Health TipsJuly 5 2022

The Benefits of Eating Greek Yogurt

greek yogurt and granola in a bowl

Greek yogurt is here to stay. Yogurt has always been popular, but with the versatility and nutritional benefits of Greek yogurt, it has become a staple in the American diet.

The Difference Between Greek Yogurt and Regular Yogurt

Both American and Greek yogurts are excellent choices, just in contrasting ways. It’s not so much whether one is better than the other, but whether you are eating either. Both yogurts promote intestinal health, build stronger bones, and enhance immunity. 

Greek yogurt has twice as much protein. Greek yogurt is high in protein, which helps promote fullness. A typical 6-ounce serving contains 15 to 20 grams, the amount in 2 to 3 ounces of lean meat. That makes it particularly appealing to vegetarians, who sometimes struggle to get enough of the nutrient. An identical serving of regular yogurt, on the other hand, provides just 9 grams, meaning you may feel hunger pangs sooner.

Less sodium. Too much salt can increase blood pressure and long-term heart risks. Because of this, consumers are looking for ways to reduce the amount of sodium in their diet. According to the USDA, Greek yogurt has 50 percent less sodium than regular yogurt.

Fewer carbohydrates. If you’re counting carbs or have diabetes, this is great news. Commercial yogurts contain around 15 to 17 grams per cup, where Greek yogurt only contains around 9 grams of carbohydrates.  However, read food labels and pay attention to added sweeteners, as this may increase carbohydrates.

Easy on the stomach. Because Greek yogurt contains less sugar, it also contains less lactose making it easier to digest. Although it is not considered lactose-free, if you can tolerate small amounts this is a great supplement to dairy products.

Versatility. Much like regular yogurt, Greek yogurt has a creamy texture and rich taste that makes it a very versatile ingredient. It can be eaten alone or used to enhance an existing dish like salad, pasta and various dips. Many people use yogurt for smoothies, but it also can be used to substitute sour cream and mayonnaise.

Less calcium. Unfortunately, if you are primarily eating yogurt for its calcium, regular yogurt has a higher concentration because some nutrients are lost in the straining process.

Whichever yogurt fits your dietary needs the best, it is important to incorporate it into your daily diet.

If you do not have a doctor and would like help finding one, UT Medical Center’s Healthcare Coordination can help. They will talk to you about what insurance you have, what type of doctor you need and what days are most convenient for you. Call them today at 865-305-6970 to make an appointment.

The Health Information Center at The University of Tennessee Medical Center provided this Healthy Tip. The Health Information Center is a library staffed by medical librarians and certified health information specialists. If you let us know your health information needs, we will do research for you and mail or email the results to you for free. You can call us at 865-305-9525. We also have a large collection of health books covering a variety of topics.

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