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Feta vs Goat cheese - Health impact and Nutrition Comparison

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Article author photo Jack  Yacoubian by Jack Yacoubian | Last updated on November 29, 2020
Education: Haigazian Medical University
Feta
vs
Goat cheese

Summary

Feta is rich in calcium, zinc, B2, B5, B6, B12, folate. It is lower in calories and fats. Feta has a higher amount of sodium. Goat cheese is rich in phosphorus, copper, magnesium, iron, vitamin A, and proteins. It has a lower glycemic index and carbohydrate content.

Introduction

Feta is a white cheese that originates from Greece. Feta cheesemaking uses sheep's milk. It is used as a "refreshing type of cheese," meaning it is not melted and not used for baking or cooking. Feta cheese usage in salads is widespread, and it is associated with olive oil and lemon dressing. It is also used in dips and as a condiment in sandwiches or pizzas. It is considered a cultural food for Greeks and is common in Greek gastronomy. Feta cheesemaking dates back to the 8th century BC.

On the other hand, we have goat cheese to compare with feta. As the name suggests, goat cheese comes from goat milk, and it can be soft, semisolid, and hard. Goat cheese can sometimes have a tart flavor due to the nutrients and compounds present in goat's milk. Goat cheese is most prevalent in France, as it is part of the French gastronomy and is famously known as "Fromage de chèvre." It is usually considered a delicacy and can be consumed raw, baked in a pie, added as a topping on pizza, or baked separately. It is used as a spread on bread and pairs it with something sweet such as honey.

This article will discuss the difference between feta cheese and goat cheese according to the nutritional content, vitamin content, mineral content, health impacts, and variations and usages.

Nutritional content comparison

The nutritional content comparison will be covering the amounts of carbohydrates, glycemic index, calories, proteins, fats, including saturated, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and cholesterol of both feta and goat cheese, based on 100g.

Carbohydrates

Feta and goat cheese have low amounts of carbohydrates. Feta has 4.1g of carbohydrates, whereas goat cheese has negligible amounts of carbohydrates which is 0.1g.

Glycemic index

The glycemic index of feta is 27, which is considered low. However, for goat cheese, due to the lack of carbohydrates, the glycemic index is negligible.

Calories

Feta has 264 calories, which is lower than the calories in goat cheese, 364 calories per 100g.

Protein

The protein content of feta is 14.21g compared to goat cheese which is 21.58g. Goat cheese has higher amounts of protein relative to feta.

Fat

Feta contains 21.28g of fat, whereas goat cheese contains 29.8g of fat, which means feta has lower fat.

The distribution of fat content for both kinds of cheese is in the following way:

Saturated fat

Feta contains 14.9g of saturated fat in comparison to goat cheese which has 20.6g. Thus, feta contains lower amounts of saturated fat compared to goat cheese.

Monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat

Both contain similar amounts of monounsaturated fats, for feta 4.6g and goat cheese 6.8g.

The polyunsaturated fat is similar, with 0.6g for feta and 0.7g for goat cheese.

We can say that goat cheese is richer in unsaturated fats.

Cholesterol

The cholesterol content present in feta is 89mg compared to goat cheese which contains 79mg. The daily recommendation of cholesterol is about 300mg.

Vitamin content comparison

The vitamin profiles of both feta and goat cheese, taking into consideration the recommended daily value (%RDV), is as follows:

Feta Goat cheese
Vitamin A 422IU 14% RDV 1464IU 45% RDV
Vitamin B2 0.84mg 65% RDV 0.67mg 50% RDV
Vitamin B12 1.65mg 70%RDV 0.22mg 10%RDV
Vitamin B6 0.42mg 25% RDV 0.1mg 4% RDV
Vitamin B5 0.97mg 20% RDV 0.2mg 4%RDV
Folate 32mcg 8% RDV 2mg 1% RDV

As the data shows, feta has a richer vitamin profile compared to goat cheese. Feta is richer in Vitamin B2, B12, B6, B5, folate. However, goat cheese is richer only in vitamin A compared to one feta.

