Friday Finds: Pinehedge Farms Yogurt

I was hanging out with my friend Ilana today and she served me this tasty yogurt from Pinehedge Farms with strawberries and granola.  This is a non-homogenized higher fat yogurt than most people, including myself, are accustomed to.  You can see a layer of fat sitting on the top of the yogurt.  Ilana likes to mix it in but I am sure it can be easily skimmed off if you would prefer.

What are the benefits of eating  this higher fat yogurt? Well the first benefit is satiety. You will feel satisfied and full after you eat a serving of this stuff.  I ate it at about 10:30 and was still full by lunchtime.  I ate about a ¾ cup. The other benefit would be taste.  I guess this a subjective benefit.  I do not think that non-fat yogurt tastes good.  Neither do Le Nutritionniste and Lethnogourmande.  However, we might be in the minority as I have many clients and workshop participants who would disagree with us.  This yogurt has the benefit of being totally natural, devoid of any artificial ingredients, added sugar, sugar substitute or preservatives.

We live in a culture of dietary fat phobia brought on by the low fat recommendations from the 1980s.  At the time, research suggested that people were gaining weight because of high fat diets and the only way to lose weight was to avoid dietary fat.  Food companies followed suit and removed fat from their processed snacks.  They replaced the fat with sugar.  Remember Snackwell’s?  

What ended up happening  was people just got fatter.  The total caloric amount of many foods did not change, just the ingredients did.  At the time there was major concern regarding the link between fat and heart disease.  Specifically, saturated fats.  New research from this year suggests that it not  saturated fat that causes heart disease but refined sugars.  Some examples of added sugars are glucose-fructose, high fructose corn syrup, dextrose and sucrose.  While we are talking about simple sugars we might as well throw in white foods into the discussion as well.  White bread, white rice, white pasta and even white potatoes are not the best food choices.

It is confusing for the consumer to know what to eat.  The bottom line is don’t gorge yourself on saturated fat which comes from animal based foods (eg. red meat, high fat dairy products). You can have about 10% of your daily intake from saturated fat.  I got about that much from the yogurt I ate.  It made me feel full and since I am a vegetarian that was my total saturated fat for the day.  

Don’t be fat phobic.  We need healthy sources of fat to absorb fat soluble vitamins.  Experiment with unsaturated fats such as avocado, nuts, seeds and olive oil.  It will add a richness to your diet.  Stay away from added sugars and white based foods. Instead opt for whole grains.  This combination of healthy fats coupled with more fiber from the whole grains leads to a satiety that will keep you feeling full and satisfied not hungry and craving junk food.


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