yogurt is a curd made of milk and fermenting bacterium, which is used in many culinary items as a side dish, condiment or even a snack in itself. Go-Gurt, as is popularly known, is a brand that focusses on yogurt that has become quite a favourite among people looking to snack on something healthy.
Needless to say, yogurt is something that many of us have interacted with at least once in our lifetime, and as such, it is imperative that we know the details about it: like is yogurt acidic or alkaline? Is Greek yogurt acidic? And finally, does yogurt have acid? Let’s answer all these questions and look into yogurt, of all things, and determine whether its acidic or alkaline, as apparently there’s a lot of confusion out there over it.
Hold Up- Bacteria in Yogurt?
Yes, bacteria in yogurt. More specifically, the bacteria is the Lactobacillus delbrueckii, which is NOT A HARMFUL BACTERIA. In fact, it is just a single one in a wide range of other hepful bacterium without which, life as we know would not be so good. Helpful bacterium are everywhere; even in your gut, you have bacteria that help with the whole digestion process. So, pigeonholing them with the rest of bacteria would be unfair, since they are crucial to our existence.
The bacteria in question, Lactobacillus, is the bacteria that speeds up the fermenting process and is pivotal in the curding process; that is, turning milk into curd or yogurt. So, you may not like bacterium very much, but this class of helpful bacterium are well, frankly, understated, and their mention will be frequent in this passage.
Now onto the question of ‘is yogurt acidic or alkaline’.
PH of Yogurt: Acidic or Alkaline?
Generally, the pH of yogurt is 4.3 to 4.4, which if you know your pH scales, translates to yogurt being acidic. And there’s a good reason for that; one of the major components in milk and in yogurt is lactic acid, which, as the name implies, is acidic and contributes much to the overall acidity of milk and yogurt.
But while milk has a much lower acidity (at 6.0 pH), yogurt is much more acidic (at 4.3), which, if you know anything about pH scales, is in ascending order (meaning that as the numbers increase, the acidity decreases). So why is that? Well, long story short, the lactobacillus in question is responsible for fermentation, a process which we will discuss later on, and the process primarily responsible for curdling the milk into yogurt.
This process increases the quantity of lactic acid present in the solution, which could help explain why the acidity is increased when milk is turned into yogurt.
What is The Fermentation Process of Yogurt?
We’ll keep things simple and to the point. No beating about the bush. Fermentation is the process by which the bacteria Lactobacillus turns milk into yogurt. To simplify the process, consider this: the bacterium, called the starter cultures, ferment the lactose present in the milk, turning it into lactic acid, increasing its overall quantity in the solution.
This increase in the acidity and the concentration of the lactic acid in milk turns it slightly sour and causes the milk to clot up, turning it into a consistency that we’ve come to know as that of yogurt. This is called the fermentation; the build-up of lactic acid in the milk to change into yogurt also induces a taste change in the entire solution; the slightly sour taste and the thick and viscous consistency is what indicates that milk has been turned into yogurt, and it is all due to the fermentation process initiated by the helpful bacterium.
While fermentation is a process that is readily used in the suds industry for making things like beer, bread, and many other things, fermentation as a specific process varies from product from product, however, the central player is still a bacterium (in bread’s case, it is yeast). So, yes fermentation is common, and is used all across industries.
Is Yogurt Acidic or Alkaline?
As stated beforehand, yogurt is acidic, much more acidic than what it is based on. Milk has a pH of 6.0 or something around that number, and so, this makes it much closer to being neutral than being acidic. But since science is science and you just can’t round something off and call it a day, milk is considered acidic.
Not that ‘shoot holes through the door’ type of acid, or the type to scare people off. No, just mildly acidic. And what gives milk its acidity is really the small concentration of lactic acid present inside the milk. A good majority of what constitutes milk is water, and water, as we all know, is neither basic or acidic but neutral, so a lot of store-bought or soy-based milk products will not contain lactose or lactic acid, making it neutral completely.
So, with an increase in the concentration of lactic acid, you can be sure that the overall acidity will be increased, and this is exactly why yogurt scores high on the acidity list. This is because during the fermentation process, as we’ve made it clear beforehand, bacterium in the culture added to the milk synthesise lactic acid from the lactose or milk sugar present in the milk, and it gets to the point where the acid curdles the milk, changing it into yogurt.
This increase in lactic acid is what gives the yogurt its signature tart-like taste, a bit of a sour taste. Thus, the decreased number on the pH scale, the increased acidity and the increased concentration of lactic acid and lactose.
Yogurt And Milk On The PH Scale
The pH scale is a scale, from 0 to 14, that is used in conjunction with a litmus paper to determine the acidity or alkalinity of a substance, or whether the substance is altogether neutral. The way the pH scale works is something like this: 0 to 6 are acids, while numbers 8 to 14 are bases.
These work in an ascending order, meaning the more strong the acid or base is, the more potent it is, the less the number on the pH scale. For instance, a strong acid like hydrochloric or sulphuric acid will be in the low 10’s like 1,2 or 3. Whereas the strongest bases will have a pH close or near to 14 like 13, 12. You get the idea now. Water is neutral; with a pH of 7, it is one of the most popular neutral substances in the world.
Now onto milk and yogurt. As we’ve said it before, both of these are acidic, only the milk is slightly less acidic than yogurt. And the reason for that is pretty simple. Milk is basically like water with a lot of lactose, lactic acid in it, which gives it its characteristics. This acidity of milk, despite the fact that it isn’t readily apparent or discernible, is because of the presence of the lactic acid.
