Yogurt is said to be a wonder food and is the best known probiotic that contains live bacteria. Yogurt is also a nourishing alternative and is great for people who want to increase calcium, protein and dairy intake in their diet. Yogurt has immense health benefits and is an outstanding source of protein, calcium, vitamin B 12 and riboflavin. Apart from being beneficial to our health, yogurt provides many bizarre health cures. Yogurt is used to cure bad breath, and yeast infection in both men and women. It cures acne and is also beneficial in maintaining a good digestive system. Read on to know a few home cure remedies involving yogurt.
1. Bad breath
Research has shown that active and live bacteria in yogurt, like lactobacillus bulgaricus and streptococcus thermophilus, can curb or suppress the levels of bad bacteria that cause bad breath. A study has also suggested that consuming unsweetened yogurt on a daily basis may keep bad breath away and eliminate offensive odor from building up. Research show that having about six ounces of yogurt daily can reduce the levels of hydrogen sulfide, an odor causing compound.
Although, these studies and research are in a preliminary stage, but researchers suggest that adding yogurt to your daily diet can be safe, and will help in fighting and eliminating bad breath.
2. Yeast infection
Yogurt is the most commonly practiced home remedy for vaginal yeast infections. Unsweetened yogurt contains living active bacteria, such as acidophilus, which help in keeping yeast balanced. If the yeast infection is mild, consuming yogurt will help balance out the yeast and the infection may go away in a couple of days. Men, too, can benefit from yogurt in case of yeast infections.
But not all yogurt readily available in the market have live bacteria in them. You need to check the label where ‘live culture’ should be specifically and prominently written. Unsweetened yogurt can be difficult to eat for some people. Hence, in such cases you can add a little honey to make it more palatable. Studies show that honey increases the number of good bacteria in the yogurt. Sugar, on the other hand, slows down the growth of bacteria and feeds the yeast.
There are various ways in which yogurt can be used for curing yeast infections. The most effective way to cure yeast infection is to prevent it before it strikes, and consuming yogurt daily will surely help. This maintains a healthy level of bacteria in your body and acts as the first line of defense against yeast infection. Some women also directly apply unsweetened yogurt to the affected area instead of eating. Yogurt is not an anti-fungal treatment and, hence, there is no risk of the yeast infection to mutate as in other drug treatments.
Yogurt has also proven to be excellent in the world of skin treatments. It has a treasure of essential vitamins and minerals such as calcium, zinc, vitamins B2, B1, B12, B6, yeast and protein. Yogurt is said to add essential oils and enzymes to your skin and works as a natural moisturizer. Skin care using yogurt helps in reducing the pore size and also improves the overall skin texture giving you a healthy glow. Yogurt is rich in zinc which also helps clear your acne prone skin. But make sure only unsweetened, unflavored active yogurt is used.
Here is a simple beauty recipe to reduce and cure acne:
Lemon yogurt cleanser
A combination of yogurt and lemon juice is great for oily and acne prone skin. You will require 4 table spoons of lemon juice (freshly squeezed), and unsweetened and unflavored yogurt. Combine both the ingredients together to a smooth consistency. Apply a thin layer of this mixture to the affected area and allow it to dry for five to six minutes. Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat dry.
Tip: Lemon juice is a natural mild astringent and helps get rid of the excess oil. Yogurt is acidic and prevents further breakouts. You can refrigerate this mixture in a covered jar for further use.
4. Lowers cholesterol
Studies show that there are couple of ways through which the bacteria in yogurt may affect serum cholesterol. When fermentation on bacteria starts in the intestines, SCFAs or fatty acids are produced. This SCFA, propionic acid in particular, is known to decrease the synthesis of cholesterol in the liver, and in turn reduce cholesterol circulation in the blood. Some live bacteria are even able to break down bile acids which are usually reabsorbed by the body.