Friday, April 27, 2012

Myth: For yogurt with the lowest amount of sugar, artificially sweetened yogurt is the best choice.

Answer: BUSTED!

Yogurt, especially non-fat or low-fat, is a healthy choice for getting calcium in your diet. However, the Nutrition Facts label doesn’t tell you all you need to know about how much sugar is in the yogurt you buy. The number next to “sugars” tells you both how much natural AND added sugar is in yogurt. A 6-ounce container of yogurt has about 12 grams of natural sugar called lactose. Any amount over 12 grams reflects sugar added to yogurt – usually about 14 grams or 3½ teaspoons. You can read the ingredient label to see what kind of sugar it is.

If you are not keen about choosing artificially sweetened yogurt or you don’t like the taste, here are some options for you:
    yogurt with fruit and granola
  • Choose non-fat or low-fat plain yogurt and add fresh fruit like diced strawberries or frozen, canned fruit in juice. Why? Fruit adds sweetness along with vitamins like Vitamin C, and fiber which fills you up.
  • Add cinnamon to non-fat or low-fat plain yogurt.
  • Add fresh fruit and cinnamon!
  • Add a small amount of dried fruit for sweetness.
  • Add a small amount of vanilla extract and a small amount of low-fat granola for some crunch and sweetness.
  • Add a small amount of lemon or orange zest to yogurt along with fruit.
  • Add pureed banana.

Visit for more information about nutrition and health.

Contributor: Ellen Schuster, M.S., R.D., Associate State Specialist, University of Missouri Extension,, 573-882-1933

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