Hi. My name is Colleen and I am a yogurt addict.
Now in unison, “Hi, Colleen“
All jokes aside, the amount of yogurt I eat can get a little ridiculous. It is just so tasty to me. I have a huge sweet tooth and to me this is a way to satisfy it rather than gorging on ice cream. Over the past few years there have been a lot of changes/advancements in my favorite snack food. The biggest of the changes being the Greek Yogurt Trend, and I am certainly on the bandwagon.
Overall benefits of yogurt
First off, both yogurts are a great choice for a healthy diet. When choosing what kind to purchase you should think about what you want from your yogurt. (Okay that sounded like you are marrying the yogurt… but you get the point) Both yogurts are made with “live and active cultures”. These cultures come from 2 strains of bacteria, Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus. The bacteria found in yogurt can provide many benefits to digestive health.
What is the difference between the tried-and-true regular yogurt and the Greek type? I’ll tell you.
Greek: Basically, regular yogurt is strained to remove most of the whey(liquid). So, Greek yogurt is a concentrated version of ol’ faithful. Due to the more concentrated nature it will have a higher protein content (nearly TWICE!!) The protein portion is one of my main draws to the Greek style.
Regular Yogurt: While Greek takes the cake on the protein front, regular wins the gold when it comes to calcium. When the whey is removed to make Greek, so is a lot of the calcium. Regular weighs in at about 250-300 mg of calcium while Greek only has 150-200mg.
So, what is the best choice for you? Mostly, I do a mix of the two types. I first think about when/with what I will be eating the yogurt with. Am I having it as a side with my morning eggs? I would probably go with the regular because I know that the eggs will provide my protein for the meal. Am I having it as an afternoon snack by itself? In that case I might go for the Greek so that the protein will help keep me nice and full until dinner time.
All in all, you won’t be making a bad choice with either of the two. If you hate the thickness of the Greek, don’t fret. Just stick with what you enjoy and get your protein from other sources. Never kill yourself trying to make your diet “perfect”. Food shouldn’t be the enemy.
Whatever choice you make, go for no or low added sugar. I love taking plain Greek yogurt and adding some fruit to it. All natural jam is a great option if keeping fresh fruit around is a pain. I love using E.D. Smith all-natural jams. (http://www.edsmith.com/) they come in so many different flavors. Cherry-Rhubarb is my absolute favorite!