When buying, when choosing foods, it is very important to check the expiry date. It may happen that the dates are not always accurate and that the product shows deterioration even before the expiry date. But can you eat expired yogurt?
The acidic pH of yogurt prevents the proliferation of disease-transmitting pathogens. This feature differentiates it from other dairy products, even if made with pasteurized milk. In this case, eating expired yogurt would not present the threat of intoxication. However, there may be elements that, at first glance, show signs of decomposition.
Checking the expiration date
On the labels of the packages, dates are printed with the words: “to be consumed preferably by…”. Nutrition specialists assure that the safety margins are quite large. In reality, these margins are cheaper for food companies than for the final consumer.
The right to eat safe food also applies to yogurt. It should be known that the beneficial action of probiotics changes over the days. If the expiration date is too early, the beneficial effects associated with its consumption will decrease.
How is it made and what are the properties of yogurt?
Yogurt is the result of bacterial fermentation of milk. Two cultures of bacteria are used in the preparation: Lactobacillus and Streptococcus thermophilus .
Both create lactic acid from milk proteins.
During the preparation of the yoghurt, the cooking of the milk reaches about 85 °, thus avoiding curdling and preserving its proteins. Once this temperature is reached, the bacterial cultures are added and the milk is kept at 45 ° for six or seven hours. This is how yogurt fermentation occurs.
This process makes yogurt a food rich in protein and healthy fatty acids. Being a dairy product, it also has essential minerals such as calcium.
How to recognize if the yogurt has expired?
The risk of eating expired yogurt can be high or low, but there are situations in which the poor state of preservation is evident. When you find these conditions, you have reason enough to throw it away.
For example, even if it is within the expiration date limits, a yogurt can decompose if it is exposed to high temperatures.
After the expiration date, yogurt begins to deteriorate and change its properties. A slight change in aroma or texture provides clues to its deterioration.
Factors that indicate a bad state of preservation of yogurt
There are three indicators you need to pay attention to in order to avoid eating yogurt that is expired or in poor storage conditions. First of all, regardless of the expiration date, the most frequent problem concerns the packaging (this applies to both yogurt and milk).
We advise you never to consume dairy products whose packaging is open, broken, perforated or with anomalies. These are all important indications of possible product contamination.
As for yogurt, it is not advisable to consume the product if, when opening the container, an excessive presence of liquid is observed. Furthermore, if there are any lumps or the consistency has “cracks”, there is a very high probability that the product is decomposing.
Another clue to ascertain the storage conditions of yogurt is the presence of an unusually acid taste. When you are faced with the three cases listed, the risk of consuming an expired or badly stored yogurt is very high. Many people do not pay attention to the expiration date, in reality its function is precisely to protect consumers. So be very careful and don’t forget to always check it to avoid unpleasant surprises.
What to do if expired yogurt is consumed?
If a short time has passed since the expiration date, usually, you are not taking a big risk. You may feel a heavy feeling in your stomach, but this would indicate that the yogurt was not decomposed.
If, on the other hand, it should have expired, the most frequent symptoms are diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain and strong abdominal fields. If the necessary steps are not taken to detoxify the body, these symptoms may worsen. In this case we advise you to consult a doctor as soon as possible.