May I enjoy some cheese? Ask this question of your doctor, your dietician or health promoting agencies such as the Heart Foundation and you are likely to receive an answer that, in one way or another will urge you to be cautious. It’s an ‘animal’-fat’ product – high in so-called BAD saturated fat. It contains cholesterol! Do you have cholesterol? Be careful the warning rings. Be cautious. If you are overweight: Stay clear – it’s high in calories.
Emerging evidence published in respected medical and nutritional journals internationally are finally coming to the rescue of cheese lovers around the world.
Researchers are uncovering very interesting facts about cheese – especially with relation to the world wide epidemic of diabetes, heart disease and obesity. These conditions, when they present together, are referred to as ‘metabolic syndrome’.
Long before you have diabetes or high blood pressure and heart disease however, you are likely to have disorganised blood sugar and blood fat levels, possibly insulin resistance and underlying inflammation. This underlying inflammation is almost like having a fever all the time, and lies at the heart (excuse the pun) of full blown disease that stealthily starts with see-saw blood sugar, a slightly expanding waistline and a ‘little bit of cholesterol’
A lot of the research has been prompted by what is referred to as the ‘FRENCH PARADOX’.
The French eat, and drink. Lots of wine. Lots of butter. Lots of cheese. Yet they have low rates of heart disease despite high intake of saturated fat.
Since the ‘red wine’ protection factor has been shown to have limitations outside of France, the search was on for another constituent of the typical French diet that could be responsible for reduced heart disease risk.
Enters CHEESE and the newly discovered fact that cheese – especially of moulded varieties like camembert changes the way our bodies ‘handle’ fat after meals, reduces blood pressure and most importantly – inflammatory markers. Remember, this is what lies at the heart of the dreaded three-some which is regarded as a modern day epidemic: obesity, diabetes, heart disease and metabolic syndrome.
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