10 surprising health benefits of yogurt

Dahi‘ is a yogurt of the Indian Subcontinent, known for its characteristic taste and consistency. It balances the palate across regional cuisines throughout India. In the hot and humid south, yogurt and foods made of dahi are a staple in order to cool down – dahi rice is always the last dish of the meal. Also, the vegetarian population of India derives some protein from dahi (other than lentil and beans).

It is also sold sweetened, sweetened and flavored or in containers with fruit or fruit jam on the bottom. The two styles of dahi commonly found in the grocery store are set type dahi and Swiss style dahi. Set type dahi is when dahi is packaged with the fruit on the bottom of the cup and the dahi on top. Swiss style dahi is when the fruit is blended into the yogurt prior to packaging.

Lassi and moru are common beverages in India. Lassi is stirred liquified curd that is either salted or sweetened with sugar commonly, less commonly honey and often combined with fruit pulp to create flavored lassi. Mango lassi is a western favorite, as is coconut lassi. Consistency can vary widely, with urban and commercial lassis being of uniform texture through being processed, whereas rural and rustic lassi has curds in it, and sometimes has malai (cream) added or removed. Moru is a popular South Indian summer drink, meant to keep drinkers hydrated through the hot and humid summers of the South. It is prepared by considerably thinning down yogurt with water, adding salt (for electrolyte balance) and spices, usually green chili peppers, asafoetida, curry leaves and mustard.

Nutritional Facts of Dahi

ElementsAmount per (100 gm/%)
Energy97 Cal
Fats5 gm
Carbs3.98 gm
Proteins9 gm
Vitamin (B12, B2)31%, 23%

Health Benefits of Dahi

The health benefits of dahi have always been important to mankind. Yogurt is a powerhouse of various vitamins and minerals that are also present in milk. Furthermore, dahi is a good source of easily digestible proteins. Dahi is beneficial for maintaining cholesterol levels in the body and preventing ailments like hypertension, while also boosting immunity. It is good for improving the strength of bones and teeth, aids in digestion, and is valuable in skin care.

The health benefits of dahi are due to the fact that it is prepared from milk. It is often offered as a healthy dessert option and is used to flavour dishes in a number of Eastern cuisines. Regardless of how it is consumed, it retains the health benefits of milk in a low-fat form. It can also be consumed by lactose intolerant individuals who cannot normally digest milk.

An additional benefit of dahi consumption is the presence of Lactobacillus, a helpful class of bacteria that ferments milk into dahi and aids in the digestive process in the body. They also protect the gut from succumbing to infections by harmful bacteria.

Rich Source of Essential Minerals: Being derived from milk, dahi consists of large doses of calcium, which is essential for maintaining bone health and dental health. Adequate calcium consumption also lowers the incidence of osteoporosis in menopausal women. It is rich in potassium and maagnesium. Potassium is essential for nerve health and maintains the fluid balance in the body. Magnesium is just as essential for bone health as calcium.

Storehouse of Vitamins: It contains abundant levels of vitamin B2 and B12. Vitamin B2 is essential for healthy nerves, eyes, and skin. Vitamin B12 is essential for maintaining bone health and its deficiency leads to anaemia. It also contains healthy amounts of vitamin D and E. Vitamin D is essential for skeletal health and Vitamin E aids in maintaining healthy skin, as well as reproductive health.

Bone Health: Calcium is essential for maintaining the good condition of our bones. We all know that milk is a great source of calcium, but digesting milk is difficult for many people. It contains all the essential minerals, including calcium, that are present in milk, but is also much easier to digest (not just that it also aids in digestion). Therefore, consuming Dahi helps in maintaining the strength of the bones. It  is also good for patients suffering from osteoporosis and rheumatism. It is a boon for many people who suffer with being lactose intolerant.

Rich Source of Animal Proteins: The protein content of dahi has been found to be higher than that of milk and is found to be more easily digestible than milk due to the partial breakdown of proteins, such as casein, by the fermenting bacteria. This is according to findings by the Journal of Dairy research.

Boosts Gastrointestinal Health: It can be used as a milk substitute for lactose intolerant individuals who cannot digest milk and would normally lose out on its health benefits. Due to the presence of active bacterial strains in dahi, it is easily digestible. In fact, the ‘pro-biotic’ components of dahi, produced by the lactic acid bacteria present in it, aid in alleviating constipation, diarrhea, colon cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, and even infections by peptic ulcer-causing bacteria H. pylori, which may eventually lead to stomach cancer.

Boosts Immunity: The pro-biotic strains of bacteria present in dahi boost the immune system and reduce the incidence of infections, inflammatory diseases, and allergies, according to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Lowers Hypertension: The regular intake of dairy products has been shown to lower hypertension. However, due to the presence of high fat content, excessive consumption is not advisable. It combines a low-fat dairy option with the benefits of a normal dairy option.

Reduces Serum Cholesterol: Studies carried out by various institutes indicate a drop in serum LDL cholesterol levels when a person regularly consumes dahi. Thus, daily consumption may lead to a reduction in cardiovascular diseases.

Prevents Vaginal Infections: Vaginal infections due to Candida are commonly observed in diabetic women. The daily consumption of dahi lowers the pH of the vaginal tract and prevents Candida infections.

Cures Bad Breath: It is a natural cure for bad breathe and has reduced halitosis by up to 80% in test subjects. Levels of plaque and gingivitis were also found to be lower among daily consumers of dahi.

Cancer: Intake of dahi may also provide relief to those suffering from colon cancer. New study suggests that a diet rich in dairy products may slightly extend lives of people diagnosed with colon cancer.

Effective Against Skin and Hair Conditions: Dahi, when applied topically, has been proved to cure acne and skin rashes and gives a healthy glow by reducing dark circles and closing pores. It is also beneficial for the hair and cures itchy scalp and dandruff. It is quite apparent that Dahi is helpful in achieving and maintaining a healthy body. The daily consumption of dahi provides a large chunk of essential nutrients as well.