Go Greek! Greek Yogurt in the Diabetic Diet

By GabbyPA Latest Reply 2015-09-01 11:31:35 -0500
Started 2012-07-13 15:19:59 -0500

Protein-packed, low-fat Greek yogurt can be a good choice for people following a diabetes diet plan. Here's why.

By: Everyday Health http://www.everydayhealth.com/diabetes/greek-...

Smooth, creamy, thick — Greek yogurt is one of the hottest foods around, and its popularity shows no signs of abating. With a pudding-like texture and a slightly tart flavor, Greek yogurt also has more protein and fewer carbs and fewer sugars than traditional yogurt. This means that Greek yogurt can be appropriate for people with diabetes, says Tami Ross, RD, LD, a diabetes educator and vice-president of the American Association of Diabetes Educators.

"My patients love the consistency of it," Ross explains. "Even the patients who are not big on yogurt or milk products overwhelmingly seem to like Greek yogurt."

Greek yogurt's thick consistency comes from straining it to remove liquid whey. This process increases the amount of protein per serving and removes some of the carbohydrates, which people with diabetes must watch carefully.

"For folks with diabetes, the lower carbs are a plus," Ross notes. "You can work in the yogurt for a snack without having to account for so many carbohydrates."
The increased protein can also help you feel that you've had a more substantial snack, so you'll feel more satisfied and won't be hungry for something else quite so quickly. "In terms of promoting satiety and helping people feel full, it's great," Ross says. And starting your day with Greek yogurt may even help you manage your blood sugar throughout the day. Eating low-GI foods for breakfast helps prevent blood-sugar spikes later on, one recent study found.
Check the Labels on Greek Yogurt

Of course, not all Greek yogurts are created equal. With many brands and flavors on the market, it's important to read nutrition labels carefully to find one that will work with a diabetes diet. Carbohydrate content is the most important item to look for on the nutrition label of Greek yogurt, since it accounts for the sugar content that diabetics must watch. The best choice is always a nonfat version, Ross says.

In terms of flavor, plain varieties also work best for diabetics over the fruit-filled choices. "If there's fruit on the bottom, it means there's going to be more sugar and carbs in it," Ross warns. "If you really want a flavored yogurt, you can flavor it yourself with fruit at home."

Another alternative is to select vanilla or honey-infused Greek yogurts, which are usually lower in carbohydrates than those with fruit. "My patients feel like they are getting a decadent treat when they get to eat yogurt with honey on the bottom," Ross says. "It's almost too good to be true." To avoid accidentally exceeding your carbohydrate limit, you should also check the label to find out how many servings are in a single package "In some products, one container may be two servings, so you have to be careful," Ross says.
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29 replies

Kalisiin 2015-09-01 11:31:35 -0500 Report

Disagree about the lowfat option. They tend to be higher in carbs. I flavor mine with either sugar-free jello powder, or with Whey protein isolate powder. Both add flavor without carbs. I have also been known to add my fiber supplement to the yogurt.

Now before you say "ewwwww: try it sometime. Seriously. This was an accidental yummy for me. The first time I did this, I did not mean to. And it wasn't bad. It was better than putting it in a glass of water and chugging it, I can tell you that!

GabbyPA 2012-10-08 10:30:31 -0500 Report

Some one had mentioned Fage yogurt, so I have gotten the 0% fat one and plain. I found if I added some peanut butter to it and a touch of agave or some truvia and I am in heaven. Why has no one done peanut butter yogurt? It is sooooo good.

Graylin Bee
Graylin Bee 2012-07-19 00:07:42 -0500 Report

Siggi's Icelandic style skyr strained non-fat yogurt is a little thicker than most Greek style yogurts. They use Agave nectar for sweetening. It has 11 grams of carbs and 14 grams protein in a 5.3 oz single serving container of their Orange & Ginger variety. So far its the only one I've tried. They also have plain, blueberry and a few other flavors. It doesn"t seem to taste as tart as some of the Greek yogurts do to me or as cloyingly sweet as some can. Besides just eating it alone, I sometimes use it as a spread on apple slices.

Sheina 2012-07-18 23:41:42 -0500 Report

Forgot to mention that this high protein yogart helps my tiredness. Probably because protein is lasting energy.

Sheina 2012-07-18 23:39:36 -0500 Report

I love these brands and do so much better when I start my day with the 2%. I use it for sour cream when I'm dying for some and can't stand it any more.

MrsCDogg 2012-07-16 11:27:05 -0500 Report

I love Greek yogurt! I never buy the flavored but stick to the plain. I really think I could sit down and eat the entire 32oz container…lol

Type1Lou 2012-07-14 17:24:58 -0500 Report

Fage is also my favorite brand of Greek yogurt. I find it less tart than most of the other Greek yogurts. (Check www.fageusa.com for info and store locations) Also, one way to "sweeten" Plain Greek yogurt without adding many carbs is to add a spoonful of flavored sugar-free gelatin to it…got that tip from the magazine Diabetic Living…now why didn't I think of that?

TsalagiLenape 2012-07-14 08:31:33 -0500 Report

Ok with this wording "Diabetes Diet" I hate the word diet for it implies dying (IMO). Yet with the various ones I have read seen and checked over I have yet to find the right combo for myself. I am now looking over jayabee's. So which one actually makes it sweet and simple and understandable. For saying carbs/proteins and etc is like talking in a foreign language to a person who only speaks English. (IMO) Thus its so confusing and just makes me so tired to quit working it out.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2012-07-13 23:23:53 -0500 Report

I won't touch it unless they make it lactose free. I am now eating yogurt but Yo Plait is the only one that is lactose free.

Kirla 2012-07-13 19:47:57 -0500 Report

I used to use the Greek gods plain Greek yogurt to make my ice cream with. I now use chobani. I can only use the plain ones. The other kinds spike my blood sugar.

DeanaG 2012-07-13 17:13:36 -0500 Report

Sounds like I need to give it a try.
I add ground flax seed and some sunflower seeds to my yogurt now.

Irish1951 2012-07-13 17:03:35 -0500 Report

I have used the Dannon Oikos for lunch for months. I also add Chia seeds to the yogurt as my additive for the extra boost. I have tried other brands but prefer the Dannon.

re1ndeer 2012-07-13 15:47:03 -0500 Report

I love FAGE Greek yogurt, it's the only greek yogurt I can eat plain with a spoon. And as their ad says, "If you haven't tried FAGE Greek yogurt, you haven't had Greek Yogurt."

GabbyPA 2012-07-13 15:48:04 -0500 Report

I have seen that one, but I have not tried it yet. I like the thickness of them and the tang. Can't go back to the other kind after you eat this, that is for sure.

GabbyPA 2012-07-13 15:21:30 -0500 Report

I also found that it is one of the few yogurts that actually had LIVE and ACTIVE cultues in it for your gut flora. I like Choboni and Dannon's Oikois (sorry for the spelling there) Those are the two that have done best for me.

IronOre 2012-07-16 19:28:08 -0500 Report

that sounds kind of gross, doesn't it? "Live and Active"

GabbyPA 2012-07-18 09:08:23 -0500 Report

I suppose but that is what you want in your gut to keep you running smooth and healthy. There are a lot of that advertize they are good for you that way, but only the ones with live and active cultures are really going to help.
Actually eating live food is far better for you than dead food. So as long as it isn't trying to eat me back, I guess I'm okay with that.

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