Better Organic Yogurt Brands
The dairy farms producing yogurt and kefir in this category are ranked at either 3 or 4 stars by Cornucopias organic yogurt scorecard. Each rank is placed at the end for you to easily decipher.
A 4-star rating in this category provides ample pasture for their animals and makes a credible effort to encourage natural behaviors. These brands may get milk or feed from outside sources that are certified organic. If multiple farms produce the milk for a brand, the management has close oversight and control over the practices of those farms. Dairy products from these brands come from animals that have been raised organically, at least since the last third of gestation, even if animals were purchased off-farm. The quality of the yogurt is similar to 5-star rating with additional additives.
A 3-star rating are meeting the standards to qualify for legal organic status. Many are good choices for consumers. All producers in this category appear committed to meeting at least the minimum pasture requirement. In this category, replacement animals may be purchased from outside sources, sometimes from conventional management where calves have received antibiotics and young cattle might have been fed conventional and/or GMO grains.
Old Chatham Sheeps Milk Plain Yogurt
Per 2/3 cup, plain: 150 calories, 10 g fat , 6 g sugar, 8 g protein
“Sheep’s milk may be easier to digest than regular cow’s milk and still contains ample amounts of protein and probiotics,” Middleberg says.
The digestibility of sheep’s milk is up for debate: A small May 2020 study in Current Developments in Nutrition compared digestive side effects of cow and sheep’s milk and symptoms and didn’t find a difference. That said, you may find that sheep’s milk is easier on your own digestive system.
Buy it: Price: $6.29
So What Are Probiotics
Probiotics are friendly bacteria that provide numerous benefits to your health. They support your bodys existing population of good bacteria and help them to function more efficiently.
Probiotics are available in supplement form but are also present in a range of fermented foods, including yogurt, kimchi, kefir and sauerkraut.
Of course, you cant expect something to improve your health just because it contains probiotic bacteria. It all comes down to the amounts of probiotic bacteria in the product, the variety of strains, whether they survive passage through your stomach, how live the bacteria are, and many other factors.
In most cases, probiotic supplements are more effective than yogurt for providing the health benefits you require. Heres why.
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Organic Valley Grassmilk Yogurt Plain
Organic Valley is a great brand for people who want to go organic the whole way. The cows are grass fed rather than grain fed, that gives your body an extra dose of fat-frying fatty acids like Omega-3s and CLA.
However, the taste and appearance can be unappetizing for many people. This Grassmilk Yogurt contains organic nonfat milk and live active cultures, including L. Acidophilus, Bifidus, and L. Casei.
Probiotics In Greek Yogurt Vs Regular Yogurt
Yogurt is well known for being a source of probiotics a form of friendly bacteria found in fermented foods. Probiotics are created during the fermentation process of converting milk to yogurt and are forms of live bacteria that feed our gut and support our overall health. Both regular yogurt and Greek yogurt are good sources of probiotic bacteria, assuming they are made through the traditional process and only include milk and active bacterial cultures.
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Advantages And Disadvantages Of Getting Probiotics From Yogurt
Yogurt is not only a great source of probiotics but also healthy and nutritious overall. Healthy, high-quality yogurts can be rich in calcium, vitamins and protein. Yogurt is good for teeth and bone health. Yogurt is also a great source of protein, especially for people on a vegetarian diet. One study found that it may even protect against type 2 diabetes. Yogurt has the potential to pass on to you all the health benefits that probiotics have to offer whatever the benefits of the probiotics that were used in the fermentation of the yogurt at least.
Some of the health benefits of probiotics include*:
- Prevention and reduction of diarrhea*
- Probiotics may strengthen your immune system
- Probiotics may help you lose weight*
- Probiotics help to restore a healthy balance of the microbiome
- Probiotics may improve your mental health
- Probiotics may improve heart health by lowering bad cholesterol, raising good cholesterol, and lowering blood pressure*
- Probiotics may improve allergies such as dairy allergies and eczema
- Probiotics may help if you have a digestive disorder
Its great that you can get health benefits from the probiotics that come in yogurt. On the other hand, there are some disadvantages of relying on just yogurt for probiotics.
Choosing Yogurt With Lactobacillus Acidophilus
In general, most yogurts contain probiotics, but if you want yogurt with acidophilus, the National Yogurt Associationâs website AboutYogurt.com, recommends looking for their âLive and Active Culturesâ seal. Buying a yogurt with Lactobacillus and the NYA seal ensures that you will be eating refrigerated yogurt that contains at least 100 million cultures per gram at the time of manufacture or frozen yogurt that has 10 million cultures per gram.
With that in mind, when looking for a high-quality yogurt with acidophilus or live and active cultures, the first step is to check for the NYA seal or the words âlive and active culturesâ on the label. There are several brands that meet the NYA criteria, which means, you should be able to find one that you like.
Before you grab a spoon and dig in, youâll want to check the sugar and protein content. When choosing a yogurt, Harvard Health Publishing recommends sticking with one that has less than 10 grams of sugar per serving.
Additionally, youâll want to check the label for protein and go with one that has 5 grams or more of protein per serving. Many yogurt companies now offer Greek-style yogurt, which is a great choice if you want some extra protein.
