Nutrition and natural products

More than 400 million people globally - including children - consume Bel products. It is the result of the Group's commitment to offer products that combine quality benefits and ingredients with tasty moments of pleasure.

All about dairy products

To adopt a healthy lifestyle, we recommend a complete, varied and balanced diet, associated with the practice of physical activity.

Dairy foods are important foods at all stages of life because they contain micronutrients such as minerals and vitamins, which contribute to multiple and distinct vital functions of the body and are therefore considered an essential source of vitamins A, B (1), B (2) and B (12) and indispensable for healthy eating.

According to the food wheel, 18% of our daily food supply should be dairy products. This group consists of milk, cheese and curd, yogurt and other fermented milks. The general population should consume 2 servings per day, except for children and adolescents who require 3 servings. One serving of dairy products corresponds to: 1 cup milk pail (250 ml) or 2 thin slices of cheese (40g) or ¼ fresh cheese or 2 triangles of 35g or liquid cheese or ½ solid yogurt (200g).

The nutritional value of the cheese

Cheese is a food that selectively concentrates the nutrients of milk. It is a food extremely valuable from a nutritional point of view, particularly for its protein richness, being also a good source of calcium, making it important to consume it at all ages.

By its characteristics, it is a food that can help to balance fast, convenient, practical and simple meals, very common these days, considering the little time available for cooking.

Cheese is the type of dairy product with a marked presence in the Portuguese food. It is not by chance that it is part of the group of foods rich in calcium and protein, essential for a healthy diet.

Calcium – the great wealth of cheeses

Cheeses are an excellent source of calcium, which has excellent bioavailability, being well assimilated and used by the human body. Calcium is vital throughout life to ensure good growth and development of bone structures. Regular consumption of calcium-rich foods also allows for the prevention of osteoporosis, a disease that grows in frequency and severity between adults after middle age and between the elderly (when bones demineralize more than expected).

People who do not eat milk or yogurts should eat cheese, including this mineral in their daily diet.

Proteins and their value

Cheese are also an excellent food source of proteins, which are of high biological value (provide all essential amino acids, in the right proportions), and high digestibility (95%).

Proteins are crucial for the body during the growth and development phases, regulating metabolism and maintaining structures that continually wear out or malfunction throughout the life cycle.

Without forgetting the lipids

Cheeses are also an important source of lipids. The milk lipids are emulsified which makes them more digestible.

The lipids play a very important plastic role, in the constitution of cellular components essential for the work of the cells; in the constitution of nerve cells, giving each cell group a specialization of functions.

They are fundamental in the development of the brain and vision, protection against cold and external aggressions, and because fats are the only vehicle capable of transporting fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K).

No Lactose

According to the Portuguese Society of Gastroenterology, about one third of the Portuguese suffer from lactose intolerance. The cause of this intolerance may be genetic (primary deficiency of lactase), however, most of the situations are a secondary lactose deficiency (lactose-digesting enzyme), caused by changes or diseases of the intestine.

As far as cheese consumption is concerned, cheeses from hard pastries, namely Flemish, are suitable for lactose intolerant.

The Vitamins

The three main vitamins present in the Cheese are:

Vitamin A – essential for vision, functioning of the immune system (body defenses) and reproductive organs. It also plays an essential role in the differentiation and growth of epithelial cells, in bone growth and in tissue growth in general.

Vitamin B2 – essential in obtaining the energy necessary to all processes and reactions of the human organism, namely to extract the energy of carbohydrates, proteins and lipids from food. It is an essential vitamin for tissue growth and repair, important in metabolism and to maintain good health.

Vitamin B12 – essential for many enzymatic reactions, making it important in the normal functioning of the metabolism of all cells, especially nerve tissue cells, bone marrow and gastrointestinal tract.

The Minerals

The main minerals present in the Cheese are:

Zinc – essential for the action of numerous enzymes, including those involved in the formation of proteins. It also participates in protein metabolism, namely in the synthesis of DNA, collagen and insulin.

Magnesium – important for the formation and growth of bones and teeth. It is an important nutritional factor for nerve and muscular conduction, protein synthesis, synthesis and use of ATP and activation of several enzymes.

Phosphorus – fundamental nutrient in the formation and growth of bones and teeth. It is important for growth, maintenance and repair of fabrics. It also contributes to the production and storage of energy.

Cheese - a food for breakfast every day


A good breakfast helps in concentration, gives energy, helps maintain a healthy weight and an equally healthy metabolism. Eating breakfast regulates your appetite in the morning and throughout the day.

Breakfast is an essential meal that should include:

  • Fruit: whole, in milkshake or in juice
  • Cereals and derivatives: bread, toasts, biscuits or biscuits or little or nothing sweets, cereals (muesli, corn flakes or wheat, etc.)
  • Dairy products (milk, yogurt, cheese, curd)

The simultaneous association of cheese consumption with cereals, as is the case of bread, is extremely interesting, as they are the main source of carbohydrates in our food and the most important suppliers of energy for daily activities.

Eating a loaf of bread provides some of the energy needed to start the day well. Omission of breakfast increases the number of hours of overnight fasting, which can lead to snacking on caloric foods in the morning and choosing less healthy foods at lunch.


These meals should be easy to digest, varied and generally smaller than breakfast. However, their volume varies according to the length of the morning and the intensity of physical exertion expended.

If workplaces or canteens have few healthy options, stipulate for yourself, or arrange with the child that she will take the snack from home 2 to 3 times a week. You can even wrap it in preparation …. It’s fun, simple and fast!

Cheese - food for all ages

Cheese is a food that must be present in the diet of individuals of all ages. Exquisite and with varied flavors, it is increasingly present in the Portuguese food. It is not by chance that besides being pleasant to the palate of children and adults, it is one of the foods rich in calcium and protein, essential for a healthy diet.