Yogurt originated in Turkey, as it was a way to store the milk for later use in the 1st century A.D. where the milk was dried in the sun and packed in the sheep or goat skin bags (Yogurt 2014). The milk was thickened during the process of packing it into the skin of the sheep or goat, because it reacted with the bacteria in the skin. This was when yogurt, a Turkish word meaning “to be curdled or coagulated; to thicken” was created (Yogurt 2014). Today yogurt goes through a process of pasteurization, just like numerous dairy products, canned foods, alcoholic drinks, butter and several more. Pasteurization involves the use of heat to sterilize products and extend the shelf life of foods such like yogurt, but not kill all of the microbial which are beneficial for the digestive tracks.
Pasteurization is used in several food and drink products, rather than sterilization, because the food and drinks need to maintain some bacteria or microorganisms (Food 2001). The process of pasteurization requires heating, around 80-90°C (176-194°F) which will sterilize the product, but not kill all of the microorganisms so the food products must be stored under refrigeration (Murano 2003). Not only does this process sterilize the food or drink, it also extends the shelf life but not as much as other food and drinks which have been completely sterilized at 121°C (250°F). The bacteria in yogurt help ferment the product and provide health benefits in the digestive track. Fermentation of the bacteria in the milk will cause pH drop, and increased viscosity (Wang et al 2009). The bacteria will convert to milk sugars, lactose, into lactic acid in yogurts which gives the yogurt its taste (Singh 2008).
The process of pasteurization takes time, as the milk is heated up to the desired temperature, then stored for fermentation as seen in Diagram 1 on the following page. In that process there are added flavors such like aspartame and other nutrients such as calcium. Lastly, as shown in the diagram, fruit flavors are added before being packaged. Not all will have fruit flavors, as there are plain flavor yogurts.
Yogurt provides several benefits, as it provides daily nutrients such as calcium, protein but more importantly yogurt helps the digestive track, by providing some probiotics. Probiotics have been known since the turn of the 20th century, in 1907, a researcher named Eli Metchnikoff, found out that there are bacteria that are beneficial when consumed by humans and animals (Food 2001). Although the word, probiotic, was not coined until the 1960, there has been several ways to describe it, such as Fuller from his study, Probiotics in human medicine, “A live microbial feed supplement which beneficially affects the host animal by improving its microbial balance.” which is what probiotics do. Probiotics covers a wide range of bacterial strains, as there are multiple known bacteria which will help the digestive track.
As mentioned before, the process of pasteurization is used...