Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Cheese; Milk’s Leap Towards Immortality~Clifton Fadiman

Cheese encompasses an enormous range of products with varying effects on the mind and body. Ayurveda encourages caution when it comes to cheeses. In general, cheeses, particularly when aged, have a great potential for blocking the microcirculatory channels or shrotas. Fresh cheeses eaten the day they are made, such as homemade paneer and ricotta are fine for Ayurvedic cooking. Fresh, soft cheeses such as cottage cheese, cream cheese, soft chevre and quark are the next best. 

Semi soft, such as feta, fresh mozzarella and teleme (an American semi-soft cheese originating from the San Francisco Bay Area, CA, now branded under the names "Peluso's Teleme Cheese" and "Peluso's Tomales Bay Teleme," and is manufactured in Los Banos, CA). are borderline. Aged, hard cheeses such as cheddar and parmesan are the most problematic, and many adherents to Ayurvedic principles will avoid them, considering them equivalent to rotten milk. 

If you love them too much to eliminate them, at least consider reducing consumption or consider some of Ayurveda’s guide lines to make adaptations that will improve your ability to digest and utilize them.

•Eat cheeses at lunchtime, around noon, when digestive strength is strongest, rather than with the morning or evening meals when it is weaker.
•Include digestive spices, especially black pepper.
•Due to its predominantly sour taste, it is most balancing for vata and aggravating to pitta and kapha.
•Cow’s milk cheeses are generally the most nourishing. 
•Goat’s milk cheese is all right, but sheep’s milk has a less favorable effect and buffalo milk is identified as inducing sleep.
•Commercially prepared cheeses may contain rennet, a non-vegetarian coagulant that comes from the stomach of a cow. There is a vegetable enzyme that does the same job and has been widely adopted by cheese makers. Cheese labeled “made with vegetable enzymes: “enzymes”, “kosher”, “pareve” or “made with kosher enzymes”,  are free from rennet.
Paneer Hindi: पनीर panīr, from Persian پنير panir

Paneer (pronounced [pəniːr]) is a fresh cheese common in South Asia, especially in Indian, Pakistani, Afghan, Nepali, Sri Lankan, and Bangladeshi cuisines. It is an unaged, acid-set, non-melting farmer cheese or curd cheese made by curdling heated milk with yogurt, lemon juice, vinegar, or any other food acids.

Nutrition Facts
100 gms of paneer made from cow milk provides 18.3 gms of protein, 20.8 gms of fat, 2.6 gms of minerals, 1.2 gms of carbohydrates, 265 kcal of energy, 208 mgs of calcium, 138 mg of phosphorous. It contains reasonably good amounts of fat and 45 ml cholesterol. It would be better to avoid it for those with hypertension and diabetes due to its high fat content. It can however be used in small quantities for such people, once or twice a week. It is suitable for all age groups. https://doctor.ndtv.com/faq/what-is-the-nutritional-value-of-paneer-8353 

Paneer is a also a great source of conjugated linoleic acid — a fatty acid which helps lose weight by increasing the fat burning process in the body.  Linoleic acid belongs to one of the two families of essential fatty acids, which means that the human body cannot synthesize it from other food components. http://www.jbc.org/content/97/1/1.full.pdf, and it is typically low in food,  www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2843518 .
Linoleic acid is an essential fatty acid that must be consumed for proper health. A diet deficient in linoleate (the salt form of the acid) causes mild skin scaling, hair loss,  http://www.jlr.org/content/38/4/805.full.pdf+html, and poor wound healing in rats, http://jn.nutrition.org/content/129/10/1791.full . 

While making paneer from milk, don't throw away the paneer water. This nutritious water can be used for making soft dough for chapattis or can be used to cook dals.

One vaidya recommends yogurt as being more “natural” for the process. In my experience, it makes a better textured and flavored product as well. Paneer is somewhat unpredictable, how it turns out depends on the fat content of the milk, the sourness of the yogurt, the timing and temperatures of just about everything involved in the process, the sun, moon and the stars.

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