Which Yoplait yogurt products have probiotic ingredients

Research news

Ilya Ilyich Mechnikov assumed that the yogurt that the Caucasians and Bulgarians ate extended their lives. This hypothesis could not be confirmed. Dresden researchers at the Max Planck Institute announced on July 31, 2014 that ingredients from Bulgarian yogurt could possibly help with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. In these ailments, the nerve cells are damaged. Their "power plants", the mitochondria, no longer work. The bacteria in Bulgarian yoghurt, which acidify it to a particular degree, produce a substance, D-lactate, which was able to repair the damage to the broken power plant cells in the laboratory. Unfortunately, it is not known whether these effects can also be achieved in the human body and how much yogurt should be eaten. Since the Max Planck Institute conducts basic research on a cellular level and does not research specific diseases, it is up to the responsible medical professionals - as in this case, for example, neurologists - to further investigate these results in their specialist areas.

Just a few years ago, manufacturers advertised that pre- and probiotic yoghurts had a health-promoting effect. They should help to strengthen the immune system or ensure a regular digestion. These health promises have been banned since 2012, unless the statements can be scientifically confirmed. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has reviewed 4,000 advertising claims, of which only 222 were classified as scientifically proven. Slogans like “strengthens your immune system” have since disappeared from yoghurt packaging.

Nonetheless, yogurt is still said to have a positive effect on the digestive system. Whether a yogurt can positively influence the metabolic processes in the intestine depends on the bacterial strains it contains. Lactic acid bacteria such as Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidum are already present in the intestine. They help keep pathogenic germs at bay. These beneficial bacteria are called "probiotics". Some products also contain “prebiotics”. These are indigestible carbohydrates such as fructose and lactose oligosaccharides. They should serve as a kind of substrate for the bacteria and their thriving in the intestine.

In order for the lactic acid bacteria to get into the intestines at all, they have to survive the "acid bath" in the stomach and other digestive juices in sufficient numbers. However, the consumer often cannot see on the yoghurt cups which bacteria are present in the product. And he does not know whether the bacteria were bred in such a way that they can survive the route through the stomach and intestines designed to eliminate bacteria. Anyone who depends on the effect should therefore use probiotics in capsule form. Approved drugs must have already proven their effectiveness and contain a sufficient number of the desired bacteria.

Some companies emphasize that their products contain left- or right-handed lactic acids. Because of their different physical properties, lactic acid is divided into right-handed (L +) and left-handed (D-) lactic acid. A healthy person can digest both lactic acids - the levorotatory (D-) lactic acid, however, is a little slower, which is why the right-rotating one is considered more digestible.

It is therefore uncertain whether Bulgarian yoghurt, pre- and probiotic additives or left- and right-rotating lactic acids actually have a health-promoting effect. And yet yogurt, when eaten in a low-fat and low-sugar version, is a healthy food. Yogurt contains a lot of vitamins B2, B12 and calcium, among other things.

100 g yogurt (1.5 percent fat) contain approx. 115 mg calcium, which corresponds to 11.5 percent of the daily calcium requirement of an adult, which is 1,000 mg per day; With 1,100 mg to 1,200 mg, teenagers need a little more. The body needs calcium to build and maintain the bones as well as for muscle functions, the transmission of signals from cell to cell, for the transmission of stimuli in the nervous system and for blood clotting.

In Germany, at least almost 50 percent of all age groups of both sexes do not reach their recommended daily dose. Women are more affected by calcium deficiency. Especially female adolescents between 14 and 18 years of age and people between 65 and 80 years of age and in inpatient facilities are often severely undersupplied.

A large mug of yogurt and other foods that contain calcium, such as milk or cheese, can help keep your body hydrated.

While all yogurts are a source of calcium, many of them are more of a dessert. A high fat and sugar content in fruit yoghurts or trendy toppings on the trendy frozen yogurt transform the product into a culinary temptation - but unfortunately also into calorie bombs. If you want to use the healthy effects of yogurt, you should therefore use low-fat natural yogurt. You can refine this with fresh fruits according to your own taste.

Alternatives to yogurt products

Man was not a milk drinker from the beginning of time. Infants and toddlers can tolerate their mother's milk. Most people around the world lose their ability to digest milk. In Southeast Asia and Africa, almost 100 percent of people cannot digest milk. In northern Europe and southern Scandinavia, on the other hand, only five to ten percent of people cannot tolerate milk. This imbalance in milk tolerance and milk intolerance has prehistoric reasons. It was only during the Neolithic Revolution, the transition from the Middle to the Neolithic, that the people of Northern Europe settled down and began farming and raising livestock. The milk of domesticated animals has been on the menu in our latitudes ever since. Most Europeans can tolerate them thanks to a mutated gene that allows the milk sugar (lactose) in the small intestine to be broken down into its individual components by an enzyme called lactase. If a person lacks this crucial enzyme, undigested lactose reaches the large intestine, where it is broken down by the bacteria that live there. This creates carbon dioxide, hydrogen and short-chain fatty acids, which can lead to flatulence, diarrhea, vomiting and colic-like pain. One then speaks of lactose intolerance, which leads to milk intolerance. Lactose intolerance is not a disease, although it can cause severe discomfort to those affected. The inability to digest milk corresponds to the original structure of our digestive system.

Yoghurt is often better tolerated than milk because many varieties have a lower lactose content. Milk contains 4.7 g lactose per 100 ml, while some yoghurts contain only 3.5 g per 100 g. In yoghurt production, the bacteria partially metabolize the lactose in the milk, which makes the product acidic and denatures the proteins. This gives the mass its typical, thick consistency. Exactly the same happens with yogurt-like soy products - however, the bacteria here utilize the sugar from the soy bean, the protein of which then coagulates.

Depending on the degree of lactose intolerance, it may also be advisable to forego dairy products entirely and to switch to substitute products. These are available on a soy or rice basis, for example. However, the terms “yoghurt” and “milk” are legally protected and reserved for “classic” dairy products, which is why the products have different names such as “soy drink” or “soy dessert”.

If you suffer from lactose intolerance, you can also cook our recipes with lactose-free alternative products of your choice.