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Greek Yogurt vs. Cottage Cheese: Experts Debate Dairy Heath Benefits

Image: Greek Yogurt vs. Cottage Cheese: Experts Debate Dairy Heath Benefits
Bowl of Greek yogurt, left and Cottage cheese. (Marazem/dreamstime; Olga Vasileva/dreamstime)

By    |   Sunday, 12 Oct 2014 01:16 PM

The debate over Greek yogurt and cottage cheese and which has the best health benefits isn't over yet.

Calling both plain yogurt and cottage cheese “worthy competitors,” Virginia Van Vynckt, a longtime newspaper food writer and co-author of several cookbooks, wrote for the San Francisco Chronicle, “Which is better for you depends on preference and on which nutritional factors matter most: protein, fat, carbs, calcium, sodium or lactose. These days, there’s another competitor in the mix, Greek yogurt, which differs from both regular yogurt and cottage cheese in its nutritional profile.”

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While cottage cheese is higher in protein, averaging about 27 grams per cup, Greek yogurt isn’t far behind with 20 grams of protein in a cup. When it comes to calcium, both cottage cheese and Greek yogurt have about the same per cup — 20 percent of the daily value. Regular yogurt actually beats out both with 45 percent of the daily value for calcium.

Perhaps the biggest advantage that yogurt — both plain and Greek — have over cottage cheese is that it contains live cultures that make it easier to digest dairy products that contain sugars.

“While both yogurt and cottage cheese contain lactose, the live cultures in yogurt turn lactose into lactic acid in the gut, making the dairy sugar easier to digest," according to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse.

Elaine Magee, a registered dietician, wrote for WedMD that such live cultures — which aren’t found in cottage cheese — may help with easing gastrointestinal conditions such as lactose intolerance, constipation, diarrhea, colon cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, and H. pylori infection.

Magee cited a review written by researchers from the Jean Mayer U.S. Department of Agriculture Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University to back up her statements about the benefits of yogurt’s live cultures.

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The debate over Greek yogurt and cottage cheese and which has the best health benefits isn't over yet.
greek yogurt, cottage cheese, benefits, debate
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2014-16-12
Sunday, 12 Oct 2014 01:16 PM
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