Quark cheese, a fresh cheese variety, has a look and taste similar to sour cream. You may also see it called tvorog or tvaroh if you shop in specialty markets. This cheese is made by coagulating pasteurized milk with a compound called rennet, which is then turned sour with bacteria. Whey drains from the curd after it is cut and processed until it is smooth or nearly smooth.
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A 50-gram serving of quark cheese contains 30 to 34 calories. Based on a 2,000 calorie meal plan, this accounts for 1.5 percent to 1.7 percent of the calories you may consume daily. Quark can be used in a number of ways, including as an alternative to sour cream or béchamel sauce, as a topping for bread or toast, mixed with fruit and served as dessert or mixed with granola. It is rarely eaten alone, however, so be sure to account for the calories of the larger dish in which you use it.
Quark cheese is fat-free. You do need some fat in your diet to keep your body functioning well; 20 to 35 percent of your daily calories should come from fat, or 44 to 78 calories. A 50-gram portion of quark cheese serves as a good source of protein, providing 6 grams, or 10.7 to 13 percent of the 46 to 56 grams suggested for daily ingestion by the Institute of Medicine. You need 130 grams of carbohydrates per day, as well. One serving of quark cheese contains only 2 grams of this macronutrient, which means you’ll have to supplement your diet with nutritious, carbohydrate-rich foods to meet your daily requirements.
One serving of quark cheese provides you with 5 percent of the daily recommended intake of calcium, a critical mineral for bone health. The National Institutes of Health reveals that many Americans’ diets lack the calcium they need to stay healthy. Without enough calcium in your diet, your bones may suffer, particularly as you age. Osteoporosis, a condition marked by easily fractured bones, may occur, and it is most prevalent in postmenopausal women. This is not the only way the calcium in quark cheese benefits women, however -- consumption may prevent or lessen symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.
Including quark cheese in your meal plan may offer some unexpected benefits. Many people who suffer from lactose intolerance avoid eating cheese to ward off symptoms that include gas, stomach cramps, bloating and diarrhea, but the Food Intolerance Network reports that quark is a great substitute cheese for those with lactose intolerance. Some people, even those without a problem ingesting lactose, do not eat quark cheese because they blame it for causing constipation. No scientific evidence confirms this belief, so feel free to eat quark cheese without worry that it will cause constipation.