What is feta cheese?
Feta cheese is in the Greek family of cheeses. It is traditionally created from goat’s milk. However in most cases now it is manufactured from cow’s milk. This cheese contains 33% fewer calories than most cheeses but much stronger flavour than low calorie cheeses such as mozzarella, so one will use less when adding it to their food. Its nutritional profile is not only impressive with regard to fat content in fact a single ounce contains nearly 140mg of calcium making it one of the best dietary sources of this important bone mineral. Another impressive biochemical detail is the fact that feta is specifically rich in conjugated linoleic acid which is a fatty acid and antioxidant that may aid abdominal fat loss. Having listed feta’s benefits, there are some nutritional facts to consider before gorging yourself. It is still relatively high in saturated fat and sodium, a 150g serving provides 49% of total fat and 70% of your daily value of sodium. Fortunately with its powerful flavour you won’t need much to get its true taste.
How can one use if effectively?
Feta is not the typical cheese that melts and oozes with a stringy feel. It needs very little handling and probably works best when served uncooked. You can sprinkle it into salads, add a few olives and you have an instant Greek salad. You can through it into omelettes, pasta, put it on top of grilled vegetables or use it to add flavour to sauces or dips. Feta’s mineral profile is very impressive when compared to other cheeses. In fact it should be a feature in the diet of post menopausal women not only for its prized calcium levels but also its high phosphorous and magnesium levels. These three minerals are the perfect combination to combat osteoporosis.
By Nutritionist Gurkirat Channa (FacedaFood)