Products derived from milk, better known as dairy products, are very delicious, healthy and can be combined with various foods , such as cheese, butter, cream and even the beloved ice cream.
However, in this article we will get to know in depth a very famous dairy product, yogurt , as well as its benefits and all its nutritional composition.
What is yogurt?
Yogurt or yogurt is a dairy product made by the fermentation of whole milk , where the proteins housed in the milk coagulate to create a product with great flavor, texture and aroma, mainly white in color.
This food has the property of transforming the components of milk through acidification, which facilitates the digestion of this product during consumption, and with this we find different types of yogurt such as Greek, liquid, natural, shaken and even flavored .
Note: One study mentions the following information: “Yogurt is milk (usually cow’s) that has been fermented with Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus under defined conditions of time and temperature . ” (1)
What benefits does yogurt provide?
Yogurt is very old and has always been a positive food for health, for what reason? Due to its great benefits for the body, which is a very broad catalogue. We present below the benefits that yogurt provides :
1. Strengthens the immune system
We do not usually hear that there are bacteria capable of neutralizing diseases and even increasing the body’s defenses, referring to the immune system , but it turns out that it does happen with the consumption of yogurt.
The probiotic bacteria Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus present in yogurt transform lactose into lactic acid, a substance that is housed in hemoglobin and muscle cells, moderating the immune system.
Important: A study mentions the use of these probiotic yogurt bacteria, with the following: “The administration of probiotics is considered for their immunomodulatory properties against various diseases and allergies” . (two)
2. Prevents heart disease
This yogurt food is relevant in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases (CVD), mainly in conditions of high blood pressure, myocardial infarctions or even cardiovascular accidents.
To highlight: Yogurt achieves this due to its fermentation, which provides calcium to a large extent and its fermentation is what creates the necessary vitamins and proteins , thus having better contractions in the heart organ and reducing the symptoms of hypertension.
3. Strengthens bones, teeth and muscles
Yogurt is a very healthy food for bone structure and muscle tissues due to the nutrients it provides, such as the high intake of calcium , which is also related to nerve impulses so that the muscle can move properly.
Yogurt, thanks to this property, can prevent bone diseases such as osteoporosis, can prevent sudden tooth loss and reduces oxidation of cell tissue, in a long chain of mixtures due to its bioactive components.
Note: A relevant study mentions the following: “A single yogurt, depending on the type, provides 270 to 450 mg of calcium, which helps maintain healthy bones and teeth.” (3)
4. Improves digestive health
It is known with many affirmations that yogurt is a necessary product for the improvement of the intestinal flora, since it is composed of microorganisms with a perfect symbiosis in our intestine , maintaining an immune balance in it.
This is thanks to natural yogurt specifically, which is said to have lactobacilli, probiotic compounds housed in the digestive system and also related to the urinary tract, these adhere to the intestinal walls and prevent the access of toxic bacteria.
5. Increases physical energy
This type of fermented food not only provides benefits to the organs, but also to the system in general, adding portions of energy through the nutrients and micronutrients that it possesses, such as calories.
You should know: Yogurt has a series of proteins and carbohydrates that provide physical or bodily energy, necessary for human beings to be able to do their day-to-day work, but this is only achieved through foods rich in micronutrients such as yogurt.
6. Contributes to weight loss
The live bacteria in yogurt, in addition to improving the intestinal flora, favor the digestive process , making it faster and more accurate. This even helps speed up the metabolism to burn calories faster and reduce weight.
But that is not the only thing, since yogurt eliminates the fat stored in the body specifically in the abdomen area , through the effects of the antioxidants that yogurt has, like natural yogurt and that it does not contain sugar, it is said that an intake of 3 yogurts a day does this.
7. Improves mood
The state of mind depends a lot on our balanced diet, but above all on the control and balance of important systems such as the intestinal, gastrointestinal and cardiovascular tracts, since physiology is related to mental states.
To highlight: Yogurt improves mood due to the actions of probiotic bacteria that have a direct impact on the microbiota or intestinal flora , which favors the digestion of proteins and the subsequent transformation of energy for the organism.
8. Promotes skin health
Can yogurt be related to the skin a lot? More than you think since it has antioxidants that stimulate a greater production of collagen , that protein related to skin and muscle tissues.
On the other hand, yogurt provides lactic acid with the aim of eliminating dead cells and moisturizing the skin, complemented by the removal of the layer of bacteria or toxins, with keratolytic compounds that dissolve microorganisms in the horny layer of the epidermis.
9. Lowers the risk of cancer
There are various types of cancer and many foods are important to greatly reduce the risks of suffering from them, since cancer can be very related to our diets and even our entire environment.
Important: Yogurt is a great protector against breast cancer and bowel cancer , many investigations agree that fermented bacteria positively alter the microflora of the breast, in addition to completely displacing toxic bacteria. This is well supported by the “Nutrition Guide for Breast Cancer Patients”. (4)
Yogurt nutritional properties
Taking into account the magnificent benefits of yogurt, we can continue explaining the properties that make all this possible, assuming great advantages for a healthy diet. These are the most important properties:
Vitamins are essential for the body and fortunately yogurt is a fermented food that is very rich in these components, highlighting the B complex vitamins (from B2 to B12) , vitamin A , and a small portion of vitamin D and K.
Note: Among these vitamins are some with antioxidant action such as vitamin E , which despite being in a smaller portion, has the characteristic of being quite effective for the body.
Minerals strengthen bone tissues (skeleton including bones) and muscle tissues or cells, in yogurt we can find a variety such as iodine, zinc, phosphorus and magnesium , being quite important for strengthening the body.
3. Other compounds
The fermented yogurt bacteria provide other quite relevant compounds, highlighting a large number of proteins such as serum albumin, proteases and metalloprotein, which are closely related to the liver and the production of free amino acids.
To highlight: Free amino acids are not produced by the body on its own, plus if they exist, they can help break down food effectively.
How to prepare homemade yogurt?
Taking into account all of the above, do you know how you can prepare your own homemade yogurt ? It is quite simple and even nutritious for your diet. That is why we present a simple and practical way to prepare yogurt on your own:
- fresh milk
- Yeast (industrial yogurt or freeze-dried yeast)
- sweetener to taste
- Place the ferment in a pot with a liter of milk, which we stir well to mix and control it with a thermometer so that it reaches 45 ° C.
- After that, let the fermentation rest in a pressure cooker or in a previously sterilized glass container for 8 to 10 hours.
- Place the fermentation container wrapped in a clean cloth in a warm place without temperature changes.
- After 8 hours, you can open the pot or container and you will have a firm yogurt, which you can sweeten to taste and enjoy with fruits, cereals, make desserts, creams, etc.
- Yogurt is a fermented food that contains probiotic bacteria.
- The most outstanding benefits of yogurt are related to improving the intestinal flora and reducing the risk of suffering from different types of cancer.
- Yogurt contains proteins that are capable of transforming free amino acids .
- It can be prepared at home, fermenting fresh milk for 8 hours to obtain a firm and delicious yogurt ready to be enjoyed however you like.