Is Cheese Good Or Bad For You? Benefits And Risks

Cheese lovers

“You can’t make everyone happy. You’re not cheese.”

Cheese is a delicacy that humanity is blessed with. Your taste buds are always ready to crack a cheese treat. Pizza, Salads, Pasta, and Fondue… All are complete only with cheese.

Eating Cheese! Are They Really Healthy?

Cheese is a rich source of calcium and protein and also it is high in saturated fat and salt.

Eating Cheese

Here comes the controversy and there are a number of misconceptions about cheese that makes cheese lovers unhappy. Let us analyze the reality.

Cheese Facts 

There are around 2000 varieties of cheese available in this world. Cheese has a lot of health benefits that help people to lead a better life.

A slice of cheese half an hour before the bed improves the quality of your sleep. It needs 10 pounds of milk to make 1 pound of cheese.

2021 survey reports that 96% of Americans are cheese eaters and they consider cheese as one of the items that they cannot avoid.

Serving and storage tips:

1. The vegetable crisper of the refrigerator is the best place to store cheese as the temperature is stable there. 
2. Leftover cheese should be wrapped in a fresh plastic wrap or wax paper after each use. 
3. It is good to take the cheese out of the refrigerator at least one and half hours before serving to develop the real taste and flavor. 
4. Avoid keeping pungent-smelling food items with cheese, as cheese can absorb the smell and get spoiled.

How To Cut Cheese?

For a better eating experience, it is also important to have a craft in cutting cheese.

There is a non-written tradition for each type and shaped cheese.

It is not only about craft and aesthetics, only the proper cutting can give you a cross-section from the center to the rind that makes the flavor and texture complete. 

 Always use a soft and sharp knife or wire to cut cheese. 
➔ Cut log-shaped cheese into uniform rounds using a thin blade soft cheese knife. 
➔ Wheels of cheese can be cut into equal-sized wedges from the center to get a uniform texture and flavor.
➔ The top of the pyramid-shaped cheese can be divided into 4 equal parts and then cut the same from top to bottom using a thin blade soft cheese knife to get equal proportions. 
➔ Wedges of cheese can be cut into equal triangles with rinds on one end. 

Types Of Cheeses 

There are more than 2000 varieties of cheeses available in this world. Here are the 5 most popular types according to the flavor and texture. 

Cheddar cheese 

Cheddar cheese is the most nutritious of all and is creamy with a smooth texture that improves the quality as it ages. It is of England origin. 

Cottage cheese

Cottage cheese is made from full cream milk basically of Indian origin. This nutritious rich cheese is made by curdling it and draining the water. It has a mildly sweet flavor. 

Mozzarella cheese

Mozzarella cheese is one of the most common and popular cheeses across the world. This Italian-origin cheese is commonly made from buffalo’s milk. It has a mild flavor with a soft and chewy texture. 

Feta Cheese

Feta cheese is a Greek-based brined white cheese. It has a soft texture and is made from a mixture of sheep’s and goat’s milk. 

Parmesan Cheese

Parmesan Cheese is a granular cheese with a strong, nutty, and bitter taste. It is best for pasta, risottos, and soups. 

What Are Vegetarian Cheeses?

Vegetarian cheeses are traditionally made without animal-based rennet and formulated with acidic ingredients.

Cottage cheese is the most common among them.

Check the label before buying the cheese packets to ensure whether it is vegetarian or not.

There are purely vegetarian varieties available for mozzarella, Parmesan, cheddar, Gouda, and cream cheese in the market although they all are not traditionally vegetarian. 

How To Pair Cheese And Wine?

It needs a special sense to match cheese and wine as different wines will not go well with different cheese types.

Pair Cheese And Wine

Hard Cheese like Parmigiano Reggiano Pecorino and aged Manchego pairs well with Cabernet Savignon Zinfandel Pinot Noir wines.

Soft Cheese such as Brie Boursin pairs well with Champagne Riesling Merlot wine. Goat Cheeses and Chevre Pave Rave de Provence are in harmony with Pinot Grigio Sauvignon Blanc Chardonnay. 

The Health Benefits And Risks Of Cheese 

Cheese is a rich source of nutrients like calcium, fat, protein, vitamin A, Vitamin B12, zinc, phosphorus, riboflavin, and so on. Cheese has a lot of health benefits. 

But being a rich source of saturated fat and salt, cheese can cause health problems too when we eat in excess. 

Pros

  • Cheese is good for dental health as any other dairy product. 
  • Shows a positive impact on cardiovascular health.
  • Cheese reduces inflammations in the human body. 
  • Cheese can prevent osteoporosis as it helps in bone strength. 
  • Cheese can regulate blood pressure. Studies proved that increased calcium intake can influence blood pressure.
  • Healthy consumption of cheese can prevent colorectal cancer, which affects the colon and digestive tract to an extent. 
  • Cheese is always good for a healthy pregnancy. 
  • The increased protein content helps in muscle building.

Cons

  • Cheese can cause obesity as it is high in calories. 
  • Cheese may cause constipation as it is very low in fiber. 
  • People with lactose intolerance may develop an allergy to cheese. 
  • Lactose intolerant people may also develop diarrhea or bloating as they cannot digest the sugar present in cheese. 
  • As cheese is rich in phosphorus, consumption may lead to kidney disorders. 
  • Cheese triggers migraine. 

The Bottom Line

Cheese is a widely accepted diary delicacy which traditionally used as a nutritional source.

Cheese is available in more than 2000 varieties all over the world. They differ in taste, flavor, and texture. Like any other food item, there are benefits and risk factors for cheese.

As per nutrition experts, it is recommended to consume around 40 grams or 1.41 ounces of cheese a day for health benefits. Overdose may provide severe health issues.

A balanced diet, regular exercise, and stress-free life are essential for healthy well-being.

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