FEA­TURED NU­TRI­ENT: Pro­bi­otics

Better Nutrition - - HEALTHY DISH -

Yo­gurt is a rich source of friendly micro­organ­isms— called pro­bi­otics— that keep your gut healthy, im­prove di­ges­tion, and sup­port im­mu­nity. But to have any ben­e­fit, yo­gurt has to con­tain live cul­tures. The Na­tional Yo­gurt As­so­ci­a­tion has de­vel­oped a “Live and Ac­tive Cul­tures” ( LAC) seal that iden­ti­fies brands that con­tain sig­nif­i­cant lev­els of live and ac­tive cul­tures. The LAC la­bel means that the yo­gurt con­tains at least 100 mil­lion cul­tures per gram at the time of man­u­fac­ture and af­ter pas­teur­iza­tion. ( Re­mem­ber— a yo­gurt could be made with ac­tive cul­tures, but that doesn’t mean any are left by the time it gets to the store. You want prod­ucts that con­tain ac­tive cul­tures, and that’s what the LAC seal means.)

You can choose Greek or reg­u­lar yo­gurt based on per­sonal taste. Re­gard­less, I ad­vise avoid­ing no- fat and re­duced- fat ver­sions. Al­most al­ways, man­u­fac­tur­ers add more sugar when they take out the fat. Re­mem­ber, live yo­gurt cul­tures con­tain en­zymes that break down lac­tose, so many in­di­vid­u­als who are oth­er­wise lac­tose- in­tol­er­ant find that they can en­joy yo­gurt with no prob­lems.

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