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Is Cottage Cheese Healthy, Actually? What Science Says

Organic homemade cottage cheese or curd in bowl on wooden rustic background, top view

Is Cottage Cheese Healthy, Actually? What Science Says

Cottage cheese is a healthy and nutritious snack. It's low in calories, making it a great snack for weight loss, and it is high in protein, which is great for building muscle. Cottage cheese can be used in many different ways and has grown in popularity to be included in a healthy diet.

What Is Cottage Cheese?

Cottage cheese is a white, soft, and creamy cheese. It is not aged to develop flavor and is considered a fresh cheese. It is cheese curds of cow's milk and can be made from whole, reduced-fat, or nonfat milk. You can also get it in different sizes where the curds are large, medium, or small.

food and dairy products concept - close up of homemade cottage cheese in glass bowl on wooden table
Cottage cheese is believed to have been made in the French countryside.

©Ground Picture/Shutterstock.com

Nutritional Value

Cottage cheese is a great snack that is packed with nutrients. It can be eaten on its own or used in recipes. Half a cup of cottage cheese is low in calories and high in protein. It has 81 calories, 14 grams of protein, 3 grams of protein, and 1 gram of fat. It can be high in sodium, at 20% of the daily value, so if you plan to eat large amounts of cottage cheese, you should consider a low-sodium or sodium-free option.

Health Benefits

Because cottage cheese is low in calories and high in protein, it is a great food for when you're trying to lose weight and gain muscle. A study where people included cottage cheese in their diet for one year showed that their body weight decreased by 6 pounds for women and 3 pounds for men. Having a high protein content in your diet has been proven to aid the body in building muscle mass. High protein content can also make you feel full, meaning you eat less and overall consume less calories.

Although there is not a direct study to prove this, it is believed that dairy consumption and increased calcium intake can help prevent insulin resistance. It is unclear the exact reason why, but a study of animals showed that an increase in calcium helped regulate their insulin sensitivity. Another positive benefit of consuming more calcium is bone health and strength.

Home made fresh ricotta cheese, quark, cottage cheese, fromage frais with basil and honey. High angle.
Cottage cheese can be used in both sweet and savory dishes.

©Pedal to the Stock/Shutterstock.com


Cottage cheese is overall a very healthy snack with little to no downsides. It offers a high amount of protein and is low in calories, making it a great option for losing weight. It can also possibly aid in insulin regulation as well as bone health. The only downfall to eating a higher amount of cottage cheese is that you can consume too much sodium. But this is easily solved by buying low-sodium or sodium-free cottage cheese.

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