The Truth About Yogurt

I’ll admit it- I have personal vendetta against yogurt. Yogurt is sneaky, and you know that I don’t like to be duped.

You may have heard my rant before, but I feel the need to share it again because of the Biggest Loser’s frustrating (and ridiculously cheesy) in-show promotion of Yoplait yogurt as a healthy snack alternative.

Despite what all the advertisements in Real Simple say, despite what the Biggest Loser may approve, fruit yogurt is not a healthy snack alternative. I know it comes in those convenient little plastic cups and in flavors like apple turnover and red velvet cake that make your taste buds dance. I know that that thick, creamy spoonful is like balm to the souls of those of us with texture issues. I know that your kids will gobble it up without complaint and its easy to chuck into a lunchbox on your way out the door.

As an ex-lover of yogurt, I know. It looks like the perfect, weight-loss snack. But have you ever stopped to look at the labels on those individual-sized yogurt containers? If you get the garden-variety yogurt, chances are it will contain as much sugar as a pack of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. If you get the non-fat, 80 calorie kind, eat two of them and you’ve consumed the sugar equivalent of a Snicker’s bar. Even organic or Greek yogurts that have sweet varieties contain almost as much sugar as their more commercial counterparts. We try to stay away from those check out line candy confections, and we certainly don’t want our children to have them, but fruit yogurt, though containing more essential nutrients than a candy bar, is certainly not the best alternative to a candy craving.

What about the additives that have to be injected into the stuff to make it taste so delectable or have so few calories? Seriously, is no one else a little suspicious what they have to put into those things to make them only 80 calories (or for that matter, any “low-fat” food that does not occur that way on its own)? How do they get yogurt to taste like red velvet cake without actually using any of the ingredients of cake? And where are the fruit pieces in flavors like “apple turnover” or “blackberry cobbler”?

There is also the issue of probiotics, which I admittedly don’t fully understand because when it comes to digestion issues, let’s just say that I’ve never had a problem keeping the pipes a-flowin’. My body has generally done pretty well in that area. BUT, I can say, that that contents of your everyday fruit yogurt cup has had the bajeezes pasteurized out of it, so there’s not going to be a whole lot of probiotics left. There are much more natural, nutritional ways to help digestion (I was about to say something snarky here, as if this post doesn’t have enough snark to go around.)

[After all of that, I must once again announce my supreme disappointment in the Biggest Loser. Do you really think Bob Harper sits around eating Danimals or Gogurt in flavors like Key Lime Pie and Triple Berry Torte? Candy bars aren’t going to make these contestants lose weight, and neither will yogurt packed with sugar and preservatives.]

Moral of the story: READ THE NUTRITION LABELS! Don’t believe everything that the Biggest Loser or Real Simple Magazine or the television commercials tell you. Those nutrition labels don’t lie and you have a brain- believe those instead.



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