Me and Kristina Vavura (www.kris.white.bg) collaborated and analysed the nutritional profile of these 10 healthy recipes with Activia (Yogurt), which are supposedto show people that healthy meals can be delicious and beneficial to our overall wellbeing.

In this article you’ll find information about dairy (which is the main ingredient in every recipe) and also information about other foods included in the recipes. For example:

  • Oats
  • Cherries
  • Bananas
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Sesame seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Kiwis
  • Cornflakes
  • Pomegranates

There are some of their health benefits explained under every recipe, so enjoy!

Dairy products

Yogurt is a dairy product which is an important addition to a healthy balanced diet, because it provides many macro- and micronutrients essential for overall health.

Many people claim that dairy should be avoided due to various reasons, but for some individuals cutting milk out may cause more harm than good.

Nutrients

1/3 of the recommended calcium intake can be obtained if one consumes dairy on a daily basis. A single glass of 2% cow’s milk provides protein, phosphorus, iodine, riboflavin and pantothenic acid as well as 72% (!) of the recommended dose for vitamin B12.

What are the health benefits then?

  • Healthy muscles, bones, nerves, teeth, skin and vision
  • Reduction of tiredness and fatigue
  • Slow release of energy from different kinds of foods
  • Healthy blood pressure
  • Normal brain development and growth
  • Optimal immune functioning

Dairy and children

The most rapid growth process in children happens in the first 5 years of their life. Thus, they have high energy needs, but due to their small stomach capacity- they need to consume nutrient-dense foods in order to sustain them during their development.

Usually, full-fat dairy products provide good amount of energy, protein, vitamins and minerals which contribute to optimal growth as well as protection against dental caries.

Children often develop their skeletal system in their teenage years, with 40-60% of peak bone mineral content. This means that by 18, one should have developed 80-90% of his skeleton.

That’s why, a healthy balanced diet in until 18 can increase bone mineral density which would lead to healthy bones later in life and it would decrease the chance of osteoporosis.

Dairy and adults

Bone density is the amount of mineral in the bones and it continues to rise until one reaches thirties. However, after that it starts to slowly decrease and one loses his bone density.

It is essential for a pregnant and breastfeeding women to consume enough calcium-rich foods in order to support the nutritional needs of her and the growing baby.

Women over 50 are at a very high risk of suffering from a bone disease such as osteoporosis, because menopause causes a more rapid bone loss.

Dairy products are very suitable for aging people due to their soft, smooth texture, because many elderly have dental or swallowing problems.

Why Activia?

Yogurt has many useful macronutrients that every body needs to function properly. It contains a lot of calcium- a mineral needed for healthy bones and teeth. Also, it is very rich in vitamin B12 and riboflavin (as I said above), which help the proper function of the cardiovascular system.

What’s more, Activia has probiotic properties because of the diversity of bacteria in its composition. Therefore, the product is extremely suitable for people who suffer from gastrointestinal problems. Probiotics are also very powerful immunostimulants.

Usually, yogurt is quite high in protein, which helps with a proper regulation of the appetite, as protein takes the most energy to be absorbed by the body.

1. Delicious breakfast with oats and fruits

  • 1/3 cup oats (gluten-free)
  • 1 tsp maple syrup/honey
  • 1 Activia Natural (Yogurt)
  • 4-5 raspberries
  • 1 tsp tahini (almond/hazelnut/peanut butter)

Oats

Oatmeal is rich many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants- mainly manganese and vitamin B1. It contains complex carbohydrates and fiber, which make it an ideal choice for breakfast.

Oats contain a certain type of soluble fibre, which is beta-glucan. It partially dissolves in water and forms a thick, gel-like solution in the intestines.

