Happy Monday my friends! Today is the last Monday of March therefore making it my last Nutritional Monday post. But just because National Nutrition Month is coming to an end doesn’t mean we can’t continue to learn about nutrition, right? Right! So we can continue learning about how food affects our bodies all year long.
Today I want to talk about probiotics. By definition, probiotic are friendly live microorganisms (in most cases, bacteria) that are similar to beneficial micro-organisms found in the human gut, whenever consumed, have potential to benefit the consumers by maintaining, or improving their intestinal microbial flora and are available to consumers mainly in the form of dietary supplements and foods (1). So let me simplify that- probiotics is great for you!
So exactly how do we consume probiotics? Probiotics can be taken various ways. My personal favorite is way of obtaining my daily probiotics is through yogurt. A few recommendations to take into consideration when choosing a yogurt:
- Overall, it is best to choose low-fat or fat-free yogurt as recommended by the Dietary Guidelines and MyPlate.
- Added sugar is a common ingredient in fruited and flavored varieties of yogurt. Try to choose a yogurt that doesn’t contain added sugar. Instead go for plain yogurt and add your own fruit or granola to it!
- Greek or Regular Yogurt? Greek yogurt has less lactose than traditional yogurt, so lactose-sensitive individuals may tolerate it even better than traditional yogurt. Both are great options so this is just personal preference.
For all my mommy readers out there- give your kids yogurt! Research shows that probiotics have been linked to helping children with asthma, eczema and GI regularity. According to Eatright.org, yogurt is rich in protein, calcium and potassium, and 1 cup counts as one of the three dairy servings recommended for children 9 years old through adulthood by USDA’s MyPlate. For 2- and 3-year-olds, 2 cups of dairy is recommended and 2½ cups for 4- to 8-year-olds.
Whether you are looking for a healthy afternoon snack or a easy, on-the-go breakfast- make yogurt a part of your daily diet!
(1) Arora M, Baldi A. Regulatory categories of probiotics across the globe: A review representing existing and recommended categorization. Indian Journal Of Medical Microbiology[serial online]. February 2, 2015;33:S2-S10. Available from: Academic Search Complete, Ipswich, MA. Accessed March 30, 2015.