Is Parmesan a Healthy Cheese

Is Parmesan a Healthy Cheese

Is Parmesan a Healthy Cheese?

Parmesan is a hard Italian cheese. It’s considered a functional food because it contains biologically active ingredients that benefit your body or health.

It’s particularly healthy because it’s easy to digest, full of essential nutrients, and lactose-free for people with lactose intolerance.

Parmesan cheese has a granular texture and firm rind. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classifies it based on specific criteria:

  • Made in a particular way
  • No more than 32% moisture
  • No less than 32% milk fat

Consumption of Italian cheeses like parmesan, mozzarella, and provolone is increasing. Being aware of the health benefits is important.

How is Parmesan cheese made?

Milk is mixed with bacteria that produce lactic acid to break down lactose. Then, an enzyme is added to clot the milk and create semi-solid curds.

The curds are cut, heated, stirred, and pressed. Salt is added either through liquid brine or when dry.

The cheese is cured for a minimum of 10 months. Authentic Parmigiano-Reggiano comes from a specific region in Italy.

What nutrients are found in parmesan cheese?

Parmesan cheese is considered a functional food in Europe because of its beneficial ingredients. It’s approximately 33% protein and contains all essential amino acids. The proteins are easily digested and absorbed.

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Despite its fat content, parmesan cheese has low levels of cholesterol. Dairy fats may reduce inflammation.

Other nutrients found in one ounce of parmesan cheese include calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, zinc, vitamins B6, B12, A, E, D, and K.

Who should eat parmesan cheese?

Parmesan cheese is recommended for people of all age groups who can safely eat solid foods, including pregnant women. It’s important to ensure pasteurized milk is used for cheese during pregnancy.


Who shouldn’t eat parmesan cheese?

People with lactose intolerance can safely consume parmesan cheese because it doesn’t contain lactose. However, those allergic to dairy should avoid it due to potential allergenic proteins.

What are the health benefits of eating parmesan cheese?

Parmesan cheese provides health benefits due to crucial nutrients like calcium. It supports the formation and maintenance of strong bones. Potential probiotic effects require further research.

How much cheese should you eat every day?

Daily dairy recommendations vary based on factors like age, sex, weight, height, and physical activity. The USDA suggests about three cups of dairy daily, with 1.5 ounces of hard cheese being equivalent to one cup.

A balanced diet includes all food groups, with cheese being just one component. It’s essential to eat a variety of foods for optimal health.

Source: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Clinical Cases in Mineral and Bone Metabolism,, Food Technology and Biotechnology, National Institutes of Health, Nutrients, U.S. Department of Agriculture, USDA Economic Research Service, USDA MyPlate, U.S. Food and Drug Administration.


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