Hahahahahaha. I have spending far too much time with my two boys and their inappropriate bathroom humor. Sorry, I just could not walk away from that title.
One thing that I put my foot down on is cheese. I refuse to give that up. I will go down fighting with some feta cheese in one hand and some cottage cheese in another. I’m telling you, I am a cheese lover.
I just ran to my refrigerator and pulled out all the cheese I had. Mind you, tomorrow is grocery day, so this is what’s left:
|Eight different kinds of cheese. Not nearly enough|
Cheese has gotten a bad rap from dieters and people in the health community. I can be somewhat objective and do understand where they are coming from. Just like many other powerful things, my beautiful cheese does have a few flaws:
High in fat — the bad kind.
Cheese does have plenty of saturated fat and that is the bad kind. Like the kind that leads to heart attacks. Not good.
High in calorie.
A small amount of cheese can pack some punch in the calorie department. A one slice of my favorite provolone cheese is 100 calories. Yikes!
High in sodium.
Again, another heart disease contributor. Oops.
Cheese does have many other redeeming qualities:
Zinc – healthy immune system
Vitamin A – improves vision
Vitamin B - reduces risk for heart disease
Phosphorus – part of our DNA and RNA, therefore necessary for all cell growth
Not too shabby, eh?
But let’s face it… When you are enjoying some soft goat cheese in a wrap, you are not thinking, “Oh, the phosphorus in this cheese is so fulfilling.”
For me, it sounds a bit more like, “Oh my. I’ve just died and gone to stinky cheese heaven with that bite of goat cheese.” Cheese just tastes great.
So, even though you are committed to healthy eating or even dropping a few pounds, there is no reason to dump the cheese. There are a few tips that can help you navigate this wonderful, cheesy world:
Check your labels
As a general rule, try to stick around 5g of fat or less per 1 oz serving of cheese.
A little goes a long way
Measure it out. Keeping a close eye on the amounts that you are consuming is a good practice. Just keep those measuring cups and spoons handy.
Use flavor packed cheeses.
Just a tablespoon or two of these strong — or stinky — cheeses can change an entire salad, wrap, casserole, or soup.
Halve the cheese in recipes.
If a cassserole calls for 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese, just cut that in half. No one will know, I swear. I do it all the time. You still get the yum of the cheese, but half of the fat and calories.
Use low-fat versions of common cheeses.
When cooking for the family, I typically use reduced fat cheeses in my recipes. These are made with 2% or skim milk, thus resulting in lower saturated grams and reduced calories.
This would be equivalent to let’s say — shredding up one of my three-year-old’s Mr. Potato Head toys and attempting to eat it. Non-fat cheese is very rubbery, does not melt, and tastes like plastic. No thanks. I stick with the low-fat versions.
So enjoy a bite of feta cheese and don’t look back. You won’t regret it.
Hey Fit Mommas! What cheeses are your favorites? How do you work them into your healthy eating habits? Comment below and tell us WHAT WORKS!
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