Mozzarella cheese is a popular cheese variant that is known for its great taste and texture and is added to various dishes to make them cheesy and delicious. It has a soft and smooth texture and melts very easily.
Mozzarella cheese is made by mixing cow or buffalo milk with the rennet enzyme. The milk is turned into curd, and then the heating and stretching process gives it a bouncy consistency.
Mozzarella cheese is considered as bad cheese because of its association with junk food items such as pizzas and burgers, and as well as due to the high level of saturated fats in it. However, this is just one side of the coin. Mozzarella cheese is also a good source of many essential nutrients that provides amazing benefits for our health.
Health Benefits of Mozzarella Cheese
Some major health benefits of mozzarella cheese are as follows:-
(1) Good Source of Vitamin B-7 ( Biotin)
Mozzarella cheese is a good source of vitamin B-7 or Biotin that performs many important functions in our body. Some major functions of Biotin are as follows.
- Metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and protein
- Maintaining healthy pregnancy
- Keeping our nails, hair, and skin Healthy
- Lowering blood glucose level
- Controlling neuropathy
- Aids in the treatment of multiple sclerosis
Biotin is water-soluble which means our body doesn’t store it in the liver, and excess vitamin B-7 gets depleted from the body during urination.
This trace mineral is important for us, and biotin deficiency may give rise to problems such as depression, lethargy, hallucinations, numbness and tingling in hands and feet, hair loss, poor control on bodily functions, weak immune system, and increased risk of bacterial and fungal infection.
(2) Good Source of Niacin( Vitamin B3)
Mozzarella cheese is also a good source of vitamin B-3 or Niacin and is required by our body for performing various functions like
- Converts carbohydrates to glucose
- Metabolism of fats and proteins
- Ensuring proper functioning of our nervous system
- Improving blood circulation
- Managing cholesterol level
- Production of sex hormones and stress-related hormones
Like most B vitamins, niacin is water-soluble which means the excess of it is not stored by the body and is excreted out of the body through urine.
Niacin deficiency is known as pellagra and gives rise to symptoms such as
- Skin pigmentation and skin rashes when exposed to sunlight
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- Swollen mouth and bright red tongue
- Memory loss
If left untreated, vitamin B-3 deficiency can even lead to death.
(3) Contains Riboflavin(Vitamin B-2)
Another reason to consume mozzarella cheese is due to the presence of vitamin B-2 in it. Vitamin B-2 is a part of the vitamin B complex family and plays an important role in keeping us healthy.
Our body needs vitamin B-2 or Riboflavin for performing various functions such as
- Energy production by the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and protein
- Allows efficient utilization of oxygen by the body
- For the development and functioning of the skin, the lining of the digestive tract, blood vessels, and other vital organs
- Keeps Eyes, nerves, muscles, and skin healthy
- Absorption and activation of other essential nutrients such as iron, folic acid, and other B vitamins such as vitamin B1, vitamin B3, and vitamin B6
- Keeping liver healthy
Riboflavin or the vitamin B-2 is water-soluble which means our body doesn’t store it in the liver, and excess of it gets removed from the body through urination.
As our body doesn’t store riboflavin, so we have to ensure that we are getting it in our diet, and mozzarella cheese can help in doing the same.
The deficiency of vitamin B-2 in our body may give rise to problems such as skin disorders, hyperemia, and edema of the mouth and throat, lesions at mouth corners, hair loss, itchy eyes, sore throat, degeneration of the liver and nervous system.
Maintaining an optimal level of Riboflavin is important for our health, and mozzarella cheese is good for the same.
(4) Good Source of Fat-Soluble Vitamins
Mozzarella cheese not only contains water-soluble vitamins such as niacin, riboflavin, and biotin, but is also a good source of fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin D, and vitamin E. These vitamins plays an important role in keeping us healthy as our body needs them for performing various biomolecular activities. Some of the ways, these vitamins can help our body are as follows:
- Vitamin A- Vitamin A is a fat-soluble molecule that keeps our vision sharper, strengthens immunity, improves reproductive health, and is also needed for keeping our vital organs like the liver, kidneys, lungs, and heart-healthy. Deficiency of vitamin A in our body may cause night-blindness, skin dryness, infertility, and trouble conceiving, and poor wound healing, etc.
