Benefits Of Curd: 13 Natural Health And Beauty Benefits Of Curd/Dahi

Curd is a probiotic rich food item and helps maintain a healthy gut. Benefits of curd include easing digestive issues like constipation, gas and bloating to name a few.

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From being one of the simplest side-dishes, which taste good no matter what you eat it with, to having significant health and beauty benefits, curd (or dahi as it is known) is among India’s favorite milk-based products. In fact, during summer months, curd becomes even more crucial to tackle the heat and humidity, thanks to its cooling and soothing properties. Curd is also considered generally safe for consumption by those who may be lactose-intolerant. It is produced from a process called curdling, which breaks down the lactose present in milk into lactic acid, thus making it digestible for people who may be unable to breakdown and digest milk. Let us look at the health and beauty benefits of curd in more detail.

Nutritional Facts Of Curd

Calories 98 kcal
Total fat 4.3 g
Cholesterol 17 mg
Sodium 364 mg
Potassium 104 mg
Total carbohydrates 3.4 g
Protein 11 g

Source: USDA

Watch: Benefits Of Curd (Dahi)

Curd Is Probiotic In Nature And Helps In Combating Digestive Issues

Curd is a probiotic rich food item and this makes it great for our overall well-being. Probiotic foods help keep our intestines healthy. In recent decades, the importance of a healthy gut have been shown to be directly related to overall health and wellness. A healthy gut can help keep your immunity up and keep the quality of skin and hair in top-shape, among other benefits. In fact, often weight gain or a struggle to lose weight has been associated with poor digestive health. People who find it difficult to lose weight, often complain of digestive issues like constipation, gas and bloating. Dahi can help a great deal to combat these issues. As thick Curd can be prepared at home, it is a highly beneficial product that is available in abundance, and the fact that it is a natural derivative of milk and does not contain any form of chemical, makes it the safest item to consume without hesitation.

Benefits of curd
Curd is prepared by curdling, a process in which a strain of bacteria is added in order to ferment the milk and separate the solid milk particles from the liquid (whey)

Amazing Health Benefits of Curd

Curd is consumed in nearly every household due to its various health benefits, and of course its refreshing flavors. Rich and. creamy and taste, curd can be enjoyed in a variety of ways, from beverages to curries and snacks. (In fact, we did an in-depth review to find out the creamiest packaged curd brand. Read our findings here) The probiotic cultures present in dahi, responsible for interacting with the inside workings of our body, helps in soothing ailments that plague our system. Here are the health benefits credited to curd:

1. Improves Digestion

Thanks to the live cultures present in curd, it helps people who are suffering from indigestion by fastening our body’s mechanism.

2. Curd Helps Relieve Constipation

The other major reason that makes thick curd good for digestion is its ability to reduce the intestinal transit time, which could fasten the process of getting rid of the undigested food.

Related Reading: We review products over days, and sometimes weeks, so you can shop better. Read our Best Packaged Dahi To Buy Review here.

3. Helps Soothe The Tummy During Diarrhea

By improving our gut activity, curd plays an important role in our diet when we are suffering from an upset stomach.

4. Increases Immunity

The active live bacteria present in curd are responsible for keeping the intestines healthy, this helps in making the immune system stronger. A stronger immune system will mean that the body is able to fight and tackle other illnesses better. It is highly advised for people suffering from immunity disorders to consume about 2-3 cups of curd everyday.

5. Reduces Blood Pressure

Apart from the live culture in thick curd which is present in abundance, the other benefits of curd arise due to its richness in minerals such as magnesium and potassium. These minerals help in reducing our blood pressure by balancing the adverse effects of salt.

Since eating more salt could increase the amount of sodium in your blood stream, it makes it hard for the excess water to reach your bladder, hence increasing your blood pressure. However, a diet that consists of an intake of curd would potentially increase the amount of potassium and magnesium in our blood stream, thus balancing it with the level of sodium, and helps in the movement of excess water into our bladder, thus lowering our blood pressure.

6. Increases Bone Density And Strength

Having a high supply of calcium, dahi acts as an important part of our diet as it helps in strengthening our bones. Just like other minerals such as potassium and magnesium, our body removes calcium through the release of excess water present in our body. Hence, curd plays an important role by providing us with a calcium rich diet and strengthening our bones.

7. Curd And Weight Loss

With benefits such as increasing our metabolism, Curd is considered to be beneficial for fast digestion and can aid in weight loss. By lowering the intestinal transit time, the intake of curd can reduce the digestion time while aiding in the absorption of the nutrients by the blood. The other important benefit that allows curd to play as a weight loss stimulant is the fact that it helps in easing the movement of excess water, and also helps in getting rid of it.

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Health Benefits of Curd
Curd helps in weight loss by increasing our metabolism, which also increases our body’s rate of burning fat

8. Curd To Cool down In Summers

Those who spend a lot of time outdoors during the hot summer months are advised to drink  a glass or two of lassi/chhach to cool down the body and avoid a heatstroke.

Related Reading: We review products over days, and sometimes weeks, so you can shop better.

Read our Tastiest Mishti Doi To Buy Review here.

Skin And Hair Benefits Of Curd

The live culture present in curd not only helps in improving our health, but its anti-inflammatory nature and anti-microbial properties also helps in nourishing our skin. The exfoliating and moisturizing properties of dahi help in fighting dry skin cells, giving the skin its fresh glowing texture. Here are some refreshing skin and hair benefits of curd:

9. Curd Acts As A Natural Cleanser

As Curd is rich in probiotics, it is considered to be a natural cleanser. When applied directly over the skin after being mixed with a few drops of olive oil, Curd helps our skin in getting rid of dirt, and also removes the dead cells, leaving behind a fresh face.

