the aphrodisiac power of cheese
by Amy Reiley
Dairy is not necessarily a food group evocative of sensuality. Yet cheese is a delicacy of European culture, said by some to resemble the scent of a woman. Embraced in Italian culture as an aphrodisiac, cheese contains ten times as much PEA, phenylethylamine–believed to release the same rush of hormones as sexual intercourse–as does chocolate.
One of cheese’s most surprising attributes was brought to light by Australian researcher, Dr. Max Lake. Dr. Lake performed extensive studies on the connection between sexual arousal and culinary scents. In his book Scents & Sensuality he commented, “The vaguely sexual odors of certain cheeses may be pleasant to both men and women.” In addition to the PEA provided by a serving of cheese, Lake surmises that part of this ancient food’s appeal is in its scent. The five-carbon fatty acid that gives most cheeses their flavor is a close relative to a female pheromone.
One of my favorite attributes of cheese is its ability to keep your mouth healthy and fresh. It helps produce saliva. This cuts down on gum disease. And the calcium in cheese helps keep your teeth strong. A health mouth is a kissable mouth!