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What Is the Yogurt Diet?

By Summer Banks
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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The yogurt diet is the name given to an Internet phenomenon and another eating plan, which was the basis of a book written by Ana Luque. Both diets center on using yogurt to increase weight loss and restore body health. According to Ana Luque, yogurt should be added to a menu of detoxifying foods that will cleanse the body and restore wellness. Internet instructions support eating only yogurt throughout the day for fast weight loss. There are no formal instructions for the Internet yogurt diet.

The two forms of yogurt diet are based on probiotics and the healthy flora present in intestine. Healthy flora helps to break down and digest food. When food is broken down completely, colon health and function typically improves. This could support claims of overall health improvements on yogurt diet plans. Weight loss is based on calorie restriction as low-fat yogurt usually contains between 100 and 120 calories per serving.

Yogurt can contain fruit, protein, and dairy which are three major food groups for dieters. Eating only yogurt may be difficult over a prolonged period of time, but no known health problems have been reported as of late 2009. In order to consume enough calories to maintain health, 10 to 12 cups of yogurt would need to be eaten every day.

Eating yogurt alone does leave out vegetables and whole grains from food menus. Ana Luque’s version of the yogurt diet does not support severe food restriction. Instead of eating yogurt exclusively, dieters on her plan are advised to eat three servings of yogurt every day in addition to approved foods. Wholesome foods and herbs are approved, but no list of these foods could be found online.

Yogurt contains probiotics, which are found naturally in intestines. Research has found that processed, high-fat, and fast-food diets tend to deplete probiotic levels. Antibiotic use can also reduce numbers of probiotic bacteria. Yogurt is a healthy source of probiotics, in some cases. Not all yogurts contain healthy flora, as these bacteria need to be added during manufacturing.

According to Luque, diets rich in probiotics can reduce inflammation, increase weight loss, and detoxify the body. These claims are not supported by scientific research. Luque also claims the probiotics present in yogurt can heal eating disorders.

Yogurt diets are all usually based on intestinal flora, so it is important to choose yogurt that includes probiotics and prebiotics on the ingredient list. Yogurts high in sugar and fat are not typically allowed. There is no mention of exercise in any of the information about the Internet yogurt diet or Ana Luque’s plan.

Yogurt Diet Plan

If you're not interested in following Luque's unique yogurt diet, you can still create a healthy diet plan that centers around consuming more yogurt on a regular basis. One serving each day of probiotic-rich, high-protein yogurt is a good place to start for many people. If you already eat yogurt on a regular basis, consider eating it twice or three times a day to up your intake. It can be especially beneficial when it's used to replace foods that are higher in calories and lacking in protein.

For example, yogurt is a great swap for sugar-filled desserts that can still help satisfy your sweet tooth. You can also season it with fresh herbs, spices, or low-calorie sauces to make a tasty dip for fresh vegetables. It even works well as a marinade for meats.

Before you start any new diet plan, you should always consult your physician first. This is especially true for diets that eliminate certain foods or require large amounts of others. People with underlying health conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, or digestive issues should be especially careful when starting a new way of eating. While a yogurt diet plan can help some people lose weight quickly, it's usually better to make gradual lifestyle changes you can stick to for slow and steady weight loss.

Why Is Yogurt Good for Weight Loss?

Most doctors and nutritionists alike recommend consuming yogurt as part of a balanced and nutritious diet for three main reasons:

  • Protein content
  • Probiotic benefits
  • Calcium content

Probiotics help balance your digestive system. This can improve your metabolism and help you make better use of the nutrients you consume. Many believe these beneficial bacteria can improve several other areas of your health as well, from immunity to pain management. Calcium plays a key role in muscle function, but it's mainly known for strengthening bones and teeth. Many adults don't consume enough calcium, so yogurt is a great way to get more of this essential nutrient.