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Yofarms Yo Crunch Vanilla M& m Yogurt
It shouldn’t be surprising that this yogurt isn’t really on the healthy side â it does come with M& M’s after all. The calories are still pretty low for including candy, but it’s also a pretty small serving. And though the sugar is significant, it does come packed with a protein punch. It stall falls into the worst end of the list, though, simply because candy with yogurt is just not necessary.
Yogurt Brands That Contains Probiotics
The Best Probiotic Yogurt Brands for Better Gut Health Probiotic bacteria is your friend The probiotic strain game Fermenting yogurt confusion Fage 2% Plain Siggis Vanilla Nancys Probiotic Whole-Milk Yogurt White Mountain Bulgarian Yogurt Activia.Other Foods Containing Probiotics Yogurt has become the poster-child of probiotic foods but there are many other options available. Kimchi, miso, kefir, aged cheeses, kombucha, sauerkraut, tempeh, and fresh pickles are also great sources.
Fermented Foods Have So Many Health Benefits.Its high in protein and calcium and most contain a fair amount of probiotics that offer the benefits described above. Generally, the best probiotic yogurt brands are the more natural yogurt products and plain Greek yogurt, which contain the most probiotic benefit without the downside of artificial sweetening and flavouring.Activia doesnt limit themselves to just vanilla-flavoured probiotic yoghurt, theres something to suit everyone! Theres lactose-free versions of your favourite flavours, or tubs with real fruit on the bottom for you to dig down to .
To find out if a particular yogurt has L. acidophilus, check the ingredient label. The bacteria should be listed. Here are some common brands that have L. acidophilus: Chobani Dannon Yoplait.
List of related literature:
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Claims Of Live & Active Cultures By Conventional Yogurt Brands Are Not What You Think
The Cornucopia Institute and University of Nebraska-Lincolns Food Processing Center commissioned a study looking at marketing claims by yogurt products claiming to have live & active cultures to see if they compared to other organic brands that did not add live cultures to their yogurt, yet had them naturally. The study found the following:
- Consumers are tricked into thinking that conventional yogurt with live & active cultures seals have more live & active cultures. But the truth was that your typical organic farmstead products have far more of these live & active cultures than conventional yogurt.
- Most of the conventional yogurt products on the shelves do not meet the legal definition to be labeled as yogurt by the FDA via their own standard of identity. The inclusion of artificial sweeteners, preservatives, milk protein concentrates, and other artificial nutrients that do not appear on the FDAs list, and therefore it should not be able to be sold as yogurt.
In addition, certain ingredients added by conventional products like aspartame and artificial colors are linked to adverse health effects and diseases like brain tumors and neurological disease so why are they even marketed as a health food? The consumer does not believe that health food is linked to cancer and makes purchases based on that assumption. The reality is not reflected in the marketing at all.
Fagetotal 2% Greek Yogurt Plain
This extra tart yogurt is one of the thickest and creamiest yogurts you will come across. It has live active cultures, including L. Bulgaricus, S. Thermophilus, L. Acidophilus, Bifidus, and L. Casei. The surface is adorned with a thin piece of parchment paper to further strain the excess whey that leaves you with an extra thick dairy treat for a healthy tummy.
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Disadvantages Of Probiotics In Yogurt
The main disadvantage of some yogurts is the high sugar content. This is extremely evident in the sweetened and fruit flavoured varieties.
You might be thinking that low-fat yogurts are the way to go? Think again. Low-fat yogurts are generally extremely processed and contain all kinds of harmful, artificial ingredients, and even more sugar than regular yogurts.
Keeping it simple is the key here. Natural, plain and Greek yogurts are the healthiest alternatives with maximum nutritional value, highest probiotic count and the lowest sugar levels.
Silk Almondmilk Yogurt Alternative
Silk struck the perfect balance between simple wholesome ingredients, creamy consistency, and delicious flavor with their almondmilk yogurt line. Unlike many dairy-free almond-based products, they use a good does of real almonds to provide richness and nutrition. In fact, its such good quality, that you can make amazing dairy-free yogurt cheese with it! And yet, this is one of the more fairly priced alternatives that often goes on sale.
- Base: Almondmilk
- Unique Attributes: No Gums of Any Kind, Fortified with Calcium Citrate
- Appeals Most To: Value Seekers
- Key Dietary Notes: Vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, coconut-free*
- Unsweetened Option? Yes
- Remaining Wishes: They have an Unsweetened Vanilla, but an Unsweetened Plain would round out the mix and make this brand more versatile.
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Dannon Activia Probiotic Yogurt
Per 1 cup, vanilla: 90 calories, 1.5 g fat , 12 g sugar, 4 g protein
“Dannon Activia Yogurt is a good option if you don’t like that tart flavor and thick texture typical of Greek yogurts,” Baumohl says. It’s available in individual or large sizes. “One thing to note about Activia is that it will be much lower in the protein content,” Baumohl says a serving contains 4 grams, or 8 percent of your daily value .
