Yogurt: Introduction, Preparation of Yogurt, History of Yogurt, Nutrition and Health (For CBSE, ICSE, IAS, NET, NRA 2022)

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  • Yogurt is a fermented slightly acid often flavored semisolid food.
  • It is made of milk and milk solids using cultures of two bacteria:
    • Lactobacillus bulgaricus
    • Streptococcus thermophilus
  • In simple words one can say that it is a food produced by bacterial fermentation of milk.
  • The bacteria used to make yogurt are known as yogurt cultures.
  • It is frequently used as a part of:
    • A meal or snack.
    • Component of sauces and desserts.
  • There is less milk sugar (lactose) in yogurt than milk.


Ingredients for Making Yogurt


  • Lactic acid is produced by the fermentation of sugars in the milk.
  • This in turn acts on milk protein to give yogurt its texture and characteristic tart flavor.
  • The milk most commonly used to make yogurt is cow milk.
  • Other animals՚ milk used for producing Yogurt:
    • Water buffalo
    • Goats
    • Ewes
    • Mares
    • Camels
    • Yaks
    • Plant milks
  • The milk used may be pasteurized, homogenized or raw.
  • Milk is first heated, usually to about 85 °C (185 °F) , which is done to denature the mil proteins so that they don՚t form curds.
  • The milk is allowed to cool to about 45 °C (113 °F) once it is heated.
  • To allow fermentation to occur, the bacterial culture is mixed in, and that temperature of 45 °C is maintained for 4 to 12 hours.

History of Yogurt

  • It has been eaten for thousands of years.
  • Similar to yogurt, the cuisine of ancient Greece included a dairy product known as oxygala.
  • Oxygala was mentioned to be consumed with honey during (AD 129 – c. 200/c. 216) .
  • Colombo Yogurt was originally delivered around New England in a horse-drawn wagon.
  • Yogurt՚s popularity in the United States was enhanced in the 1950s and 1960s.
  • Colombo Yogurt sweetened the yogurt and added fruit preserves due to the fact the plain yogurt still proved too sour for the American palate.
  • Yogurt had become a common American food item by the late 20th century.

Nutrition and Health

  • Yogurt (plain yogurt from whole milk) is:
    • 81 % water
    • 9 % protein
    • 5 % fat
    • 4 % carbohydrates
    • Including 4 % sugars (table)
  • A serving of yogurt is a rich source of vitamin B12 (31 % DV) and riboflavin (23 % DV) :
    • Moderate content of protein,
    • phosphorus,
    • Selenium (14 to 19 % DV; table)

Vitamins and Minerals Found in Conventional Yogurt

Vitamin B12

Found almost exclusively in animal foods.


Products obtained from milk are excellent sources of easily absorbable calcium.


  • Yogurt is a good source of phosphorus.
  • Phosphorous plays a vital role in biological processes.


Products obtained from milk are the main source of riboflavin (vitamin B2) as far the modern diets are concerned.

Health Benefits of Yogurt

Digestive Health

  • Probiotics may help in alleviating the symptoms of lactose intolerance with improvement in digestion of lactose.
  • Probiotic yogurt with bifidobacteria is also useful in reducing the symptoms of Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) .
  • Probiotic yogurt with bifidobacteria also helps in reducing constipation.

Osteoporosis and Bone Health

  • A condition characterized by weak and brittle bones is known as Osteoporosis.
  • Osteoporosis is common among older adults and is the main risk factor for bone fractures.
  • Dairy is associated with higher bone density and hence considered protective against osteoporosis.

Blood Pressure

Consumption of yogurt in a regular manner may lower blood pressure.

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