Is Cheese Keto-Friendly? Everything You Need to Know About Cheese on A Keto Diet

cheese

Is cheese keto-friendly? What type of cheese is keto? Is cheese allowed on keto? These questions and many others concerning cheese on keto will be answered by this post. So, if you have any concern about adding cheese while following a keto diet or you want to find out more about cheese on keto, then keep reading to learn more. Now without further ado, let’s dive deeper and find out if you can eat cheese in a keto diet. Ready?

cheese

What Is Cheese?

Cheese is usually made using pasteurized goat, cow, sheep or buffalo milk. It is available in many texture and flavors. 

Milk is pasteurized to remove harmful bacteria.

Now, after pasteurization, starter cultures are added to the milk to ferment and convert into lactic acid. The type of culture combined depends on the kind of cheese. For example, a different starter culture is used for brie and cheddar.

Next, acidic agents like rennet are added to curd the milk and separate milk solids from whey liquid. Draining processes follow depending on the type of cheese required.

Flavoring using herbs, spices, or wood smoke follows before cheese goes through different variations of aging. Basically, the harder the cheese, the longer its shelf life, and protective rinds further increase the shelf life of some cheeses.

Is Cheese Allowed on Keto?

The answer is yes. It is perfectly ok to include cheese in your keto diet, and there is no hard rule on how much cheese per day you can consume. This is why you will meet some cheese lovers eating it like there is no tomorrow.

One thing you need to remember is that cheese is calorie-dense. Which means it can add up quickly when combined with other meal. So, if trying to lose weight, you may want to monitor your cheese intake. And if you have to make cheese, try to fit it in your calories.

cheese

Types of Cheese

So what types of cheese are out there?

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Soft Cheeses

They are called soft cheeses because they have been ripened for a short time. A good example is camembert, feta, and brie.

See the table below for more information.

Soft cheese macros:

Feta (100 g)
Calories: 264
Fat: 21 g
Protein: 14 g
Carbs: 4.1 g
Brie (100 g)
Calories: 334
Fat: 28 g
Protein: 21 g
Carbs: 0.5 g
Camembert (100 g)
Calories: 299
Fat: 24 g
Protein: 20 g
Carbs: 0.5 g

 

Hard Cheeses

Unlike soft cheeses, hard cheeses are ripened for a longer period (from months to years). Cheddar, romano, parmesan and gouda are some of the examples of hard cheeses. Below is a table with detailed information about hard cheeses.

Hard cheese macros:

Cheddar (100 g)
Calories: 402
Fat: 33 g
Protein: 25 g
Carbs: 1.3 g
Gouda (100g)
Calories: 356
Fat: 27 g
Protein: 25 g
Carbs: 2.2 g
Parmesan (100g)
Calories: 431
Fat: 29 g
Protein: 38 g
Carbs: 4.1 g
Romano (100 g)
Calories: 387
Fat: 27 g
Protein: 32 g
Carbs: 3.6 g

cheese

Soft Cheese Vs Hard Cheese: Which Is the Best? 

Both soft and hard kinds of cheese are great. But hard cheeses tend to be more suitable as they are low in carbs and have more calcium than soft cheeses. Additionally, hard cheeses have the smallest trace of lactose, making them easy to digest and an excellent option for people with sensitive stomachs.

Benefits of Cheese on Keto

  • Satiety: Another advantage of cheese is that it makes you feel fuller for longer. So, if not looking to overload when you take your next meal, add cheese in your diet.
  • Dental Health: The presence of vitamin D and calcium in cheese make it suitable for dental health. A 2018 study measured the pH of 10 healthy adults before and after the consumption of white cheese and other foods. The results revealed that cheese has the potential to prevent tooth decay because of its pH value.

Choose also increase salivary pH. This is according to a study to a 2012 study where 30 children were assigned cottage cheese or processed cheese after a chocolate challenge.

  • Bone Health: One advantage of consuming cheese is that it is good for bone health. This is because of its high calcium levels. According to a 2002 study, consuming milk calcium in the form of cheese increases bone strength and bone mineral density.
  • Cardiovascular Health: Cheese is an excellent source of omega three fatty acids. This means consuming cheese has a protective effect on cardiovascular health.

cheese

How to Eat Cheese on Keto

While cheese is low in carb, it is high in calories which means if you add it in your keto diet, you must also factor calories from other meal to avoid taking too much calories. Remember if trying to cut weight on a keto diet, you have to watch your calories intake. Basically, you need to calculate how much cheese you can include in your diet without going above your daily calories.

Go for Hard Cheeses

We have already stated why you need to consider hard cheese over soft cheese. They are easily digested and more suitable for people with sensitive stomachs. No to mention they have more calcium. So, by adding them in your diet, you enjoy all those benefits.

Meal Prep

Adding a specific amount of cheese in your keto meal prepping is another way to avoid overeating. Whether cheese is a side snack or the main ingredient, meal prepping help you monitor your calories.

Eat Fiber

Taking too much cheese can cause constipation. It is therefore prudent to include some fiber from keto veggies such as broccoli, artichokes, cauliflower, zucchini and asparagus. Remember also to drink enough water.

Conclusion

Cheese is keto-friendly, so don’t let anything hold you back from adding cheese in your diet. 

While soft cheese is recommended on keto, hard cheese is the best as it is not only low carb but also a rich source of calcium. Besides, hard cheese is easier to digest and friendly to people with sensitive stomachs.

While enjoying your cheese, it is crucial to note it calories dense, which means you can overeat and go beyond your calorie requirement. Meal prepping is one way that can make sure you enjoy your cheese without going above your calories.