Page 0035


Today, the 'King of

Cheeses' is the perfect

choice to add an umami*

flavour to a range of sweet

or salty dishes, and now

a recent study shows that it's actually good

for your gut too. In 2019 the prestigious

scientific journal Nature Communications

published a study coordinated by

Professors Marco Ventura and Francesca

Turroni of the University of Parma, aimed

towards understanding the ecological

origins and composition of the microbial

communities of Parmigiano Reggiano

that contribute to the development of its

organoleptic** characteristics. According

to the study, Parmesan cheese enriches

the microbiota residing in the human

gastrointestinal tract.

The study by the University of

Parma has proven for the first time that

Parmigiano Reggiano, as a vector of

microbial strains that enrich the human

gut microbiota, plays an important role as

a functional food in the human diet. It is the

first piece of research that provides a very

detailed description of the composition

of bacterial communities - defined

collectively as microbiota - that reside

in Parmigiano Reggiano, demonstrating

the existence of both ubiquitous bacterial

species and differences connected with

the locations of production.

The study was conducted by

the Laboratory of Probiogenomics,

Department of Chemistry, Life Sciences

and Environmental Sustainability, and

by the Microbiome Research Hub

Interdepartmental Research Centre,

alongside the participation of a research

group from the University of Parma. This

research project has made it possible to

reconstruct a comprehensive profile of

the microbiota of Parmigiano Reggiano.

The data obtained demonstrated the

existence of bacteria that are transmitted

from the cow milk to humans during the

consumption of Parmigiano Reggiano.

These bacteria include some

Per 1oz (28g) 121 caloreis, virtually zero

carbs or sugars, 8g fat, 10g protein, 3% of

your recommended daily allowance (RDA)

of Vitamin A, 31% Calcium, 18% Sodium

and 1% Iron.



bifidobacterial species, probiotic

microorganisms commonly considered

capable of providing health benefits

to humans. Essentially, the research

shows that there is a passage between

potentially 'good' bacteria from the cows

to the person who eats the cheese.

Natural and authentic

Parmigiano Reggiano is closely linked to

its area of origin: the provinces of Parma,

Reggio Emilia, Modena and Bologna to

the west of the Reno river, and Mantua to

the east of the Po river. It is a Protected

Designation of Origin (PDO) product that

owes its success to its age-old history,

but also to the ideal microclimate in its

production region. The resultant cheese

is completely natural, healthy, and

authentic product containing no additives

or preservatives and is produced without

any thermal treatments as it is made from

unpasteurised, raw milk. The cheese,

consequently, gives consumers the

fragrances and flavours of the fodder

eaten by the cows and of the milk used to

make the famous cheese.

The study from the University of Parma

highlights that consuming Parmigiano

Reggiano not only plays an important

nutritional role in the human diet but also

provides health benefits produced by the

transmission of microorganisms capable

of modulating and enriching human gut

microbiota. It also opens up a serious

scientific debate about the origin of some

Foccacia bites with tomato and Parmigianno Reggiano.

Click the pic to download the recipes.

Recipe overleaf

types of bacteria considered unique to

certain foods (referred to as food bacteria)

and lays out the scientific foundation

regarding their environmental origin and

their transmission through the food chain.

Although the research is still

ongoing, this study has that Parmigiano

Reggiano enriches our microbiota with

microorganisms that are beneficial to

the gastrointestinal tract. However, in the

future studies may go even further, as

the presence of these microorganisms

may have additional health benefits,

considering the central role attributed to

the gut as far as human well-being and

health are concerned.

*Umami is a Japanese word for a savory

taste, one of the five basic tastes (together

with sweetness, sourness, bitterness and

saltiness). It has been described as savory

and is characteristic of broths and cooked

meats. ** Organoleptic properties are the

aspects of food, water or other substances

that create an individual experience via the

senses-including taste, sight, smell, and

touch. Source: Wikipedia.


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