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Feta
6
:
Contains more Vitamin B1 +113.9%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +24.9%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +408.9%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +606.7%
Contains more Folate +1500%
Contains more Vitamin B12 +668.2%
Contains more Vitamin A +246.9%
Contains more Vitamin E +44.4%
Contains more Vitamin D +25%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +15.8%
Contains more Vitamin K +38.9%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 26% 4% 12% 0% 39% 195% 19% 59% 98% 24% 212% 5%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 88% 6% 15% 0% 18% 156% 22% 12% 14% 2% 28% 7%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +113.9%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +24.9%
Contains more Vitamin B5 +408.9%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +606.7%
Contains more Folate +1500%
Contains more Vitamin B12 +668.2%
Contains more Vitamin A +246.9%
Contains more Vitamin E +44.4%
Contains more Vitamin D +25%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +15.8%
Contains more Vitamin K +38.9%

Mineral content comparison

Feta Goat cheese
Calcium 493 mg 38% RDV 298 mg 23% RDV
Sodium 917 mg 38% RDV 415 mg 17% RDV
Phosphorus 337 mg 27% RDV 375 mg 30% RDV
Copper 0.032 mg 4% RDV 0.564 mg 63% RDV
Magnesium 19 mg 5% RDV 29 mg 7% RDV
Zinc 2.88 mg 26% RDV 0.66 mg 6% RDV
Iron 0.65 4% RDV 1.62 mg 9% RDV

As the data shows, feta is richer in calcium and zinc. However, goat cheese is richer in phosphorus, copper, magnesium, and iron. It is important to note that feta has higher amounts of sodium.

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" chart below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food
Contains more Calcium +65.4%
Contains more Zinc +336.4%
Contains more Iron +149.2%
Contains more Magnesium +52.6%
Contains more Phosphorus +11.3%
Contains more Potassium +154.8%
Contains less Sodium -54.7%
Contains more Copper +1662.5%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper 148% 25% 14% 145% 6% 120% 79% 11%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper 90% 61% 21% 161% 14% 55% 19% 188%
Contains more Calcium +65.4%
Contains more Zinc +336.4%
Contains more Iron +149.2%
Contains more Magnesium +52.6%
Contains more Phosphorus +11.3%
Contains more Potassium +154.8%
Contains less Sodium -54.7%
Contains more Copper +1662.5%

Weight Loss & Diets

We can consume feta and goat cheese during keto, dash, Atkins, Mediterranean, paleo, vegetarian, pescatarian, intermittent fasting, low carb, and anti-inflammatory diets.

For the Dukan diet, Individuals who are undergoing the Dukan diet can consume feta cheese. However, people who follow the Dukan diet must avoid goat cheese.

Vegans must avoid feta and goat cheese during the vegan diet.

Health impacts

Health Benefits

Cardiovascular Health

Consumption of a moderate amount of dairy cheese, including feta and goat cheese, has reduced the risks of cardiovascular diseases. (1)

Diabetes

Goat cheese has shown a decrease in appetite and hunger after consumption compared to other types of dairy, including feta. This decrease in hunger and appetite would result in a decreased food intake in individuals who have diabetes, which results in lower blood glucose levels. (2)

Cancer

Consumption of dairy, including feta and goat cheese, has shown a reduction in risks of the development of lung cancer. (3)

Emphysema

Both feta and goat cheese contains high amounts of methionine. This amino acid protects against low to moderate degrees of emphysema due to smoking. (4)

Downsides & Risks

Diabetes

Diabetic people should avoid eating feta cheese, and this is due to the high amounts of sodium that would affect kidney filtration of excess glucose. (5)

Cancer

During dairy consumption, in specific feta cheese and goat cheese, an increase in rates for prostate cancer in males and uterine and breast cancer in females is recorded. (6)

In addition, Cancer patients undergoing treatment should avoid feta and goat cheese from unpasteurized milk during their treatments due to the risk of gastrointestinal infections that might occur due to unpasteurized milk. However, there should be no concern if feta and goat cheese are from pasteurized milk. (7)

Allergy and intolerance

Feta has a higher lactose content compared to goat cheese; Lactose intolerant individuals should avoid it.

Goat cheese allergies are also common. However, this is due to goat cheese casein and not lactose.