- Vitamin D- Vitamin D is an essential nutrient for our health that provides amazing benefits. This fat-soluble vitamin is needed by our body for increasing the absorption of calcium and phosphate from food and dietary supplements, and also for performing other functions like regulating blood pressure, reducing the risk of cancer and auto-immune diseases, strengthening the immune system, keeping joints and muscles healthy. Not getting enough vitamin D may increase the risk of cardiovascular problems, high blood pressure, increased risk of colon cancer, prostate cancer, and breast cancer, and multiple sclerosis.
- Vitamin E- Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps in performing various biological functions in our body. Being an antioxidant, it protects our cells and tissues from the oxidative damage caused by the free radicals and also provides numerous other benefits such as managing diabetes, regulating blood pressure, improving cardiovascular health, preventing chest pain, and reduced the risk of atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries. Deficiency of this fat-soluble vitamin may give rise to symptoms such as damage to nerves and muscles, loss of body movement control, poor immunity, muscle weakness, and vision problems, etc.
Unlike water-soluble vitamins, excess fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin D, and vitamin E can be stored in the body. Also, excessive accumulation of vitamins in our body can give rise to health problems. So, it is important to maintain the optimal level.
(5) Contains Phosphorus
Mozzarella cheese also contains phosphorus which is a trace mineral that helps performs various functions in our body. Some of these functions are
- Making our bones and teeth stronger
- Aids in muscle contraction
- Aids in muscle recovery after exercise
- Removal of waste from kidneys
- Synthesis of DNA and RNA
- Maintaining the body’s energy storage and usage
Like vitamin D, it is also known for increasing the absorption of calcium in our body and thus contributes to bone health. About 85 percent of the phosphorus present in our body is found in the bones and teeth.
Deficiency of phosphorus in our body can give rise to symptoms such as loss of appetite, anxiety, bone pain, fragile bones, joint pain, fatigue, irregular breathing, irritability, numbness, weakness, and poor growth of bones and teeth (in children).
For healthy living, it is important to ensure that we are getting enough phosphorus in our diet, and mozzarella cheese may help in doing the same.
Eating one ounce of whole milk mozzarella cheese can provides around 100.4 mg of phosphorus which is about 11 percent of the daily phosphorus requirement.
(6) For Making Bones And Teeth Stronger
Another advantage of mozzarella cheese is its ability to make our bones and teeth stronger.
This benefit of mozzarella cheese is because of the presence of calcium in our body. Calcium is an essential mineral for our bone health as it is needed for the growth and development of the bones and teeth. Deficiency of calcium in our body can increase the risk of osteoporosis, which is a bone disorder in which are our bones become weak and fragile, and are prone to damage and fracture.
Eating one ounce of mozzarella cheese provides around 183 milligrams of calcium which is around 18 percent of the daily requirement of calcium for men and women in the age group of 19 years to 50 years.
Calcium also provides other benefits such as protecting our heart muscles, reducing the risk of colon cancer, regulating blood sugar, and controlling high blood pressure, etc.
Other nutrients like potassium and phosphorus also play a significant role in making our bones stronger.
Mozzarella cheese also contains vitamin D which increases the absorption of calcium and phosphate in our body and is an added advantage for our bone health.
(7) Good Source Of Protein
Mozzarella cheese is also a good source of protein which plays an important role in the growth and development of the body. Some of the major functions of protein in our body are as follows-
- Growth and development of body
- Causes biochemical reactions
- Acts as a messenger protein
- Maintains fluid balance
- Strengthens immune system
- Aids in transportation and storage of nutrients
- For Providing strength and stamina to the body
- For boosting our energy level
Deficiency of protein in our body may give rise to symptoms such as Edema, fatty liver, poor skin, hair and nail health, loss of muscle mass, increased risk of bone fracture, and weak immune system leading to increased risk of infections, etc.