However, it's the protein content in yogurt that plays a major role in weight loss. In addition to giving your body continuous energy, protein helps you feel fuller longer. This keeps you from snacking more or reaching for other unhealthy options to stave off hunger throughout the day. However, not all yogurt is created equal, and some options can actually do more harm than good when consumed on a routine basis.

What Yogurt is Good for Weight Loss?

If you want to use yogurt to help you lose weight, remember to check the labels first. Greek yogurt is usually the best choice because it's much higher in protein than other options. However, there are many types of Greek yogurt that are also loaded with sugar and fat, which can have an adverse effect on weight loss. Look for low-fat products that are high in protein and low in sugar for daily consumption. Sweeter yogurts can still be a healthier substitute for high-calorie desserts, as long as they are enjoyed in moderation.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By anon961358 — On Jul 16, 2014

I Have been on the Yogurt diet for about three weeks. Twice a day, I eat low fat plain yogurt with granola or corn flakes and I add a tablespoon of honey.

For dinner I eat grilled chicken breast with some veggies. I have lost a total of 4 kilos. It's not that much, but I noticed that my (tight) pants are very loose.

By anon943249 — On Apr 01, 2014

I have tried the yogurt diet (with a twist. I added Cumin to the yogurt. this pushes your body to burn more calories), and it is very effective, once you take it with 21 dates per day. Dates will give you the supplement of nutriments you are missing. For more effective results, like I had, you should do one week with dates and yogurt and one week with the GM diet.

By mobydog1973 — On Mar 31, 2014

I am trying out a new kind of "fast". I put it in quotes, because I am drinking smoothies from a blender, so it's not a fast in the strict sense of the word. Here is what I am taking, three times a day. Please let me know what you think.

Half a liter of unsweetened natural yogurt, whey protein powder, tablespoon of bran, apple, banana, cranberries and a tablespoon of Macrolife Natural's Greens.

I also drink organic pressed juice for morning and afternoon snacks and drink decaf herbal tea often, as well.

Thus far, in 3.5 days, I've lost 4KG. I am quite active, with an hour of cardio in the gym, daily, and I am a teacher, currently working.

By anon353356 — On Oct 29, 2013

A very close friend of mine, after being on the yogurt diet for only two weeks, had only dropped 10 pounds on the scale but inches in her waist! You can really see a huge difference. She drank a cup of coffee for breakfast, had yogurt and water for lunch, and ate a normal, healthy meal for dinner. The results are amazing! Can't wait to try it.

By anon344820 — On Aug 12, 2013

My accidental 'diet.'

I recently started eating lots of yogurt after taking some strong antibiotics. I didn't even know this was a 'diet'! Found I lost weight without even trying - more than 15kg in a month! I am thrilled as I'd given up trying to lose weight I'd carried for the last 10 years.

I have plain Greek yogurt, with a tiny sprinkle of oats, fruit for breakfast and lunch- then a normal, but healthy dinner, with a glass of wine! (makes sure I get veges/fiber etc).

Psychologically, I think the difference is that I chose to eat the yogurt, rather than feeling I was depriving myself of anything. My motivation was not a 'diet'- but based on the advantages of probiotics and balancing PH, etc. Losing weight has been an accidental (but welcome) side effect!

Now I'll sometimes have a bit of salad/soup or tiny bit of cheese/chicken for lunch-small portions only, especially if I am socalising. This also means I don't get sick of yogurt!

However, all the yogurt eating seems to have retrained my appetite to smaller portions and if it's my primary food in the day, it takes away the decision making. I've just stopped thinking about food all day and get on with other things.

I feel really great, so I am carrying on!

By amypollick — On Feb 21, 2013

@anon321130: Not to be a wet blanket, but you probably need to get your doctor to do a blood glucose and A1c level checked on you. Losing weight without trying, increased thirst and fluid intake are sometimes signs of diabetes.

By anon321130 — On Feb 21, 2013

I am a 62 year old male with rheumatoid arthritis and have also had multiple surgeries, including a complete colostomy in 2008.