And the bump in acidity with the fermentation process that turns milk into yogurt is similarly explained. Fermentation allows for the Lactobacillus to turn lactose or milk sugar into lactic acid, which increases in concentration as the fermentation process goes on. This bump in the concentration of lactic acid and the milk’s reaction to the lactic acid is what gives yogurt its characteristic taste, viscosity and texture. This extra lactic acid also increases the acidity, and so, if you were to dip a litmus paper into simple, freshly curdled yogurt, you would get increased acidity, with a pH of around 4.
Alkaline Diets And Yogurt
It has long been rumoured that alkaline diets may be the answer to some of the more common afflictions that seem to be present throughout the world. Many have even hypothesised that an alkaline diet may go a long way towards reducing the risk of cancer or even beating cancer, but that all is just health nut hocus pocus. Nothing that has been said regarding alkaline diets has ever been conclusively proven, and this continues to be a rumour among the people way too much into health stuff and crazy diets. yogurts are classified as acidic, but they are also called alkaline-forming substances.
Why so? Well its all down to how it reacts once it enters our body and more specifically, our digestive system. While yogurt may be acidic, the effect it has once it becomes a part of our body is alkaline, and so, yogurt is regularly classified as an alkaline-forming food, which could help explain why some health nuts can’t stop talking about integrating yogurt into every aspect of their diet. Its because despite being an acidic food in itself, yogurt is an alkaline-forming product, and what happens is that when it is digested, it is broken down into alkaline substances, thus the name and the classification in alkaline diet.
But is it any good? Coupled with an alkaline diet, will yogurt really shush away all those diseases, and, dare we say it? Beat cancer? Long shot. If eating an alkaline diet cured cancer, we wouldn’t have so many deaths and fatalities then, now, would we? The myth of the alkaline diet is just overhyped nonsense of beating acids in the body, which, if you anything about the human physiology and the various in-body processes, you’d know are pretty useful.
Also Read: Is Milk Acidic or Basic? Milk PH: Health Effects
A good argument against an alkaline diet would be that the body has a natural pH, which it maintains itself through a precarious balance of all acids, bases and neutral substances in the body. Of course, an overage of acids in the body will lead to an upset pH balance, but so will an overage in alkaloids or bases in the body. These will disturb the natural pH balance of the body just as consuming large amounts of acid would do, and so, nutritionists and diet practitioners really advise against leaning completely over to either the acidic or basic side. Do both, in moderation, and leave the acid-base pH moderation to your body, which does it best.
Yogurt in Alkaline Diets
As for yogurts and alkaline diets, yes, yogurts are alkaline-forming, and therefore are considered a part of alkaline diets. Yes, they are very healthy, to the point that the bacteria in it doesn’t even make you sick, rather helps you stay healthy. So, in short, yogurt itself is pretty healthy, and yes, it should be integrated into the daily diet as it not only helps with digestion but also provides vital nutrients, calcium and protein to the body.
Plus it is pretty tasty and can be used as a substitute of milk for people who cant be bothered to drink milk. We wouldn’t suggest you to start trying out this alkaline diet, but yogurt, we can get behind. Owing to its many advantages as a snack, yogurt can provide you with various healthy nutrients, calcium and proteins.
Calcium is especially important as people with a sedentary lifestyle and eating habits involving a lot of junk food are sure to miss out on this crucial mineral, which is exceedingly important as it helps form and strengthen bones, teeth and performs various other functions across the body.
Yogurt As Part Of a Healthy Diet
A big part of yogurt turning into snacks like Go-Gurt is the nutritionally beneficial mixture of milk, lactic acid, lactose and healthy bacteria like Lactobacillus. Plus, you can throw in a lot of fruit flavours and mixtures, which can help with the taste problem as it tastes a bit sour at times.
But that’s not the virtues. The virtue is the fact that yogurt is very healthy, poses a lot of nutritional benefits and allows for a healthy snack that tastes good and is healthy. What more could you ask for, really, from something as humble as the white goodness that is yogurt. Plus as part of a healthy diet, people regularly swap it out for milk, the reasons for which are beyond us but seem to make sense once you understand that yogurt has things Go-Gurt up its sleeve whereas milk’s not fun to consume apparently.
But, capitalist and consumerist banter aside, yogurt is pretty healthy, and everyone should integrate it into their diet. Except probably the people who are lactose intolerant maybe.
List of Commonly Asked Questions and Answers on a Website About Topics “Is Yogurt Acidic or Alkaline?”
Q1. Yogurt is Better For Acid Reflux Than Greek Yogurt?
Greek yogurt and regular yogurt are similar in acidity levels, which is more acid-y than milk, so both of them will not do your acid reflux any favor.
On paper. yogurt is actually an alkaline-forming compound, and as such, it means that it forms into alkaloid compounds once in the body, so it does help with acid reflux after all. Plus it is a rather cool snack, and so, it might help cool down all the acid-induced rage that might be going on in your gut.
Q2. Milk is Better Than Yogurt For Acid Reflux?
It is true that milk has a higher pH than yogurt, meaning it is less acidic than its fermeneted counterpart. But that does not equal a total gut-relaxer. Milk still isn’t the best medication for acid reflux, but milk going down is certainly more easy than yogurt for some people.
Although we might disagree, the fact is this: considering that these are both acidic but yogurt is an alkaline-forming compound, you’re probably better off eating yogurt in a situation where Satan himself is sending up bile and acid through your upper G.I. tract.
Q3. is Greek Yogurt Good For Acid Reflux?
And lastly, is Greek yogurt good for acid reflux? Yeah, sure. Whatever floats your boat. Certainly better than Greek couscous if it comes to that.