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Is cream cheese a good paleo (with dairy) food?

by (6082)
Updated about 1 hour ago
Created February 27, 2010 at 5:52 PM

If you are doing limited dairy with Paleo, is cream cheese a good source of animal based fat? Kraft Philadelphia Cream Cheese is loaded with saturated fat. I have taken a liking to dipping carrots or pecans in it for snacks. Gross or Awesome?

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4896 · July 11, 2010 at 8:02 PM

thanks! I was wondering about it, and it would be great, b/c even though sour cream has only half the fat that heavy whipping cream has, it is really tasty and much cheaper!

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2254 · July 11, 2010 at 9:23 AM

I would class sour cream slightly above heavy whipping cream, as the fermentation process is beneficial. Firstly, because it gets rid of the (little) lactose in cream (the bacteria turn it into lactic acid), and secondly because the fermenting bacteria themselves are likely beneficial to gut health like you said.

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13983 · July 10, 2010 at 8:18 AM

This would be great as it's own question! :)

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3268 · May 23, 2010 at 11:09 AM

Me too. I make my own from organic, grass-fed, whole milk yogurt I get at the farmer's market. Just put it in a colander with some cheese cloth and the whey will seep out (keep that for fermenting things!) and what's left is cream cheese. Delish.

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13983 · March 01, 2010 at 9:32 AM

I second GG's sly suggestion of ensuring that you're eating cultured, organic cream cheese rather than highly-processed-full-of-preservatives brand cream cheese. Ditch the Philly!

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56616 · February 28, 2010 at 2:34 AM

AGEs may be interesting, but don't seem to have much to do with paleo/not-paleo. Broiled meat has more AGEs than cream cheese.

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2254 · February 28, 2010 at 7:17 AM

Compared to heavy cream, I think cream cheese might come second. It has a higher protein content, therefore more casein, which could be a concern if it comes from commercial cow breeds (these tend to produce A1 casein, see here: http://paleohacks.com/questions/427/a1-vs-a2-casein). Cream has virtually no protein, just fat (and water and trace carbs).

I still eat cream cheese once in a while, mainly for convencience when I can't get cream instead. More as a meal than a snack, though, as I can easily eat a whole packet (200g) in one sitting.

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293 · March 01, 2010 at 6:37 AM

Aloha David! No need to worry about the saturated fat. It is not the enemy the ADA would have you believe it is. Personally I am lacto-paleo and find my cultured, organic cream cheese topped with home made pesto served with sauteed veggies is a delicious gourmet dinner every once in a while.

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13983 · March 01, 2010 at 9:32 AM

I second GG's sly suggestion of ensuring that you're eating cultured, organic cream cheese rather than highly-processed-full-of-preservatives brand cream cheese. Ditch the Philly!

03aeff8d87a3b53a449b5b8e9158da98
3268 · May 23, 2010 at 11:09 AM

Me too. I make my own from organic, grass-fed, whole milk yogurt I get at the farmer's market. Just put it in a colander with some cheese cloth and the whey will seep out (keep that for fermenting things!) and what's left is cream cheese. Delish.

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2213 · February 27, 2010 at 7:47 PM

For the sake of correctness, I'll point out it is not strict paleo as paleo prohibits dairy. Obligatory disclaimer aside, if you are following a lacto-paleo path then I think it is fine, awesome even. Lots of good saturated fat. I eat quite a bit of it. I like it as a snack right out of the package but use it most often in omelets. Could stand alone or with other ingredients as a tasty fat bomb.

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2319 · February 28, 2010 at 2:09 AM

FWIW - cream cheese is a very highly processed food. Lots of AGE's (advanced glycation endproducts)

This post has a chart showing the AGE's in various foods. It has a lot to do with how things are cooked and for how long:

http://inhumanexperiment.blogspot.com/2009/09/age-content-of-foods.html

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56616 · February 28, 2010 at 2:34 AM

AGEs may be interesting, but don't seem to have much to do with paleo/not-paleo. Broiled meat has more AGEs than cream cheese.

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2319 · March 02, 2010 at 3:52 PM

I've been thinking this over and surely we can process a certain amount of AGE's. But is there an "evolutionarily appropriate" amount of AGE's in the diet? I mean, is the cream cheese subbing for the grilled meat? The meat is definitely more nutritionally dense. Although cream cheese is a great source of vitamin A and has a fair amount of calcium and iron too.

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13983 · July 10, 2010 at 8:18 AM

This would be great as it's own question! :)

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0 · February 26, 2013 at 6:42 PM

8 months paleo with dairy sprinkled through Have just discovered cream cheese again... Oh Happy Day!!!!! Philli block has bacteria culture WooHoo! Lovein it. Doesn't give me that mucusey bleck and no troubles beyond Too much Love happening!

WooT! Thank you Paleo hacks for all the fab. info. Jennifer

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4896 · July 11, 2010 at 2:25 AM

I am eating some dairy, and I've been wondering recently on what's best. It seems like heavy whipping cream wins over cream cheese. Where is sour cream in it? Is it better than cream cheese? Is the sourness of it beneficial for gut bacteria?

I would appreciate any help with that!

A68f24168bc0de414a038037e287b581
4896 · July 11, 2010 at 8:02 PM

thanks! I was wondering about it, and it would be great, b/c even though sour cream has only half the fat that heavy whipping cream has, it is really tasty and much cheaper!

70d9359a2086e890a4c3bccb2ba8a8cb
2254 · July 11, 2010 at 9:23 AM

I would class sour cream slightly above heavy whipping cream, as the fermentation process is beneficial. Firstly, because it gets rid of the (little) lactose in cream (the bacteria turn it into lactic acid), and secondly because the fermenting bacteria themselves are likely beneficial to gut health like you said.

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0 · July 10, 2010 at 5:28 AM

this is a pretty good question...because i've been primal and recently been hooked up with cream cheese. i can have just cream cheese all day for my meals!

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1453 · February 28, 2010 at 3:43 PM

I also don't have this all sorted out (hopefully someone can explain), but I've recently gathered that there's a difference between traditional cultured cream cheese and standard supermarket cream cheese, which isn't made with cultures. So I've been buying Organic Valley recently, which is cultured (I only eat it once a week on average with my weekly flax muffin treat, but I like to keep it on hand).

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78422 · February 27, 2010 at 6:33 PM

I don't know if it is totally legal, but I agree it is yummy. Guess it depends on whether you agree with dairy being part of your diet.

One of my favourite desserts is whipped cream mixed with whipped cream cheese and maybe a few berries or sugar-free homemade jam mixed in.

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