Drinkable Plant-Based Yogurt
The lighter version of yogurt is a versatile, sippable swap for dairy
BY SARAH PROTZMAN HOWLETT
For all the years we’ve spent trying to keep up with the latest diets—whichever ones make the loftiest promises on longevity, brain and heart health, these days there is increasing attention on something less flashy and more simple: Eating more plants.
A Plant-Based Diet is All About Flexibility
Sometimes billed as the anti-diet, in that it doesn’t require the elimination of entire categories of food but instead urges moderation, research has linked the plant-forward plate with lower rates of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers, when as compared with diets that center on meat and other animal products.
Plant-Based Yogurt is Delicious & Healthy
Now we can count some of the latest yogurt alternatives among our various plant-based options at meal and snack times. For people who have intolerances to cow’s milk products or endeavor to follow a vegan lifestyle—a group now estimated to comprise 6 percent of people in the United States, up from 1 percent in 2014—plant-based drinkable yogurts can be a versatile, flavorful and nutritious swap that’s great for your gut.
While these yogurts are indeed vegan and made from nut milk, contrary to popular belief they are no less nutritious than dairy yogurts: Nut milks contain desirable healthy fats, antioxidants, protein, fiber, calcium, vitamins C and E, plus zinc, iron and magnesium.
Molly Hembree, R.D., L.D., retail dietitian coordinator for The Little Clinic of Kroger in the Columbus, Ohio, area, says curiosity about alternatives to mainstream yogurt products are one reason people are turning toward a new kind of experience.
“People wanting to try out something different to see how it tastes and if they can use it as a substitute for what they’ve been doing,” Hembree says, adding that she’s a fan of the Califia unsweetened drinkable plant-based yogurt because it has no added sugar. “You can use that in so many things where you would have used milk,” she says.
From smoothies to salad dressings and yes, even fro-yo, here are some simple ways to incorporate this new option into your daily meals.