How Much Yogurt Should I Eat A Day To Lose Weight


How Much Yogurt Should I Eat A Day To Lose Weight? There is a preconceived notion that yogurt will help you to lose weight. The truth is that some yogurts may help you lose weight and others might not. Yogurts with live active cultures in them make a significant difference in fat loss while those which are artificially sweetened will hinder your progress. Eating yogurt is a great way to burn fat. Yogurt’s protein content is perfect for keeping you full without adding a lot of calories.

Is yogurt good for weight loss—yes or no?

In summary, yes, yogurt can be a great food for weight loss. “Yogurt is a good source of protein that helps with satiety,” says Maggie Michalczyk, RDN. That means it’ll keep you full for a significant amount of time.

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Yogurt also contains beneficial probiotics, which help keep your digestive system running smoothly, maintain your bodily immunity, and prevent bacterial infections like UTIs, Michalczyk adds.

Here’s a pro tip: Look for yogurts with a seal that says this yogurt contains “live and active cultures,” notes Michalczyk. Why? This guarantees that the yogurt will contain about 100 million probiotic cultures per gram, or lots of healthy bacteria for your gut.

Which types of yogurt are best for weight loss?

The trick is to pick a high-protein yogurt, which will keep you fuller for longer than one that has little to no protein and a lot of added sugar, Michalczyk says. “I like opting for low-sugar or no-sugar-added varieties and find it fun to add my own toppings like honey, berries, nuts and seeds.” Yum.

Need a sure-fire plan for when you’re shopping the yogurt aisles? Just make sure you’re looking at the box before you buy to make sure you’re getting a truly plain yogurt. “Check the back label: Some will have additives that you may want to avoid, including thickening agents like starches or gelatin, whey or milk protein concentrate, modified food starch or pectin,” Zellner says.

Is Greek yogurt *really* better than regular yogurt?

Greek yogurt might be better than regular yogurt if weight loss is your goal. Why? It helps you stay fuller for longer due to its high protein content.

“What makes Greek yogurt different from regular yogurt is that it’s thicker and creamier due to the extensive straining process,” Michalczyk says. “This is also what makes Greek yogurt richer in protein.” Noted!

Ways Yogurt Can Help You Lose Weight


It curbs appetite.

Woman eating yogurt

Protein is the secret ingredient to a snack that satisfies, researchers say. And yogurt may be the ultimate between-meal munchie. Women who indulged in a high-protein snack of yogurt in the afternoon reported greater feelings of satiety and ate 100 fewer calories at dinner than snackers served crackers or chocolate, according to a study in the journal Nutrition. And the higher the protein content of yogurt, the greater its influence on appetite control, research suggests. So reach for strained Greek or Icelandic Skyr varieties that provide two to three times the protein punch of regular, like these 15 Best Greek Yogurts, According to Nutritionists.


It can help you keep weight off.

stepping on scale

You’ve lost the weight. Now the real challenge: keeping it off. Yogurt can help, researchers say. In fact, former dieters who ate at least three daily servings of dairy maintained their weight loss while consuming 11 percent more calories than people who consumed less than one serving per day, according to a Nutrition & Metabolism study. The researchers attribute the dieters’ ability to eat more calories without weight gain to dairy’s ability to burn fat through enzyme inhibitors and amino acids unique to dairy protein, which act synergistically with calcium.


It can boost your weight loss efforts.

Woman measuring waistline

If vitamin D were your diet coach, he’d say something like: I’ll see your 5-pound weight loss goal and raise you another 5 pounds. That’s because supplementing with the nutrient, especially when you’re low in the sunshine vitamin, may enhance the effects of a reduced-calorie diet, a recent study suggests. Dieters who supplemented with vitamin D lost nearly three times as much weight as a group on the same diet who didn’t get the boost. And fortified low-fat yogurt is one of the best dietary sources of vitamin D.


It’s a staple of the healthiest people on earth.

Man scooping into yogurt fruit granola breakfast bowl

Think of the healthiest person you know. There’s a good chance you’ll find yogurt in their fridge. Compared with non-consumers, people who eat at least one serving of low-fat yogurt daily tend to weigh less, have smaller waists, and follow healthier diets overall, according to a recent study. They also have lower levels of bad cholesterol, blood sugar, and insulin resistance. Study authors say micronutrients in yogurt, including calcium, potassium, magnesium and the B vitamins, help improve diet quality and keep your metabolism going strong.


It can help you build calorie-burning muscle.

Woman with strong muscle arms doing push ups for exercise

Your bodybuilder friends will tell you it can’t be done: Build lean muscle and drop fat at the same time. Yogurt fans know otherwise. In fact, women who ate 6-7 servings of dairy as part of a 16-week diet and exercise program lost twice as much belly fat as a group who ate less than a single serving. And while the Greek-yogurt goddesses gained one and a half pounds of lean, sexy muscle, their low-dairy sisters lost as much muscle on the same program. Study authors say it’s a combination of calcium, vitamin D, and potent amino acids found in dairy that speed up fat burning and help retain lean muscle mass, making yogurt the ultimate body recomposition food.


Blog Image: Five Health and Weight Loss Benefits of Yogurt

Yogurt is a favorite snack – and with good reason. It’s loaded with beneficial nutrients that can help you slim down and stay healthy. Here are four top health and weight loss benefits of eating yogurt.

