Nutritional Yeast: To Nooch or not to Nooch

Nutritional Yeast Flakes

Yeast is nothing but a single-celled organism, scientifically called Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It may seem like an average kitchen-friendly microbe, but it is pretty multitalented. When you hear the word yeast, you might think of the good tasty stuff like cakes, pastries, cookies, etc., or an infection, which I hope is not a common occurrence. 

The organism is like us humans, and it needs food, moisture and warmth to grow. It converts its food into carbon dioxide and alcohol through fermentation, which helps the baked goods to rise. Yeasts are good at making bread, beer, and wine because they can extract energy from sugar without oxygen. There are two kinds of yeast: brewer's yeast, a wet yeast mainly used in beer production, and baker's yeast, used as a leavening agent. But an underestimated variant to the star food is “Nooch” - Nutritional yeast.

Nooch is named so due to its abundant nutrients, including protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells are grown on a sugar-rich medium, such as molasses, to make nutritional yeast. The yeast is later killed using heat and powdered to form a food additive which gives a nutty umami flavour. It can be added as a savoury seasoning to various dishes like popcorn, pasta, sauces, spaghetti, salads, etc. Sprinkle it on your popcorn or add it as an alternative to cheese in your pasta, you will get the same taste but without the stress of adding extra calories. You can also stir it in your soups for added nutrients. The Nooch is an essential diet additive as it hoards large amounts of Vitamin B. This vitamin is essential for keeping your blood and nerve cells healthy. It also helps make DNA and prevent megaloblastic anaemia, a blood condition that makes you feel weak and fatigued.

Nutritional yeast is sold as thin flakes, granules or powder and you can find it in the condiment section of most of the grocery shops. It is pale yellow in colour and may come in a bag, jar or a shaker. This incredible ingredient fits in any diet or eating style. it is naturally low in calories and sodium and its fat free, sugar-free, gluten-free and vegan. It has a umami-nutty flavour.

Nutritional Profile of Nutritional yeast

  • Protein: Nutritional yeast includes all nine essential amino acids that must be obtained through food. It's also a good source of plant protein.
  • Vitamin B: such as thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), and vitamins B6 and B12 
  • Mineral: Zinc, selenium, manganese, and molybdenum are trace elements that play roles in gene regulation, metabolism, growth, and immunity.

Benefits of Nutritional yeast 

  • Nutritional yeast contains the antioxidants which protect your body from chronic diseases.
  • Boost immunity
  • It helps lower cholesterol
  • Improves glucose sensitivity
  • Promotes skin and hair growth

Although it may not sound appealing, nutritionists believe that sprinkling nooch on your food may help you lose weight. It is notably high in Vitamin B-12, which aids in weight loss by supporting the body in converting fats and proteins into energy. Nutritional yeast is also a complete protein, making it ideal for people attempting to lose weight because it keeps you feeling full and prevents you from snacking or overeating. It is also found to have anti-cancer properties due to the high level of antioxidants in it.

You can easily add it as extra protein, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to meals. Although it tastes as if it came from a dairy product, it is not. This cheesy ingredient is Vegan & Halal. Due to its high potency in improving the quality of life, this supplement should be included in our diet. Sattvic Foods provides a quality product, which can be found here

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