Yogurt is a rich creamy dairy product that has been used by people as a common food item for over 4,500 years. This dairy product is mainly produced by adding bacterial cultures to milk. This causes the transformation of the milk’s sugar lactose, into lactic acid. The product has been a staple food item in the cuisine of Asia, Russia, parts of Europe and certain Middle Eastern countries. However, it was only during the 20th century that people residing in Western Europe and Northern America became aware of the special health benefits of this exquisite dairy product. Yoghurt is especially rich in nutrients like protein, riboflavin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and calcium. Today, the product plays a very important role in the cuisine cultures of countries like India, Greece and Turkey. Commercially, the product is available in a wide variety of flavors and textures and is found all through the year. To know more about the benefits of the rich and exquisite dairy food called yogurt, go through the pointers given below.
Health Benefits Of Eating Yogurt
- One of the major positive effects of consuming yogurt is that it helps prevent and heal arthritic conditions.
- Recent studies have also indicated that Helicobacter pylori, the bacterium responsible for a majority of ulcers occurring to humans, can be shut down by regular consumption of yogurt.
- Yogurt can also be used to fight foul breath and thus, it helps maintain a healthy mouth. Intake of around 90 grams of this dairy product, two times daily helps lower the levels of volatile sulfides like hydrogen sulfides, which are responsible for bad breath.
- The dairy product also helps prevent dental plaque formation, cavities, gingivitis and even eliminates tongue-coating bacteria.
- Yogurt contains certain cancer-preventing factors, along with a protective fat called conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which is also popular as a cardio-protective. Hence, the product contributes a lot in lowering the risk of colorectal cancer.
- It is a known fact that calcium, present in yogurt, is very important for the formation and maintenance of a healthy skeletal system. This is especially true for young girls going through the tremendous physiological changes during puberty.
- Yogurt is also sometimes referred to as a ‘bone-friendly’ food. Apart for the bone building mineral calcium, it also contains an iron binding protein called lactoferrin. This component is very important for the growth and activity of osteoblasts, the cells which are responsible for building bones.
- Studies have indicated that the yogurt containing live bacterial cultures can actually help live longer and is very beneficial for maintaining a healthy immune system.
- Yogurt helps lower the Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) levels, while raising the good (HDL) cholesterol levels.
- Regular intake of this rich dairy product is also found helpful against obesity and weight related problems.
- It also helps fight infections and boosts the human immune system.
- In certain parts of the world, cows are treated with a recombinant bovine growth hormone or rBGH. Research has shown that such cows are very prone to conditions like mastitis, lameness and even infertility. Hence, it is always beneficial to purchase yogurt that is made organically, not from milk treated with rBGH.
- Allergic reactions may sometimes develop due to consumption of yogurt. Such reactions may either be immediate and specific or be delayed and general.
- There are a number of ways for consuming this rich delicacy. Many people add dill weeds and chopped cucumber to yogurt and eat it as a salad, with grilled chicken or lamb.
- You can add pieces of cooked eggplant to yogurt, along with garlic, mint leaves and cayenne.
- Yoghurt is also regarded as a great base for salad dressings. Blend plain yogurt with some water, until the desired consistency is achieved. Over this, sprinkle some herbs and spice, to give a delicate flavor to the recipe.