  1. Yogurt is loaded with vitamins: Just one serving of a high-quality yogurt can pack significant amounts of potassium, phosphorous, riboflavin, iodine, zinc, and vitamins B5 and B12, which maintains red blood cells and helps keep your nervous system functioning properly.
  2. Yogurt is high in protein: Getting plenty of protein is key for weight loss because it helps you to keep you feeling full and less likely to overeat or snack mindlessly. Keep in mind, though, that yogurt types and brands can vary greatly in their protein content. Greek yogurt, which is strained to make it thicker, has up to 20 grams of protein per container, while traditional yogurt may have as few as five grams.
  3. Yogurt is high in calcium: Research shows that getting plenty of calcium each day can increase your basal metabolic rate, which can significantly aid in weight loss. One study funded by the National Dairy Council showed that a high-calcium, low-calorie diet boosted fat loss by 42 percent, compared to only 8 percent for with a low-calorie diet that lacked in calcium.
  4. Yogurt can help you recover faster after a workout: Just a cup of yogurt a day can help your body recover faster after strenuous exercise, making it a great post-workout snack. That’s because the protein lends the amino acids that your muscles need to repair themselves and the healthy carbohydrates replace your muscles’ depleted energy stores. Pair it with a bottle of water, as research suggests that the protein in yogurt may help increase the amount of water absorbed by the intestines, improving hydration.
  5. Yogurt can help you lose weight: In one recent study, researchers with the University of Tennessee, Knoxville found that eating 18 ounces of yogurt a day helped participants lose 22 percent more weight and 81 percent more belly fat than dieters who didn’t eat yogurt. Yogurt-eating participants also retained one-third more calorie-torching lean muscle mass, which can help you maintain weight loss

5 Common Yogurt Mistakes to Avoid

Here are some common mistakes you’ll want to avoid when shopping for or enjoying yogurt.

Mistake 1: Choosing One High in Added Sugar

Navigating the yogurt section can be tricky. Flavor aside, there are so many options, from the style of yogurt — Greek, regular, Icelandic — to the source, whether it’s cow’s milk, goat milk, oat milk or soy-based, for example.

Another major factor is the added sugar content. This can range from 0 grams of added sugar to upwards of 20 grams per serving. For reference, women should consume no more than 25 grams of added sugar per day, while the limit for men is 36 grams, per the American Heart Association.

Fix it:​ Always check for the amount of added sugar on the nutrition facts panel before buying. Look for yogurts with 7 grams of added sugar or less — the lower the better for weight loss and overall health. Your best bet is choosing a plain flavor, which is free of added sugars, and then adding chopped fruit for sweetness.

Mistake 2: Picking a ‘Light’ Option Made With Artificial Sweeteners

Some yogurts are marketed as “light,” which may be an indication that they’ve been sweetened with artificial sweeteners. While keeping added sugar to a minimum is important, opting for yogurts that achieve this by using artificial sweeteners isn’t the answer.

Sucralose, aspartame and saccharin are common artificial additives used to sweeten a product while keeping the calorie and sugar content low. This ​sounds​ ideal for weight loss, but the trouble is they may actually confuse our brains and leave us craving sugar even more, according to Harvard Health Publishing.

Fix it:​ Always check the ingredients list for artificial sweeteners. Choose options that have been lightly sweetened with the real thing (again, aiming to keep the added sugar content as low as possible) or, better yet, go with the plain flavor, which will be free of added sugars ​and​ artificial sweeteners.

Mistake 3: Adding It to Sugary Smoothies or Parfaits

Incorporating nutritious yogurt into your breakfast loses its health appeal when its paired with sugary cereals or added to overly sweetened smoothies. Yes, you’re still getting all of the vitamins, minerals, probiotics and lean protein from yogurt, but you’re getting it with a side of added sugars and, in some cases, refined grains.

Parfaits are commonly made with granola, which is typically high in calories and added sugars, while smoothies can be sweetened with juices, honey, or sweetened nondairy milk.

Fix it:​ If it’s a parfait you’re after, use a whole-grain, high-fiber cereal along with freshly chopped fruit. When making smoothies, keep the added sugar content to a minimum by skipping honey or maple syrup and sweeten with fresh fruit instead. Opt for whole fruit over juices (you’ll get more fiber) and always use unsweetened nondairy milk or regular cow’s milk.

Mistake 4: Choosing Vegan or Dairy-Free Brands That Are Low in Protein

There’s no shortage of plant-based yogurts, but you have to be choosy if you’re looking for one with a decent dose of protein. Cow’s milk is a natural source of protein, but almond, oat and other plant-based yogurt alternatives come up short in this category, much like their “milk” counterparts. Many dairy-free yogurts contain 2 grams of protein or less.

Fix it:​ All is not lost. There are a few dairy-free options that are also rich in protein. Soy-based yogurts contain protein, and other types, like oat or almond, may have added protein from peas or faba beans. Always read the nutrition facts panel and look for 6 grams of protein or more.

Mistake 5: Overdoing It on Portion Size

One of the inherent benefits of yogurt is that it’s typically sold in small portions — perfect single-size containers made for one. But if you’re looking to stretch your grocery dollar, the larger-size tubs of yogurt are a more economical option. The downside to these tubs is that you lose that built-in portion control.

Fix it:​ Portion your yogurt out before eating (about a three-fourths cup serving), until you get used to eyeballing it. Or, when you get home from the grocery store, portion out the tub into small individual containers so you don’t have to think about it each time you want to enjoy your yogurt.

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