Are we getting the wrong advice about saturated fat from foods like cheese? For years, cheese has been demonized as a food high in saturated fat which could raise cholesterol levels and heart disease risks. Irish researchers in University College Dublin and Teagasc Moorepark now think that this advice needs a rethink.
A number of scientific studies published in the last few years have called into question the current negative message about cheese as an unhealthy food. This emerging science from around the world is poking holes in the argument that cheese is detrimental to health. FHI scientists will shortly begin the largest study of its kind in Ireland to understand more about cheese and its impact on our health.
Dr Emma Feeney, FHI UCD explains ‘Cheese is high in saturated fat however the composition of the matrix of the fat is special. The fat is found with other nutrients like calcium and protein. It is believed that this matrix of nutrients with the fat can potentially have a positive effect on our health. Our study will look at this theory in more detail’.
The idea of our diet impacting our health is a hot topic these days. With obesity and its related diseases such as heart disease, on the increase, we need to look towards prevention rather than relying on cure. Heart disease is a serious condition with 10,000 of people in Ireland dying from the disease per year. The intention is that the results of this study will add to the body of knowledge about cheese and health proving that the combination of nutrients in cheese has many promising health benefits that were never considered in the past.
Dr Emma Feeney will be available to talk about the research and the role of diet in treating diseases.