The Benefits of Yogurt for Crohn’s Disease
According to recent research, adding certain kinds of yogurt to your diet may help ease the symptoms of crohn’s disease.
Yogurt contains Probiotics, bacteria that are beneficial to a person’s health, either through protecting the body against pathogenic bacteria or assisting in recovery from an illness.
Several studies have shown that probiotics can be effective for many gastrointestinal illnesses (Crohns, ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, antibiotic associated diarrhea) and allergies.
The easiest way to incorporate probiotics into to your diet is through fermented milk products.
Yogurts containing the bacteria lactobacilli and bifidobacteria show the most promise.
Daily consumption of yogurt with active probiotic bacterium, will maintain beneficial long term levels in the stomach and intestines.
Yogurt is made by adding cultures of certain bacteria to milk. These microorganisms convert the lactose in the milk to lactic acid.
The lactic acid gives yogurt its characteristic tart taste and causes the milk to form a soft curd.
Yogurt is preferable to supplements. Live and active cultures flourish in yogurt but have trouble withstanding the stress of freeze-drying into supplements.
Natural yogurt can supplement the friendly flora in your system, which will naturally start reducing the Candida bacteria which in turn leads to Crohn’s symptoms.
Many Crohn’s patients assume that because they are lactose intolerant, they can’t eat yogurt. This is not necessarily true. Yogurt culturing creates the lactase enzyme and helps digest the lactose.
Crohn’s patients who cannot digest lactose (milk sugar) may be able to enjoy yogurt with live and active cultures. The live cultures in yogurt break down most of the milk’s lactose into lactic acid. By taking away lactose, live and active cultures help create a food that may not cause the same bloating, cramps, gas and/or diarrhea as milk does in people who are lactose intolerant. Others with more severe lactose intolerance may not be able to eat yogurt. We recommend speaking with a physician about any concerns you might have.
Important! Eat homemade yogurt not commercial yogurt
Homemade yogurt that has been fermented for a minimum of 24 hours contains the most beneficial probiotics.
Buy a yogurt maker so that you can make your own nutritious yogurt doing it the 24 hour way instead of just buying it at the store. Making it yourself is easy once you get used to it.
The great thing about making yogurt yourself is that you save money over store bought products and your homemade cultured products are fresher and healthier. You decide which flavorings and sweeteners to add to your yogurt.
Homemade yogurt is important for those suffering from Crohn’s disease. The little amount of extra effort that it takes to produce homemade yogurt is extremely beneficial to those suffering from Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis and other intestinal health issues.
1. Homemade yogurt is full of helpful strains of probiotic bacteria, usually Lactobacillus Bulgaricus, Lactobacillus Bulgaricus, and Steptococcus Thermophilus. These powerful probiotic bacteria are useful in displacing bad bacteria in the colon and play an important role in assimilation of B-vitamins. Commercial yogurts are sometimes heat-treated or pasteurized after production, thereby killing any probiotic bacteria that are so necessary to maintaining good health.
2. Homemade yogurt contains no lactose. Home made yogurt is fermented longer than the standard yogurt, allowing the bacteria additional time to break down the lactose in the milk. This results in a yogurt that is easier to digest and absorb in the small intestine thereby leaving less to cause trouble in the large intestine. As the yogurt ferments, the lactose is converted into lactic acid. Homemade yogurt can be made to eliminate virtually all of the lactose and will be much fresher than anything you can buy in a store.
On the other hand, virtually all commercial yogurts have way too much lactose because they are not 24 hour fermented.
In addition, commercial yogurt standards are not stringent enough upon the quality and quantity of live beneficial or probiotic bacteria. In fact, some commercial yogurts add ‘pima’, a slimy substance to thicken the yogurt. This is in addition to the added fruits and sugars which attract the beneficial bacteria away from the lactose they are supposed to be breaking down.
This superb yogurt maker will make 2 quarts of yogurt in 4.5 hours. It is the only yogurt maker available using the “water bath” system to create an even heating wall to make perfect yogurt every time.
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If you do eat commercial yogurt….
Be aware that lots of yogurt is little more than junk food packaged as healthy food.
Check the label to be sure that the yogurt contains “live, active cultures”. Yogurt products that do not have live cultures will not be beneficial to replenishing healthy bacteria.
Eat only plain, unflavored yogurt that contains live cultures or bacteria. The live cultures are good for any digestive system, including one that is ravaged by Crohn’s.
Get plain yogurt and add fresh fruit or a natural sweetener like like agave or maple syrup. Steer clear of ‘fruit on-the-bottom yogurts as well, which is just like eating artificial jelly. It contains fruit, but it does not count toward the recommended daily servings of fiber, and it’s nutritional value is severely compromised by the artificial sweeteners.
