As the new guidelines outline, the vast majority of Americans are not getting the recommended three servings of dairy per day. Adding one lowfat or nonfat yogurt every day to their eating plan could be a simple, convenient way for Americans to increase dairy intake. Specific strategies for increasing dairy intake as noted in the 2015 DGAs include choosing yogurt as a snack, or using yogurt as an ingredient in prepared dishes.
In accord with the company’s mission to bring health through food to as many people as possible, Dannon also notes that in addition to helping Americans get their recommended three servings of dairy per day, yogurt can play a significant role in helping them meet many of the other recommendations put forth in the new guidelines:
Yogurt is a nutrient dense food, and most yogurts contain calcium, potassium and vitamin D, three critical nutrients that were identified in the 2015 DGAs as nutrients of public health concern (those that are under-consumed across the population). Among their many benefits, these nutrients support growth and bone development.
Yogurt pairs well with fruit and vegetables and can encourage their consumption when combined in smoothies, dips and dressings, supporting overall healthy dietary patterns like those recommended in the 2015 DGAs.
The updated guidelines identify the opportunity for Americans to consider more vegetarian options. Most yogurts are a good source of high quality protein – along with calcium, potassium and vitamin D – which can fit into a vegetarian diet.
The DGAs serve as a guide to healthy eating, including weight management. Research shows that people who regularly consumed yogurt had less weight gain over time. In particular, yogurt consumption over time (at 4% of daily calories) is associated with a lower change of weight and waist circumference over time, and consumption of yogurt, fruits, vegetables and whole grains is associated with less weight gain over time, with yogurt having the best effect.
The 2015 DGAs also call for Americans to reduce their intake of sugar from all sources, and Dannon has been working to reduce sugar throughout our portfolio. The company started in 2013 by lowering the sugar content of our bestselling kids' product, Danimals Smoothies, by 25%. In 2014, Dannon, in conjunction with the Partnership for a Healthier America, committed to reduce the amount of total sugar in its products to 23 grams or less per 6-ounce serving (based on the Institute of Medicine's recommendation) in 100% of products for children and in 70% of the company's products overall by 2016.