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Yogurt Facts: Health Benefits of Yogurt

Updated on June 23, 2011

The Benefits of Yogurt

Yogurt is very good for you! It's full of beneficial active cultures that help prevent bad bacteria from taking up residence in your body. The other benefits of yogurt is that it gives your body valuable nutrients such as calcium, protein, and vitamin B2.

Yogurt can boost your health. Here are some facts about yogurt:

Yogurt bacteria can relieve the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. It can also restore the balance of your body's yeast levels, preventing yeast infections. It can help prevent urinary tract infections. Because yogurt is rich in calcium, it can keep your bones strong and prevent osteoporosis.

People who are moderately lactose intolerant can often digest yogurt without a problem. The process of turning milk into yogurt transforms the lactose into lactic acid, which means your body doesn't have to process the sugars in the original milk product.

Even better, yogurt can be eaten in a variety of different ways. You can even make a delicious smoothie with some yogurt and fruits.

Watch That Label!

When you buy yogurt from the grocery store, make sure the label doesn't say "pasteurized." Also, look for "live bacteria" or "live cultures" on the label.

The pasteurizing process kills off the good bacteria, minimizing the health benefits of yogurt.

What Is Yogurt, Anyway?

And Is There Really Bacteria In Yogurt?

Yes, you heard right: Yogurt contains bacteria. But don't worry, it's good bacteria. The live cultures in yogurt inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria.

Yogurt is cream or milk that has has been fermented with live bacteria at a consistently warm temperature. The milk attains a pudding-like consistency, and the lactose is converted to lactic acid. That's what gives yogurt its slightly acidic flavor.

Yogurt is good to keep on hand, but it's a pain to run to the store whenever you need it. Worse still, stores only sell yogurt in either those little cups or in containers that only contain four servings.

A yogurt machine like this one makes it so much easier to keep your fridge stocked. With the Salton Yogurt Maker, you can whip up 1 quart of yogurt. It has a see-through lid that lets you monitor the yogurt's progress.

Review of Dannon Light & Fit Vanilla Yogurt

Recently I tried out Dannon's Light & Fit vanilla yogurt. This particular breed of yogurt has no fat, but it contains an artificial sweetener called Nutrasweet. It has a nice pudding-like consistency, but it also has a funny aftertaste that bothers me. It definitely tastes artificial. Mixing it up with blackberries and other fruits helps disguise this artificial flavor, but I don't really enjoy this yogurt by itself.

Since I've only tried the vanilla Light & Fit, I don't know how the other flavors compare. However, I do know that I prefer to avoid artificial sweeteners.

Yogurt With Berries

Yogurt With Berries
Yogurt With Berries

Greek Yogurt

I have it on good authority that Greek yogurt is superior to the pitiful watery stuff we Americans are used to eating. Apparently Greek yogurt is very thick and creamy. It's made from whole milk, usually from a sheep or a cow. It's supposed to be especially decadent when you mix it with honey.

You notice I can't speak from personal experience. I've been keeping my eyes open for Greek yogurt, but so far the local grocery stores here don't appear to stock it. The bums. When I finally find some, I'll buy it, eat it, and report my findings here.

The History of Yogurt

Where Did Yogurt Come From?

So now we know the science of yogurt, but what about yogurt's history? We're pretty sure yogurt has been around for over 4,500 years, but it's hard to say where yogurt first originated.

Our best guess is that yogurt was discovered by accident. The first batches of yogurt were probably born in bags full of goat's milk while they were being carried around by nomadic people migrating to Europe. Some brave or hungry soul probably tried the dubious substance, thought "Hey, this is pretty good!," and decided to try duplicating the results.

Many cultures around the world developed their own version of yogurt. It's hard to say which cultures discovered it on their own and which cultures adopted it from others.

Yogurt Smoothies to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth

Fruit Smoothies with Yogurt!

If you have a blender, you can make your own fruit smoothies using just a bit of fruit, yogurt, and ice. Sometimes I even skip the ice, other times I thin smoothies with a bit of milk.

Here's a recipe for a basic strawberry smoothie:

1 cup plain yogurt

1 cup strawberries

A handful of ice (I find crushed ice works best)

Blend thoroughly, pour in a glass, and enjoy!

Fee free to experiment with other variations, too. Mix in a chopped banana to mellow the tart sweetness of the strawberries, or spike it up with some blueberries. It's hard to ruin a fruit smoothie.

