Some cheeses are meant to be moldy, and it’s OK to eat those molds, says Jane Ziegler, D.C.N., R.D., L.D.N., associate professor and director of the Department of Clinical and Preventive Nutrition Sciences at Rutgers University. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2018. Mayo Clinic offers appointments in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota and at Mayo Clinic Health System locations. These molds are safe for healthy adults to eat. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at, How To Use Fall’s Best Fruits And Vegetables, 30 Protein-Packed Breakfasts for All-Day Energy, The Best Vegan Protein Powders for Strong Muscles, Save $150 on This Super Powerful Vitamix Blender, The Absolute Best Crackers for Healthy Snacking, 30 Best Meals to Enjoy When It’s Chilly Outside. Sadly cheese doesn’t live forever and most times you’ll have to use two or all three of these to determine if … If in doubt, throw it out. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Accessed Aug. 28, 2018. Do You Have Food Poisoning or the Stomach Flu? With these cheeses, the mold can send threads throughout the cheese — contaminating more than you see. Zeratsky KA (expert opinion). Any use of this site constitutes your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy linked below. Accessed Aug. 28, 2018. So, when you come across cheese that’s been hanging out for a while, there’s a solid chance it could have grown mold. If your cheese is hard or semi-soft, like cheddar, Parmesan, or Swiss, Detwiler says you might be OK to cut off the moldy part and eat the rest of the cheese. Of course, not all molds pose a risk. Molds on food: Are they dangerous? In addition, harmful bacteria, such as listeria, brucella, salmonella and E. coli, can grow along with the … “If you are one of those people who is susceptible to the affects of cholesterol, eating cheese may increase your risk of heart disease and stokes,” he continues. Support from readers like you helps us do our best work. The symptoms of foodborne illness can include fever, chills, stomach cramps, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. Want healthier recipes? Other cheeses may have an internal and a surface mold. That’s especially true when you’re dealing with a soft cheese, shredded cheese, or sliced cheese. If your immune system is in a compromised state, however, then the effects of the mold could lead to some intestinal problems that … Swap ingredients! Best-case scenario: Nothing. Foods that are moldy can also have invisible, harmful bacteria like Listeria, Salmonella, and E. coli growing along with them, says Darin Detwiler, Ph.D., director of the Regulatory Affairs of Food and Food Industries program at Northeastern University and author of Food Safety: Past, Present, and Predictions. What Really Happens If You Never Replace Your Pillows. And how bad is it to eat cheese with mold on it, anyway? Again, there is a wide range of molds out there. It’s unclear exactly how many different types of mold there are, but there may be 300,000 or more. Also, the truth on whether cheese is mold. With these cheeses, the mold can send threads throughout the cheese — contaminating more than you see. In addition, harmful bacteria, such as listeria, brucella, salmonella and E. coli, can grow along with the mold. “Cut off at least one inch around and below the moldy spot,” he says. The same goes for any kind of cheese that's shredded, crumbled or sliced. AskMayoExpert. And in the case of cheese, you are at risk of food poisoning once you’ve eaten either: Cheese made with unpasteurized milk, or Bad cheese that is contaminated while … That’s where the mental dilemma comes in: Do you really have to chuck the whole thing? A single copy of these materials may be reprinted for noncommercial personal use only. Can you cut off the moldy part and eat the rest? Some types of mold are used to make cheeses, such as Brie and Camembert. The same goes for any kind of cheese that's shredded, crumbled or sliced. However, these cheeses, as well as other soft cheeses and cheeses made with unpasteurized milk, are best avoided by people with weakened immune systems, older adults, pregnant women, infants and young children. Why trust us? Prevention participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. It’s easy for things to get lost in your fridge. “Because soft cheeses have a high moisture content, they can be contaminated well beyond the surface of the moldy area,” Ziegler says. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Unfortunately, when you eat cheese every day, you are putting yourself at risk of inflammation and the damage it causes. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 28, 2018. Taste is the one indicator that is a dead giveaway that your cheese is bad. Plus, the best way to store your cheese so it stays fresher for longer. The type of food matters here, she says. You’ll also want to keep your cheese covered in plastic wrap, and make sure you don’t leave it out of the fridge for more than two hours at a time, the USDA says. Check out these best-sellers and special offers on books and newsletters from Mayo Clinic. “Think of mold as a weed,” says Susan Whittier, Ph.D., director of the clinical microbiology service at New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. Many have a body that consist of root threads that invade the food it lives on, a stalk that rises above the food, and spores that form at the ends of the stalks. Mold may be more likely to spread widely in soft foods, ruining even the parts that look OK, while it may be more localized in dense, hard foods, like a Parmesan cheese. Bottom line: If you have moldy cheese and you’re not sure what kind it is or what to do, it’s really best to pitch it. Our general interest e-newsletter keeps you up to date on a wide variety of health topics. “Mostly these are invisible to the naked eye, but when one can see mold, strong roots have already grown. Soft cheeses, such as cottage cheese, cream cheese and ricotta, with mold should be discarded. See our safe care and visitor guidelines, plus trusted coronavirus information. So you can cut away the moldy part and eat the rest of the cheese. If you eat Mozzarella, cheddar, or any other cheese that mold has grown on, the effects could be anywhere from minimal to serious.


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