The best yoghurts for gestational diabetes
Yoghurt can be a great breakfast, snack or 'dessert' which keep blood sugar levels lower and stabilised. They can also be packed with refined sugars, fruit and cereal making them a terrible choice on a gestational diabetes diet. So which yoghurts are the best yoghurts for us to pick? We've compared and so it's time to share...
As per 3 of our 8 golden rules, we're looking for yoghurts that are low in carbohydrates, high in natural fat, with good amounts of protein.
Best indulgent yoghurt (and lowest carb!)
COYO coconut milk yoghurt
There is a range of COYO coconut milk yoghurts available. They are 100% gluten, soya and dairy free and are suitable for vegans. They are the lowest carbohydrate yoghurt we have found with the plain and vanilla flavoured one containing a measly 0.5g carbs, 3.0g protein and 19.0g fat per 100g!
Everyone who has tried them in our Facebook group seems to fall in love with them, but at around £2.00 per 125g pot, these may be more of a luxurious treat, than a breakfast staple. We've found COYO yoghurts for sale at Tesco, Waitrose and Ocado.
Best lactose free widely available yoghurt
Alpro Soya Simply Plain, Alpro Plain with Almond, or Alpro Plain with Coconut
Widely available, 100% plant based, lactose and gluten free to boot! The Alpro Simply Plain yoghurt has the least amount of carbs of the three at just 2.1g per 100g. It has 4.0g protein and 2.3g fat per 100g. The Plain with Almond or Coconut have just a small amount more carbs at 2.3g, 3.9g protein and 3g fat per 100g. All three make it to the top of our best yoghurts list.
Best branded yoghurt
Fage Total Greek yoghurt
The Fage Total yoghurt is very thick and creamy. It's high in protein, contains live cultures and is suitable for vegetarians.
The full fat version has 3.8g carbs, a decent 9.0g protein and 5.0g fat. We advocate a high fat diet to help slow down the release of glucose into the bloodstream, but those that need to follow a low fat diet for other health reasons, the 0% fat version has 4.0g carbs, a whopping 10.3g protein and 0g fat! Fage Total Greek yoghurt can be found in most shops.
Best higher end supermarket own label yoghurt
Tesco Finest Greek Style yoghurt
Tesco Finest Greek Style thick and creamy strained yoghurt is suitable for vegetarians. It was a close call between this and Waitrose Authentic Greek Natural Strained yoghurt, but we picked this over the Waitrose one due to the slightly higher protein content, the slightly lower price and it being more widely available (including our ladies in Ireland). It has 3.8g carbs, 6.5g protein and 9.9g fat per 100g
Best budget yoghurt
Lidl Milbona Greek Style Creamy Yogurt (full fat)
This Lidl yoghurt is a huge favourite in our Facebook support group and that's because it has everything we're looking for, but at a fraction of the price compared to others. This one is not suitable for vegetarians due to it containing gelatin. It is available in a huge 1kg bucket size, which if you rely on this for breakfast and snacks every single day, can come in handy! It has 3.2g carbs, 4.8g protein and 10.0g fat per 100g.
So grab a bucket when you pop in for your Lidl high protein rolls (our best bread winner!) This yoghurt is also available in smaller sizes.
Best indulgent flavoured yoghurt
COYO raw chocolate coconut milk yoghurt
COYO have a few more flavours available other than the lowest carb (plain and vanilla flavours). The other flavoured yoghurts contain higher carb amounts, but still have much less crabs than most other flavoured yoghurts. The raw chocolate flavour has 3.9g carbs, 2.3g protein and 19.0g fat.
Best budget and widely available flavoured yoghurt
Weight watchers range of yoghurts come in as the next lowest carbohydrate flavoured yoghurt. It's important to bear in mind that although the lowest in carbohydrates compared to others, we have more than doubled the carb content compared to some of the yoghurts mentioned above!
There is also a lack of fat to help slow down the release of glucose in weight watchers yoghurts and so some may find these more difficult to tolerate.
It is advisable to compare the nutritional information before purchasing these yoghurts and fromage frais, as with such a broad range, the nutritional content varies. The weight watchers yoghurt and fromage frais we compared ranged from 5.7g - 7.0g carbs per 100g, 4.0 - 5.6g protein and 0.1g fat per 100g.
High protein yoghurts
New to the market last year, we have seen Arla Dairies produce some new high protein yoghurts such as the SKYR range and the Arla Protein yoghurts.
Excluding the natural one, which contains 4.0g carbs per 100g, these flavoured yoghurts contain slightly more total carbohydrates than the weight watchers yoghurts but have a much higher protein content, meaning they tend to be well tolerated. They still have small amounts of fat, but the extra protein makes up for that.
In the Arla SKYR and PROTEIN yoghurts we compared, (excluding the Natural SKYR yoghurt) they ranged from 6.5g - 9.0g carbs, a huge 9.4g - 10.0g protein and 0.2 - 0.3g fat.
Jazz up your natural yoghurt
There are literally tons of suitable yoghurts to choose from out there, but these are just a few of the better choices above.
If you are looking for flavoured yoghurts, you can easily add flavour to natural yoghurt and have much better control over what you are eating.
Here's some ideas to try:
- a few berries
- chopped kiwi
- half a grated granny smith apple
- lemon or lime juice and zest
- agave nectar
- fresh ginger
- seeds from a vanilla pod
- choc shot
- grated dark chocolate
When adding fruit to yoghurt it increases the carbohydrate content as fruits are high in fructose. The same applies to adding things like chocolate. To help to 'pair' or counter balance this additional carbohydrate you could add nuts and seeds which are packed with protein and healthy fats. For more on food pairing please take a look at our 8 golden rules of eating which can be found here.
Serving sizes versus nutritional info
All the nutritional information above is based per 100g, it is very rare that we actually consume only 100g of yoghurt though.
A small pot of yoghurt such as the Weight watchers ones and the most common size mulitpack yoghurts contain 120g - 125g. A yoghurt the size of a Mullerlight contains 175g. The big pots contain around 400 - 500g and the ones like the bucket of yoghurt from Lidl contain 1kg!
Bear this in mind when selecting your yoghurt and choosing how much to eat. When starting the diet and checking your tolerance, it's best to start with a small amount and then increase the amount depending on your readings. 4 heaped tbsp is a good starting point and is a very rough 100g.
Not just a sweet treat
Don't forget that yoghurt can be used in lots of different ways to help compliment your GD diet. It's great for making dips, sauces, dressings and curries with.
Need more help?
If you are really struggling for what to eat since being diagnosed then take a look at our GD Diet and 8 golden rules. If you are stuck for ideas and inspiration then we also have a membership section which offers lists of food ideas, hints & tips, brand suggestions, some recipes and shopping lists. All this is available with our Bronze membership. For even more convenience we also have 7 day food plans with our Silver membership option. Check out our membership options here.