In fact, some people like slipping in lettuce leaves or other bits of veggies to make "green smoothies." As long as you don't add too much veg, it will still taste like a perfectly good fruit smoothie.

To make fruit smoothies, you need a blender. I personally like the Oster Classic Beehive Blender: It's solid, heavy, classic-looking, and simple to operate. There's only one switch to fool with. No confusing buttons that can get stuck or gummed up.

Have anything to add about yogurt?

Yogurt Fans Unite

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    • Zodiacimmortal profile image

      Kim 4 years ago from Yonkers, NY

      I have no problem with yogurt & usually eat the watery kind esp being HATE fruit at the bottom (no idea why, just never liked plain yogurt & haivng to mix the fruit in) I did for the first time try greek yogurt. It was Ii forget brand but a square packaging that came with a cup of nuts & granola etc. I'm not sure if it was the Pine apple (which do like) or the mix of that & yogurt flavor but I didn't care much for this. I do have 2 more flavors in the fridge one being Blood Orange from Chobani & I guess you coul say Orange Creamcicle by Dannon (light & Fit) also I think the idea of Greek yogurt is it actually satisfies you. Not sure what 'local' groceries you are going to but try A&P Stop & Shop or Pathmark I found mine in Pathmark (it varies by store what you find the greek is usually separate from the other yogurt.)

    • JoanieMRuppel54 profile image

      Joanie Ruppel 5 years ago from Keller, Texas

      One of my favorite breakfasts: Fage Greek yogurt with locally made honey, sprinkled with walnuts that my father-in-law grew and painstakingly took all the nut "meat" out and gave to all us kids. What a guy!

    • profile image

      skat10 5 years ago

      Thanks for sharing. Just had some strawberry yogurt today. :-)

    • profile image

      harrison-smith-1000 5 years ago

      Great Lens.. you just opened my eyes how yogurt helps us a lot. thanks for sharing.airport transfers

    • profile image

      harrison-smith-1000 5 years ago

      @JVandewalker LM: Great Lens.. you just opened my eyes how yogurt helps us a lot. thanks for sharing.[url=]airport transfers[/url]

    • profile image

      digitalready 5 years ago

      Any new updates, specifically with regards to Activia Yogurt Products?

    • Countryluthier profile image

      E L Seaton 6 years ago from Virginia

      OK, I am a berry lover from wayyyyyyyyyy back. This lense definitely got my attention. Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      mynaturalremedies 6 years ago

      is it true that yogurt can cure yeast infection?

    • profile image

      bodykneadsky 6 years ago

      I believe yogurt is one of the best all-around foods you can eat. The protein content, low calories, and lets not forget the benefits of repopulating your natural gut flora.

    • Amoonlighter2011 profile image

      Amoonlighter2011 6 years ago

      thanks for the added info!

    • Gayle Dowell profile image

      Gayle Dowell 6 years ago from Kansas

      I'll need to try the strawberry smoothie recipe. Sounds great!

    • JVandewalker LM profile image

      JVandewalker LM 6 years ago

      I love the yogurt that comes with the pack of clusters that you can mix in. SOO Good! Bertolli coupons

    • profile image

      raymondjohnson 6 years ago

      Great Lens.. you just opened my eyes how yogurt helps us a lot. thanks for sharing.

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    • profile image

      raymondjohnson 6 years ago

      Great Lens.. you just opened my eyes how yogurt helps us a lot. thanks for sharing.

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    • AdeleW profile image

      AdeleW 6 years ago

      Try adding yoghurt to muesli, it is delicious!

    • profile image

      depuylawsuit 7 years ago

      Glad one of my favorite snack gets the attention it deserves. I just love having a banana yogurt everyday.

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    • profile image

      JackiODonnel 7 years ago

      I was never a big yogurt fan until I discovered pink berry, now I am hooked! I like to make it at home, just plain yogurt either frozen or not, a little sugar, and some fresh fruit is absolute bliss. It might sound funny, but yogurt is also really good with some breakfast cereal like fruity pebbles. Great article, now I am hungry!

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    • profile image

      hiprecalllaw 7 years ago

      Starting to like yogurt. Thanks for this lens

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    • profile image

      cellecell 7 years ago

      Wow this is great new. This having nice informationâs on cord blood banking. Thanks for the nice news best complement from cryocell International, Inc.

