STUDY: Eating cheese could reduce risk of stroke, heart disease

WAUSAU, Wis. (WAOW) - A new study published in the European Journal of Nutrition said that eating a small amount of cheese every day could limit your risk of stroke and heart disease.

The publication reported on 15 studies with more than 200,000 participants and showed that the risk of someone suffering from heart disease or a stroke was significantly less than someone who rarely, or never ate cheese.

Matthew Christians, owner of Navieve Fromagerie in Wausau said the new findings aren't at all surprising to him.

"Traditionally, people always did eat cheese as a regular part of their diet," he said. "Anything that can counter the idea that whole natural foods could be bad for you."

The research said eating 40 grams of cheese daily does have its benefits.

Dr. Chikako Ono, a cardiologist with Aspirus Hospital in Wausau, said the protein, probiotics and calcium in cheese definitely can be beneficial.

"If you [eat] too much cheese, of course cheese contains a lot of sodium, not just fat," she said. "One small piece of cheese is fine, but don't eat the whole block."

She said eating too much of a Wisconsin favorite can hinder your health.

"Obesity, number one, high blood pressure and diabetes," Dr. Ono said. "High blood pressure can trigger a stroke, cardiovascular disease and kidney disease."

Dr. Ono said the biggest threat in eating too much cheese is the sodium. She said eating Swiss cheese is probably the best choice because it tends to have less salt.

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