What is Yakult?
Yakult is a tasty, healthy, probiotic milk drink which contains good bacteria that are healthy for our guts.
How did Yakult come about?
First produced in Japan in 1935, Yakult is made by fermenting a mixture of skimmed milk with a special strain of the bacterium Lactobacillus casei Shirota.
This bacterium strain was discovered by Japanese scientist Dr Minoru Shirota (1899-1982) and has been scientifically proven to reach the gut alive.
The name was derived from the word 'Esperanto' which means 'yoghurt'. However, it is not a yoghurt but rather, fermented milk.
Main contents of Yakult
It contains, namely: sugar, skimmed milk powder, natural flavors, live Lactobacillus casei Shirota (8 billion per 65mL), water.
A standard Yakult contains 18g of sugar for every 100g, which the UK Food Standards Agency considered to be 'High'. In comparison, Coca Cola and orange juice are in the range 10g of sugar per 100g. However, Yakult is served in much smaller doses and the former have no good bacteria whatsoever.
Why is Yakult good for you?
- Yakult contains probiotics, friendly bacteria that help to maintain a desirable balance of good bacteria in our intestines.
- It contains more than 10 billion of probiotics, L. casei strain Shirota. These are strong enough to survive the harsh journey to our intestines without being killed by gastric juice and bile.
- The probiotics 'top up' the good bacteria already present in our guts.
- One bottle of Yakult has a minimum of 6.5 billion cells of the unique strain of bacteria named Lactobacillus casei Shirota.
Other facts about Yakult
- Yakult has no colorings or preservatives and its natural color is a result of the caramelization process.
- Over 28 million Yakult products are consumed every day in 32 countries around the world. It was launched in the UK in 1996.
- Regardless of its production location, all Yakult bacteria cultures come from a mother strain in Japan.
- After its introduction in Japan and Taiwan, Yakult was first sold in Brazil in 1966, because of the large number of Japanese immigrants in this country.
- Like most Japanese products, it's pretty expensive. A good alternative would be a low-fat, natural yoghurt.
- It's very tasty and rather sweet.
- As I live in Singapore, I get to buy flavored yakult. How cool is that?! Introducing the fruit flavored orange, grape and apple Yakults.
Introducing the Yakult Ladies System: Yakult at your Door-Step
The Yakult Ladies System was introduced in 1963 in Japan. This is a door-to-door distribution of Yakult by pleasant, dynamic women to help people understand the benefits of probiotics by bringing Yakult products to them everyday, be it to their homes or offices.
In Japan, Yakult comes to the people.
Yakult AOJIRU No Meguri
Made expressly for the Japanese market, Yakult AOJIRU No Meguri is made from young barley leaves containing yakult dietary fiber. The barley leaves are grown in the Oita prefecture without agricultural chemicals and fertilizers.
Loosely translated, aojiru means green leaf drinks (ao = green). It comes in a powder form and is a good health supplement particularly for those who take irregular meals.
Although the instructions say to dissolve in 100ml of cold water, don't do that because it will probably taste horrible! Instead, dissolve in sweetened soya milk for a refreshing, sweet and healthy beverage.
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(price as of May 25, 2016)
If you're living in the USA, you can find stores selling Yakult via a store locator. You can even sample it for free at in-store demonstrations.
Probably the only thing bad about this product is that they don't usually have discounts, even when buying in bulk. This wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't so tasty! Given the amount of junk we eat everyday e.g. fast food, unhealthy snacks etc., everyone could do with more good bacteria in our guts. Cheers to Yakult, the probiotic drink that's your digestive system's best friend.