What's The Healthiest Cheese for The Body?
Cheese is a food that has significant nutritional properties. It’s a source of protein with a high biological value. Plus, it also provides calcium, phosphorus, and vitamins A and D. Overall, its components make it especially beneficial for the development of bones and teeth.
However, due to the risks involved in the manufacturing process, the cheese should be of good quality. Products made when there is a lack of basic hygiene can expose the consumer to diseases.
When it comes to choosing a quality cheese, the general rule is knowing the company that produces it. This will ensure that it has been produced under good manufacturing conditions, which is the starting point when it comes to quality.
In the same way, if you suffer from any type of cardiovascular problem, it’s recommended that you first consult your doctor.
Get to know the different types of cheese to choose the healthiest cheese
The cheese will be healthier or less healthy depending on the state of health of the person who consumes it. Conditions such as high blood pressure, cholesterol, and intestinal or liver problems, influence the effect of its consumption. However, some research, such as that developed in this study by the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, states that this could be false or present other nuances.
Furthermore, in relation to cheese consumption and obesity, the latest findings suggest that its presence in the diet is not associated with weight gain. On the contrary, it seems that dairy can contribute to better body composition.
Some good quality cheeses that are very healthy for some people are not for others. Above all, this is the case if the latter suffer from intolerance to any of its components.
In view of this, it’s important to know the types of cheese as a starting point to choose the ideal dairy product for your body, and therefore, for our recipes.
The production process consists of curdling and milk dehydration. It doesn’t need to be aged or cured. However, it’s essential to keep it in the refrigerator at 3 or 4 degrees centigrade. This group includes: mozzarella, pressed white cheese, ground cheese, cottage cheese, and feta. Fresh cheese is ready for consumption as soon as the manufacturing process is completed. We often think of it as the healthiest cheese.
After the manufacturing process, this type of cheese needs to be kept at the required temperature and in conditions that can provoke the physical and chemical changes that it needs. It usually has an intense smell and strong flavor. Among the most popular are cheddar, gouda, Monterrey Jack, emmental, parmesan, and edam.
They are high in fat, a fact that must be taken into account when you eat them.
Blue cheese has a high mold content, which gives it an intense flavor and smell with an acidic touch. This cheese needs a humid environment, which favors the proliferation of the mold. Among the most popular are roquefort and gorgonzola.
Cream cheese has a higher cream and fat content compared to fresh cheese. Its texture is very creamy. It’s generally used as a spread, so it usually comes in containers for this purpose. The most popular cream cheese are Camembert and Philadelphia.
Processed cheese is made from two or more cheeses that melt. During the manufacturing process, the microorganisms that give flavor to natural cheeses are eliminated, which is why it’s somewhat bland on the palate.
The lack of flavor is usually compensated by adding salt. It’s easily cut into slices using machines, making it an ideal cheese for snacks and sandwiches. People with high blood pressure shouldn’t even think about consuming processed cheeses.
Ricotta cheese is made from cow’s milk serum. It has a firm and slightly grainy texture. It contains half the salt of cottage cheese, twice as much calcium and zinc, and four times as much vitamin A. It’s often used as an ingredient in processed foods, such as fillings and desserts.
How do you choose the healthiest cheese?
The types of cheese that contain the most fat and calories are Parmesan cheese, provolone, and camembert. Those that provide less cholesterol are cottage cheese and mozzarella; they’re also low in calories.
The latter are, together with fresh and ricotta, the types of cheese that are recommended as the healthiest cheeses for daily consumption since they have reduced quantities of fat, calories and salt. They preserve the vitamins and minerals that they naturally contain.
The key to including the healthiest cheese in your diet
Traditionally, cheese is an ingredient that people are accustomed to. For those who have consumed cheese for their whole life, it’s almost impossible to think about getting giving it up.
You don’t have to stop eating cheese. The key is to incorporate the healthiest types by following a set of guidelines which will keep the cheese on your table, and therefore avoiding any harm to your health.
- For adults, it’s healthy to eat about 30 grams a day maximum.
- Choose cheeses that are low in fat and salt. Nowadays, the dairy industry commercializes cheeses that are low in fat and sodium.
Fresh cheese and ricotta are considered the healthiest cheeses.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Dekker L, Vinke P, Riphagen I, Minović I et al. Cheese and Healthy Diet: Associations With Incident Cardio-Metabolic Diseases and All-Cause Mortality in the General Population. Front Nutr. 2019 Dec 17;6:185.
- Nilsen R, Høstmark AT, Haug A, Skeie S. Effect of a high intake of cheese on cholesterol and metabolic syndrome: results of a randomized trial. Food Nutr Res. 2015 Aug 19;59:27651.
- Mozaffarian D. Dairy Foods, Obesity, and Metabolic Health: The Role of the Food Matrix Compared with Single Nutrients. Adv Nutr. 2019 Sep 1;10(5):917S-923S.
- Montel M, Buchin S, Mallet A, Delbes C et al. Traditional cheeses: rich and diverse microbiota with associated benefits. Int J Food Microbiol [Internet]. 2014;177:136–54.
- Hermans W, Fuchs C, Hendriks F, Houben L et al. Cheese Ingestion Increases Muscle Protein Synthesis Rates Both at Rest and During Recovery from Exercise in Healthy, Young Males: A Randomized Parallel-Group Trial. J Nutr. 2022 Apr 1;152(4):1022-1030.