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greek-style-yoghurt

Greek style yoghurt vs greek yoghurt

So the question is do you know the difference between greek and greek style yoghurt?

I’ve used yoghurt as a sugar busting staple for years now. I put it in low sugar smoothies; mix it up with sugar-free granola and/or fruit; and quite often eat it as a dessert with a few cacao nibs sprinkled over the top.

So one day I figured I wanted to know the difference between greek style yoghurt and greek yoghurt and understand the differences.  So here’s the lowdown and a few other greek style yoghurt facts to keep you in the know.

greek style yoghurt

Greek style yoghurt vs. greek yoghurt

A while back I went for a super healthy lunch with yoghurt pro Alison White from Total Greek (also known as FAGE).

We chatted all things yoghurt, life and sugar-free foods whilst drinking a glass of sparking wine ha!

greek style yoghurt vs. greek yoghurt

Here are some handy Greek yoghurt facts you may not know that will help you make informed decisions without getting lured or misled by marketing or packaging.

  • A really thick yoghurt has either got there in two ways:

1) it was either strained a few times to remove the whey or

2) it has had milk protein powder, starch or other additives added to it to get there. The easiest way really to determine this is to look at the ingredients list.

  • In the UK there is a difference between ‘Greek yoghurt’ and ‘Greek Style Yoghurt’. Greek yoghurt now has to be authentically made in Greece. Greek style yoghurt is just made to seem like it and can be thickened by either one of the two processes above.
  • In America, anything can be called ‘Greek’ – basically this whole Greek style yoghurt thing in the UK is the result of a big court case between Total and Chobani. Total (or FAGE) yoghurt is at present the leading authentic Greek yoghurt brand on the market.

This post isn’t sponsored FAGE UK, I simply wanted to share this because I think it’s quite useful to know and found it personally interesting. Buying sugar-free yoghurts can often be utterly confusing and I know I get a lot of questions about it via e-mail.

I do personally think Total Greek are one brand with a very good quality product for lower sugar living. They also have some superb healthy (& many sugar-free) yoghurt infused recipes on their website too – these sweet potato fries with rosemary garlic yoghurt dip being one of my favourites.

However there are other cheaper Greek yoghurt style yoghurts made by the supermarket brands that are still sugar-free and healthy.

I’ll also mention that have the Total Greek Cookbook which generally has a great selection of yoghurt infused recipes. There are some that use sugar though too so you have to filter through a little.

The difference between Greek yoghurt vs. natural yoghurt

Now you’ve got Greek style yoghurt vs. greek yoghurt sorted, here’s a video I made explaining the difference between Greek yoghurt and natural. Yes let’s go yoghurt crazy today!

What’s worth remembering is that when it comes to managing hunger, Greek yoghurt has a higher protein count – 10g per 100g compared to 5-6g in natural yoghurt – thus it will keep you fuller for longer.

Also remember that about 4-7g of the sugars listed in yoghurt are the natural lactose sugar, which doesn’t count as sugar (of the fructose kind) on a sugar-free or lower sugar diet.

Always check for added sugar in the ingredients list though.

greek style yoghurt protein

My transition off sugary yoghurts

In my former sugary years I used to eat a ‘Muller Light’ or low fat fruity yoghurt pretty much every day, sometimes 2-3 a day.

I did this for literally years.

A fruity yoghurt was often my ‘healthy’ post meal sweet fix – anyone used it the same?

At University I would chose the cheapest and – shame-shock-horror – I even used to buy those Sainsbury’s basics low fat fruity yoghurts at one point. Yes I did, sins confessed!

When I moved to London I would buy Muller Lights, Shapers, Activia brands or whatever was on special offer. I am still in awe of the entire supermarket aisle that is awash with colourful wide variety of sugar laden yoghurts.

When people today ask me why I started Happy Sugar Habits, I often say it’s because I was simply mortified at discovering some of the yoghurts I loved had a shocking 15g of sugar in them and no-one back then was talking about this.

greek-style-yoghurt

So I wrote a blog post on the lower sugar yoghurts and things went from there.

These days I don’t touch fruity sugar-filled yoghurts – they just don’t appeal. Of all the sugary things out there, I really don’t miss these. A mouthful of one every now and then confirms this to me – they are way too sweet, sickly and taste a bit artificial. I would rather drizzle some brown rice syrup or good quality honey on some full fat natural yoghurt to get something a bit sweeter when I do fancy it.

Do you eat yoghurt and what with? Breakfast? Dessert? Any more questions just hit me up with a comment below.

Natural vs. Greek yoghurt (video)

So when I first was going low sugar, swapping from my Muller Lights to my natural yoghurt was a big (& at the time quite painful) step. I used to eat a fruity low calorie yoghurt everyday for years after my lunch.

After trying lots of different natural and Greek yoghurts over the past lower sugar period of my life, I decided it would be quite useful to know what the difference is and state the key things to look out for when buying healthy yoghurts. Hence the inspiration for this weeks video.

p.s. in the video I mention grams of fat and this is with reference to per 100g.

p.p.s. I’ve just noticed I’m wearing my same striped top as the last video. Bad wardrobe decisions there….

What brands of yoghurt are you currently eating? Do or did you have a low fat sugary yoghurt habit to contend with? I’ve now made it easier to leave comments below so please let me know your thoughts and I would love it if you’ve got any questions I can help with xx

Three sugar-friendly desserts that you need to try

You might have assumed that going low sugar is all doom and gloom on the dessert front. Well fear not my friend, desserts can still be on the cards. Here are three unusual options you can have a play with.

1. Avocado based chocolate mousse

rawsome-mousse

Mine did not look quite like this…

Yep avocado in a dessert, that looks like it’s indulgent and chocolate-like. Perfect for fooling the ultimate chocoholic.

Now you might screw your face up at the thought, but this can turn out OK if you add enough sweetener (preferably stevia or rice malt syrup). If you don’t, it’s a bit weird because it looks like chocolate but doesn’t taste sweet enough. I’ve found a good base recipe here, and you can even make it diary free using coconut milk or cream. When all you need to do is whack ingredients in a blender, it’s worth a fun experimental try. I need to have a few more goes though…

2. Greek yoghurt with…

I was cold one evening and I didn’t want freezing frozen berries on my creamy Greek yoghurt. So I put them in a little bowl and zapped them in the microwave. I then poured the berries onto my yoghurt, grated some dark chocolate on top. I was in awe of the spontaneous taste sensation I had self created in a mere three minutes…result!

3. Chia seed pudding

So I’ve blogged about this one before and tested out my own almond & pear chia seed pudding. Basically chia seeds soak up all the liquid and make you a chilled glass of slightly jelly like substance you can keep in the fridge for whenever you fancy. You can mix in any fruits and create your own concoction. Apple and blueberries are a good little combo. You’re also packing your dessert with serious nutritional punch because chia seeds are a bit of a superfood.

chia seed pudding

This is before they soak up all the liquid

Now I’ll happily admit that I’m OK at cooking, but I’m certainly no Nigella. My chocolate avocado mousse mishaps verify that for sure. With these new strange sugar-free dessert combinations, it is a real case of trial and error. Everyone’s got different taste preferences and similarly, a different sensitivity to sweet.

Keep experimenting until you find something you really like, so when the day dessert desire comes calling, you know you’ve got something that’s going to hit the spot in the most virtuous way possible.

Any sugar-friendly desserts you go for? More importantly any better experiences with avocado chocolate mousse?!