For many years, yogurt has been considered a healthy diet food. It’s popularity has increased over time and thousand of flavors and varieties are now offered. Unfortunately, in attempts to make the product more tasty and attractive, manufacturers have introduced ingredients that add tons of sugar and artificial ingredients – the result is far from healthy.

A daily dose of yogurt can add protein and healthy probiotics to your diet, in addition to potassium, calcium, magnesium, zinc, and vitamins B2 and B12. Greek yogurt usually has twice the protein, with a creamier texture. Low fat and zero fat options are available, just read the label to make sure it isn’t loaded with the bad stuff.

How to choose: A good yogurt should have nothing more than milk, cream and cultures. If you want to add flavor, buy plain, low or zero fat Greek yogurt, and add fresh fruit and sweetener of choice. If you prefer pre-packaged yogurt for convenience, read the labels and watch out for sugar, including high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors and flavors. Another marketing trick is labeling the yogurt “Greek style”. True Greek yogurt is simply strained to remove a lot of moisture, which makes for a creamy consistency. However, some manufacturers offer “Greek style” and thicken their product with gelatin, cornstarch, pectin, etc. which adds empty carbs instead of protein. When shopping for yogurt, read the labels and choose wisely. If you want to be sure your has the freshest, healthiest yogurt, you can make it yourself with your slow cooker.