My weight for the past five years has ranged between 165 and 175.(I am 5'8") I have been eating two or three 8 ounce portions of yogurt per day mixed with fresh strawberries, blueberries and walnuts for the past two months. I don't do it for any particular reason other than I like it. In addition, I eat anything and everything throughout the day which includes two or three square meals. I have been losing an average of one to two pounds per week without trying and this morning weighed in at 157lbs.

I have always had a spare tire with excess body fat in my mid-section and I have lost 2" there. My physical activity is limited due to my arthritis and joint pain, so it's not any increased physical regime that has resulted in this. I don't have an explanation as to why this is occurring. I have noticed other changes like fluid craving/intake, etc. that have me perplexed as well.

By anon263490 — On Apr 24, 2012

I tried the yogurt diet for two weeks when I wanted to lose weight for my wedding. We decided to book a date for our wedding which meant I only had eight weeks to lose a stone and a half!

I ate up to five yoghurts a day (mixed low fat and muller corners, etc.) and I would say it took about four days of just yogurt and my stomach started shrinking by the inch! (I didn't lose much in terms of weight by this time).

After one week of eating only yogurt, I became violently sick (I cannot say whether this was due to the extreme amount of yogurt or I may have just had a virus).

Anyway, after the sickness bug cleared, which was in about three days, I'd lost about half a stone and my stomach was so flat! After the two weeks went by I stopped the yogurt and reintroduced solids so I would have a coffee in the morning, a small snack pack of sushi for lunch (124kcals) and a small portion of healthy food for dinner (e.g., salmon with greens) I continued this for six weeks and went from 10st 6 to 8st 12!

I kept the weight off for two years and I am now 11st and on day two of another yogurt diet and hoping to get down to 9st and maintain it!

By anon171781 — On May 01, 2011

I have been on the yogurt diet for 11 days. I haven't lost a single pound! I made mistakes!

You are supposed to take a break every seventh day and eat whatever you want. You are to cut out salt and sugar completely from your food. You need to stick to low fat yogurt only and you can, but shouldn't have veggies and fruits. Strictly have 21 dates divided in three meals with three glasses of yogurt and water. Nothing else and make sure not those diet sodas or salt and it should work. So I am planning to start over!

By anon166164 — On Apr 07, 2011

I have started two days ago, and I already lost 2KG which is amazing for me. I am eating in the morning seven dates with cup of yogurt and the same for lunch and dinner. the nice thing about is you always feel you're full.

By naturesgurl3 — On Nov 16, 2010

I am all for healthy, macrobiotic diets, but I think that an all yogurt diet is taking it too far.

Although there is a lot to be said about the benefits of yogurt for one's diet, eating only yogurt simply can't be too healthy.

I would also warn people about eating too much yogurt in addition to a normal diet. Your body needs to be in balance, and loading it down with anything can be bad for you.

So just try to keep everything in its correct proportion -- get your five fruits and veggies a day, stick with whole grains and lean meats, and have some -- not a ton! -- of yogurt in your diet. And be sure to exercise. You'll lose weight, and you'll also feel great.

By FirstViolin — On Nov 16, 2010

I kind of have my doubts as to how healthy the yogurt only diet is. Although yogurt is great, and can make an excellent contribution to health, it simply doesn't have all the nutrients you need for your body to function properly.

This sounds like a crash diet to me. Sure, you'll probably lose weight it you go on an all yogurt diet for two weeks, but when you start adding your other foods back in, then you'll start gaining that weight back.

Besides, there are so many healthy recipes out there -- why only stick to yogurt? Get some variety in your diet; it's much healthier. Besides, if you go on such an extreme diet, there's always the chance that your body will start to think that you're starving and you will actually start to retain weight, rather than losing it.

Just some food for thought...

By closerfan12 — On Nov 16, 2010

Has anybody reading this actually tried the low fat yogurt diet? I've heard some really good things about it, but I'd like to get some more personal input from someone in the know before I try it.

Does anybody reading this have any experience with this diet, and can you tell me if it worked for you? Thanks!

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