Cheese is made by curdling milk with some form of acidic ingredient, like vinegar, lime juice, or specialized bacteria. This causes the milk to separate into curds (solids) and whey (liquids).
With most cheeses, the curds are drained, heated, and pressed to squeeze out as much of the whey as possible, then shaped into molds and left to age.
Cottage cheese is a bit different. The curds are not pressed, processed, or aged nearly as much, leaving them to retain more of their moisture and light, fluffy texture. This slight difference in processing gives a unique flavor to cottage cheese, and it might also make it a bit healthier.
Cottage Cheese Is Very Nutritious
Cottage cheese is relatively low in calories and high in protein.
It is also a great source of B vitamins, calcium, phosphorus, and selenium.
Its carb and fat content are relatively low. It’s estimated that around 70% of the calories in cottage cheese come from protein, making it a great choice for those looking to increase their protein intake without adding a lot of extra calories.
Cottage cheese is also a great source of probiotics, or beneficial bacteria, which may help improve digestion, promote a healthy immune system, and even reduce inflammation-related joint pain.
Be aware that some varieties can contain higher amounts of sodium, so be sure to get a low-sodium variety if you need to watch your salt intake.
Cottage Cheese For Weight Loss
The combination of low calories and high protein content makes cottage cheese a perfect treat for anyone looking to lose weight.
Studies show that increasing your intake of low-calorie, high-protein foods like cottage cheese can help reduce appetite and calorie intake. Cottage cheese also contains casein, a type of slow-digesting protein that may provide additional help in promoting fullness and reducing hunger.
The protein in cottage cheese could also help preserve muscle mass when losing weight, which can be a problem for people on a low-calorie diet.
It’s filling, nutrient-dense, and easy to include in your regular diet. It also pairs well with other healthy, low-calorie foods like fruits and vegetables.
Other Health Benefits of Cottage Cheese
In addition to helping reduce the risks associated with obesity, cottage cheese may offer other benefits.
For example, some studies have shown that fermented dairy products like cottage cheese can be good for improving insulin sensitivity. This could have a positive impact on blood sugar levels and help people currently living with or at risk for developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Due to its high calcium, phosphorus, and protein content, cottage cheese may also be beneficial for promoting strong and healthy bones.
If you are allergic to dairy or lactose intolerant, cottage cheese is probably not a good choice for you.
But overall, cottage cheese is a nutritious, delicious, and filling food that can fit into almost any diet.