First, let’s get one thing clear, Greek Yogurt should only be called Greek Yogurt if it has been made using the traditional method: made by straining the yogurt to remove the whey (the liquid remaining after the milk is curdled).
That means that the resulting yogurt is more-solid with less sugar, fewer carbohydrates, and more protein compared to ‘normal’ yogurt. It is also a source of probiotic bacteria that result from the fermentation process. This is the healthiest kind of yogurt, not least because it is more easily tolerated by most, being lower in lactose, but also because it is packed full of other nutrients, more so than ‘normal’ yogurt. Whilst it’s thicker texture and slightly tart taste may not be to everyone’s liking there are additions that make this a very suitable choice for all family members.
HIGH IN PROTEIN
Most Greek Yogurt will be twice as high in protein as normal yogurt. This makes Greek yogurt an ideal snack after sport or other energetic activities, especially when combined with banana as it helps to regenerate muscle tissue and repair muscle damage.
For an even greater protein boost add a couple of tablespoons of chia seeds to their Greek Yogurt.
Remember that high in protein means that it will keep your children fuller for longer. A breakfast combining Greek Yogurt, Chia Seeds and some Fruit in a smoothie or even with a Low Sugar Granola may be the ideal breakfast to keep them going right through until lunchtime.
RICH IN PROBIOTICS
Probiotics are healthy bacteria that can help boost your children’s immune system and decrease stomach issues, such as diarrhea and pain. Greek yogurt is a naturally abundant source of probiotics. It doesn’t just have to be a breakfast food though, it can be enjoyed daily as a snack, as a dip or as an addition to cooked dishes such as stews. Heating the yogurt however means that the probiotic value will be lost.
A SOURCE OF CALCIUM
Another benefit of Greek yogurt is that it’s high in calcium. Calcium is key to building strong muscles and helping your children’s vital organs function.
A SOURCE OF B12
Often lacking in strict vegetarian diets the addition of a regular bowlful of Greek yogurt can greatly help make up for this. As a source of Vitamin B12 it can help restore levels of this vitamin to ensure red blood cells form and that the brain functions properly.
A WORD OF WARNING
The words ‘Greek’ and ‘Yogurt’ are used on a lot of yogurts not made using this method. Be warned that the ingredients label is where to look to determine if the yogurt you buy is actual Greek Yogurt or not. The label should show ingredients as milk and live active cultures. You’ll want to steer clear of:
- thickening agents, such as starches or gelatin
- whey protein concentrate
- milk protein concentrate
- modified food starch
Watch out for these ingredients on the label. Don’t buy these versions of the yogurt. Be sure to buy only Greek Yogurt and not Greek ‘Style’ Yogurt. Lastly, enjoy the unique taste and texture of your true Greek yogurt with your topping of choice.