Super Starts Here.

Is Yogurt Still A Healthy Snack?

on April 4, 2013

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I have always been a huge fan of yogurt and all of it’s benefits, especially the protein, calcium, b vitamins and active cultures.  But when trusted companies like Stoneyfield start pumping 30g of sugar into a cup of yogurt, it defeats the purpose.  Marion Nestle recently posted about it in her Food Politics blog, mentioning that a reader complains, “It’s so bad that kids are fighting over it.  We have noticed that they are eating less fruit because they want that sugar in the yogurts.”  According to Nestle, the main battle between the yogurt companies is sugar – seems like the sweeter they can make it, the more they sell.  What I find most disappointing is that they keep adding more sugar to yogurts targeted at kids, even toddlers and babies.  Nestle mentions, “Sugars constitute 55 percent of the 80 calories in Go-GURT, 67 percent of the 90 calories in Danimals Drinkable, and 68 of the 170 calories in Danimals XL.  Even in Stonyfield’s YoBaby organic yogurts…53% of the 120 calories come from added sugars.  Some of Stonyfield’s yogurts for older kids appear berry-flavored, but they have no fruit at all….”  Sugar is addictive, not to mention, harmful, so the more kids consume, the more they want.

Yogurt IS a healthy snack, you just need to eat the right ones, here are a few better options:

1. Siggys – A creamy Icelandic style yogurt (they call it Skyr) that has about 9grams of sugar per serving and 13g of protein

2. Fage – Their flavored yogurts have about 16g of sugar, still better than your traditional yogurts, but still a bit high, but  they do offer 11g of protein

3. ProBugs – This smoothie style drinkable kefir provides a boost of probiotics at about 10g per 4oz serving.  Still a bit high, but great for a treat.  They also offer it a frozen ice pop, which my kids love.

Another idea to cut the sugar is to mix a few tablespoons of the flavored yogurt with plain yogurt.  My go-to is still plain yogurt and mixed fruit.  I typically puree the fruit, because it adds enough sweetness without the need for added sugars.  I usually puree a big batch early in the week and just add it to oatmeal and yogurts throughout the week.  Our favorite combos are: bananas blueberry; avocado banana; peach mango. Lastly, try to avoid the ” made with real yogurt” trick used by the food industry — that includes anything that is not yogurt, but claims to have yogurt such as cereal, or yogurt covered raisins, etc.  The “yogurt” in those products are usually sugar and provide little to no benefit of any kind.  Read this article from Fooducate for more info.

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