What's the best yoghurt for your ailment
07:42 GMT, 1 May 2012
Yoghurt can help build healthy bones
A pot of yoghurt counts as one of the two or three dairy portions a day needed for healthy bones. But which is the best choice for you
UPSET STOMACH: SOYA
A bout of gastroenteritis can affect the intestinal cells that produce lactase, the enzyme that helps digest dairy food. Swapping to soya yoghurt (which is as calcium-rich as its dairy counterpart) for a couple of weeks after a stomach upset is a good idea, allowing the gut time to heal.
IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME: ACTIVIA
This brand contains a specific strain of friendly bacteria that speeds up the rate of food transit through the gut. In a group of women with IBS, bloating and constipation were improved when they ate a couple of pots a day.
HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE: BLUEBERRY
Low-fat yoghurts are recommended as part of a diet to lower blood pressure, but choose one with 20 per cent blueberries and add another handful of fresh fruit. Blueberries are packed with proanthocyanidins, which help keep blood vessels relaxed (in turn, lowering blood pressure).
OVERWEIGHT: 0% GREEK
With only 57 calories per 100g, fat-free natural Greek yoghurt has twice as much protein – known for its appetite-curbing qualities – than standard natural yoghurt. It has extra protein because it’s strained, removing excess water.
Natural yoghurt has the edge over other yoghurts in terms of calcium content, with around 30 per cent of the recommended daily amount per 150g serving. Use for making low-fat dressings – the vitamin K and potassium in salad greens will work with the calcium in the yoghurt to make even stronger bones.
LOW ENERGY: WITH WHOLEGRAINS
The grains slow down the digestive process so that sugars are released into the bloodstream more slowly, stabilising energy levels.
HIGH CHOLESTEROL: BENECOL
This has added plant stanols – substances that bind to cholesterol in the gut, preventing it being absorbed by the body. Two pots a day are needed to have an effect – have one with oaty muesli in the morning to boost the cholesterol-lowering effect.
GENERAL WELL-BEING: HAZELNUT
Vitamin E is an antioxidant found in hazelnuts that protects cells from DNA damage that can lead to cancer and other chronic disease. An average pot of hazelnut yoghurt supplies a quarter of the Department of Health’s daily vitamin E recommendation for women (3mg). Sprinkle in a tablespoon of wheatgerm to take this to 60 per cent.