Gouda cheese is named after a Dutch city and can be aged for different amounts of time, which impacts the flavor of the cheese. The cheese often shows up on dessert platters and in gourmet sandwiches, but its flavor will enhance many other dishes as well. If you haven't eaten a piece of Gouda cheese lately, make a point of picking up a wheel next time you go to the grocery store. You'll likely enjoy a new flavor, and you'll get a boost of nutrition.
Teeth and Bone Benefits
An ounce of Gouda cheese supplies 198 milligrams of the 1,000 to 1,200 milligrams of calcium you need each day. Calcium helps build and maintain bone mass and supports the health of your teeth. Because your body can't make calcium, it's essential to get the mineral from your diet, making Gouda cheese one way to increase your intake. A 1-ounce serving of Gouda cheese also contains 155 milligrams of the 700 milligrams of phosphorus you require daily. Phosphorus is just as crucial as calcium for the strength of your bones and teeth. A 1999 article published in the "British Dental Journal" notes that eating cheese might protect you from dental cavities as well.
An ounce of Gouda cheese contains 1.11 milligrams of zinc toward your daily requirement of 8 to 11 milligrams. In addition to helping you heal from wounds, zinc is an antioxidant. Antioxidants destroy free radicals in your body. Free radicals are substances that form in your body in response to pollution, cigarette smoke and the aging process, and they can contribute to the development of cancer, heart disease and other chronic medical problems.
A 1-ounce serving of Gouda cheese supplies about 7 grams of protein. Protein helps repair, build and maintain cells and tissues. It also helps to give you energy. The same serving of Gouda cheese provides small amounts of potassium for heart and muscle health, as well as vitamin A. Vitamin A also aids your body in making healthy white blood cells, which help protect you from infection.
Eating Gouda Cheese
Because Gouda cheese contains fat and sodium, limit your intake. Too much saturated fat and sodium can contribute to heart disease, high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes. An ounce of Gouda cheese contains 7.78 grams of total fat, of which 5 grams are saturated. The same serving of Gouda cheese also has 232 milligrams of sodium, which is about 10 percent of your daily limit. Add a slice of Gouda cheese to a grilled cheese or lean turkey sandwich. Eat small slices of Gouda cheese with whole-grain crackers for a calcium-rich snack. Shred Gouda over your favorite casserole or use it in tacos or burritos for a new take on the traditional version.
Sara Ipatenco has taught writing, health and nutrition. She started writing in 2007 and has been published in Teaching Tolerance magazine. Ipatenco holds a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in education, both from the University of Denver.