones to prevent all kinds of bones conditions like bone fracture in senior age. Furthermore, since yogurt is good for bones, it is also good for your teeth.
- Reduces the Risk of Osteoporosis
During senior age when your body is no longer able to absorb calcium, your body will automatically using the stock calcium in your bones and if the stock is not enough conditions like osteoporosis is likely to happen. So, when you’re still young, making sure to have yogurt in your daily diet.
- Excellent Source of Calcium
The best thing about yogurt compared to other dairy products is it is an excellent source of calcium and according to some studies the amount of calcium in yogurt is more than the amount of yogurt in milk with the same serving size.
- Great for Heart
Though there are a lot of discussion about fat content in yogurt could be harmful for heart but some recent studies said otherwise. Since yogurt is great to control cholesterol, it means it is also good for heart. Furthermore, most of dairy product is great to help in regulating blood pressure.
- Reduces the Cholesterol Level
Surprisingly, some studies about yogurt have stated that consuming yogurt fermented from whole milk could promote the production of ‘good’ cholesterol while at the same time controlling the production of ‘bad’ cholesterol. However, one warning, yogurt also contains cholesterol though the amount is not going to harm you.
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- Healthy Food during Pregnancy
If you want to make sure your baby will be born healthy, don’t forget to add yogurt to your daily diet. As rich of calcium and folate, yogurt could assist in optimizing the fetus development from brain up to bone structure. Furthermore, folate in yogurt also able to prevent or reduce the risk of baby born with birth defect.
- Regulates Blood Pressure
As mentioned above in the table, yogurt contains high potassium and vitamin K. The combination of those compounds is great to make sure you don’t have problem with your blood pressure.
- Improves Metabolism
Metabolism is closely related to how your body is absorbing the nutrients from food you’ve consumed. It means you should have healthy digestion. Well, yogurt is just like most of dairy product you know is great for digestion.
- Immunity Booster
Since yogurt contains probiotics, it means yogurt is great to make sure your body is protected from harmful bacteria. In other words, it will provide you one more layer of protection that makes yogurt an excellent immunity booster.
- Reduces the Risk of Depression
One of the benefits of yogurt for health is it could reduce the risk of depression. Though yogurt is not going to cure the depression condition but consuming yogurt in daily basis could really help.
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- Natural Energy Booster
One of the reasons why yogurt is great for breakfast is because it is an excellent energy booster. Contains certain amount of carbohydrate and protein that will provide you energy but not enough to make you lazy because the carbohydrate found in yogurt is not going to slow your metabolism, instead it will improve it.
- Solution to Weight Loss
Actually solution to weight loss is quite easy because what you need to do is consuming food low in calories and high in protein. Yogurt is the perfect solution in this matter. Furthermore, as probiotic, yogurt will make sure all nutrients are optimally absorbed while protein and calcium will help you managing your appetite.
- Reduces the Risk of Obesity
Obesity problem is different with weight gain though the factors that trigger it could be similar. Obesity is condition when your body metabolism is working in very poor condition and to prevent it, you should consume foods that could improve your body metabolism and yogurt is one in the top of the list.
- Aids Digestion
Just like any dairy product like milk or cheese, yogurt is also good for your digestion. As long as you don’t have condition like lactose intolerance, yogurt will help you having better digestion and healthier intestines.
- Acts as Natural Probiotics
Probitoics are very essential in your intestines; they are good bacteria that will fight the bad guys. Probiotics will make sure your digestive system is in its best condition so it could function optimally.
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- Treats IBS or Irritable Bowel Symptoms
Do you know that condition like irritable bowel symptoms if it is not properly taken care could be really fatal? However, to treat IBS is not as difficult as you think, you just need to have healthy digestive system to make sure there is no further effect from IBS. Yogurt is great for digestion so it could treat IBS in the most natural way.
- No More Constipation
Constipation occurs when your bowel movement is really slow because of some factors. Well, as contains probiotics which could promote healthy bowel movement surely yogurt could help you saying good bye to constipation for good.
- Could Combat Diarrhea
Not only condition like constipation, as food contains probiotics, yogurt is also good to combat diarrhea. It is because diarrhea is caused by bacteria infection and probiotics have main function to kill all kinds of bacteria that could cause ‘problem’ in your digestion.
- Easier to Digest than Milk
Believe it or not, though yogurt is fermented from milk but it is easier to digest than milk. That’s why, some people with lactose intolerance could enjoy this dairy product without worrying about their stomach problems.
- Promotes Healthier Intestines
Healthy intestines mean your intestine is free from harmful bacteria and quite rich of probiotic. It works in normal pace without disturbance so all nutrients you got from food will be optimally digest and absorbed.
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Cautions of Yogurt
No matter how delicious yogurt is or how much the benefits of yogurt for health is, still this kind of food is not everyone. Actually, when it comes to reverse effect of yogurt, this kind of food is almost without side effect but only for those with certain condition, consuming yogurt could be harmful for them.
- Those who have lactose intolerance may have problem with their digestion after consuming diary product. Though as mentioned in point number 19 which stated that yogurt is easier to digest than milk and probably okay to be consumed by people with lactose intolerance, still you need to be careful.
- If you have condition like milk allergy, consuming yogurt will give you the same effect as when you consume other dairy product.
- The problem with yogurt you find in supermarket is most of them have been added with refined sugar or artificial fruit flavor, so it is not the yogurt you should worry about but the additional ingredients that are added to yogurt that could be harmful for you.
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It is true that there are a lot of brands out there that are offering yogurt as food product but if you want to enjoy all the benefits of yogurt for health is better to only choose or consume plain and unsweetened varieties.