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Nutritional Yeast Benefits

Nutritional Yeast Benefits

Nutritional yeast is termed as a 'super food' as it is a rich source of vitamins, proteins and a number of trace elements. Also given its cheesy flavor, it can be either sprinkled on eggs or added to gravies.
Debopriya Bose
Last Updated: Apr 9, 2018
Nutritional yeast is the deactivated form of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It is called the "vegetarians' proteins" as it is a rich source of protein and contains a number of other nutrients. It is then sold either in the form of flakes or powder. The color of nutritional yeast may range from yellow to brown depending upon the manufacturer.
Advantages of Nutritional Yeast
  • With 18 amino acids, nutritional yeast is a complete protein. It is considered to be 55% high quality protein. In addition to that, it has 15 minerals.
  • For vegetarians and those who are on a low cholesterol diet, yeast is a great substitute for meat, dairy products or other sources of proteins that are also rich in fats.
  • It is a rich source of vitamin B complex which helps in managing stress levels, maintains a good metabolic rate, prevents cancer of the pancreas and ensures a healthy skin.
  • In fact, vitamin B12 which is deficient in most vegetarian foods is also added in certain varieties of nutritional yeast. This vitamin is produced separately from bacteria and then added to yeast to increase its health benefits.
  • Nutritional yeast consists of a trace mineral - chromium, which is known as Glucose Tolerance Factor (GTF). It is beneficial for dealing with diabetes, low blood pressure and fluctuating blood sugar levels.
  • It is also rich in manganese, copper, vanadium, molybdenum and lithium.
Other health benefits include:
  • It maintains ideal intestinal ecology.
  • It improves blood production.
  • It helps in maintaining optimum cholesterol levels.
  • It improves liver health and function.
Uses of Nutritional Yeast
There are different types of yeasts. Some of which can really harm you whereas some help you in leading a healthy life.
  • For example, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It is used in brewing beer making and bread making. Its extracts are also used to enhance the taste of salad dressing, sauces, chips and many more food stuff.
  • Nutritional yeast, a type of S. Cerevisiae, is manufactured through culturing yeast. The medium used for culturing is usually glucose, derived from sugarcane or beet molasses. It undergoes pasteurization in the final stages.
  • Hence, it is guaranteed to be free from the notorious Candida albicans, a bad kind of yeast that can cause numerous health problems. It is also a gluten-free product. It is different brewer's yeast and torula yeast and cannot be substituted with baking yeast while cooking.
Nutritional Yeast in Your Diet
It's nutty and cheese like flavor also has a role to play in popularizing this supplement. It is favored by many people as a cheese substitute. Here are some ways in which it can be included in the diet:
  • Use it as a topping for popcorn, instead of butter and salt.
  • Put in on your scrambled eggs.
  • Use it for its cheesy flavor in pizzas, pastas and casseroles.
  • Add to soup to give it a creamy taste without adding milk.
  • Use it with fried or mashed potatoes.
  • It can be used with gravies and sauces.
  • Mix it with vinegar and oil and use as salad dressing.
  • Mix 1 tablespoon with every 2 cups of vegetable mixture for burgers.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast to each cup of flour while making baked foods.
What is best about this yeast is that it is a tasty way of staying healthy. Just sprinkle a few flakes in your soup or in your breakfast cereal, and get a tasty meal fortified with proteins, vitamins and minerals. A word of caution before you begin sprinkling it in your meals. It can lead to itching, bloating and gas formation in some people. That's why, you need to introduce it to your diet gradually. Moreover, people with mold allergy also find it difficult to digest it and can experience stomach cramp due to its similarity to molds. This yeast also has high amounts of glutamate which is similar to MSG, a food additive and dangerous substance. Glutamate can lead to migraine headaches and asthma just like MSG and can even induce addiction to it. Hence, people who are dealing with yeast infection of any kind should avoid using this product in any form.