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Apr 05

Health Foods A-Z: Yoghurt

Yogurt is a wonderful supplement to any meal. Its nutrition and benefits are numerous and it tastes great. Also, if you pick a low fat yogurt, you don’t even add many calories to your diet.

The benefits of yogurt are many. First, it is much easier to digest when compared to milk. This is because it contains good bacteria that aid in digestion. It is also great for lactose intolerant people since the lactose in milk has been broken down to digestible components. Yogurt also aids in colon health, and can even prevent colon cancer since it is a rich source of calcium. Having yogurt makes it easier for the body to absorb calcium, vitamin D and B vitamins. Apart from this, yogurt can also help boost immunity, as suggested by research.  Yogurt also helps the intestines heal better and sooner after an infection. Also, yogurt can help lower cholesterol.

Yogurt is a great source of protein and calcium, For  children, it is a balanced source of protein, fats, carbohydrates, and minerals.

Since it has so many health benefits, and is easier to have as compared to milk, especially for children, it should be a part of every meal. Making it interesting by making it a dip or a smoothie helps persuade children to consume more of it. Also, be careful with the amount of sugar you add in the yogurt when making a smoothie or dip-if there is too much sugar, the sugar content and its damage may outweigh the benefits of the yogurt.

Most of us are reliant on the yogurt available off the grocery store shelves. But you can make your own. Its a cheaper and healthier alternative. Here is how to do it at home. You will need:

1 saucepan

Milk as required (1 gallon milk=1 gallon yogurt)

1-2 tbsp. yogurt

Bowl to set the yogurt

Method

Boil the milk in a saucepan. This is required so that the milk is free of contamination and the milk bacteria are prepared for bacterial reproduction. You can use any milk you choose-low fat, regular or

Next, cool the milk. This can be done in several ways. You can put the milk bowl into another bowl filled with ice for a few minutes. We don’t want to dilute the milk, so don’t put the ice in the milk. Else, you can just repeatedly transfer the milk from one bowl to another. 3-4 times should be enough. The exposure to cool air will cool down the milk. The temperature of the milk after cooling should be lukewarm, around 100 degree Fahrenheit. If it is warmer than this temperature, the yogurt will be watery.

Once the milk is cooled to the temperature above, mix the yogurt in it. Use probiotic yogurt from the grocery store- it has a larger number of bacteria and helps better set the yogurt.

Stir the yogurt well so that it is evenly mixed-stir for a few seconds. Next, cover the bowl and keep it in a place that is likely to remain warm through the night, or for about 7-8 hours. In the summer, the microwave will work well. In winter, consider covering the bowl with a heating pad or a thick cloth that will help retain the heat. It is lukewarm to begin with, so we need to try and retain the heat as best as we can. Leave the covered bowl for about 7-8 hours undisturbed. Overnight works best. The yogurt should be ready in the morning. Put it in the fridge-it should thicken further in the refrigerator for a few hours.

That’s it! Very simple and a fraction of the cost as compared to yogurt bought from the grocery store. Also, it has no preservatives and no sugar. Enjoy!

This post is part of a series on health foods. I have previously written about Avocado, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Dates, Eggs, Fennel, Green chickpeas or chholiya, Honey, Iceberg lettuce, Jackfruit, Kidney Beans, Lentils, Milk, Nectarine, Olives, Peas, the alphabet Q, Radish, Spinach, Tomato, the letter U, Vinegar, Water Chestnut and Xacuti Chicken.

1 ping

  1. Improve as a blogger using content marketing | Saumya's Kitchen

    […] week, I concluded my series on Health Foods: A-Z. I wrote about Xacuti chicken, Yoghurt and Zucchini. Like always, I elaborated on their nutritional value, methods of selection and […]

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