Yogurt is one of the healthy foods that offer a plethora of health benefits. For over several millennia, yogurt has been a part of the human diet. Different parts of the world call it by different names.
However, the name “yogurt” has a Turkish origin. It comes from the Turkish word “yog ̆urmak,” which means to thicken, coagulate, or curdle.
The yogurt we know today is essentially fermented milk that is acidified with viable and well-defined bacteria.
Eating yogurt daily offers a variety of health benefits including improved bone strength and promoting digestive health.
In this article, we’ll look more closely at some top yogurt benefits that will help you live healthier.
1. Easier to digest than milk
So here is the good news: for all lactose intolerant people, you can switch to yogurt to enjoy the benefits. As yogurt is made by introducing active bacterial culture into the milk.
According to the research article published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the culturing process in yogurts produces lactase enzymes along with Beta-galactosidase. These enzymes, in turn, facilitate the lactose absorption.
Bacterial culture also transforms the lactose into glucose and galactose to be conveniently absorbed by the body.
2. Contributes to colon health
The colon is in charge of ensuring the smooth passage of bowels. And so the good bacteria in the colon helps to digest the fiber. This, in turn, makes it super easy to release your bowels.
According to the article published in Medical news today, yogurt can prevent colon cancer. But the question is, how?
Well, it turns out that yogurt contains two extremely beneficial bacteria Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus.
Both bacteria ensure good colon health. These bacteria prohibit the conversion of bile into carcinogenic bile acid and thus keeps your colon healthy and functioning.
3. Boosts immunity
Immunity is important because living organisms are vulnerable to agents that cause diseases. The human body is a complex organism. And it means that the protection it needs from diseases is also quite complex.
But complex protection against diseases doesn’t mean sophisticated methods. Adding yogurt in your routine diet significantly enhance the immunity.
A study investigated the immunological effects of yogurt. The researchers found that culturing of yogurt boost the production of white cell in blood crucial for immunity.
4. Aids healing after intestinal infections
If you are suffering from intestinal infection or indigestion, then yogurt could be the savior. The intestinal infections affect the lactase forming cells in the intestine, thus causing temporary lactose intolerance in the patient.
Having yogurt filled with lactase helps the healing process and provide the required lactase for lactose absorption. Moreover, yogurt also protects the beneficial bacteria present in the intestine from the harsh effect of antibiotics.
5. Fights yeast infections
According to the study conducted in 2013 on the vaginal Candidiasis, the researchers were of the view that yogurt could prove beneficial in the prevention of the development of yeast cultures in the vagina.
So if you are suffering from any vaginal yeast infection, then having a yogurt bowl daily could ease the problem. (Pro Tip: Sleeping naked can also help to fight yeast infection)
6. Serves as a rich source of calcium
Calcium helps our bodies to build and sustain strong bones. besides improving bone strength, calcium enables our cells, muscles, and heart to function well.
But here’s something you might not know:
Do you know a bowl of yogurt could deliver much more calcium than an equal amount of milk? Amazed? Well, due to the presence of active bacterial culture in yogurt, calcium absorption increases many folds.
The study conducted in 2015 on children between the ages of 8 to 18, found a significant calcium absorption due to yogurt.
7. Is a great source of protein
The proteins present in the yogurt are known as “pre-digested proteins” as fermentation makes it convenient for the digestive system to digest proteins.
But here’s something else: 8ounces of yogurt contains 10-14gm of proteins as compared to milk, which contains only 8gms of proteins.
This is why the researchers give preference to yogurt over milk for protein intake. Greek yogurts are also excellent substitutes for protein powders. Apart from their gut-friendly probiotic benefits, the content quality proteins have much as 17 grams in about three-quarters of a cup.
8. Can lower cholesterol
Here’s the thing about cholesterol: too much of it is bad.
Our bodies thrive on a healthy amount of cholesterol, which is a waxy substance our blood. We need it to develop healthy cells.
But when the body retains high amounts of cholesterol, it skyrockets the risk of heart disease since fatty deposits begin to develop in the blood vessels.
These deposits clog the blood vessels and make it difficult to have free-flowing blood in our arteries. A study conducted in 2013 linked yogurt consumption to healthy cholesterol and blood pressure level.
Active culture present in yogurt tends to absorb the cholesterol, thus decreasing the cholesterol level in the body. So if you are worried about your fat or increased cholesterol level, then try adding yogurt in your routine diet.
9. Improves bioavailability of other nutrients
One study published in Advances in Nutrition Journal described yogurt as the facilitator of bioavailability of other nutrients. What does this mean?
Nutrients including vitamin B-12, calcium, proteins, peptides, and magnesium become available after the fermentation. Yogurt could be beneficial in assisting the absorption of milk proteins, as well.
10. Is a good “grow food”
Yogurt is the authentic source of calcium, proteins, and minerals in children, as shown by the search results of various studies. The culturing of active bacteria in yogurt improves gut health, digestion, and bioavailability of various nutrients.
So if your child is suffering from any intestinal issue or lactose intolerance, then yogurt could be a great source to replenish the required nutrients and minerals.
The yogurt benefits are beyond the strictures of this article. Yogurt could be your great companion to not only boost growth but also strengthen immunity.
Adding yogurt in your routine could prove beneficial for your overall wellbeing. If you have children, then providing them with a daily intake of yogurt improves their overall growth.
Yogurt is available in the market in a variety of forms; it is now up to you to choose the most suitable one. So next time when you go to the frozen yogurt shop, don’t be shy. Go ahead, and help yourself.