Activia yogurts have often been a popular choice during pregnancy, since they’re probiotic and can also be high in calcium and protein. However, are they safe and beneficial for pregnant women?
Activia yogurt is considered safe for pregnant women. Some variants of the brand contain vitamin D on top of protein and calcium. Activia contains large amounts of different probiotic strains, and some types of Activia have more sugar, so some flavors are better than others.
Discover what makes yogurt safe for consumption, if Activia is as beneficial and safe as it claims, and what experts have to say about it!
Can You Eat Activia Yogurt While Pregnant? Is It Safe?
According to Activia AU, almost everyone can safely enjoy the yogurt, including children, teens, adults, pregnant women, and the elderly (source: Activia).
In general, store-bought yogurts are safe to eat during pregnancy. This is because they are pasteurized, and they went through strict rigorous procedures to make them safe for consumption. For more on yogurt in general, check out our best yogurt for pregnancy article.
The probiotics in Activia and their safety
Activia market their yogurt products as containing Bifidobacterium animalis lactis DN 173 010/CNCM I-2494 as a probiotic culture. They also recommend eating 2 servings per day regularly to get the full benefits of probiotics (source: Activia).
In the dairy market, the most common probiotic bacteria are the ones in the lactic acid group. Other ones include bifidobacteria and yeast. Lactobacilli, Lactococci, Bifidobacterium, and yeast are generally regarded as safe (source: Oxford Academic). This includes the ones in Activia, which is why it’s considered safe for pregnant women.
Is Activia Pasteurized?
The milk used in Activia yogurts undergoes pasteurization before being blended with 5 bacterial cultures (source: Danone).
This pasteurization process means that Activia is safe in pregnancy, and does not contain raw milk or dairy product.
Is Activia Good for Pregnant Women? The Benefits
Per serving, Activia original, Activia Light, and Activia Greek (3 popular Activia yogurt lines) all contain the essential nutrients protein and calcium, with the original also containing Vitamin D.
The table below shows the popular Activia yogurt lines and their corresponding nutrient content:
|4 oz. serving
|Dannon Activia Light
|Dannon Activia Greek
(Source: Nutrition Issues in Gastroenterology).
Calcium is important because it helps the human body modulate fluids. It also helps develop the baby’s bones and teeth (source: APA). Since the calcium is the same in the above varieties, you should choose one with either less sugar or more protein, depending on your preferences.
Protein is essential during pregnancy. It helps increase your blood supply, as well as grow your breast and uterine tissues. Protein also favorably affects the growth of baby’s brain.
Vitamin D also has a major role in healthy cell division, immune function, and bone health. It also helps absorb calcium and phosphorus (source: APA). Note that this only appears in the original yogurt.
When Should I Not Eat Activia When Pregnant?
According to Dr. Jonathan Kushner, an associate professor of the Digestive Diseases Division of UC, certain types of bifidobacteria like the one in Activia yogurt can help with functional gastrointestinal issues such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
However, he also says that those with compromised immune systems should take caution when consuming such a product.
He adds that these products have high doses of probiotic bacteria that might do more harm than good in some patients. Those with GI tract issues or diseases should ask their doctors before consuming probiotic yogurts like Activia (source: University of Cincinnati News)
Pregnancy weakens the immune system. It is, therefore, best to consult your doctor before eating any Activia product if you have known GI tract or other similar issues, especially if you haven’t had probiotic yogurts before.
Can Activia Help with Pregnancy-Related Constipation?
While there is evidence that probiotic yogurts do help improve symptoms of constipation in pregnant women (source: NIH), there is no current study that supports this particular brand regarding pregnancy-related constipation.
Therefore, if you want to enjoy yogurt during pregnancy, you should pick one that you like, and ideally one with less added sugar. For more on this, you can read our best yogurt for pregnancy article, which also goes over some more safe types for you to enjoy, too.