Lactobacilli “feed” on lactose (milk sugar)

Basically, yoghurt is fermented milk. During fermentation the lactobacilli digest lactose in the yoghurt. The end-result of lactose digestion is a substance called lactic acid (responsible for the sour taste and yoghurt texture)

Lactic acid inhibits harmful species of bacteria, boosts the absorption of calcium, phosphorus and iron, and has been shown to make milk proteins more digestible by creating fine curd particles. 

Therefore if you are lactose intolerant, foods containing the “good” bacterial strains will not usually trigger an unwanted response from your body as the lactose will have been removed by the lactobacilli and will be a good source of calcium as well as helping your immune system.

© Jonathan Wade 2014