In my very humble opinion, yogurt is essential to any successful smoothie endeavor, as it adds a creaminess that is unsurpassed. Plus, the inclusion of yogurt in a smoothie not only benefits in the flavor department, but it’s also great for your health, too.
Well known health benefits of yogurt
Firstly, your body needs to have a healthy amount of ”good” bacteria within the digestive tract, and many yogurts are made with active, good bacteria cultures. One of the words you’ll be hearing more of in relation to yogurt is probiotics.
Probiotic, which literally means “for life”, refers to living organisms that deliver vital nutrients and health benefits when eaten in adequate amounts. The benefits associated with probiotics are specific to certain strains of these “good” bacteria.
They are beneficial because they adjust the micro flora (the natural balance of organisms) in the intestines, and by acting directly on body functions, such as digestion or immune function. However, only yogurts that say “live and active cultures” on the label contain probiotics, so don’t be fooled into thinking that all yogurts are created equal.
Sounds kind of gross. Why do we eat yogurt again?
Including probiotics into your daily routine can deliver trans-formative benefits to your body.
Here are the top 5 reasons to get more active cultures into your diet.
- Yogurt may help prevent the development of osteoporosis because of its high level of calcium, but what makes it really special is the vitamin D. This spiffy little vitamin promotes the absorption of calcium into the body.
- Yogurt may help reduce the risk of high blood pressure. In one study published on WebMD.com, scientists found a 50% reduction in the risk of developing high blood pressure among people eating 2-3 servings of low-fat dairy a day (or more), compared with those without any intake.
- Yogurt with active cultures helps the gut. You’ve likely heard this before (at least once in this article so far!) but it bears repeating. Yogurt with active cultures may help with certain gastrointestinal issues such as lactose intolerance, constipation, diarrhea, colon cancer, inflammatory bowel disease and H. pylori infection. It does so by changing the micro flora in the gut, improving immunity and helping food move through the intestines and bowels.
- Yogurt with active cultures may help relieve vaginal infections because the active cultures help to balance the female bodies PH, therefore eliminating the ideal environment for yeast to thrive.
- Yogurt may help you to feel more full, although the evidence as to why this happens is still relatively unknown. But low-fat yogurt is a dieter’s best friend, helping to satiate and provide a full feeling is a plus for anyone watching their weight.
The laundry list of benefits associated with eating yogurt is undeniable. There are so many flavors and varieties to choose from, and they are begging to add that je ne sais quoi to your smoothie routine. Just be sure to check the label for active cultures to reap all the benefits!