If you are at risk of developing heart problems or are currently looking for ways to reduce the severity of potential heart problems, changing your diet can provide a lot of help. Observing what you drink and eat, as well as exercising properly and even taking supplements are all factors that can reduce the risk of heart disease.
Just like most foods, consuming too much cheese can contribute to several problems, such as potential heart complications. According to Lauren Manaker, MS, RDN, LDN, CLEC, CPTa registered dietitian on our board of medical experts and author of The recipe book of the mother’s first pregnancy, The recipe book for a healthy pregnancy with 7 ingredientsAnd Feeding male fertility, Cream cheese is the worst cheese for your heart.
“Cheese can be part of a heart-healthy diet as long as the proper portions are observed and consumed alongside an overall balanced and healthy diet,” says Manaker. “Of the cheese options, cream cheese may be the worst cheese for your heart.”
Manaker goes on to explain that cream cheese is high in saturated fat and not particularly high in many micronutrients.
On average, in 2 tablespoons, cream cheese contains 87% fat in its calories. Its total fat is 10 grams, which is 15% of the daily value. Meanwhile, 5.9% is saturated fat, which is 30% of the daily value.
A single serving of cream cheese also contains 29 milligrams of cholesterol. If you are already dealing with heart disease, you should limit your cholesterol intake to 300 milligrams per day. While 2 tablespoons of cream cheese doesn’t look bad, be careful when it starts to add up.
As an added drawback, cream cheese also tends to be consumed alongside other foods that aren’t particularly heart-healthy.
“Since we follow dietary patterns and don’t eat a single vacuum packed food, it’s important to look at the big picture of what eating cream cheese means in terms of diet and lifestyle,” says Manaker. “Cream cheese is fine sometimes, but excessive amounts of this food won’t be the healthiest choice for the heart.”
If you’re looking for some cream cheese to spread on your morning bagel or if you want to use it for a delicious buffalo sauce, it’s best to choose healthier versions.
Even though cream cheese has little or no nutrients, when picking a tray it’s worth selecting one that has less fat per serving, but also one that doesn’t add excess sugar. For example, creamy cheeses that have added flavors like berries or brown sugar and cinnamon may seem healthy, however they only add unnecessary sugars. You also want to check the ingredients on the label for any other added preservatives that would include things like corn syrup. If you see something like this, go ahead!
Kayla Garritano is a writer on the staff of Eat This, Not That! She graduated from Hofstra University, where she majored in Journalism and dubbed in Marketing and Creative Writing. Read more