    • profile image

      exposure 7 years ago

      There are many reasons why yogurt is healthy. It has lots of vitamins and they are light and delicious.



    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 7 years ago

      I used to make it once a week.. I MUST get back into that habit.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago


      Nice information posted about Yogurt. It is an excellent source of protein, calcium, riboflavin and vitamin B 12.

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    • profile image

      JaycFrancis 7 years ago

      I have whole stock of Greek yogurt at home and more often than not you wont find it in store like Stop N' Shop and Walmart. You'll have to go to those small mom and pop stores to get them. I'm from New York and there's this small Greek store in Queens that has the best stuff, my dad always goes there whenever he comes home from work and one day he brought home some Greek yogurt. One bite and I was hooked :)

    • MargoPArrowsmith profile image

      MargoPArrowsmith 7 years ago

      I first had Greek Yogurt in Greece 11 years ago. Oh, my. You can imagine how excited I was when I saw it here in the stores.

      BTW, Food Lion here doesn't have it, but other stores do, and you can always ask them to get it, get up a petition, they pay attention to things like that

      Angel blessed!

    • profile image

      robertpaul123 7 years ago

      I have been reading your article on various genres, but this article that you have written is especially my favorite one. Your article has given me loads of knowledge, I keep reading it daily. In fact I wait to read your articles. I hope you keep writing such good articles.


    • charle lm profile image

      charle lm 7 years ago

      @charle lm: Sorry , the link which I put it don't work , this is the good link Health Benefits , thanks

    • charle lm profile image

      charle lm 7 years ago

      I like yogurt , but i don't have money to a lot LOL, I also wrote a lens about Health Benefits

      and would like you to read it , thanks

    • profile image

      godzela55 7 years ago


    • profile image

      jogreen1968 7 years ago

      I love yoghurt and already have the yoghurt maker, would not be without one.!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      This Squidoo Lens is really Delicious, my favorite is Frozen Yogurt! But I do like yogurt that's not frozen as well, I prefer Strawberry that way!!

    • sheriangell profile image

      sheriangell 7 years ago

      I eat yogurt every day and usually make a smoothie also. My favorite is a banana, pineapple with organic yogurt, yummy!

      Blessed by a Squid Angel today!

    • profile image

      constipation 7 years ago

      wow......!!! I just know there is a yogurt machine. and I think will eat yogurt every day, heheheh....hehhehe, I like this lens, thanks for this info.


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    • profile image

      gamingmouse 7 years ago

      I like yogurt but not everyday eat.

    • howtocurecancer profile image

      howtocurecancer 7 years ago

      I really love yoghurt! I make daily yoghurt with pure raw honey and if I have some slices of furits: peaches, bananas, grapes.

      Thanks for your lens, I didn't know the history...interesting...

    • Paula Atwell profile image

      Paula Atwell 7 years ago from Cleveland, OH

      I eat yogurt every day, but I am not quite ready to make my own. I prefer the Greek style yogurt for flavor and texture. :)

    • lemonsqueezy lm profile image

      lemonsqueezy lm 7 years ago

      My whole family eats yogurt. We buy it by the case at a local warehouse. Yum!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      There's new yogurt flavor i tasted Coconut flavor. taste good!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      There's new yogurt flavor i tasted Coconut flavor. taste good!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      world best fruitjuice monavie

    • profile image

      suz2823 8 years ago

      Cosco has Greek yogurt - it is truly yummy:)

    • profile image

      BuyTopTen 8 years ago

      Yogurt is really healthy and you point out some great reasons here in this lens...Yogurt is also delicious!

    • profile image

      revitawellness 8 years ago

      nice lens and great information.............

    • profile image

      revitawellness 8 years ago

      nice lens and great information.............

    • profile image

      tssfacts 8 years ago

      Great lens. I am featuring on my Ice Cream vs Yogurt lens.

    • GoodBug profile image

      GoodBug 8 years ago

      Interesting lens - from a yogurt lover!

    • profile image

      WellWithU 8 years ago

      Cool lens, great info.

