Yoghurt is a delicious addition to your diet. High in calcium and beneficial cultures like probiotics, it’s not only great for your waist line, but also for keeping your gut healthy.
Recent studies have actually found that adding yoghurt to your diet aids healthy weight loss, due to the high ratio of protein to fat in a typical tub of the white stuff.
The consistency and texture also makes yoghurt a weight loss winner as it’s something that is enjoyable to eat.
This makes it an easy choice as a healthy snack over something less nutritious.
You’ll also find that plain yoghurt can be added to a whole bunch of your favourite meals, replacing high fat components like cream or mayonaise without compromising on the taste or texture.
Or try a tablespoon in your daily Healthy Mummy smoothie for an extra hit of protein and calcium.
Especially great for pregnant women or breastfeeding mums who tend to need a calcium boost. Yum!
Choosing a yoghurt can be tricky! A visit to the dairy aisle at your local supermarket can be a mind boggling experience as you’re faced with hundreds of different coloured packages, all vying for a place in your trolley.
The best rule of thumb when choosing commercial yoghurt, is to always choose one with good bacteria (look for words like ‘probiotic’, and ‘acidophilus bifidus’ on the label) as it helps boost your immune system and keep your tummy healthy.
It’s also a good idea to steer clear diet, no-fat yoghurt. Although this seems like a strange suggestion when trying to lose weight, when you check the label, you’ll see that a huge amount of artificial sweetener is used (up to 8 teaspoons in some brands!).
Avoiding artificial sweeteners where possible is best for healthy weight loss as the way the body responds to these foreign substances isn’t fully understood and consumption of them doesn’t appear to lead to long term, sustained results.
Jalna yoghurt is a fantastic brand, available at your local supermarket in a whole bunch of different varieties. Alternatively, why don’t you try making your own?
Making your own yoghurt isn’t just cost effective, it also means you get to see exactly what goes into your pot (a very rare event in today’s, pre-packaged food world!)
It’s very straight forward and you don’t need any special equipment, except some clean jars. I bought mine for $3.95 from Target.
This is what you need to do!
- 4 cups of milk (full fat – approx.162 cal per 250ml or skim – approx 90 cal per 250ml). The amount of milk you need depends on how big your jars are so this can be adjusted accordingly. Just keep the ratio of ingredients the same.
- 1 tbsp. live yoghurt, preferably organic. You can use Jalna or any other probiotic brand. This tbsp. serves as your yoghurt ‘starter’ culture, and will help the good bacteria to grow.
- 2 tbsp. milk powder (full fat or skim). This helps thicken the yoghurt so that it sets firmly and tastes creamy. You can find milk powder next to the long life milk at the supermarket.
Directions (It’s easy, I promise!)
- Pre-heat your oven to between 180-200 C. Once the oven is hot, switch if off but keep the door closed. You’ll be using this warm, enclosed space for your yoghurt to set.
- Pour milk and milk powder into a small saucepan and whisk to combine.
- Turn on the heat and bring milk to the point before it boils. You’ll know it’s almost there when you see small bubbles begin to form around the edges. Don’t worry if it does boil properly, you’ll just need to remove any skin from the top.
- Once it’s started bubbling, turn the heat off but leave saucepan on the warm burner for a couple of minutes to gently simmer.
- After 2-3 minutes, remove saucepan from the stove to begin cooling. If you have a food thermometer, you can stick this in to test the temperature (you want it to be 43C). I don’t have a thermometer so I just use the finger test. Keep dipping your pinkie into the mix until it’s cool enough to leave in for 10 seconds without burning.
- Place your live yoghurt (the yoghurt ‘starter’) into a bowl or jug and strain the milk mixture over the top.
- Whisk to combine.
- Pour the mixture into your pre-washed and sterilised jar(s) (fill jars with boiling water for 5 minutes or place in a warm oven before use).
- Wrap your jar(s) in a teatowel or hand towel and place in the warm oven.
- Leave your yoghurt in the oven for a minimum of 8 hours (overnight is perfect), then transfer to the fridge.
That’s it! Fresh, home made yoghurt in a jiffy. You can even set a tablespoon aside for next time to use as your yoghurt starter.
Once you’ve got your yoghurt, there are so many things you can do with it. Why don’t you take it for a test run with this yummy banana, blueberry and yoghurt Healthy Mummy smoothie recipe.
- 1/2 cup of milk
- 2 tbsp yoghurt
- Half a ripe banana
- 1 cup of frozen blueberries
- 2 tbsp Healthy Mummy Vanilla mix
Simply blend all ingredients for 2 minutes and enjoy! Yum!
For more delicious recipes, check out the online recipes section.
If you are ready to lose weight then the Lose Baby Weight plans offer a healthy and safe exercise and diet routine that are safe in breastfeeding and can help support your milk supply.