5 things you don’t know about cheese
Cheese is a food that is always on our tables, grated on pasta, accompanied by honey and jam, or simply to enjoy as appetizer. Yet we know so little about this wonderful food. Here is a list of 5 curiosities about the cheese you don’t know.
1.Cheese induces sleep
You got it right! Recent studies have found that eating cheese and dairy products induces sleep. It seems incredible, but the secret of everything is in the chemical composition of these products. Cheeses and dairy products are rich in tryptophan, an essential amino acid in milk that is the basis for the synthesis of serotonin. These are exciters neurotransmitters which, with the tryptophan-favored synthesis process, become melatonin, which in turn have sedative properties and regulate the sleep cycle.
2. Why in italian we call it “Formaggio”
If you are thinking that the italian word “formaggio” (cheese) comes from word “forma” (shape) you have not gone totally out of the way. But then the Italian word “forma” what comes from? In our language assumes various meanings, but its origin is linked…to cheese! In ancient Greek, “phormos” was a wicker basket containing the curd. The curd inside the “phormos” take its shape.
3. How the cheese was born
Cheese is an ancient food. The first testimonies of its existence date back to more than 6,000 years ago.Rather than an invention we can talk about a discovery.
The legend tell that cheese was born in the Middle East. It seems that a merchant needed to carry milk from one end of the desert to another, putted it in a stomach of a sheep. During the crossing, the enzymes and the heat did the rest. At the opening of the sheep’s stomac, the merchant found a magnificent surprise that made his fortune.
4. Cheese naturally without lactose
That’s right! Lactose intolerants should not give up on cheeses. During the cheese production cycle (during fermentation and maturing), lactose is transformed into lactic acid, thus facilitating digestion even for intolerants. The AILI (Italian Lacto-Intolerant Association) has stated that in hard cheeses and in blue cheese, lactose is present in a percentage less than 0.01% and is therefore generally tolerated. In the list of tolerated cheeses also cites the seasoned Pecorino. Theese kind of cheese could be eaten initially in small doses, to assess the subjective degree of tolerability (depends on the amount of lactase enzyme remaining active).
But there are also non-seasoned cheeses that can be eaten for the greater presence of lactic bacteria that, by disintegrating lactose, make these cheeses tolerable. Among these are the quark and goat’s cheese.
5. Eating cheese don’t leed to weight gain
How many times have we heard that cheese makes fat, causes cholesterol to come and we have to limit its use? A study conducted by the University College in Dublin has (luckily) denied these cliches. On a sample of 1500 people they analyzed the impact that milk derivatives could have on their health.
The result was stunning! In fact, the results show that regular consumers of cheeses and dairy products have lower fat mass index, lower cholesterol values and lower pressure than non-consumers. Incredibly, regular consumer of low-fat cheeses have higher levels of cholesterol.
Finally we leave you with a question: