25 Best Yogurts for Weight Loss, According to Nutritionists
Packed with metabolism-revving protein and overflowing with gut-healthy probiotics, yogurt has all the makings of one of the very best weight-loss foods around.
But tread carefully in the aisle of the fermented milk products. Manufacturers have a knack for cramming as much sugar and artificial ingredients into yogurt pots and bottles as they do candy bars—all while marketing their products as the picture of health.
The good news is, we're here to help! We asked dietitians for their expert advice on how to choose the healthiest yogurts. Whether you're looking for a low-fat, full-fat, or sippable yogurt, the next time you find yourself discombobulated in the dairy section, refer to this handy guide of the 25 best yogurts for weight loss.
How yogurt can help you lose weight.
"While no one food is responsible for weight loss, yogurt can be a great addition to a balanced diet that can ultimately help you lose weight," says Elizabeth Matchett, RDN, CD, and Nutrition Coach at NapTown Fitness.
There are multiple different ways that eating yogurt contributes to weight loss:
- It's rich in satiating macronutrients. "Yogurt is high in protein (some varieties higher than others) and can be low in fat, but it is still a good source of energy and can keep you full and satisfied," says Matchett. Greek yogurt, in particular, is great for weight loss due to its high protein content. Eating protein-rich Greek yogurt helps to control appetite, which leads to consuming fewer calories later on, according to a study published in Nutrition Journal.
- Yogurt is one of the best probiotic foods. The fermented dairy product also contains probiotics that help foster a healthy gut, which research shows can encourage weight loss and fat loss.
- You can use yogurt as a nutrient-dense substitute for high-calorie ingredients. "Yogurt can also aid in weight loss as it is often replacing other high-calorie meals, such as a buttery bagel for breakfast. Whether decked out in a parfait, substituted for heavy cream in a sauce or whipped into salad dressings, yogurt is the perfect low-calorie substitute to jazz up your favorite dish and cut the calories!" dietitian Bonnie Balk, RD, a Health & Wellness Expert for Maple Holistics tells Eat This, Not That!
How we chose the best yogurts for weight loss.
"Yogurt has all sorts of ways to help you lose weight; however, some yogurts are better than others for weight loss," says dietitian Amanda A. Kostro Miller, RD, LDN, who serves on the advisory board for Smart Healthy Living.
When selecting the best yogurt brands for weight loss, we made sure our choices met specific nutritional criteria:
- It should be low in fat. Although fat can help you feel full and satiated, it also adds extra calories. "If you're trying to control your calorie intake for weight loss, opt for low-fat or non-fat yogurts," says Kostro Miller.
- Opt for a sugar-free yogurt or one with no added sugars. "Because the lactose in dairy is a natural form of sugar, some sugar is fine, but you want to make sure that there hasn't been a lot of sugar added on top of that," says dietitian Sarah Marjoram, MS, RDN, LD. The healthiest yogurt will have little to no added sugar.
- Look for high protein yogurts. "Protein helps you stay full for several hours, so getting enough protein can prevent early hunger, which is good for someone who is trying really hard to control their calories," says Kostro Miller. "While yogurt, in general, is a good source of protein, Greek yogurt varieties have around double the amount of protein as regular yogurt, which will help keep you full and satisfied," adds Matchett.
Each of our "Eat This!" picks are also free from artificial sweeteners, colors, and additives, and are the lowest sugar options in each of their categories.
If you stick to our best yogurts for weight loss, the stubborn pounds and belly fat are sure to melt away.
1. YQ Plain Yogurt
This is the closest you're going to get to a sugar-free yogurt. YQ (which is supposed to be a play on IQ) is made with ultra-filtered milk, which gets rid of most of the naturally-occurring sugars in milk while retaining very high levels of protein. The result is yogurt with only one gram of natural sugar and an incredible 17 grams of protein: the perfect combination for weight loss. A bonus is that it's 99% lactose-free.
2. Siggi's Icelandic Style Strained Non-Fat Vanilla Yogurt
Not just great-tasting, Siggi's is one of the lowest-sugar vanilla yogurts on the market. "With just 9 grams of sugar, it barely has any added sugars, as yogurt itself naturally contains about 6 grams. As opposed to most other vanilla-flavored Greek yogurts, with about 15-20 grams per serving, a moderate 9 grams of sugar in Siggi's is the winner," says Balk. The Icelandic yogurt is strained more than Greek varieties, which also ups the protein content.
