On business trips, I often crave my usual breakfast of yogurt with honey, fruit and nuts. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to find a yogurt for sale in supermarkets, health-food stores or even gourmet food markets that compares to my homemade yogurt. Here are my thoughts on why store-bought yogurt doesn’t even come close to the yogurt you can make at home.
- Unless the package says “pasture-raised”, the cows that produced the milk are likely kept in factory farms, which means some of them are probably sick. Even if the packaging says Organic or All Natural and shows pictures of cows grazing on beautiful pastures, I’m willing to bet they’re still kept in confinement and never eat a blade of fresh grass their entire lives. This means that the milk is missing key nutrients, like Activator X (K2), that you only get from milk that comes from cows that eat fresh grass. Once I bought a yogurt that claimed to be made “using milk from pasture-raised cows,” but the color of the yogurt was bright, almost bluish-white. The milk I buy from farms produces a yogurt with a layer of cream that has a slight yellowish tinge, which comes from beta carotene, but only if the cow eats fresh grass. Later it dawned on me that this producer might only add a small percentage of pasture-raised cow milk and perhaps the majority was milk from factory farms.
- Powdered milk, which is carcinogenic, is often used as the thickening agent. Especially for the “Greek Style” yogurts. There’s one well-known brand of Greek-style that claims not to add powdered milk. But what they don’t tell you is that non-fat milk often contains powdered milk, so their non-fat product probably contains plenty of it.
- The probiotic content is low because the yogurt hasn’t fermented for very long.
- I prefer the taste of yogurt that’s set in glass over plastic. When I eat yogurt out of a plastic container, I often wonder if I’m eating trace amounts of plastic. How could I not be, given that yogurt is made by pouring hot milk (110 degrees) into the container where it will set.
- Most commercial yogurts are low-fat or non-fat. I believe low-fat and non-fat milk will make you fat.
- Most have sweeteneres and flavorings already added. I prefer to add my fruit/honey/nuts, etc. after-the-fact because I can use ingredients I trust, like raw honey, unpasteurized nuts and organic, naturally-ripened fruits. I also think it tastes a lot better this way.