There are so many yogurts in the refrigerator section of our grocery stores these days. You can find fruit yogurts, chocolate yogurts, coffee yogurts, yogurts that taste like apple pie, or red velvet cake … the list is endless. Sadly, we seem to have lost sight of the idea that yogurt was one of the original health foods. It didn’t become popular because of calorie content, it became popular because of health benefits. The first record of possible health benefits from yogurt was in the 1500s. The Sultan of the Ottoman Empire sent his doctor with yogurt to Francois I, the King of France, to cure his intestinal disorder. It worked.
The majority of yogurts available today, however, don’t resemble the yogurt that was around in the 1500s. Just check the FoodFacts.com database and you’ll find yogurts with numerous controversial ingredients that you’re probably trying to avoid in your diet. There are some, though, that remind us that yogurt is supposed to be a healthy food. A new report has been released that points to the health benefits of low-fat yogurt.
Researchers found that people who ate low-fat fermented dairy products like yogurt and cottage cheese slashed their risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by 24% compared to those who didn’t eat those foods. The 11-year study also showed that yogurt by itself could help ward off the disease. Those who ate low-fat fermented dairy products were 24 percent less likely to develop diabetes.
Eating yogurt and low-fat cheese can cut the risk of developing diabetes by around a quarter compared with consuming none, according to a study of 3,500 Britons published on Wednesday.
The evidence comes from a long-term health survey of men and women living in the eastern county of Norfolk, whose eating and drinking habits were detailed at the start of the investigation.
During the study’s 11-year span, 753 people in the group developed adult-onset, also called Type 2, diabetes. Those who ate low-fat fermented dairy products — a category that includes yogurts, fromage frais and low-fat cottage cheese — were 24 percent less likely to develop the disease compared to counterparts who ate none of these products.
When examined separately from the other low-fat dairy products, yogurt by itself was associated with a 28-percent reduced risk.
People in this category ate on average four and a half standard (4.4-ounce) pots of yogurt each week.
Only low-fat, fermented dairy products were associated with the fall in risk. Consumption of high-fat fermented products, and of milk, had no impact.
The new report is a reminder for us all that enjoying a good quality yogurt as part of our regular diet can, indeed benefit our health. Of course, we’d have to assume that would probably remove key lime pie or strawberry cheesecake yogurt from the list of available options. But most of us who are concerned about diet and nutrition probably weren’t eating those anyway!