Do I believe everything I read? I am a trusting person. Why would the labels lie? (My daughter rolls her eyes at me.) So imagine my consternation when I learn that one of my favorite foods, Greek yogurt, may not really be Greek at all?
I decide to investigate. The smooth, tart creamy deliciousness that Enara Health has me happily eating for breakfast is supposed to be good for me. But what exactly have I been eating? And what makes this yogurt “Greek”?
I learn that: Unlike the UK, where yogurt can be labeled “Greek” only if it truly comes from Greece, Greek yogurt in the US refers to a type or style of yogurt and NOT to its country of origin.
Yogurt is made by heating milk and then adding cultures, causing the milk to ferment.
Greek yogurt is yogurt that has been put through a straining process, which removes the watery liquid called whey. Whey contains lactose (the sugar found in milk) and so that is why Greek yogurt is lower in sugar and more solid in form than regular yogurt.
And many, many sources expound the benefits of eating Greek yogurt, because it is also high in protein, dietary minerals (it has more calcium than milk!), B vitamins and probiotics. Studies even report a correlation between yogurt consumption and healthy aging (less bone loss) and weight maintenance (the protein keeps you full, so you consume less).
For those of you who are trying plain Greek yogurt for the first time, adding berries or pomegranate seeds to your yogurt may help you enjoy the tartness. After a couple of weeks, your taste buds will adjust and you might actually find that Greek yogurt tastes sweet to you!
Enara Health recommends eating plain Greek yogurt without artificial sweeteners, containing 7 grams of sugar or less per serving.
By the way, strained yogurt is popular in Greece, and it’s known as straggisto. So don’t ask for “Greek” yogurt there!
Enara Health is one of the few insurance covered weight loss programs in the Bay Area! Learn more about Enara Health here.