In one corner sits the new and exotic Greek yoghurt, in the other an old favourite, the regular yoghurt. The bets are in and the outcome is confused. Both options are regarded as a healthy snack but, which one should we be eating? What’s the difference? Which yoghurt will be left standing in the ring?
What is Greek yoghurt?
Both Greek and regular yoghurts have good bacteria added to them to start the fermenting process, once thickened they are strained through a cheesecloth to remove the liquid whey part of milk. While regular yoghurt is strained twice, Greek yoghurt is strained 3 times which is why it has less fat, sugar, sodium and calcium, it’s also why it has a much tangier taste. While they both have numerous health benefits, they do differ in some areas.
How do they stack up nutrition wise?
- Protein- Greek yoghurt is the clear winner here; it really packs a punch with almost double the amount of protein when compared to regular protein. A typical serving of Greek yoghurt contains 15-20g of protein leaving its counterpart in the dark at only 9g protein per serve. This means Greek yoghurt will keep you fuller for longer.
- Carbs- if you want to go low-carb, then Greek yoghurt is the better choice. A serving of Greek yoghurt contains about half the carbs of regular yoghurt. A bonus with the Greek option is that it also contains less milk sugar and lactose due to the straining procedure, meaning it is a safer option for those who are lactose intolerant. Keep in mind though that either type of yoghurt can contain a high amount of cans if it is sweetened with added sugars. Either way chooses the yoghurt with the lowest sugar.
- Fat- so far it seems that Greek yoghurt is winning, but what about the fat content? An average serve of Greek yoghurt contains roughly 16g of saturated fat, that’s roughly 80% of your daily allowance. Always look for low-fat or fat free versions of Greek yoghurt.
- Sodium- Greek yoghurt has about half the amount of sodium when compared to regular yoghurts, although low-sodium versions of regular yoghurt are available. Choose the lowest sodium content as too much sodium in your diet can lead to high blood pressure and heart problems.
- Calcium- regular yoghurt provides roughly 30% of our daily intake of calcium. Greek yoghurt loses some of its calcium in the straining process but it still in the fight with 20% of our daily needs.
- Taste- taste is a huge factor when differing between the two. People who love the sweet taste of regular yoghurt will be in for a rude shock with that first spoonful of Greek yoghurt, it has a much tangier taste almost like sweetened sour cream. While some people love this new, less sweet taste others just can’t get used to it.
- Cost- because of the extra straining done with Greek yoghurt it is a little bit more pricy then your regular yoghurt.
- Texture- Greek yoghurt is much thicker and creamier then regular yoghurt which means you can use it in cooking as it won’t curdle.
It really comes down to personal preference; both are the ultimate health snack and contain loads of calcium. On one hand Greek yoghurt contains more protein, less fat and less sugar, while regular yoghurt has more calcium, is cheaper and tastes sweeter. When deciding just remember to choose the low/no-fat, no added sugar and the one with the lowest sodium content!