Interpreting fat, Lanzano says, depends on my health goals. For heart health, the quality of fat is key. All Nutrition Facts panels break down total fat by saturated and trans types. Because the saturated fats found in most animal products (including meat and dairy) raise bad LDL cholesterol, eat less than 20 grams of animal-derived saturated fat each day.

If you're more interested in managing your weight than protecting your heart, you don't necessarily have to opt for low-fat or nonfat yogurt all the time. Full-fat yogurts certainly have more calories and fat than nonfat varieties; the brand we examined had 60 extra calories and 6 grams saturated fat, compared with zero in the nonfat yogurt. But compounds in saturated animal fats, such as conjugated linoleic acids (CLA), step up metabolism, which can lead to weight loss, says Lanzano. “I'm not afraid of saturated fat in yogurt because most people won't overeat yogurt,” she says. “I'm more concerned about people eating too much steak.”