Contrary to popular belief, a recent study has shown that cheese (along with milk and yoghurt) is not bad for you, neither does it make you more liable to suffer from a heart attack or stroke. Experts have now condemned previous findings that told us to stay away from cheese as being poorly misconceived.
A new meta-analysis looked at 29 studies of whether cheese and dairy is bad for us and concluded that they are not. With this in mind, we decided to take a good look at cheese and find out for ourselves just a few of the reasons why it can in fact be good for you!
How Cheese can be Good for You.
- Protect your teeth – cheese may protect your teeth from damage and cavities. Not only does it contain lots of calcium but the bacteria found in it – lactobacillus rhamnosus strain, can reduce the amount of yeast in the mouth that contributes to holes forming. Cheese without sugar can actually increase the amount of calcium and phosphate in dental plaque, thereby helping to keep those nasty cavities in our teeth at bay.
- Love that protein – cheese is a great source of protein and helps us to build muscle, not just in the body generally but also important muscles in the heart. If you are a vegetarian, it is a must-have to include in your diet.
- Put a smile on your face – cheese triggers the part of the brain that is responsive to certain types of addictive drugs. It contains something called casein which is in all dairy foods and this triggers the opioid receptors in the brain, making us feel happy and euphoric.
- Lower the risk of heart disease – cheese could be linked to lower levels of cholesterol in the body. Danish scientists found that when people ate lots of dairy food, particularly cheeses, the microflora in the body changed and they even found metabolites which are related to the metabolism of the microflora, in their faeces. People within the study also had lowered amounts of TMAO, something produced in the body and associated with heart disease, when it metabolises choline which is found in red meat.
- Live longer – the same study explains why people that consume lots of cheese suffer less heart disease. For example, French people consume approx. 24kg each per year but have fewer heart problems and a life expectancy of 82 years, compared to people in the UK who consume just 11kg per year, suffer far more heart problems and have a lower life expectancy of 81 years.
- Love that good bacteria – fermented cheeses like cottage cheese, Gouda, parmesan and some cheddars are packed with probiotics which balance out the flora in the gut. This helps keep our immune system healthy and may even assist with good mental health.
So there is no reason to remove the cheese from your shopping basket! Feel good about adding it back into your diet and as they say, a little bit of what you fancy does you good. With so many wonderful cheeses on offer with a vast array of tastes, now is the time to love your cheese.
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