(Natural News) Looking for a great late-night snack that won’t make you feel guilty? Try yogurt – it will satisfy your hunger without drastically increasing your calorie intake. Additionally, yogurt is also nutritious. Still unconvinced? Here are five more reasons why yogurt is a great late-night snack:
It helps you sleep: If you find it hard to sleep at night, eat yogurt before bed. Yogurt contains tryptophan, an amino acid that helps produce sleep-inducing and relaxing chemicals known as serotonin and melatonin. These chemicals have a calming effect on the brain that helps you sleep well.
It is good for people who are lactose intolerant: Warm milk is often recommended before going to bed, especially for those who have a hard time falling asleep. However, people who are lactose intolerant can’t drink milk, making yogurt a great alternative. Like milk, yogurt is also a great source of calcium, which is known for keeping the bones strong. However, this does not mean that yogurt contains no lactose at all. It’s just yogurt has lactic acid bacteria that converts lactose to lactic acid, which reduces the amount of lactose in yogurt. Most lactose-intolerant people can tolerate yogurt in moderation.
It aids in digestion: Similar to kefir, yogurt is a natural probiotic food because it contains good live bacteria. Probiotics are important in building and keeping the gut healthy. Having a healthy gut is also important for overall health, and poor gut health has been associated with many health problems, such as immunity and thyroid problems. Eating yogurt before bed also reduces gastrointestinal problems.
It helps you manage your weight: Eating yogurt before bed — or even throughout the day — will not lead to weight gain. This is because it is relatively low in calories.
It helps build muscle: Yogurt is rich in protein; it provides 11 grams (g) of proteins for every eight-ounce serving. Protein aids in lean muscle development. Having yogurt before bed may also help prevent muscle loss during sleep, keeping them in good shape.
Choosing the best type of yogurt
Yogurt is indeed a healthy food. However, not all types of yogurt are the same. Here are some tips when buying yogurt:
Read the ingredients list: Try to buy yogurt that has few ingredients. Avoid all yogurts that have any type of added sugar on the ingredient list. If they have sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, or fruit juice, — all of which are different names of added sugar — on the list, do not buy them. The best type is plain and unsweetened yogurt.
Check its nutrient content: Aside from the sugar content, also check for the nutrition facts, so you would see how much calcium or protein a yogurt has.
Look for live cultures: Only buy yogurts that contain live cultures and avoid processed ones. Yogurts that have been heat-treated or pasteurized after the probiotics are added do not contain these beneficial bacteria because they were killed during the process.
Avoid regular yogurt: Greek yogurt is considered healthier than regular yogurt. This is because the former is more concentrated than the latter as it is strained more times, removing some of the whey and lactose. It also contains more protein and has about half the carbohydrates compared to regular yogurt. You can also opt for dairy-free yogurts. They are plant-based, much lower in fat, and do not contain lactose.
Read more news stories and studies on the health benefits of eating yogurt by going to Yogurt.news.