What is SCD yogurt starter?
An SCD yogurt starter is one that doesn’t contain any strains with ‘bifid’ in the name. In addition, the ingredients should only consist of bacteria strains and milk solids. The Yogourmet starter pictured above contains a small amount of sucrose but this it consumed during the fermentation process.
The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (or SCD diet), is a regime in which homemade yogurt plays a crucial role in restoring proper gut health. Common yogurt strains such as Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus are allowed. But anything with ‘bifid’ in its name such as Lactobacillus Bifidus, Bifidobacterium longum, etc should be avoided. The thinking is that Bifidus bacteria can be sort of an aggressive neighbor and crowd out other beneficial strains. So when repopulating your intestinal tract with probiotics, say after a long course of antibiotics, it may be best to avoid these strains. Then, when you’ve reestablished a good population of healthy bacteria, reintroduce Bifidus strains.
The second requirement in preparing this yogurt has to do with culture time. The longer your SCD yogurt starter sits in its milk, for more lactose it breaks down. They have found that after 24 hours at 100 – 110 degrees F, the yogurt will be essentially lactose-free. At this point the lactose has been broken down into its components of glucose and galactose. So the yogurt bacterial have basically done the digestion for you making this recipe well suited for lactose intolerant people. In addition, this long culture process also helps brake down some of the milk proteins resulting in overall ease of digestion for this yogurt. Another added benefit is that this longer fermentation time allows more time for the bacteria to multiply which means very high probiotic content.
Using this method will result in more of a tart yogurt similar to Bulgarian style. Yogurt bacteria consume the milk sugar lactose and convert it to lactic acid. Because your SCD yogurt starter sits in milk for a full 24 hours it produces for more lactic acid and thus more tartness. Some folks have found that using whole milk or straining the yogurt helps to subdue tartness. Or it can be eaten with honey and pureed fruit which is allow on the SCD diet.
PS, check out our Bulgarian page for another option for an SCD yogurt starter!