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Nutritional Value of Cheese

Updated on August 21, 2011

Cheese is a dairy products made from cow’s milk or goat milk. In the production, lactic acid bacteria and rennet are added in fresh milk to make milk protein coagulate and mature through a period of time, whey floating on the surface of the curd is removed at the same time. Cheese is concentrated milk, to produce 1 kg of cheese, about 10 kg of milk is needed. According to statistics, there are nearly 2000 types of cheese in the world today. According to composition and moisture content, cheese can be divided into four major types, namely, soft, semi-soft, semi-firm, firm cheese.

Cheese is rich in protein, fat, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and other ingredients, it is a fermented dairy product with high nutritional value. The protein content of cheese is about 20% - 35%. Cheese are extremely easy to digest, it has a digestibility of about 96% due to a series of pre-digestion processes of the protein in the maturing process, while the digestibility of whole milk is only 91%. Most cheeses contain about 30% fat, some people worry that eating cheese will increase the body's cholesterol level, in fact this is usually not the case, because cheese has very little cholesterol content, usually less than 0.1%. 

Cheese also contains sugars, organic acids, calcium, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc and vitamin A, carotene and vitamin B1, B2, B6, B12, folic acid and many other nutrients and bioactive substances. After fermentation, protein in the cheese is decomposed to peptides, amino acids etc., very easy to be digested. 

Cheese is also abundant in fat-soluble and water-soluble vitamins, there is 1200 IU vitamin A per 100g cheese, about 30% to 40% of the daily consumption of an adult.

Research shows that eating cheese can promote the growth and development of children, it also has many health benefits such as anti-caries, prevention of osteoporosis in women and elderly, protection of eyesight, maintaining the balance and stability of normal intestinal flora, promote digestion and preventing diarrhea and constipation. Studies also show that people who eat cheese often have lower rate of colon and rectal cancer.

Lactose, which is contained in fresh milk, has been largely transferred into the whey in the cheese production process, the remaining part of lactose is decomposed into galactose and glucose, which helps to prevent diarrhea and other lactose diseases in people who lack a type of enzyme to digest lactose.

Cheese is the best food for calcium, in the production process, calcium ions are added so that the calcium content of cheese increases, and it can be absorbed more easily. There is 49mg calcium per 100g milk, while 720mg calcium per 100g cheese, which is 14 times more than in the milk.


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