Obviously, by looking at this beautiful image of baked banana muffins, some of the TNH readers might be wondering where is the nutritional yeast here? Well guys, actually the slightly yellowish-white sprinkled powder here on the muffin is the nutritional yeast. And today we are going to learn some interesting features of this Superfood.
Yeast has played an important role in the human diet for thousands of years. It is a fungus that has become an essential ingredient in our daily foods products like bread. In recent years, many people have started consuming a specific type of yeast called nutritional yeast.
Nutritional yeast is a deactivated yeast, commonly known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It is sold commercially as a food product.
The commercial products of Nutritional yeast look like a yellow powder or flakes when you use them as your healthy recipe ingredient or simply as a condiment. It is quite popular among vegans and vegetarians.
Although both vegans and vegetarians don’t eat animals as food. The core difference between vegans and vegetarians is that the vegans don’t eat animal products but the vegetarians may eat animal products such as dairy products or eggs.
Such diets are typically preferred by those who have special health concerns or religious and moral concerns. The philosophy of following such vegan practices on a strict basis is known as veganism. People who follow veganism practices are known as vegans.
It offers a cheesy, nutty and savoury flavour. It’s quite popular among vegans as a regular cheese substitute. It’s an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals. Nutritional yeast lovers enjoy numerous potential health benefits.
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Here’s a deep dive into the topic to bring you everything you ever wanted to know about nutritional yeast.
Some of the main nutritional benefits of nutritional yeast include:
Nutritional yeast is a whole protein food source with all nine essential amino acids that you must get from your food as your body can’t produce them on its own. One tablespoon contains 2 grams of protein, making it an easy way especially for vegans to add high-quality protein to meals.
Nutritional yeast is an excellent source of vitamin B-complex with approximately 30-180% of several vitamin B’s daily values. It also contains 2-30% daily value of many important trace minerals such as zinc, selenium, manganese and molybdenum. Trace minerals are vital for various body functions like gene regulation, metabolism, growth and immunity.
The health benefits that nutritional yeast may offer people include:
Vitamin B-12 may help boost energy, as a deficiency of this vitamin can lead to weakness and fatigue.
Nutritional yeast contains almost double of the daily value of vitamin B-12; that can be potentially helpful for vegetarians and vegans as this vitamin mostly found in animal products.
Boosting Immune Function
Nutritional yeast can support the immune system and reduce inflammation resulting from bacterial infection. It may also be helpful in treating diarrhoea.
Help Lower Blood Cholesterol Levels
The beta-glucans in nutritional yeast may also help lower blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels. This effect has been researched primarily in oats i.e. another rich source of beta-glucans, but yeast has similar effects.
Promoting skin, hair, and nail health
Studies suggest that nutritional yeast can potentially cure or prevent hair loss and brittle nails problems. It may also help reduce or improve typical adolescent skin problems such as acne.
Some edible ways to use nutritional yeast include:
- sprinkle on popcorns as a substitute of butter or salt
- add to scrambled eggs or tofu scramble
- mix into nut roast or stuffings
- make a vegan substitute of cheese sauce
- stir into soups for added nutrients
- ingredient of cheese dishes and vegan macaroni
- sprinkle on regular rice-dal, subzi or khichdi
Although nutritional yeast is generally safe for most people, it may cause negative reactions in individuals who are sensitive to it.
Despite all the benefits that nutritional yeast may offer, this supplement is not suitable for everyone. Researchers have recommended that individuals with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), glaucoma, and hypertension avoid using nutritional yeast because it could make their symptoms worse.
People with a yeast sensitivity or allergy should also take care to avoid any exposure to nutritional yeast.
In addition, some researchers say that people with a higher risk of gout may want to avoid nutritional yeast.
Ultimately, nutritional yeast is a highly nutritious vegan food product with various potential health benefits.
It can be used to add extra protein, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to meals.
Researches suggest that nutritional yeast may help protect against oxidative stress from free radicals. It also helps to lower cholesterol and boost immunity.
Nutritional yeast is sometimes called a Superfood because even a little of this high-protein, low-fat, nutrient-dense food provides a host of vitamins and minerals.
Nutritional yeast can be safely enjoyed by most people and purchased at your local health food store.
And there is also one more thing that I’d like to know from TNH readers. Please tell me in the comment section below what more recipes would you love to try with nutritional yeast.