Is it me, or is yogurt having a moment? The studies
extolling its health benefits just keep on coming. A recent MIT study made
headlines when it found that yogurt made mice slimmer—and, um, sexier. (What makes mice sexy, you ask?
Those on a yogurt-supplemented diet developed thicker and “shockingly shiny”
fur. Males also adopted a strut-like swagger).
New research presented at the European Congress of
Obesity earlier this week found that obese and normal-weight children differed
drastically in the makeup of their gut microbes. These findings, while preliminary, suggest that the right microbes (which can be obtained from eating
foods high in both protein and probiotics, like yogurt) may help prevent
Last month, a study from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden
found that adults who ate low-fat dairy foods (including yogurt, as well as
cheese and milk) had a 12 percent lower stroke risk compared to those who ate
And one of my favorite studies—from the University of Tennessee—found
that people who ate yogurt as part of a reduced-calorie diet lost a whopping 22
percent more weight and 61 percent more body fat after 12 weeks than a control
group, who ate the same amount of calories, but consumed half the amount of calcium.
Yogurt has so much going for it that it naturally became a
top-notch food in my new book, The Digest Diet.
It seems to contain a magic mix of calcium, protein, and probiotics (and who
knows what else?) that give it incredible powers for weight loss, digestive
health, and more.
If you’re not a yogurt eater (yet!), here are a few of my
favorite ways to weave it into your diet:
Shake It Up
Use a cup of plain nonfat yogurt as a creamy, protein-packed base for
smoothies. Toss in favorite fruits and a healthy fat like peanut or almond
butter for a satisfying, nutritious breakfast or snack that will keep you full
Dip Into It
Nonfat Greek yogurt has a thick, creamy consistency that’s perfect for dips. Add a drizzle of olive
oil and some savory spices for a tangy mix for crudité.
Perk up breakfast by alternating plain yogurt in a
glass with layers of honey, fresh berries, and chopped nuts.
Top It Off
Use yogurt as a sour cream replacement on black bean or split pea
soup. Then sprinkle with black pepper or herbs.
Stash a carton of yogurt in the freezer, then whirl it in the food
processor with frozen or fresh fruit for a delicious dessert.