The main health benefits are the following:

  • Reduced levels of “bad” cholesterol (LDL-cholesterol) and total cholesterol
  • Lowered blood sugar and insulin levels (which makes it a good choice for people with diabetes)
  • Increased satiety (helps with weight reduction, because the beta-glucan increases the levels of peptide YY, which is a hormone in the stomach produced during satiety)
  • Increased variety of good bacteria in the digestive tract
Energy 365 kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
43g
16g
Fats
Saturated fats
14g
6g
Protein 15g
Fibre 5g

2. Activia with cherries

  • 50g oats
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp honey/maple syrup
  • 100g cherries
  • 1 Activia Natural (Yogurt)

Cherries

Cherries are full of fiber, vitamin C, potassium (important for proper maintenance of muscles, nerves, blood pressure). In addition, cherries contain a relatively high amounts of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that fight oxidative stress in the body. 11 out of 16 studies have shown that cherries reduce inflammatory processes in the human body; and 8 (out of 10) prove the reduction of oxidative stress markers.

Cherries are also rich in polyphenols, which are a group of plant compounds that fight cell disorders, protect against chronic and cardiovascular diseases (such as diabetes and certain types of cancer).

Energy 490kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
61g
29 g
Fats
Saturated fats
15g
6g
Protein 18g
Fibre 10g

3. Delicious breakfast with chia seeds and fruits

  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp honey/maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 banana
  • 100g strawberries
  • 1 Activia Natural (Yogurt)

Bananas

Bananas are among the most popular fruits in the world. They come from South Asia, but now they are grown all around the world.

They contain large amounts of fiber and antioxidants as well as pectin, which is a type of fiber that gives their gooey texture.

Unripe bananas contain persistent starch that acts as an indigestible fiber and slows down digestive processes. Pectin can maintain stable postprandial blood sugar levels and reduce appetite, because unripe bananas are thought to be with lower glycaemic index value (this is a measure of 0 to 100, which shows how quickly a food product raises blood sugar levels). The glycaemic index of unripe bananas is about 30, while ripe bananas are about 60. This means that bananas should not cause large spikes in blood sugar levels in healthy individuals. However, people with type 2 diabetes should avoid eating too many ripe bananas and they should also monitor their blood sugar levels closely.

Energy 490kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
61g
29 g
Fats
Saturated fats
15g
6g
Protein 18g
Fibre 10g

4. Fruity breakfast

  • 1 Activia Natural (Yogurt)
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • 4-5 strawberries
  • 1 kiwi
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter

Strawberries

Fresh strawberries have a very high water content, so their total carbohydrates are very low- less than 8g per 100g. Most of these carbs are simple sugars such as glucose, fructose, sucrose and fiber.

The glycaemic index of the fruit is 40, which means that it should not lead to huge spikes in blood sugar levels, thus, they are considered safe for people with diabetes.

Strawberries are a good source of vitamin C (antioxidant; good for the immune system and the skin), manganese, folate/vitamin B9 (important for normal cell growth and essential for women in their reproductive age), potassium (a mineral involved in many processes happening in the body).

Strawberries are also very rich in pelargonidin, ellagic acid, ellagitannins and procyanidins, which are plant compounds (antioxidants) known to fight bacterial inflammation and cancer.

Energy 307 kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
30g
21g
Fat
Saturated fat
15g
6g
Protein 16g
Fiber 5g

5. Delicious breakfast with raspberries and muesli

  • 80g raspberries
  • 1 Activia Natural (Yogurt)
  • 40g muesli
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 5 hazelnuts, raw

Raspberries

Despite the minimal amount of calories in raspberries and their low carbohydrate content, they are relatively high in fiber. These fruits are very suitable for people who strictly monitor their carbohydrate consumption or follow a keto/low-carb diet. Raspberries DO NOT raise blood sugar sharply like some other fruits, as they fall into the category of foods with a low glycaemic index.

In addition, raspberries are high in tannins, which block alpha-amylase (this is a digestive enzyme needed to break down starch). Therefore, the amount of carbohydrates absorbed after a meal decreases as blood sugar levels are reduced.


Energy 326 kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
39g
24g
Fat
Saturated fat
15g
6g
Protein 12g
Fiber 8g

6. Delicious breakfast with seeds

  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp flaxseed
  • 1 tsp oatbran
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 Activia Natural (Yogurt)
  • 50g raspberries

Sesame seeds

Sesame seeds are a good source of healthy fats, proteins, vitamin B, selenium, iron, zinc, copper, fiber and antioxidants as well as other beneficial plant compounds.

