Study: A piece of cheese a day could keep the doctor away

Do you love cheese? Well, maybe you don’t have to feel so bad about that.

Research suggests eating a small slice of cheese, a matchbox size amount, every day could actually slash your risk of heart disease by 14 percent.

The Chinese study also found that that same portion could lower the risk of stroke by ten percent. Oh, and there’s also an acid that can help prevent clogging of the arteries.

Cheese may have gotten a bad rap in the past, but even prior studies show that a little cheese can’t hurt. A team of international researchers at Reading University showed in April that eating dairy does not raise the risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke.

So, more cheese please? Don’t mind if I do. 

RELATED: The best and worst cheeses for you

The best and worst cheeses for you
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The best and worst cheeses for you

WORST: Parmesan

The Italian cheese is filled with calories and sodium. While people tend to use it sparingly -- grating it on top of a pasta dish here and there -- an ounce of Parmesan contains 1/3 of your daily sodium allowance. 


BEST: Feta

The beloved salad topper has fewer calories than other cheeses, only 75 calories per ounce, so it’s a good choice for those trying to eat healthy. The Greek cheese is also rich in flavor, so a little goes a long way!


WORST: Blue Cheese

The spotted blue cheese has 8 grams of fat and 100 calories, per one-ounce serving -- making it one of the worst you can eat.


BEST: Cottage Cheese

The healthy cheese is a go-to for dieters everywhere. The neutral taste is also a plus, meaning you can top it with something sweet or savory. It’s rich in protein, which helps keep you full, and low in fat and calories. A 1/2 cup of low-fat cottage cheese contains only 81 calories and 1 gram of fat, with 14 grams of protein.


WORST: Cream Cheese

Out of all the soft, white cheeses on the market, cream cheese is the unhealthiest. The cheese most commonly used on bagels has almost 10 grams of fat and 99 calories per ounce.


BEST: Mozzarella

While mozzarella often gets a bad rap because of it's association with pizza, the cheese is a good source of protein. Mozzarella sticks (not the fried alternative) are a quick and easy snack for when you're on the go.


WORST: Gruyere 

The hard yellow cheese, named after the town of Gruyères in Switzerland, contains a whopping 117 calories and just over 9 grams of fat per ounce.


BEST: Swiss

Unlike Gruyere, you can reap a bunch major health benefits from a little amount of Swiss -- just two slices alone contain 44 percent of your daily calcium intake, and 15 grams of protein. 


WORST: Fontina

The Italian cow's milk cheese has a whopping 110 calories and almost 9 grams of fat per 1-ounce serving. The cheese is quite pungent in flavor. The Swedish and Danish versions are often found in US grocery stores, and can be distinguished from Aostan Fontina by their red wax rind.


BEST: Ricotta

The cheese most commonly used in Italian cuisine contains 14 grams of protein and 25 percent of your daily calcium needs in a half-cup serving. It’s also low in sodium and high in phosphorus, B vitamins, vitamin A, and zinc.

WORST: American

There's definitely something about American singles that probably gets you nostalgic about your childhood. However, it's not doing your health any favors -- it's made up of mostly processed ingredients, including food dyes that give it an unnatural yellow-orange color.

BEST: Cheddar

The light taste of cheddar makes for a lower-calorie, versatile cheese that goes well with many meals.


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