3. Fage Total 0% Greek Yogurt
While it's not technically a sugar-free yogurt (because dairy naturally contains sugars), Fage Total are all no-sugar-added. You can't get a much purer ingredient list than this: milk, cream, and cultures. "I love Fage Total 0% nonfat, plain Greek yogurt. It is thick, creamy and is so versatile. I always recommend using Fage yogurt in smoothies, as a sour cream replacement, dips, cooking, baking, as your dessert, etc. Since it is unflavored, you can add your own toppings (sweet or savory)," says Kostro Miller.
4. Light & Fit Two Good Greek Low-Fat Yogurt, Vanilla
Like YQ, this is another nearly sugar-free yogurt. Two Good's unique slow-straining process also removes the naturally-occurring lactose in milk, which renders a super low-sugar cup with only 2 grams of sugar. This Greek yogurt is high in protein, tasty, and less than 100 calories. A touch of stevia is added to round out the flavor.
5. Wallaby Organic No Sugar Added Aussie Greek Yogurt, Peach Hibiscus
If you like flavored yogurts, Matchett recommends Wallaby Organic Aussie Greek No Sugar Added yogurt. "It currently comes in three fun flavors and is sweetened with fruit concentrates [rather than added sugars]," she says. So, again, while technically not a sugar-free yogurt, Wallaby is added sugar-free. Wallaby also offers countless plain low-fat Greek yogurt flavors. They're all tasty middle-of-the-road offerings for those who don't want to commit to the calories of a whole-milk-based yogurt, but like the idea of reaping extra nutrients from a bit of milk fat.
6. Icelandic Provisions, Vanilla Skyr
If you want a high-protein yogurt but don't like the tart taste of Greek yogurt, try Icelandic Provisions' skyr. The Icelandic heirloom cultures Icelandic Provisions uses help transform their dairy base into a creamy, decadent yogurt. This vanilla skyr will fill you up with an impressive amount of protein for the fewest grams of added sugar.
7. Chobani Non-Fat Plain Greek Yogurt
The healthiest yogurts, like Chobani's Plain Greek yogurt, have low sugar content and are packed with plenty of satiating protein. This container makes a great choice to keep around the house. This non-fat snack packs in 15 percent of your daily value of bone-building calcium.
8. Stonyfield Organic Whole Milk Greek Yogurt, Plain
Because this is made with organic non-fat milk and live active cultures, you can't go wrong with this plain, thick and delicious Greek-style yogurt. Organically raised cows aren't subject to the same hormones and antibiotics that conventional cows are; no antibiotics for them means no antibiotics for you. Pair a pot with some fresh fruit, raw nuts and a tasty weight loss teas for a complete, healthy breakfast.
9. Maple Hill Creamery Plain Greek Yogurt
Maple Hill Creamery's yogurts are made just two ingredients: grass-fed milk and live cultures. That difference in milk might be reflected in the price, but it's well worth the extra cents if you can afford it. "Grass-fed yogurt contains more omega-3s and conjugated linoleic acids, both of which help prevent heart disease, inflammation, diabetes, and various cancers," registered dietitian Stephanie Middleberg explains. That's why grass-fed milk makes the healthiest yogurt. Bonus: Maple Hill Greek yogurts are rich, creamy and taste way more decadent than they are.
10. Dannon Whole Milk Vanilla Yogurt
Vitamin D-fortified dairy products, like this just-sweet-enough yogurt, help the body absorb bone-protecting calcium. While this is one of the best products Dannon has to offer, this yogurt shouldn't be your daily go-to as it's low in protein and high in sugar.
11. Organic Valley Grassmilk 100% Grass-Fed Whole Milk Yogurt, Plain
When you can, splurge for a grass-fed yogurt like this new tub from Organic Valley. Grass-fed cows provide more omega-3 fatty acids and two to five times more conjugated linoleic acid than their corn- and grain-fed counterparts. CLA contains a group of chemicals that provide a wide variety of health benefits, including improved blood-sugar regulation, maintenance of lean body mass and reduced body fat.
12. Dannon Triple Zero Greek Nonfat Yogurt, Vanilla
Although there is no naturally-occurring fiber in yogurt, Dannon's addition of chicory root fiber allows the yogurt's six grams of naturally-occurring sugar to be matched with an equal amount of digestion-slowing fiber. The source of fiber, chicory root, is a source of inulin, a prebiotic that may help feed those live active probiotic cultures and can help minimize spikes in insulin after a carb-heavy meal.
