Lipid Fraction in Cheese: Nutritional Value and Strategies for Improvement (pp. 439-458)
Authors: (Eliana Jerónimo, F. Xavier Malcata, Centro de Biotecnologia Agrícola e Agro-Alimentar do Alentejo, Instituto Politécnico de Beja (IPBeja), Beja, Portugal, and others)
Abstract: Fatty acid (FA) profile of cheese is characterized by high content of saturated fatty
acids (SFA) and trans FA, and low levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Overall,
SFA and trans FA intake is associated with increase of the risk of cardiovascular disease;
and a low consumption of these FA have been recommended by health authorities.
However, reduction of cheese consumption in order to reduce the intake of SFA also may
limit the intake of several potential health-promoting compound presents in cheeses,
namely FA as conjugated linoleic acid isomers (CLA).
To satisfy consumer concerns over potential health effects of cheese is essential
improving its FA profile, reducing the SFA content and increasing the beneficial
unsaturated FA, particularly CLA and n-3 PUFA. Improving the milk FA composition
through change of animal diet appears to be most effective way to manufacture cheeses
with enhanced health properties. Nutritional strategies to improve the FA composition of
milk fat have been extensively studies. So, this chapter reviews the nutritional value of
the lipid fraction in cheese, the ruminant lipid metabolism and feeding strategies to
improve the FA profile of cheese. The sensory impact of improving the nutritional value
of cheese is also discussed.