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I had two questions.  I was comparing some different plain non-fat yogurts in the supermarket and noticed they vary in natural surgar content.  It seems like the less calcium and protein they have the more sugar it has.  For an 8 cup serving, one had 35% calcium, 10g sugar, 10g protein.  One had 40% calcium and 15g sugar.  One had 50% calcium, 20g sugar, 14g protein.  Why does sugar content vary?  Does it matter much how much sugar a plain yogurt has?  Does this make it better?

The second question relates to all this talk about trying to avoid phytic acid (phytates) in food (e.g. grains, beans, nuts) because it supposedly blocks mineral absorption, things like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, zinc.  By avoiding phytic acid foods, I've seen everything from curing tooth decay to curing all sorts of other diseases in the body.  I thought it was just the opposite for phytic acid, where it prevents diseases and a host of other things in the body.  I thought these were really good foods to try and eat every day, and this should make up the bulk of your diet.  Is this something to worry about?  Are important minerals not being absorbed?  How much scientific proof is there to this?  I try to take my vitamins every morning with breakfast since it was always told to do this for best absorption.  Now I'm thinking twice about this.  I like my bowl of oatmeal every morning, but am now worried vitamins/minerals are not being absorbed.  I also like my grains.  Is hard to really know what's truth and not truth out there on the internet, since things many times seem so valid.  Thanks.

Answer
Dear Dave,
Sorry for the late answer.
First question: The sugar content varies because manufacturers of yoghurt are adding different amounts of sugar. It doesn't make yogurt better but sweeter. The more sugar in the yogurt the more calories. To much calories isn't good for health. Refined or white sugar isn't good for health.
Second question.
Don't worry about phytates. Phytates are blocking some mineral absorption not all. If phytates should block 20 % of mineral you still absorb 80 %.

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