Health Benefits of Goat Cheese

Goat cheese has been a popular alternative to cheese made from cow’s milk for a long time. In many parts of the world, goat’s milk is still the main source of milk used by people. It is valued for its mild and earthy flavor, as well as the ease of its digestion. 

Goat cheese can be used in place of cow’s milk cheese in practically any recipe. It’s easy to find in just about any supermarket or health food store, and its many nutritional benefits make goat cheese a wise choice for anyone looking to diversify their palate. 

Health Benefits

The vitamins, minerals, and heart-healthy fats in goat cheese improve health in a number of ways. Copper, for example, helps produce red blood cells, which carry oxygen from the lungs to the other tissues of the body. Copper also aids in the absorption of iron and other nutrients.  

Goat cheese also contains riboflavin, also known as vitamin B2. Riboflavin plays an important role in many bodily processes, especially the production and functioning of new cells. 

Moreover, goat cheese has many other health benefits, including: 

Weight Loss

The fatty acids in goat cheese are metabolized faster than cow’s cheese, which means that the body feels full faster. Researchers have found evidence that choosing goat cheese over cow helps people feel less hungry and eat less overall, which is an important factor in weight loss. 

Improved Digestion

While cow’s milk has both A2 and A1 beta casein proteins, goat cheese has only A2 beta casein. The difference means that goat cheese and goat milk are easier on the digestion.

Gut Health

Goat cheese is full of beneficial probiotics, a healthy kind of bacteria. Probiotics colonize the intestines and compete with any unhealthy bacteria or pathogens that they find there. This can improve the effectiveness of your immune system and reduce your vulnerability to illness. 

Bone Health

Goat cheese is high in calcium, an essential nutrient for your bones, teeth, and organs. A diet high in calcium can prevent the onset of osteoporosis and other bone disorders later in life.

Continued

Nutrition

Goat cheese is a good source of selenium, an essential trace mineral more often found in seafood. Selenium helps your body break down DNA-damaging peroxides, which can lower your risk of developing conditions like cancer, thyroid disease, and cardiovascular disease

It also contains: 

Nutrients per Serving

A 1-ounce serving of goat cheese (what you might typically put in a salad) contains: 

Portion Sizes

Goat cheese can be high in fat, though not as high as cheeses made from cow’s milk. Nevertheless, you should still consume it in moderation to avoid weight gain.

How to Eat Goat Cheese

Goat cheese is available fresh, aged, or ripened. It can be eaten as a spread, a topping, or a side in many dishes. Ripened goat cheese naturally develops a crusty, edible rind on the outside that is a normal part of the cheese-making process. 

Goat cheese is a great, neutral alternative to incorporate into your meals. Many who can’t tolerate cow’s milk or cheese are able to eat goat cheese without complaint. 

Here are a few recipe ideas to help you incorporate more goat cheese into your diet: 

  • Sprinkle fresh goat cheese onto salad.
  • Roast and stuff tomatoes with herbs and goat cheese.
  • Make hamburgers or lamb burgers using goat cheese.
  • Spread goat cheese onto bread with strawberries for a tasty dessert.
  • Use goat cheese when making gyros at home.
  • Toss goat cheese into pasta to give it a delicious and creamy texture.
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD on November 24, 2020

Sources

SOURCES:

AllRecipes: “Goat Cheese Recipes.”

FoodData Central: “Goat Cheese.”

Harvard Health Publishing: "Precious metals and other important minerals for health."

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: “Calcium.”

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: “Riboflavin — Vitamin B2.”

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: “Selenium.”

The Journal of the Pakistan Medical Association: “Role of probiotics in health and disease: a review.”

Nutrients: “Comparison of the Effects of Goat Dairy and Cow Dairy Based Breakfasts on Satiety, Appetite Hormones, and Metabolic Profile.”

Nutrition Journal: “Effects of milk containing only A2 beta casein versus milk containing both A1 and A2 beta casein proteins on gastrointestinal physiology, symptoms of discomfort, and cognitive behavior of people with self-reported intolerance to traditional cows’ milk.”

© 2020 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

Pagination

Get Diet and Fitness Tips In Your Inbox

Eat better and exercise smarter. Sign up for the Food & Fitness newsletter.

By clicking Subscribe, I agree to the WebMD Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of WebMD subscriptions at any time.