How Healthy are Yoghurt, Quark and Skyr?

Dairy products such as yoghurt, quark and skyr – a traditional Icelandic milk dish – are high in high-quality protein, calcium and saturated fat. The composition of the nutrients is considered healthy. However, if you are overweight or have high cholesterol levels, you should only eat the products in moderation or switch to alternatives with less fat.

Be careful with finished products: yoghurt, quark and skyr with industrially produced fruit preparations can contain artificial flavours and large amounts of sugar – on average, up to six sugar cubes per cup. It is, therefore, better to prepare the natural product with fresh fruit.

Production of yoghurt, quark and skyr

Different substances are added to milk to make yoghurt, quark and skyr:

  • In yoghurt, lactic acid bacteria ferment the milk sugar. The type of bacteria determines the consistency and taste – mild or sour.
  • With quark, rennet is added to the milk, a coagulation ferment from calves’ stomachs. The enzymes chymosin and pepsin contained in the rennet allow the milk to coagulate (coagulation). The cream is also added. As a result, the fat content is higher than that of yoghurt: low-fat quark up to 10 per cent, low-fat quark up to 20 per cent and cream quark up to 40 per cent.
  • Skyr is acidified with bacteria like yoghurt and thickened with rennet-like quark. Skyr tastes sourer than a quark, the consistency is firmer and creamier than that of yoghurt. Some manufacturers refer to the Icelandic origin of Skyr, but the product is mostly made in Germany.

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