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.
- 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.