Let’s shed some light on the most asked question all the time “can I eat blue cheese when pregnant?”
What is Blue Cheese
Blue cheese is a semi-soft cheese that generally has some mold on it, which is what gives it its distinctive appearance. It varies in color through various shades of green and blue. This carries a special smell, either from that or various specially cultivated bacteria.
Sometimes blue cheeses are injected with spores before the curds form. The spores of other blue cheeses are mixed in with the curds after they form. These are usually aged in a temperature-controlled environment such as a cave.
Blue cheese can be eaten by itself. It can also be spread, crumbled, or melted into or over a range of other foods. You can use it on sandwiches, chips, crackers, hot dogs and steaks, pastries, and cheesecakes.
Types of Blue Cheese
List of popular blue cheeses that are readily available which sure to please a variety of tastes.
- Danish Blue (Danablu)
Danish Blue (Danablu)
Marius Boel, a Danish cheesemaker, created Danish Blue (Danablu) in the early 20th century. It is an aged goat cheese with a mild, sweet flavor that is often used in cooking and baking. This was Boel’s attempt to imitate the popular Roquefort cheese in terms of flavor, texture, taste, and appearance.
Danish Blue is a semi-soft, white cheese that’s creamy, milky, and delicious. It has a natural blueish color due to the dye that’s added to it. It comes in 1 or 2 kg slices, 250 grams, and 500 grams. This is a mild blue cheese compared to the more powerful flavor of Roquefort.
Danish Blue is usually sold in wedges, drums, or blocks. The needling process of Danish Blue cheese takes place in the curd phase, and Penicillium Roqueforti is inserted evenly into the deep channels. Traditionally, this cheese is aged in a dark, damp environment for 8 to 12 weeks.
Gorgonzola is an Italian cheese with origins in either goat’s or unskimmed cow’s milk. It can be made of a combination of the two. Gorgonzola cheese has a varying texture that ranges from soft and crumbly to firm.
Gorgonzola has been around since the Middle Ages, but it wasn’t until the 11th century that it started getting infused with Penicillin glaucum. It thereby gained the distinction of blue cheese. Nowadays, it is commonly infused with other types of bacteria like Streptococcus thermophilus or Lactobacillus bulgaricus for commercial production.
Gorgonzola is a small, but beautiful, Italian city just outside of Milan. Traditionally made with Penicillin glaucum, this farmstead cheese from Lombardy and Piedmont is now infused with lactic acid bacteria. Recently, the use of Penicillium roqueforti has also become a very sought-after additive to many different types of food, which is due in part to the fact that it comes with a wide range of health benefits.
This cheese is a protected designation of origin. Any cheese labeled as “Roquefort ” must follow certain standards set by independent government agencies. Cheeses that are protected origin cheeses are regularly overseen by independent government agencies that perform random quality checks.
Roquefort is made from the milk of the Manech, Lacaune, and Basco Bearnaise sheep. Cheese that is aged in the Combalou caves in Roquefort-Sur-Soulzon is the only one that can be labeled “Roquefort.” It is only in these same caves that Penicillium roqueforti maybe be found.
Roquefort is being made by milking within 48 hours, wherein the rennet is added to the ewe’s milk. It’s then heated and placed into large vats, where it’s allowed to ferment, which can produce curds. The curds are then carefully cut into cubes, drained, and salted which helps to preserve them.
The cheese is stored at a dairy for a few days. This is done before the cheeses is being transferred to the caves. Just before entering the caves, the cheese is being poked to make a few holes to encourage fungal growth.
To allow the spore growth, the cheese is then left in the caves for a few weeks. For another 3 to 10 months the loaves are wrapped and aged. More interesting information is on way!
Health Benefits of Blue Cheese
Getting back to the question: can I eat blue cheese when pregnant. Let’s find out the core benefits of Blue Cheese in your diet.
- Good For Heart Health
- Fights Arthritis
- Prevents Osteoporosis
- Enhance Memory
- Good Source Of Phosphorus
Good For Heart Health
Having blue cheese in your diet can help in lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases. There is a lower risk of contracting cardiovascular diseases in people who consume blue cheese regularly because it’s loaded with antioxidants that are great for your heart. According to researchers, blue cheese is an extremely heart-healthy food that can help lower cholesterol levels, and prevent artery inflammation and blood clotting in veins or arteries.
We usually experienced arthritis and other health issues when we start aging. Blue cheese has anti-inflammatory properties that may reduce joint inflammation and relieve arthritis pain. Increasing the frequency of blue cheese in your diet plan can help to lower the risk of arthritis and also help to combat it.
Osteoporosis is a condition where bones become so weak that they may tend to even fracture from a fall. More women suffer from osteoporosis than men. Blue cheese is a very good source of calcium that is important for bone health.
Just one ounce of blue cheese has about 150 milligrams of calcium. Therefore, consumption of blue cheese makes your bones healthy. It also helps in preventing diseases like osteoporosis.
Blue cheese has many healthy and brain-boosting nutrients and can be helpful in enhancing memory. Consuming blue cheese has been found to enhance brain cell functioning and memory. Adding blue cheese to a child’s diet can provide significant help with memory development.
Good Source Of Phosphorus
Blue cheese is a good source of phosphorus, a mineral that is very important for healthy bones and teeth. Lack of phosphorus in the body may lead to rickets and other bone-related problems. Aside from healthy bones and teeth, phosphorous also has many vital functions in the body.
Blue Cheese and Pregnancy
In the response to “can I eat blue cheese when pregnant” – Blue cheese is often made with unpasteurized milk. Raw unpasteurized milk carries a higher risk of contamination with Listeria monocytogenes. This bacteria can cause a foodborne illness known as listeriosis that presents much like a stomach bug or the flu.
Listeriosis symptoms in pregnant women can often be mild and many may not even realize they have it. However, Listeria can cross the placenta and can be fatal to the fetus. Therefore pregnant women should avoid blue cheese products or use only pasteurized milk.