Are you ready for football this weekend? And maybe some cheese? As fans in Dallas, we know the Cowboys are setting out to bEAT the cheese-heads, aka Packers, this Sunday afternoon. Your goal should be to eat the cheese! A popular member of the dairy family, cheese is full of nutrients that your body needs and your taste buds love!
- Strengthen your bones: Dairy foods have the most calcium per serving compared to any other foods! Just an ounce and a half of cheese gives you approximately one-fourth of your daily needs. Calcium is required to build and maintain bone mineral density thus cheese and other dairy foods are needed in the diet throughout the lifespan.
- Build your muscle: Cheese is also full of protein, a necessary component for building and maintaining lean muscle mass. Protein provides your body the amino acids (building blocks) it needs to repair the muscle and tissues in your body. Cheese contains 7 grams of protein an ounce and is easy to fit into meals and snacks!
- Fills you up: Protein and fat help you feel full faster and stay full longer. Thus, including protein at all meals and snacks is essential to satiety and feelings of fullness.
- Won’t bother your gut: Some people say “dairy hurts their stomach”. It is true that some individuals do suffer from lactose intolerance, which is where the body does not do a good job of breaking down lactose, or milk sugar. But the good news is that most cheeses are very low in lactose, specifically natural cheeses like cheddar, Swiss, Colby jack, Monterey and mozzarella. So even those with lactose intolerance can enjoy cheese as a part of their diet!
- Easy to include in your day: Cheese can be a simple way to include protein in your diet whether you sprinkle it on your omelet, slice it on crackers, toast it on bread, grab a string cheese with a fruit or crumble it on a salad. It goes with almost any food and there are literally hundreds of tasty varieties to choose from!