10. Helps In Fighting Acne

Thick Curd, when applied over the skin and massaged properly, due to its anti-inflammatory nature, forms a protective layer over our skin that prevents external pathogens from attacking it, which prevents it from getting inflated.

Also Read: Yogurt/Curd For Acne And Pimples: 7 Amazing Skin & Hair Benefits Of Yogurt

11. Curd Is Moisturizing

A chemical called Hyaluronic acid, which is produced bythe probiotics present in curd, makes it a product that works as a wonderful moisturizer too. Hyaluronic acid is responsible for pulling the water or the moisture present in the environment straight into our skin, thus hydrating it. So if you have a skin that looks tired or is dry, then curd is the perfect natural remedy for you.

12. A Remedy For Dandruff

Praised for its anti-fungal properties, Curd can help by getting rid of the dry scalp as well as the fungal growth that it results in. By providing our scalp with the required nourishment, dahi also by keeps our scalp moisturized.

13. Curd Reduces Hair-Fall

By providing nourishment to our hair, thick Curd unblocks the hair follicles, which aids in the growth of a healthy set of hair, thus reducing hair-fall.

The benefits of Curd, ranging from our health to our skin and hair, make it one of the highly consumed food items in most household.

Related Reading:

Is Curd Good For An Upset Stomach?

Epigamia Artisanal Curd: Packaging, Price And Flavor Details

Side Effects Of Curd

There are not many side effects of dahi, but some people might face the following issues:

  • Even though curd helps in weight loss, but excessive consumption of dahi may lead to obesity.
  • Thick curd may be heavy for some people which can result in constipation.
  • Curd gives strength to bones and teeth but people suffering from arthritis should avoid eating dahi as it may lead to increase in joint pain.

Curd Vs Yogurt. What’s The Difference?

A question that has been asked for a long time is how Curd/Dahi different from Yogurt. And the answer is simple. The difference between curd and yogurt comes the process, meaning that the process of making Curd/Dahi differs from the process of making yogurt.

Both thick Curd and Yogurt are formed due to the coagulation of milk, which is a phenomenon that occurs after we add LAB (Lactic Acid Bacteria). A broad class of LAB can be used for making Curd, however, in order to make Yogurt, only specific strains of bacteria called Lactobacillus bulgaris and Streptococcus thermophilus are added to the milk. Simply put, what we set at home is curd and what is sold in cartons by brands, and produced at industrial levels, is usually yogurt. Both are healthy and bring with them a whole host of benefits.

Curd, being rich in vitamin b12, is good for someone who is suffering from breathlessness or indigestion, whereas, Yogurt, containing a sufficient amount of vitamin b6,  which helps people who are suffering from tiredness, and also people who develop rashes due to the deficiency of vitamin b6.

How To Set Curd At Home

One of the major reasons that make dahi the most common household item is its ability to be set at home. The most common way of setting Curd at home is by using a starter, which itself is a spoonful of Curd that is either brought from the market, or freshly made in a previous batch. The lactic acid bacteria (LAB) present in curd helps in breaking down of lactose into lactic acid, resulting in the coagulation of milk (the process of separating the solid particles from the liquid). The liquid that is left behind after the coagulation is called whey.

Also Read: How To Set Dahi (Curd) The Right Way

When the starter curd is added to the milk, it is stirred well and allowed to settle. Then the mixture is left to rest in an enclosed location and allowed to set. The setting time for curd could range from 7-10 hours, depending on the surroundings.

Make Starter Curd At Home

If you are trying to add a little more of the homely essence to your home-made curd, then you can skip using the curd that you had purchased as a starter, and instead, you can make it at home using basic ingredients to coagulate the milk.

All you need is a cup of milk, and a few stems of fresh green chilli. It is advised to make a small batch, since it would be only used as a starter for making dahi. You can later use the curd produced by this process as a starter for a larger batch.

Step 1

Mix about 7-8 stems of chilly in a cup of milk and stir well. Then let it set, which would take approximately 5-6 hours.

Step 2

Once the starter curd is ready, you can use it to produce a larger volume of curd. If you are boiling about 1 litre of milk, let it cool down to a lukewarm temperature, and then add about 2 tbsp. of starter curd and stir well. The setting time again for the curd depends on the surrounding conditions.

Though, apart from using chillies in order to make a starter, other ingredients such as lemon juice and vinegar, can also be used in order to curdle the milk with the same procedure.

Uses Of Curd

Some of the uses of curd include its derivatives, which are:

1. Cottage Cheese

It is formed by draining the whole thick curd. The remaining solids, when cooled, join in together to form a complete solid block of curd, it is called cheese. It was first discovered by storing milk in animal stomachs, as the enzymes present in the stomach help in separating the curd from milk.

Derivatives of Curd
Cottage cheese is formed by completely separating the milk solids from the liquid after the process of curdling

2. Whey

Whey is the liquid that is left behind when the curd is separated from the milk. It is used for its high protein content and is marketed in a powdered form too.

3. Coolers

Some cooler drinks such as ‘lassi’ are made out of curd and are as beneficial to our health. It is one of the most consumed beverages among Indian households during the summertime.

To know about the tastiest lassi, also read:

Mishry Review: The Tastier Lassi: Amul Or Mother Dairy?

Mishry Review: Best Chhaas/ButterMilk To Buy

Dahi has been a part of every household for many centuries now, and it continues to mark its position as one of the most recommended natural remedies that could help us with our overall health and wellness.

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  1. Appreciate the recommendation. Let me try it out.