Regular consumption of these seeds helps with blood sugar control, making them an excellent choice for diabetes patients. In addition, some studies have shown improvements in arthritis’ symptoms and lower blood cholesterol levels.

The human thyroid gland contains high amounts of selenium (plays a vital role in the production of glandular hormones). Sesame seeds are a very good source of this mineral, supplying 18% of the recommended daily allowance of selenium.

Moreover, they contain phytoestrogens, which are plant compounds similar to estrogen. Therefore, sesame seeds are thought to help menopausal women when their estrogen levels decrease.

In order to optimize absorption- leave the seeds in a glass of water for a while.

Energy 295 kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
23g
12g
Fat
Saturated fat
17g
6g
Protein 15g
Fiber 9g

7. Delicious breakfast with oats

  • 3 tbsp oats
  • 1/2 apple
  • cinnamon
  • 1 Activia Natural (Yogurt)
  • 2 chopped walnuts

Walnuts

Walnuts have numerous antioxidant properties and significant amounts of omega-3 fatty acids than all other nuts. They are thought to reduce inflammatory processes in the body and contribute to a better cardiovascular profile. Some studies suggest that the fiber content in walnuts as well as all the polyphenols in them positively influence the gut microbiota.

Additionally, these nuts contain vitamin E and melatonin, which should be part of every person’s healthy lifestyle.

Energy 357 kcal
Carbohydrates 41g
20g
Fat
Saturated fat
16g
6g
Protein 13g
Fiber 5g

8. Colourful fruity breakfast

  • 5-6 fresh strawberries
  • 1 kiwi
  • 1 Activia Natural
  • 1/2 vanilla
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds

Kiwi

Kiwis are full of vitamin C, K, E, antioxidants and fiber. High doses of vitamin C and antioxidants are though to fight asthma. A study has found that people who consumed kiwis had better lung function.

The digestive system also benefits from the consumption of this fruit, because it contains a lot of fiber as well as the proteolytic enzyme- actinidine, which helps with the breakage of dietary protein.

Other beneficial properties of the kiwi include reduced risk of cancer, optimised immune system, improved blood pressure, reduced chance of blood clotting and protection against macular degeneration (the main cause of vision loss).

Energy 316 kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
31g
22g
Fat
Saturated fat
15g
6g
Protein 14g
Fiber 11g

9. Cereal with Activia

  • 1 tbsp flaxseed
  • 2 tbsp cornflakes, sugar-free
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 Activia Natural
  • 100g blueberries

Cornflakes

The main ingredient in cornflakes is ground corn, which is rich in vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, vitamin D and vitamin E as well as thiamine. Thiamine is useful in the carbohydrate metabolism, energy production and cognitive function.

Although cornflakes are not rich in fiber, you can add them to a balanced breakfast which would make it an ideal choice for the start of your day.


Energy 312 kcal
Carbohydrates 42g
25g
Fat
Saturated fat
11g
5g
Protein 12g
Fiber 5g

10. Delicious breakfast with fruits and oats

  • 3 tbsp oats (gluten-free)
  • 1 apple
  • 1 tbsp pomegranate seeds
  • 1 Activia Natural

Pomegranate

Pomegranates contain two unique substances that are of a great benefit to human health. These are punicalagins and Punic acid. Punicalagins are extremely powerful antioxidants found in pomegranate juice and in its peel. Some studies claim that the antioxidant properties of pomegranate are 3 times more than those of red wine and green tea. Punic acid is found in the oil extracted from the fruit and it is the main fatty acid in aryls. This is a type of conjugated linoleic acid with powerful biological effects.

Additionally, pomegranates are considered anti-inflammatory and help with treating cardiovascular diseases, cancer, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s and even obesity. A 12-week study of people with diabetes concluded that of patients drank 250ml of pomegranate juice every day- their inflammatory blood markers- CRP and interleukin-6, decreased by 32% and 30%, respectively.

Energy 401 kcal
Carbohydrates
Sugars
57g
31g
Fat
Saturated fat
14g
6g
Protein 14g
Fiber 9g