There is one commercial yogurt product that I would recommend.
That yogurt product is Dannon Activia produced by the Dannon company.
Activia is a great-tasting low fat yogurt from Dannon that contains Bifidus Regularis, a natural probiotic culture that can help regulate your digestive system by helping reduce long intestinal transit time. Specifically, it adds beneficial bacteria to the colon, which allows material to pass through the colon more quickly and easily. Like all probiotics, Bifidus Regularis is beneficial to the body. It replaces microorganisms that are necessary to aid in digestion replacing “good” bacteria that can be depleted by age or antibiotic use.. Because Dannon developed Bifidus Regularis specifically for its Activa line, it cannot be found in other products. Bifidus Regularis, available only in Activia, is a live “friendly” bacteria that’s beneficial when eaten daily.
A study published in Microbial Ecology in Health and Disease shows that Bifidus Regularis is successful in moving material through the colon quickly and efficiently, a factor of digestion that is called “transit time.” The faster the transit time, the healthier the digestive tract.
Activia is clinically proven to help naturally improve slow transit time and that bloated feeling, when eaten every day for 15 days.
If you are lactose intolerant but do tolerate other yogurt products, it is likely that you will also tolerate Activia. However, people under severe lactose intolerance, may not be able to eat Activia.
Important! Purchase Activa light as opposed to Activa regular.
Activia Light has the same number of Bifidus Regularis cultures but 35% less calories and fewer grams of sugar and is therefore a better choice for those with Crohn’s disease.
Other good yogurt choices
1. Goat milk yogurts
Yogurt already has the lactose broken down so for lactose intolerant people eating yogurt should not be an issue, if it is or If you suffer from severe lactose intolerance or If you’re cow casein intolerant (versus lactose intolerantthen there’s a possibility they have an allergy to actual dairy (the casein) and not the lactose then you can try using goat milk to make yogurt. There are different types of casein the casein that’s found in cow milk is the one that people generally react to, and for someone who has a casein sensitivity, goat milk may provide an alternative to which they don’t react.
- The fat globules in goats milk do not cluster together, making them easier to digest.
- Goat’s milk contains only trace amounts of an allergenic casein protein, alpha-S1, found in cow’s milk.
- Goats milk casein is more similar to human milk.
- The protein is structured totally different in goat’s milk. Goat milk does not contain the complex proteins that are the main stimulants of allergic reactions to cow dairy products.
A highly recommended Goat’s milk yogurt product is Redwood Hill Farm goat yogurts from California
This product is easier to digest for some people than cow milk products and tastes just as good if not better.
Redwood Hill Farm Goat Milk Yogurt is distributed across the United States and is available at health and natural food stores as well as independent grocers. Click here to locate a store near you that sells this supreme product.
2. Soy yogurts
If consuming dairy products keeps you locked in the bathroom due to lactose intolerance, you may wonder how you can enjoy your favorite treats and beverages when eating anything with dairy produces flatulence, diarrhea, and pain. Yes, you can still enjoy your ‘dairy’ treats without the gastrointestinal problems–with a bit of label checking and research and some soy substitutes usually found in the dairy section of most supermarkets.
Soy yogurts, like other soy products, have been gaining in popularity, and most of the major brands, such as Silk and Whole Soy, have added the same kinds of bacteria to their yogurts as their animal-milk counterparts.
Soy yogurt is a yummy substitution for regular yogurt–all the benefits and taste of yogurt without the lactose. You can find soy yogurt with regular yogurt in the yogurt section of most supermarkets.
3. Coconut yogurt
If you love to eat yogurt, but you can’t because of the dairy, so you look for a non-dairy yogurt and all you see is soy-based products and…you’ve got an aversion to soy as well. There are thousands of people who have problems with both dairy and soy. There are even more who want an alternative to dairy, but don’t enjoy the taste of soy. Enter So Delicious Coconut Milk Yogurt produced by Turtle Mountain Inc.
So Delicious Coconut Milk Yogurt is:
- Dairy Free / Lactose Free
- Soy Free
- Gluten Free
- Rich in Medium Chain Fatty Acids
- Excellent Source of Vitamin B12 (vegetarian friendly)
- Formulated for Maximum Calcium Absorption
- Contains Pre- and Probiotics for Enhanced Intestinal Health
- Cholesterol Free
- Certified Vegan
So Delicious Coconut Milk Yogurt is available in nationwide. Click here to locate a store near you that sells this supreme product.