Historically, buttermilk has been a rich dairy drink that has enjoyed runs of high popularity, particularly in the American South, but today it's mostly used in cooking and baking for added flavor. Like yogurt, buttermilk contains probiotics that make it an active dairy culture. These bacteria are safe to eat and can even improve your health. Despite its name, buttermilk also has lower fat content than some types of milk, but still features high calcium content.
Buttermilk has probiotic qualities that help regulate your body's gastrointestinal system. This is because probiotics introduce healthy bacteria into your body, particularly the digestive tract, where bacteria is essential for the breakdown and absorption of foods and their nutrients.
Buttermilk also provides you with bone-building calcium. Each cup of buttermilk offers 284 milligrams of the mineral, or 28 percent of your recommended daily intake. The calcium in buttermilk gets incorporated into your bone tissue to maintain bone density, and also plays a role in helping your cells communicate with each other. Calcium also nourishes other tissues, including your muscles, heart and nerves.
You'll also find loaded with health benefits due to its vitamin content. Vitamin and D supports your immune system, keeping it strong and able to fight off infection. It also helps your body use calcium to maintain bone health and plays a role in cell growth. A serving of buttermilk provides you with 127 international units of vitamin D, or 21 percent of your recommended daily intake.
- New York Times: Got Buttermilk?
- Australian Women's Weekly: Buttermilk
- Linus Pauling Institute: Vitamin D
- University of California: Making Buttermilk
- University of Florida: Commonly Asked Questions about Probiotics and the Potential Benefits for Your Health
- NutritionalValue.org: Milk, Whole, Fluid, Buttermilk
- Linus Pauling Institute: Calcium
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.