There’s a commonly held belief that few, if any, savoury foodstuffs can’t be improved with the addition of cheese.
Boasting magical, melting properties and the ability to enliven the flavour of almost anything, it’s fair to say that the United Kingdom, as a whole, would struggle to survive without it.
In fact, it could be a matter of life and death for some – in every sense of the word.
According to research compiled by Nature Medicine, eating cheese could be the secret to living a long and happy life.
So crack open the oven pizzas, bring on the Babybels and turn on the grill for a toastie or two, because now there’s no excuse not to eat the yellow stuff – or is there?
The researchers reckon that its all down to a compound called spermide, found in more mature cheese, which may make you live longer.
An initial test of mice and rats – two groups that bloody love cheese – revealed an increase in the average lifespan of those consuming the cheesy stuff.
A further 800 Italians were then quizzed on their dietary habits, with most reporting a high intake of spermidine which, in turn, results in a 40% decrease in the risk of heart failure and other cardiovascular disease.
Obviously there are a couple of small caveats to the findings.
For starters, spermidine is also found in peas, corn, soy beans and other whole grains, all of which are a lot healthier than cheese.
Then there’s the whole fat content of cheese. Probably best you don’t eat too much of it then.