Yogurt | Yogurt Benefits | Yogurt Health Benefits
Understanding The Yogurt Health Benefits
There are many Yogurt Health benefits when it comes to eating yogurt on a regular basis. In fact the yogurt health benefits are so vital for your overall health that eating yogurt should form a regular part of eating a healthy diet. To get a better understanding for why there are so many yogurt health benefits it’s important to first understand a little biology regarding how the body works.
- Your body has more bacteria than cells.
- 66% of your body’s immune cells live inside your gut.
- There are more neurons (nerve cells that transmit and process information) in your enteric nervous system, which includes the intestines, than there are in your central nervous system, which includes your brain and spinal cord.
- You are born bacteria-free and accumulate your first bacteria while passing through your mothers birth canal and in the years that follow.
So you can already begin to see from those four facts alone that bacteria plays a fundamental role in maintaining good health.
Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.
You will probably be aware of the unhealthy pathogen bacteria that can give you an upset stomach, make you sick or even cause you to become serious ill, however the human body is also full of many different types of good bacteria that are vital for your good health.
Bacteria is one of the most important aspects of human health and the average human has 10 times more bacteria on them and inside them as they have individual cells. So knowing what bacteria does to the human body is as important as knowing how to keep your bodies cells in good working order.
Your Gut is the Key to Good Health
One important part of your body that science is only beginning to explore is your gut and how it has a far bigger effect upon your health than first thought.
Your stomach and gut is home to roughly 100 trillion bacteria of many varieties and science is learning that healthy bacteria in the stomach and gut has a direct effect upon every aspect of your health.
Serotonin, for example, which is the hormone responsible for regulating emotional behaviour and mood and which is often attributed to helping you feel happy, is actually mostly located in your gut. Or to be more accurate, 95% of your serotonin is located in your gut, which is why people feel strong emotions in their gut as well as their brains.
This is the origin of the common saying, follow your gut feeling. So a big part of mental conditions, such as depression and other emotional disturbances, can all be linked to your gut.
The friendly bacteria in your stomach generally promotes a healthy body and brain and is responsible for digesting your food and absorbing nutrients, producing vitamins, creating anti-inflammatories, producing health promoting enzymes, keeping your immune system strong and maintaining the complex functions of your brain. So what goes on in your gut has a massive impact upon your overall health. This means what you put in your stomach in terms of food, drink and medicines, all have a massive impact upon your overall health and well-being.
Bacteria and your Nervous System
One thing that many people may not be aware of is that your body has two nervous systems. The central nervous system and the enteric nervous system. While your central nervous system runs from your brain down your spinal cord, your enteric nervous system is embedded in the lining of your gastrointestinal system, or your stomach and intestines, and it mostly operates independently of the brain and the spinal cord.
Science has shown that your enteric nervous system sends more messages to your brain than your brain sends to it, making it an important neurotransmitter that effects your nervous systems and brain.
The science on this topic is relatively young, however there is already growing scientific evidence that is showing a direct connection between brain activity and the bacteria in our gut. And while a definitive conclusion has not yet been reached, the evidence indicates that a lack of friendly bacteria in the gut is responsible for causing stress, anxiety, depression and a range of other mental conditions. It’s also been shown that children who do not have balanced gut bacteria have an increased chance of developing allergies. The science goes on and on.
To cut a long story short, when the good bacteria in your gut reduces, whether it’s through your diet, from drinking alcohol or from using antibiotics, this allows the dangerous and harmful pathogenic bacteria to increase in their absence. And when this happens, it’s been proven that these pathogens leach through the walls of the stomach and intestines and travel throughout the body to your organs and brain. When allowed to do so regularly and for extended periods of time, this can have a devastating effect upon your health.
Good Bacteria is Scientifically Proven to Improve your Health
Let me just say, and as the title suggests, there is loads of science proving the yogurt health benefits and that yogurt is undoubtedly good for your health. I’ll show you the results of some of that research now. UCLA (The University of California Los Angeles) published research that shows a change in our gut bacteria directly effects our brain function. UCLA’s research quotes that,
“Women who regularly consumed beneficial bacteria known as probiotics through yogurt showed altered brain function, both while in a resting state and in response to an emotion-recognition task.” (1)
The publication goes on to explain that, for the women who increased their friendly gut bacteria by eating probiotic dairy products, these subjects showed an increase in healthy brain function to those who didn’t consume probiotic dairy products.
Another study has also revealed that probiotic, or friendly bacteria, in your gut appear to affect gene activity and the reaction of the cells within the intestines. As quote on the website, www.nutraingredients.com,
“Consumption of a dairy drink containing three strains of probiotic bacteria was associated with changes in the activity of hundreds of genes, with the changes resembling the effects of certain medicines in the human body, including medicines that positively influence the immune system and those for lowering blood pressure.” (2)
Most medicines are watered down versions of natural healing substances from nature, done so pharmaceutical companies can create products for you to buy, so it should be of no surprise that nature can do just as good a job as modern medicine, if not better, in most cases.
So the question now is, how do you get these good bacteria’s into your gut?
Yogurt | Yogurt Benefits | Yogurt Health Benefits
So now for the yogurt benefits. The good news is protecting your health and ensuring your gut remains full of healthy bacteria and low in dangerous pathogens is quick and easy and doesn’t need to involve buying specialized products to do it. This is where the yogurt health benefits comes in. You don’t have to spend a small fortune on probiotic drinks such as Danone or Yakult either. All you need is natural yogurt. Look at some of the yogurt benefits below.
Natural yogurt benefits in the following ways:
- Nutritional Content – Yogurt benefits your body by offering considerable nutritional value, an 8-ounce cup provides as much as half of your daily requirement for calcium. The same serving size also provides 57% of your daily requirement for vitamin B12, 10% of your daily requirement for magnesium and 12% of your daily requirement for potassium. Yogurt also contains all nine essential amino-acids, making it a convenient source of complete protein.
- Yogurt Benefits the Immune System – Beneficial bacteria known as probiotics in yogurt provide considerable benefits for you immune system, including increased activity of white blood cells and increased production of antibodies.
- Weight Loss – Yogurt benefits include helping you to reach and maintain your ideal weight by promoting abdominal fat loss. A study published in the April 2005 issue of the “International Journal of Obesity” found that diets that included daily consumption of yogurt containing 1,100 milligrams of calcium for 12 weeks helped obese participants lose weight without losing lean body mass. Abdominal fat loss increased by 81 percent for those on the yogurt diet compared to those on a control diet that contained 400 to 500 milligrams of a calcium supplement.
- Cancer Prevention – Yogurt benefits may also help protect against breast cancer, according to a study that appeared in the June 2012 issue of the “Journal of Clinical Immunology.” In the laboratory animal study, supplementation with Lactobacillus acidophilus, a probiotic bacteria extracted from homemade yogurt, for 15 days significantly decreased breast cancer tumor growth. Researchers called for further studies to determine the mechanisms by which the yogurt-derived bacteria suppressed the cancer. Yogurt helped reduce risk for throat and esophageal cancer in a study published in the September 2012 issue of the “European Journal of Cancer Prevention.” Of the 959 volunteers surveyed in the study, those who consumed yogurt regularly had as much as one-third less risk for developing the upper digestive tract cancers.
This is just a tiny sample of the scientific evidence that’s currently in the public domain on how yogurt can improve many different aspects of your health. Yogurt is so important for your health, that it should form part of everybody’s daily health routine. John Lennon once said, “All you need is love,” and he’s got a point. Although yogurt sure does help keep that love flowing for longer!
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