Milk and milk products play an important role in the nutritional wellbeing of Indian society as the major population is still vegetarian. Paneer which is prepared by acid coagulation of milk by use of citric acid, alum etc and whey water is removed further by pressing. Paneer, known as cottage cheese, is the soft variety of cheese used as an excellent substitute of meat in culinary dishes or snacks.
The fat content in paneer varies depending upon the fat percentage of milk being used to process paneer. The protein content is 16-18% and low level of lactose (2-2.7%). It is a good source of fat-soluble vitamins A, D and minerals, calcium and phosphorus.
100 gms of paneer approximately offers 18 gms of protein with high biological value. It is ideal nutritious food for adults, children, adolescents, expectant and lactating mothers, individuals with diabetes and heart disease etc. Also, it is taken by athletes to keep up with their increased protein requirement.
Paneer can help with weight loss
As it is high in casein protein, which has shown to provide better satiety feeling and keeps you full for longer, which leads to reduced intake of carbohydrates. It offers a good amount of calcium which may be linked to reducing fat accumulation, as studies have shown that calcium-rich dairy products help reduce weight if combined with exercise.
Paneer and Gain in Muscle Mass
Casein accounts for more than 80% of the protein in paneer which is slowly absorbed and is as effective as whey protein for building muscle and synthesis and repair of muscle fibres due to its slow release of amino acids.
Paneer and Bone Health
As after 40 years, lack of calcium or other important nutrients is needed for proper bone health and to avoid leaching of calcium from bones. About 100 gms of protein provides with approximately 240 mg of calcium and it should be included in the diet to get enough calcium along with phosphorous in our diets.
In conclusion, paneer is highly nutritious and it should be included in the diet in the form of salads, dishes like paneer curry, snacks such as grilled paneer or can be added in vegetables as well. Since it offers a good amount of protein, calcium, vitamin A and certain other minerals in a fair amount, which makes it a good option, particularly for people looking forward to increasing muscle mass, weight management and bone health.