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Good News! Eating cheese won’t raise your cholesterol, may protect heart, says study

A study of middle aged and overweight men found that cheese isn't bad for cholesterol and full-fat cheese can even protect your heart,

Cheese loyalists have always felt that protein-packed, fatty cheese is the way to go to lead a better life. But they also know that cheese is full of saturated fat, which has been considered dangerous for heart health. Nutritionist world over too believe that people should limit the quantity of cheese that clogs heart. However, science has come to their rescue with yet another research that this dairy may not be as bad for your heart as once thought to be.

In the latest study, researchers found that middle-aged, overweight adults who ate full-fat cheddar cheese reduced their cholesterol more than those who ate reduced fat cheese or butter. The research, which was funded, in parts, by Irish dairy companies, reached the conclusion that the old-fashioned cheese works inside the body in a different way.

During the period of the study, participants were eating huge chunks of full-fat cheddar cheese for six weeks straight and the scientist figured out that a cheese matrix the way protein and calcium are arranged in aged fatty cheese makes it better for cholesterol than other dairies.

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Lead study author Emma Feeney, who studies human nutrition and metabolism at University College Dublin, in her study of 164 Irish adults found that participants who incorporated blocks of full-fat Irish cheddar cheese in their diets, while taking just 2 ounces of milk per day didn't gain weight.

On the contrary, the participants lowered both their total cholesterol and levels of "bad" LDL cholesterol.

The findings, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, go hand in hand with another study published recently, which observed more than 2,900 Americans for more than two decades. That study had found people who consumed full-fat dairy products were at no greater risk of dying from any cause, including cardiovascular diseases, compared to anyone else.

Feeney believed that people need to stop thinking about foods in terms of their fat and their saturated fat content and take them as whole foods.

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