Both feta and goat cheese have shown allergic and intolerance responses, feta due to lactose intolerance, and goat cheese due to goat casein. (8)

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5867544/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5579670/
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26877260/
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12009885/
  5. https://www.journalofdairyscience.org/article/S0022-0302(11)00117-2/abstract
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6352799/#R19
  7. https://www.cancer.net/blog/2014-04/foods-avoid-during-cancer-treatment
  8. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10457109/
Article author photo Jack  Yacoubian
Education: Haigazian Medical University
Last updated: November 29, 2020

Infographic

Feta vs Goat cheese infographic
Infographic link

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the most right column. It shows the amounts side by side, making it easier to realize the amount of difference.
Feta Goat cheese
Lower in Sugar ok
Lower in Sodium ok
Lower in Cholesterol ok
Lower in glycemic index ok
Lower in price ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Rich in minerals Equal
Rich in vitamins Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Feta Goat cheese Opinion
Net carbs 4.09g 0.12g Feta
Protein 14.21g 21.58g Goat cheese
Fats 21.28g 29.84g Goat cheese
Carbs 4.09g 0.12g Feta
Calories 264kcal 364kcal Goat cheese
Starch g g
Fructose g g
Sugar 4.09g 0.12g Goat cheese
Fiber 0g 0g
Calcium 493mg 298mg Feta
Iron 0.65mg 1.62mg Goat cheese
Magnesium 19mg 29mg Goat cheese
Phosphorus 337mg 375mg Goat cheese
Potassium 62mg 158mg Goat cheese
Sodium 917mg 415mg Goat cheese
Zinc 2.88mg 0.66mg Feta
Copper 0.032mg 0.564mg Goat cheese
Vitamin A 422IU 1464IU Goat cheese
Vitamin E 0.18mg 0.26mg Goat cheese
Vitamin D 16IU 22IU Goat cheese
Vitamin D 0.4µg 0.5µg Goat cheese
Vitamin C 0mg 0mg
Vitamin B1 0.154mg 0.072mg Feta
Vitamin B2 0.844mg 0.676mg Feta
Vitamin B3 0.991mg 1.148mg Goat cheese
Vitamin B5 0.967mg 0.19mg Feta
Vitamin B6 0.424mg 0.06mg Feta
Folate 32µg 2µg Feta
Vitamin B12 1.69µg 0.22µg Feta
Vitamin K 1.8µg 2.5µg Goat cheese
Tryptophan 0.2mg 0.227mg Goat cheese
Threonine 0.637mg 0.805mg Goat cheese
Isoleucine 0.803mg 0.893mg Goat cheese
Leucine 1.395mg 1.861mg Goat cheese
Lysine 1.219mg 1.549mg Goat cheese
Methionine 0.368mg 0.575mg Goat cheese
Phenylalanine 0.675mg 0.859mg Goat cheese
Valine 1.065mg 1.485mg Goat cheese
Histidine 0.397mg 0.589mg Goat cheese
Cholesterol 89mg 79mg Goat cheese
Trans Fat g g
Saturated Fat 14.946g 20.639g Feta
Monounsaturated Fat 4.623g 6.808g Goat cheese
Polyunsaturated fat 0.591g 0.709g Goat cheese

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Feta Goat cheese
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low Calories diet ok
Low glycemic index diet ok

People also compare

Vitamin and Mineral Summary Scores

The summary score is calculated by summing up the daily values contained in 300 grams of the product. Obviously the more the food fulfills human daily needs, the more the summary score is.
Vitamin Summary Score
57
Feta
30
Goat cheese
Mineral Summary Score
68
Feta
76
Goat cheese

Macronutrients Comparison

Macronutrient comparison charts compare the amount of protein, total fats, and total carbohydrates in 300 grams of the food. The displayed values show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of food.
Protein
85%
Feta
129%
Goat cheese
Carbohydrates
4%
Feta
0%
Goat cheese
Fats
98%
Feta
138%
Goat cheese

Comparison summary

Which food is lower in Sugar?
Goat cheese
Goat cheese is lower in Sugar (difference - 3.97g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
Goat cheese
Goat cheese contains less Sodium (difference - 502mg)
Which food is lower in Cholesterol?
Goat cheese
Goat cheese is lower in Cholesterol (difference - 10mg)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Goat cheese
Goat cheese is lower in glycemic index (difference - 27)
Which food is cheaper?
Goat cheese
Goat cheese is cheaper (difference - $0.5)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Feta
Feta is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 5.693g)
Which food is richer in minerals?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.
Which food is richer in vitamins?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.

References

The source of all the nutrient values on the page (excluding the main article the sources for which are presented separately if present) is the USDA's FoodCentral. The exact links to the foods presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Feta - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173420/nutrients
  2. Goat cheese - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/173433/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000 calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.