Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Dec;94(6):1479-84. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.111.022426. Epub 2011 Oct 26.

Cheese intake in large amounts lowers LDL-cholesterol concentrations compared with butter intake of equal fat content.

Author information

Department of Human Nutrition, Faculty of Life Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Frederiksberg, Denmark.



Despite its high content of saturated fatty acids, cheese does not seem to increase plasma total and LDL-cholesterol concentrations when compared with an equivalent intake of fat from butter. This effect may be due to the high calcium content of cheese, which results in a higher excretion of fecal fat.


The objective was to compare the effects of diets of equal fat content rich in either hard cheese or butter or a habitual diet on blood pressure and fasting serum blood lipids, C-reactive protein, glucose, and insulin. We also examined whether fecal fat excretion differs with the consumption of cheese or butter.


The study was a randomized dietary intervention consisting of two 6-wk crossover periods and a 14-d run-in period during which the subjects consumed their habitual diet. The study included 49 men and women who replaced part of their habitual dietary fat intake with 13% of energy from cheese or butter.


After 6 wk, the cheese intervention resulted in lower serum total, LDL-, and HDL-cholesterol concentrations and higher glucose concentrations than did the butter intervention. Cheese intake did not increase serum total or LDL-cholesterol concentrations compared with the run-in period, during which total fat and saturated fat intakes were lower. Fecal fat excretion did not differ between the cheese and butter periods.


Cheese lowers LDL cholesterol when compared with butter intake of equal fat content and does not increase LDL cholesterol compared with a habitual diet. This trial is registered at as NCT01140165.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center