Did you know that when you eat cheese it triggers the same part of your brain that crack does? Cheese has opiate like molecules built into it in the form of casein and casomorphins. The brain releases dopamine when you eat cheese making you feel oh, so good.
"These opiates attach to the same brain receptors that heroin and morphine attach to. They are not strong enough to get you arrested, but they are just strong enough to keep you coming back for more, even while your thighs are expanding before your very eyes." - Dr. Neal Barnard, author of The Cheese Trap
According to Forbes, companies that sell cheese are well aware of these stats, and leverage our addiction to their benefit. Back in ‘00, at a presentation by Dairy Management Inc. (collects approximately $140 million each year from dairy companies to promote dairy products), they suggested that the key to increasing demand was to ‘trigger’ cheese cravings. The presenter broke cheese consumers into two categories: enhancers, those who sprinkle cheese on pasta, salad, etc. from time to time (not worth targeting), and cravers, people who LOVE cheese and will consume it whenever possible. This meant working with Fast Food companies to promote more cheese heavy products on their menus (Cheddar-Lovers sound familiar? Stuffed Crust pizza too!).
Cheese is a contributor to food related diseases such as heart disease and obesity. Why? Because it is high in saturated fat and trans fats. Also, because almost every recipe you find out there has cheese in it. Want a veggie omelette? It comes with swiss cheese. Want a spinach salad? That will come with crumbled blue cheese or feta. Seeing where I'm going with this?
Try to reduce your cheese intake to only once a day and see how often you think about how good cheese would taste with your foods. You may quickly realize you are a cheese addict!