What’s up with Greek yogurt?

A friend recently posed this question to me.  I just love questions like that.  Not because I always know the answer, because I usually don’t know, or I just don’t think I know enough.  It turns out I like doing research on things I’m curious about and I like being helpful. 🙂

I know why I like Greek yogurt.  It’s creamier, thicker, and richer.  But it does have some health benefits too.

Here is a break down of what I think are the most important stats when it comes to yogurt.  The first two are your standard plain fat-free yogurt.  The following four numbers (3-6) are fat-free Greek yogurt.  All stats are for 6 oz. servings, even if they aren’t sold in that serving size.  I converted them for comparative purposes.  How nerdy of me. 🙂

Calories Fat Sugars Protein % of daily Calcium
1. Dannon (All Natural) 80 0 12g 9g 30%
2. Yoplait* 98 0 13g 11g 30%
3. Greek Gods 60 0 7g 6g 25%
4. Fage* 90 0 6.75 15g 18%
5. Chobani 100 0 7g 18g 20%
6. Oikos** 105 0 7.5g 18g 23%

*Individually packaged in 8 oz containers.

**Individually packaged in 4 oz. containers

The most notable difference is the amount of sugar in plain non-fat versus plain Greek yogurt.  In most cases, the amount of protein is greater in Greek  yogurt, except in the case of Greek God’s Greek yogurt, which puzzled me a bit.  The only reason I can think of is that because their calorie content is lower than the other Greek yogurt, some of the protein (almost 2/3) is removed during the process of reducing the calories.  On the other hand, this yogurt has the most calcium, although the difference is pretty negligible when compared to the Oikos.

That being said, it seems that there are obvious health benefits of the Greek yogurt, mainly with the lesser sugar content.  However, if you’re a fan of sweetened and flavored yogurt the Greek yogurt can pack in almost as much sugar as the traditional yogurt.  Flavored Greek yogurt ranges anywhere from 16-23 grams of sugar in their flavored varieties, based on my observations.  Traditional flavored yogurt fall in the 25-30 range.

But like all things in life, there is a trade-off.  Greek yogurt is typically more expensive than plain yogurt; sometimes even twice or more than twice as expensive per individual serving.  I try to be as thrifty as possible, within reason.  I believe in buying quality foods because it’s a good investment in my health, which is worth more than saving money only to fill it with questionable chemicals.  I typically buy Greek yogurt, but not always.  If I do not buy Greek, it’s Organic and plain. Mostly I buy the larger containers of yogurt because you save money with less packaging than when you buy individual serving sizes.  I figure I can be inconvenienced a little if it helps me save some money over time.  I also am willing to try different brands, so if I see a brand on sale, I grab it.

This is how I recently came to try Greek God’s Greek Yogurt and full-fat Greek yogurt for the first time.   I also had the good luck of being sent coupons to try the Greek God’s yogurt line, which I happily obliged.  Stay tuned for a full review.

Question: Do you prefer Greek over plain yogurt?  Is the cost differential worth nutrition/taste difference?

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “What’s up with Greek yogurt?

  1. I just started eating Greek yogurt this year, and totally think it’s worth the extra money. I switched primarily for the added protein and to get away from high sugar or artificial sweetner varieties. My favorite is Chobani or Fage plain over berries! mmm 🙂

  2. Yum! I like to nuke my berries until they burst and then stir it up with the plain. 🙂

  3. I’m such a bad food blogger- I just can’t get into yogurt! I never liked the consistency. Which is unfortunate because I know all the benefits!

    • You’re not a bad food blogger! Everyone has something they don’t like. I don’t think yogurt is a necessity to be healthy since you can get its nutritional benefits from other foods. If you really want to incorporate it, maybe try it in a smoothie where the consistency will be somewhat masked (?). You can thin it out with water or milk so it’s less thick.

  4. Pingback: Review: Greek God’s Greek Yogurt «

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