Scientists: Eating cheese reduces the risk of developing heart disease

Scientists: Eating cheese reduces the risk of developing heart disease

Scientists: Eating cheese reduces the risk of developing heart disease

Researchers from China and the Netherlands analyzed data gathered from 15 previous studies where numerous participants were tracked for at least 10 years.

Dutch and Chinese scientists examined dietary data from more than 200,000 people and came up with a surprising result. All but one of the studies excluded people with existing heart disease, and all but two tracked people for 10 years or more.

From their findings, the team found that people who ate a small serving of cheese (about the size of a box of matches) regularly decreased their chances of developing coronary heart disease by 14 percent.

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It's important to understand that the relationship between higher cheese consumption and lower risk of heart disease and stroke is U-shaped rather than linear. Now, cheese-lovers can sleep well knowing that their midnight snack or post-night-out cheese fry indulgence is actually good for them.

Adults should get about 1,000 mg of calcium a day and one ounce of cheese gives you roughly 20 percent. While it may seem like a lot of the dairy product, it's an average of 36 grams per day, which is slightly less than the amount recommended by researchers. It could be that people who eat cheese on a daily basis are healthier overall, or have more disposable income and higher socioeconomic statuses. Also relevant is the fact that different types of cheese weren't studied, meaning that some may be better or worse for you in terms of reducing risk of heart disease and stroke. Cheese also has an unsaturated fatty acid called conjugated linoleic acid which may affect cholesterol by lowering your bad LDL levels and raising the good HDL levels.

"We're always are searching for ways to minimize heart disease and reduce atherosclerosis", he says.

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