Buy it: Price: $3.39 per four-pack
Find The Best Probiotic Yogurt Brands: Yogurt Review Guide
There’s no doubt that the naturally occurring, good bacteria that live in our gut need to be active and balanced.
Probiotics containing live bacteria are available as a medical supplement but also occur in yogurt.
While they’re all beneficial, there are a number of species as well as a variety of strains that are specifically needed, depending on your requirements and the health of your digestive system.
Simply selecting a random yogurt off the supermarket shelf is unlikely to produce a great benefit. Some are certainly better than others and most offer nutritional benefits, as long as you avoid brands that contain large amounts of sugar and artificial additives.
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What Is Lactose Intolerance
Lactose is the natural sugar, or carbohydrate molecule in milk and milk products, including certain yoghurts. Lactose is a double sugar molecule, which requires an enzyme called Lactase, to break it down before it can be digested. How much lactose a person can consume comfortably, will depend on how much lactase they have in the lining of their digestive tract. If someone eats or drinks more lactose than they can digest, the lactose will stay in the digestive tract and continue its path to the large intestine where it is fermented by the healthy bacteria that live there. This creates gas as a side effect and contributes to bloating and abdominal pain. Lactose is also one of the FODMAPs that is known for attracting water into the digestive tract and causing diarrhoea.
Lactose intolerance is fairly common, especially in certain regions or populations, and has been extensively researched. As a result, we know that most people make some amount of lactase enzyme, and will do well with small amounts of milk in a cup of tea or coffee, but can find larger amounts problematic for the GI system.
Research shows that most people with lactose intolerance will tolerate about 4-7g of lactose per serve, and up to 12g spread out through the day. Although lactose tolerance varies, in our clinical experience we have found traditional strained Greek yogurt to be well tolerated by those on a fodmap diet. Of course, discussing with your own healthcare provider is always the best idea.
Siggi’s Icelandic Strained Yogurt
Per 1 cup, plain: 120 calories, 0 g fat, 6 g sugar, 23 g protein
Both Baumohl and Middleberg recommend this yogurt. “Personally, my favorite yogurt is Siggi’s Icelandic yogurt because of its creamy texture and rich taste,” Baumohl says. Middleberg notes that it’s low in sugar and contains five live active bacteria cultures.
Buy it: Price: $5.99
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How To Buy The Best Greek Yogurt
There are many different varieties of Greek yogurt available and some of this will come down to personal preference or taste.
Plain Greek yogurt is a good choice, as they contain good quantities of all the macronutrients: protein, fat and carbohydrates and no added sugar or sweeteners. You could add prepared fresh fruit such as bananas, apples or berries, if you like.
You can also buy varieties that are pre-flavoured with fruit purées or honey these are likely to be higher in sugar and calories, so may be best enjoyed as an occasional treat.
Low-fat or fat-free varieties will be lower in calories but bear in mind that they may also contain more sugar manufacturers often add this to make up the lost flavour when the fat is reduced. If youre looking to control your calorie intake, a smaller portion size of normal Greek yogurt may be best, and the fat content will provide longer satiety.
Check the labels to ensure that the variety you are buying contains probiotics for extra health benefits.
Not Our Favorite Organic Yogurt Brands
Each dairy farm producing yogurt and kefir in this category received either a 1 or 2 star ranking on Cornucopias Organic Yogurt Scorecard. Each dairy farm is marked individually.
A 2-star rating represents industrial-scale operations or others with outstanding questions regarding their compliance with USDA organic regulations. Private-label dairy products often fall into this category because they may be getting all, or some, of their milk from factory-farm sources. These brands may have a lack of control over their milk supply due to reduced oversight at the farms that supply their milk. None of the 2-cow rated brands was willing to participate in Cornucopias research.
A 1-star rating generally depends on industrial-scale dairy operations, some milking thousands of cows each, that almost universally skirt or misrepresent the pasture requirements. Transparency is a hallmark of the organic food movement, and Cornucopia believes it is essential that producers remain open with their customers to maintain the confidence consumers have in the organic seal. At a minimum, these operations are not following the spirit of the organic label. Generally, private-label products fall into this category because of their lack of transparency and the fact that most get some of their milk from factory-farm sources.
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Siggis Skyr Icelandic Vanilla Yogurt
Siggis is a trustworthy yogurt brand headquartered in Iceland. I like that the texture is thicker than regular Greek yogurt, and the slight sour natural taste. Siggis yogurt is made of whole milk and a dash of cream, which gives I think gives it a richer taste.
There are up to five live active bacteria cultures that may help with digestive health. Also, it is low in sugar and high in protein, which recommends it as a nutritious, filling breakfast food or snack. The yogurt is 100% natural, does not contain any GMOs, artificial sweeteners, or even preservatives.
It has the following 5 probiotic strains: S. thermophilus, L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, Bifidobacterium, L. acidophilus, L. paracasei.
Amount Per Serving:
Brown Cow Plain Cream Top Yogurt
Brown Cows Original Cream Top Yogurt is rich and satisfying because they use only whole milk. This yogurt is sweetened with cane sugar and maple syrup, and is made without the use of artificial growth hormones, artificial flavors or artificial sweeteners.
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