When most people think of yeast and the body, they tend to think of horrible infection that nobody wants. But recently I have been introduced to nutritional yeast, a savoury type of yeast that is used in a lot of vegan foods. It has a nutty, cheesy flavour and is often used to emulate cheese in vegan dishes, thicken sauces and dressings, and act as an additional boost in nutrients because it’s filled with B vitamins!
After attending a vegan course a few weeks ago and discovering how tasty nutritional yeast made everything I decided to do some research and found that it boasts some incredible health benefits. If you need persuading to try it look at what nutritional yeast can do for you (if you are already convinced then please scroll down for a great recipe containing nutritional yeast):
- Preserves Immune Function – Nutritional yeast provides the compounds beta-1,3 glucan, trehalose, mannan and glutathione, which are associated with enhanced immunity, improved cholesterol levels and risk reduction of cancer.
- Holds Antiviral and Antibacterial Properties – Dr. Seymour Pomper, an expert in yeast, notes that nutritional yeast is the fourth most prescribed herbal monopreparation in Germany due to its antiviral and antibacterial properties. Only ginkgo biloba, St. John’s wort and horse chestnut are consumed at higher levels.
- Improves Digestion – German monographs indicate nutritional yeast as a medicinal choice for diarrhea and loss of appetite, and studies showcase the digestive system benefits of nutritional yeast. The probiotics in nutritional yeast have shown positive effects on diarrheal patients, and although more research is needed, it may help cure diarrhoea.
- Contains Beneficial Protein and Thiamine – Nutritional yeast is a complete protein containing at least nine of the 18 amino acids that your body cannot produce. This is great news, especially for vegans and vegetarians who may struggle to find enough protein sources in the diet.
- Promotes Healthy Hair, Skin and Nails – Nutritional yeast contains many B vitamins, all of which tend to benefit healthy hair, skin and nails. Vitamin B5 and vitamin B7/biotin benefit healthy hair, skin and nails with the ability to reduce signs of skin aging, such as redness and skin spots. Niacin, also found in nutritional yeast, has been found to treat chronic acne and improve skin overall.
Convinced and ready to try it?
Click here for a recipe I tried this week which was delicious – don’t be afraid to add more nutritional yeast than the recipe recommends – I doubled the amount for a more nutty, cheesy taste. I also substituted the edamame beans for broccoli which worked really well. Enjoy!