Eating one ounce of mozzarella cheese contains about 8 grams of protein which is about 28 percent of the mass of mozzarella cheese.
(8) Contains Zinc
Mozzarella cheese also contains zinc which is a vital mineral that plays an important role in keeping us healthy as it has a direct connection with our immune system. Some major functions performed by zinc are as follows
- Strengthens our immune system by increasing white blood cell count
- Helps with metabolism
- Quick healing of the wounds
- Enhances sense of taste and smell
- Decreased risk of age-related macular degeneration
- For growth and development
- Protein synthesis
Zinc deficiency may give rise to symptoms such as loss of appetite, poor immune system, hair loss, diarrhea, delayed sexual maturation, impotence, hypogonadism in males, and skin and eye lesions.
Consuming one ounce of part skin mozzarella cheese contains about 0.8 mg of zinc which is about 6 percent of the daily zinc requirement by our body based on a 2000 calorie diet.
This is another reason to enjoy mozzarella cheese.
(9) Contains Potassium
Another reason to enjoy mozzarella cheese is due to the presence of “Potassium” in it.
Potassium is a vital mineral that acts as a natural vasodilator which means it relaxes our blood vessels, improves blood circulation, and thus provides relief from hypertension or high blood pressure, and thus minimizes the risk of various cardiovascular issues such as heart attack, heart stroke, irregular heartbeat, and coronary artery disease.
It also performs other important functions in our body such as
- Regulates fluid balance
- Improves nerve functioning
- Regulates contraction of muscles and heart
- May Regulates blood pressure
- May Reduces risk of stroke
- May prevents kidney stones
- Maintains electrolyte balance
- Counteracts the damage caused by excess sodium in our body
- Reduces water retention
Not getting enough potassium in our diet may lead to hypokalemia giving rise to symptoms such as constipation, palpitations, fatigue, muscle damage, muscle weakness, muscle cramps and spasms, tingling and numbness, weak digestive system, and breathing difficulties
The “Infamous ” Saturated Fat
Now, here comes the part that gives mozzarella a bad reputation among other variants of cheese, and why we are advised to stay away from it.
Without a doubt, mozzarella cheese is a good source of various nutrients like vitamins and minerals that provides amazing benefits for our health, but it also contains a high level of saturated fats.
Excess of saturated fats in our body may increase the cholesterol levels in our body and thus increase the risk of cholesterol buildup in the arteries. It can lead to clogging and hardening of the arteries, and thus increases the risk of atherosclerosis which is a leading cause of various cardiovascular problems such as heart attack, heart stroke, and coronary artery disease.
However, these issues only arise from excessive consumption of saturated fats.
It\s hard to say whether saturated fat is bad fat or not, but it is not an evil one.
Like other types of fats, saturated fats also play an important role in helping with various biochemical functions, and keeps us healthy.
Some of the benefits of saturated fats are as follows:
- Provides stiffness and integrity to cell membranes
- Plays a vital role in managing our bone health as it facilitates the effective incorporation of calcium in the skeletal structure
- Protects our liver from alcohol and other toxins such a Tylenol ( a non-aspirin pain killer).
- Strengthens immune system
- Provides antimicrobial benefits and protects our digestive tract from harmful microbes
So, as long as you are enjoying mozzarella cheese in moderation and going for low fat and low sodium variants, there is no need to worry. Also, if you are on any medication, then it is better to take your doctor\s advice to ensure that there is no food-drug interaction.
Also, if you have a surgery scheduled, then it is better to stop consuming mozzarella cheese two weeks before surgery and up to two weeks after the surgery. This is because there is limited study in this regard.
Similarly, pregnant and lactating women should also consult with their doctor before adding mozzarella cheese to their diet.
The information contained in the post is for general purposes only and shouldn’t be considered as medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice. Although I’ve tried my best to keep the information contained in this post as accurate and updated as possible, I make no guarantee of the accurateness of the same.
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