Can you eat cheese on the Carnivore diet? This is what many beginners to the Carnivore diet want to know, wondering if cheese can affect their results. If you’re new to the Carnivore diet and worry about the effects of cheese, this article will help you learn the best and worst kinds of cheese on Carnivore, plus easy and affordable Carnivore recipes with cheese.
Can You Eat Cheese on the Carnivore Diet?
Yes, you can eat cheese on the Carnivore diet as it’s an animal product. The Carnivore diet allows all animal-based foods like meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, and some dairy like cheese and butter and excludes all plant-based foods like veggies, fruits, grains, etc.
While some strict Carnivores believe that dairy products must all be excluded, we believe if you are starting Carnivore, cheese is fine because you are trying to stick to the Carnivore diet and focus on progress, not perfection!
Also, cheese can provide various health benefits and even boost our Carnivore results.
Cheese is delicious and can be a part of so many Carnivore recipes. It can be part of a healthy diet  and help you achieve your health and fitness goals. Let’s take a look at the main benefits of cheese.
Cheese Is High in Protein and Nutrients
Cheese contains various nutrients, including proteins, fat, bioactive peptides, amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals . It can also increase the rates of muscle protein synthesis .
Cheese Contains High Levels of Fat
The fat found in cheese can be a healthy source of energy and an essential factor in hormone production, brain function, and cellular health.
Cheese Can Help Reduce the Risk of Diabetes
Cheese can significantly decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes by improving insulin sensitivity and reducing inflammation. Also, lactic acid bacteria and bioactive molecules found in fermented foods positively affect the viability and composition of the gut microbiota and impact gene expression linked with glucose and insulin metabolism  .
Meta-analyses and observational studies show that consuming cheese can have positive effects on lowering the risk of hypertension, which may be a result of decreased BMI, waist circumference, triglycerides, and fasting glucose  .
Cheese Can Help Weight Loss
Consuming whole-fat dairy foods does not cause weight gain, despite what some may think. Cheese as an added fat source to your Carnivore meal provides more satiety, and fat makes you full for longer, leading to weight loss.
Also, consuming dairy can help increase lean body mass and decrease body fat .
Cheese Can Support Heart Health
While many may think cheese can cause high blood pressure due to its high sodium and saturated fat content, studies show that cheese does not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and can actually help lower the risk of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality .
Cheese Is Good for Bone, Dental, and Digestive Health
High levels of calcium and vitamins K and D found in cheese can have positive effects on supporting bones, teeth, and the digestive system .
What about the effects of cheese on the Carnivore diet?
Mozzarella is a semi-hard, creamy cheese, low in lactose and carbohydrates. It is rich in calcium and protein and can be a great part of many Carnivore dishes, including pizzas and sandwiches.
Cheddar is a hard cheese with low levels of lactose and carbohydrates and high amounts of fat, protein, calcium, and vitamin K. With a sharp, tangy flavor, Cheddar tastes fantastic with meat.
Parmesan is a hard, aged cheese that is low in lactose and carbohydrates but high in fat and is a good source of calcium, vitamin A, and protein.
Its strong, savory, nutty, and salty flavor deepens the taste of meat dishes, but it can be more expensive than other types of cheese allowed on the Carnivore diet.
Cottage cheese contains good levels of protein and is low in lactose and carbohydrates. If you are sensitive or allergic to lactose, cottage cheese can be ideal for you as it’s a lot easier to digest. It can also be used as a base for dips, spreads, and sauces.
Cream cheese contains significantly more fat than cottage cheese, so it’s a more satiating option for those on a Carnivore diet. It is also rich in protein and calcium.
Lower levels of carbohydrates and sugar in cream cheese make it a good option for those looking for low-carb foods.
Blue cheese is called “blue” for containing blue or green veins created by kinds of mold, like Penicillium roqueforti or Penicillium glaucum, in the process of cheese-making.
As the cheese ages, the mold grows more, resulting in a pungent and distinct flavor, which makes it ideal for steak or burger topping. You can also eat it with bread or crackers as a snack. Roquefort, Gorgonzola, and Stilton are varieties of blue cheese.
Like many other types of cheese allowed on the Carnivore diet, blue cheese is satiating as it contains high levels of fat. It is also low in carbohydrates and rich in protein and calcium.
If you’re sensitive or allergic to mold, blue cheese cannot be the best for you, as it’s mold-ripened. Also, please note that some kinds of blue cheese contain small amounts of carbohydrates from the mold used in fermentation.
So, which kinds of cheese are not in line with the rules of the Carnivore diet?
The Worst Cheese on the Carnivore Diet
Cheeses with high levels of carbohydrates, like the examples below, are not allowed on the Carnivore diet.
Processed Cheese: Since processed cheese, such as American cheese, contains additives and preservatives, which are high in carbohydrates and low in protein, it is not a good fit for the Carnivore diet.
Flavored Cheese: Cheese with added flavors contains added sugar or herbs/ fruits, which are not allowed on the Carnivore diet.
Low-fat Cheese: Cheese that contains low levels of fat can have lower calorie content, but it is often full of carbohydrates, i.e., it's not satiating enough for those on the Carnivore diet.
Fresh Cheese: Fresh cheese, like ricotta, is high in lactose and carbohydrates compared to aged or hard cheeses.
Now we know that consuming moderate amounts of low-carb, low-calorie cheese is allowed on the Carnivore diet and can also positively affect weight loss through increased satiety and help us improve our health.
But the question is how to add cheese to our Carnivore diet meals. Well, we need some Carnivore-friendly recipes containing cheese.
Cheese is rich in fat and protein, two micronutrients necessary in the Carnivore diet. Hard cheese can be a good option for the Carnivore diet, and processed cheese can be considered the worst.
Cheese is a nutritious and animal-based food we can use in various forms in the Carnivore diet. The most important tip to remember about cheese is to consume it in moderation. Also, consider its caloric content when adding it to your Carnivore meals.