      If your up for it, check out my lens to learn about an online wellness class starting the 13th of this month. And let me know what you think:-)

    • profile image

      BPninja 8 years ago

      great lens, totally use yoghurt all the time... cook with it, use instead of cream, eat it for breakfast... and always make sure it's got the live cultures

    • covenantguy lm profile image

      covenantguy lm 8 years ago


      totally agree! I was advised to have natural yogurt with flax seed oil when I was battling external hemorrhoids and have recently discovered it can help with Yeast infections. I will give this 5 stars

    • DeboraR profile image

      DeboraR 8 years ago

      Great lens! I've been looking for the health benefits of yogurt and found out a lot of good information here. Gave it 5* and favored it .

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      It's really good post

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago


    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Nice Lens. Very Good Info. 5**. Please Visit Health Articles Blog & Find All Health Articles on various Topics.

    • profile image

      thewishpearl 8 years ago

      Great lens. You may be able to find greek yogurt in middle eastern grocery stores if you have any in your area. I have added this lens to my discovery tool on my yogurt lens.

    • Demaw profile image

      Demaw 8 years ago

      Like you stated, yogurt is a very important food, I used to make my own but got out of the habit. Maybe I will try again. 5*

    • profile image

      jamesanderson1346 9 years ago

      Very nice lens. Yogurt is one of the best Milk product we are using. Read Health Articles

    • profile image

      AntioxidantGuyg 9 years ago

      Great info

      Health Vitamin

    • profile image

      zhante 9 years ago


    • faithcreations profile image

      faithcreations 9 years ago

      Great Lens...I lensrolled it to my Recipe for Homemade Yogurt lens.

    • LaraineRoses profile image

      Laraine Sims 9 years ago from Lake Country, B.C.

      It is very difficult to find unpasturized milk now so my yogurt machine has not been used for quite a while. If you happen to live in the country and have your own cow or have a friend who has a cow...I envy you. We used to have creamy the greek yogurt you mentioned, makes a great breakfast drink. 5*s for bringing back fond memories.

    • eclecticeducati1 profile image

      eclecticeducati1 9 years ago

      Great lens! Taught me a lot about yogurt. 5*

    • profile image

      Colleen_Boyd 9 years ago

      I love Greek yogurt. It is rich and creamy, much like creme brulee or custard but with a yogurt taste. My favorite brand is The Greek Gods and that brand can be difficult to find. Here in Houston we have Greek yogurt widely available but this brand usually is only found in H.E.B. One container has 250 calories. It contains 5 live and active cutures including probiotics. My cat is also quite fond of the yogurt. Whenever she hears the lid peel back she comes running to have the leftovers. She's old and blind but her hearing hasn't failed her.

    • profile image

      ywperjjl 9 years ago

      I like this lens. It is very informative.

      Health Tips

    • profile image

      Tyler_Murphy 10 years ago

      Good and bad bacteria. Who knew? I can imagine this war going on in a person's stomach. Do they wear different colors? What are their weapons of choice?

      There is one important thing to keep in mind with yougurt. If you happen to look at the sugar content of regular Yoplait or some other brands, you might notice that two little cups of yogurt have about as much added sweetner as a can of soda! No kidding. I have a friend who was eating yogurt with the intention to lose weight and after I pointed out that some yogurt is loaded with sweeter he was shocked! He switeched from the store brand regular to the low-fat, healthier kind.

      Even though, these sweetened yogurts are still better for you than soda...

    • mystic junction profile image

      mystic junction 10 years ago

      I enjoyed reading all about yogurt. I especially liked the photo's you have added. Good job.

    • QuantumTraveler1 profile image

      QuantumTraveler1 10 years ago

      Just reading your lens makes me hungry. I am definitely go to try your recipe for the smoothie. Great job.

    • grassosalvato86 profile image

      grassosalvato86 10 years ago

      What a lovely lens!! I like yogurt, I especially enjoy natural yogurt without fruit. 5 stars!!

    • Lewister profile image

      Susan 10 years ago from Texas

      Great tip about checking the label for pasteurizing and live bacteria. Although I've never been able to figure out how the little buggers can survive the stomach acid to get where you want them. Guess that mystery goes up there with the "licks to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop" question.

    • archetekt lm profile image

      archetekt lm 10 years ago

      Yogurt is the best for making smoothies. I always use vanilla or plain yogurt with live bacteria.

      Nice lens!

    • aka-rms profile image

      Robin S 10 years ago from USA

      I love yogurt. Thanks for a great lens and some really good information. I didn't know that pasteurizing killed the bacteria.


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