The average American consumes over 34 pounds of cheese a year, though some shy away from eating the dairy product due to its high-fat content which has been known to contribute to higher cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease.
Cheese is typically considered more of an indulgence than a health food, but a new review of research suggests that it may not be as bad for you as once thought. What they found is that those who ate cheese on a regular basis also tended to not develop heart disease. They scientists pored over 15 observational studies that included more than 200000 people.
Her take: Consuming saturated fat from real, whole foods (like dairy products) is better - and even possibly beneficial - in comparison to highly processed sources, especially ones that also contain partially hydrogenated oils.
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The analysis revealed that people who regularly consumed cheese were up to 18 percent less likely to develop CVD, up to 14 percent less likely to develop CHD, and up to 10 percent less likely to have a stroke, compared with those who had a low cheese intake.
Researchers in China and New Zealand examined 15 studies from PubMed and EMBASE that involved cheese to better understand the relationship between cheese and heart disease. (But the findings were) certainly different from what people might expect. People with the greatest health benefits from cheese ate around 40 grams per day, which is the size of a matchbook.
But cheese also has its health benefits, like high levels of calcium and protein, and has probiotics that are good for the body, as well. Recent research shows, however, that saturated fat may be more benign than we think. "There is some evidence that cheese - as a substitute for milk, for example - may actually have a protective effect on the heart". One portion is 40 grams (1.4 oz), which represents a matchbox-sized chunk, two slim slices or a quarter cup of crumbled cheese, according to The Independent. "But on the upside, a bit of cheese on a cracker doesn't sound unreasonable", Stewart said. Overall, though, the news is good for cheese lovers. "It's promising to find that something that actually tastes good-and pairs well with a nice glass of red wine-may offer some protection, as well".
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