Many of us drink yoghurt and enjoy drinking it. Yoghurt is good for the body and if you recall, I mentioned it as part of foods that give you a fresh and younger-looking skin. Yoghurt is made from milk and it could be a very good source of calcium and proteins which we all need for our bones and body tissues. Some of them are even used as probiotics these days and consuming them only does one thing to the body – a world of good.
Another very good thing about yoghurt is that, even though it is being made from milk, people that are lactose intolerant can take it and still derive all the important nutrients of milk from it. When yoghurt is being made, the lactose in the milk gets converted to lactic acid — making it safe for lactose intolerant people to consume. You can count on me to write about the full health benefits and nutritional facts of yoghurt.
Why should you stop buying some Yoghurt brands?
First of all, I am wrong to be calling them Yoghurt because many of them are not even what they say they are. To build a good premise for my argument, let me give you the definition and properties of yoghurt.
What is Yoghurt?
It is a custard-like food with a bit sour flavor, prepared from milk curdled by bacteria, especially Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus, and often sweetened or flavoured.
Many yoghurt brands that you would see in many developing countries including Nigeria make products that are called yoghurt, but not yoghurt in the real sense. This could be dangerous for someone that was given medical advise to consume yoghurt as part of his diet. Of course, he thinks he buys and drinks yoghurt but what he has been buying is something else. Our regulatory bodies should do more to ensure that our companies make labels that are correct, accurate and not misleading.
Many of these companies make their yoghurt the same way, but what is different is what they do to it after production.
What Defines A Good Yoghurt?
A good yoghurt should contain the live, active bacteria that was used to ferment the yoghurt after production. These beneficial active cultures promote a healthy intestinal environment. This is the reason any good yoghurt manufacture would write on their label that you keep the Yoghurt refrigerated to slow down or halt the activities of the microorganisms. If you do not do this, the microorganisms continue to ferment the Yoghurt outside the refrigerator and in no time, it spoils.
This is how yoghurt should be but what you often see here is “yoghurt” packed in bundles and left on the shelf at different stores. Some even pack them in stacks under the sun and leave them there until whenever they decide to refrigerate them. Of course, they are not going to get spoilt because the manufacturers have killed the microorganisms after production.
What Brands of Yoghurt Should You Stop Buying/Drinking?
I am not going to be mentioning brand names here but will only be telling you what to look out for on different brands of Yoghurt to decide whether to buy it or not.
Since the microorganisms have been killed, there is no bacteria to make it spoil at normal room temperature, therefore they can be stored anyhow. If you see any yoghurt that is not in the refrigerator, DO NOT BUY THEM — they are not yoghurt. However, if you just want to take something that tastes like yoghurt but do not have all the health benefits, go ahead and buy.
Check the labels of the yoghurt, if it does not contain a warning that you should keep refrigerated, you may want to avoid it. Some may include a statement like “best served chilled” but it is not the same as a statement telling you that your product remains in good state only if you refrigerate it.
Check the expiry date: when you see yoghurt with 6-month expiry date stored in the normal room temperature, don’t buy it. A real yoghurt can only stay for about 2-3 months if it is frozen and many manufacturers would not even want to honestly advise you to freeze yoghurt. It has effects on the texture and ultimately, the mouth-feel of the product. I’ll advise that you only refrigerate yoghurt if you want to enjoy it. It would only be able to stay for about 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator.
Finally, a one litre bottle of real yoghurt would normally be more expensive than one that has had its beneficial organisms killed.
COMING SOON: The Quick Way To Make Your Own Yoghurt At Home