13. Siggi's 4% Whole-Milk Skyr, Mixed Berries
This full-fat Icelandic-style yogurt is among the most creamy and concentrated on the dairy aisle. It contains four times the amount of milk than a regular yogurt, making it an uber-filling, weight loss-friendly pick. We love that Siggi's uses real berries to flavor their pots.
14. Powerful Yogurt, Plain
Thanks to Powerful Yogurt's proprietary straining process, this scoopable eat retains more of the natural proteins found in its pasteurized milk base. Eat it plain or throw it into a protein shake for an added boost.
15. Chobani Low-Fat Mango Greek Yogurt Drink
Compared to other drinkable yogurts on the market, Chobani has churned out a drink that has about 33 percent less sugar. Not only is it lower in sugar than their competitors, but it also contains belly-filling fiber and 10 grams of muscle-building protein. With its moderately high sugar count, it may still be good to keep this drink to a post or pre-workout snack.
16. Siggi's Swedish-Style Drinkable Yogurt, Plain
This tangy, sippable yogurt—called "filmjölk"—is surprisingly filling. We recommended this pick as either an on-the-go snack or breakfast addition.
17. Noosa Strawberry Rhubarb Yoghurt
If you want to enjoy Noosa, be sure to pick a flavor that comes in a 4-ounce container. If you can't find these smaller packaged yogurts, you could end up consuming over 30 grams of sugar before breakfast!
18. Chobani Less Sugar Greek Yogurt, Raspberry Chocolate Crunch
When looking for yogurt for weight with fruit, opt for a Chobani with Less Sugar. Chobani's Raspberry Chocolate Crunch with less sugar than its original flip yogurts is one of—if not the—best yogurts on the market. Why? It's high in healthy fats and protein while being low in belly-busting sugar.
19. Fage Crossovers Maple Syrup with Granola
If you're looking for a yogurt that comes with indulgent mix-ins, this is the lowest-sugar option in Fage's Crossover line. With an impressive 14 grams of protein and a respectable 13 grams of sugar, feel free to dig into this when you're craving a sweet breakfast.
20. Lifeway Helios Kefir Nonfat Original
Kefir is 99 percent lactose-free, making it a great yogurt alternative for those with lactose intolerance. This tangy drinkable yogurt is easy to eat on the go and is loaded with 16 grams of protein. Whether or not you can handle dairy, throw it into your shopping cart to mix up your morning routine!
21. Chobani Less Sugar Greek Yogurt, Wild Blueberry
As far as fruit-flavored yogurts go, Chobani's Less Sugar line is a safe bet. Especially since it's so rare to find a fruit-flavored yogurt with more protein than sugar. This one's also gluten-free, kosher, and free of artificial ingredients. Pick some up if you haven't been able to give up on your fruit-flavored yogurts, but we'd always recommend a plain Greek yogurt with real blueberries before any pre-packaged container.
22. Dannon Oikos Greek Nonfat Yogurt Plain
If you're choosing plain, Oikos gets the green light from us. Low sugar, high protein: that's the winning combo in any yogurt.
23. Brown Cow Cream Top Whole Milk Yogurt
Brown Cow Farms makes a great cream-on-top yogurt because they keep things simple and basic. As a general rule, we recommend choosing brands that have a short ingredient list. Brown Cow's non-GMO Greek yogurt contains just two ingredients plus cultures.
24. Yoplait Original, French Vanilla
It's not the healthiest yogurt, and it's not even our second pick (you can see where it actually ranks in our ultimate ranking of vanilla yogurts), but this is your best option if you're a die-hard traditional Yoplait yogurt fan. (Especially since their other lines are riddled with artificial sweeteners.) Their Original French Vanilla has reasonable calorie, fat, and protein counts. However, because it is still fairly high in sugar, don't rely on this container to keep you full all morning. To counteract the high sugar count, we recommend pairing it with digestion-slowing, high-fiber chia seeds.
25. Wallaby Organic Whole Milk Kefir, Plain
If you're looking for a basic, full-fat kefir, this is it. Although it tastes great right out of the bottle, we love the idea of using this Wallaby sip to make a smoothie. To whip up a simple drink, blend a half-cup of the stuff with a ¼ cup of fruit, some honey to taste and four or five ice cubes.
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