In recent years, coronary heart disease brought about by high blood cholesterol has been a chief cause of death among adults. Research on both animal and human subjects shows that yogurt is beneficial in keeping blood cholesterol at acceptable levels. This effect is believed to be related to the fact that the beneficial bacteria in yogurt decrease cholesterol production by the liver and present cholesterol-inducing elements from passing from the intestine into the blood. The calcium in yogurt is also beneficial in controlling high blood pressure, a major risk factor in cardiovascular diseases. Especially garlic infused yogurt, which is an important sauce in many of our dishes, is accepted as beneficial in controlling blood pressure. As the beneficial bacteria in yogurt do not remain in the large intestine for long, a portion of yogurt must be consumed daily for them to be beneficial. One of the factors in cardiovascular disease is high consumption of saturated fats. Production and consumption of low-fat milk products in order to reduce the amount of saturated fats in food is increasing constantly. For this reason, those with a hereditary predisposition to cardiovascular disease and those with high cholesterol should eat low-fat yogurt.
The calcium and beneficial bacteria contained in yogurt also make it helpful in the prevention of colon cancer, a major health issue. In order to reap the benefits of yogurt in this area, daily nutrition should also include sufficient high-fiber foods such as legumes, unbleached grain products, vegetables and fruits.