Last summer I had to opportunity to meet (& share a room for a week) a fantastic New Mexico science teacher. We were tired of the unhealthy food options offered to us and we decided to walk to the grocery store in the midst of downtown Kansas City (YES!! I was sooo happy to find a REAL grocery store with regular people prices in the middle of downtown in a city!!). She picked up PLAIN Greek yogurt and I was internally disgusted because I knew the taste of plain regular yogurt very well since I used to make my microbiology class make yogurt in lab as soon as I taught them sterile laboratory techniques. We then discussed the difference in flavored vs. unflavored yogurt and I had never really paid much attention to the sugar content. Besides “they” say yogurt is good for you, especially women, so we should eat more yogurt and that’s what I did. However, all yogurt is not created equally!!
First, most flavored yogurts are filled with extra sugar and preservatives, so if you’re concerned about your daily sugar intake then this is problematic. Next, there’s this matter of whether you should eat regular or Greek yogurt. Honestly, it doesn’t matter which one you pick in the grand scheme of things as long as you choosing plain, nonfat or lower fat versions of yogurt. The type you choose is based on your preference. Personally, I like to purchase things that can serve as double or triple duty (i.e. food to eat and hair products) and Greek yogurt can be used as both, as well as used in cooking various dishes. So it’s Greek yogurt for me!
Here’s some stats of plain, nonfat Greek vs. plain, nonfat regular yogurt: Greek yogurt is
- higher in protein (almost double)
- lower in carbs
- lower in calcium (so if you monitor your calcium intake, then you may want to stick to regular yogurt)
- lower in sodium
- calories are similar
Additionally, Greek yogurt can be used to make dips, smoothies, sauces, and desserts (such as swap out eggs & oil in baked dishes or in place of mayo, cream cheese, sour cream or other fats in recipes).
Now I buy Plain, Nonfat Greek yogurt. When I just want to eat the yogurt as a snack, then I add my own ingredients such as honey, fruit, nuts, and/or granola.