Individuals ages 9 and older need 3 cups of dairy products -- milk, cheese or yogurt -- a day, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. If you choose Greek yogurt as one of your dairy foods, check the manufacturer's Nutrition Facts label for the serving size of that particular product. A 6-oz. serving, for example, counts as 3/4 cup, so you would need an additional 2 1/4 cups of daily to meet the daily requirement.
To make any type of yogurt, manufacturers must add live bacterial cultures of Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus to warm pasteurized milk, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The resulting fermentation produces lactic acid, the source of yogurt's characteristic tangy taste. From this basic recipe, manufacturers may add sweeteners, flavorings, fruit, cereal and other ingredients, if desired. Making Greek yogurt involves straining the liquid whey from the basic recipe to create a denser product with more protein than other yogurts.
To determine the serving size of a Greek yogurt product, check the Nutrition Facts label. Chobani's single-serving containers, for example, hold 6 oz. while Fage packages their plain Greek yogurt in a 7-oz. container and their flavored products in 5.3-oz. cups, according to the companies' websites. Oikos Greek yogurt comes in single-serving cups of 5.3 oz. each and in four-packs of 4-oz. servings.
Check the Nutrition Facts label for the serving size and number of servings in large containers of Greek yogurt. Stonyfield and Chobani 16-oz. containers provide two 8-oz. servings and the 32-oz. containers provide four 8-oz. servings. Fage's 17-oz. container has slightly more than two 8-oz. servings and its 35.3-oz. container has more than four 8-oz. servings.
If you need to limit fat, sugar, calories or any other nutrient in your diet, do not rely solely on the manufacturer's stated serving size when making your food choices. Check the Nutrition Facts label for additional information to help you determine if the product will fit into your meal plan and, if so, how much you should eat. For example, a 6-oz. serving of Fage's plain Greek yogurt has 100 calories, no fat and 7 g. of carbohydrates while a 5.3-oz. serving of the Honey Total Classic flavor has 260 calories, 12 g. of fat and 28 g. of carbohydrates.
- Nadianb/iStock/Getty Images