Do you love bread? Pasta? Sourdough starter? Wine? Beer? The good news is that you can eat them all without worrying about gluten. This post goes into the science of how yeast works, how to get started with making beer, wine or bread and some of my favorite recipes.
Food With Yeast In Them
Stomach cramps, nausea or diarrhea after eating certain foods could indicate a food intolerance. In the case of a yeast intolerance, the symptoms might be triggered by yeast-containing food such as bread, beer or vinegar. These symptoms can occur within a couple of hours of eating, or they might take as long as a couple of days to appear. While eliminating yeast-containing foods is an appropriate treatment plan for an intolerance, see your doctor first to rule out any other medical conditions.
Yeast Allergy Versus Intolerance
A yeast allergy is not the same as a yeast intolerance. Food allergies are a serious condition that occurs when the body wrongly identifies food as a foreign substance, which can cause symptoms that range from mild, including hives and itching, to severe, including anaphylactic shock.
A food intolerance, on the other hand, does not involve the immune system. Rather, it’s caused by the digestive system improperly breaking down a particular food or chemicals in the food. Yeast intolerance symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, cramps and nausea.
Read more: List of Yeast-Free Diet Foods
One of the most obvious food groups that contain yeast is baked goods, such as most types of bread. According to Harvard University’s Microbial Sciences Initiative, yeast breaks down sugars in other baked goods ingredients, converting it to energy. The yeast causes fermentation, releasing carbon dioxide and ethanol and causing bread products to rise.
Luckily, a yeast intolerance doesn’t mean you have to give up bread forever. The University of Kentucky College of Agriculture notes that baking powder and baking soda are leavening agents that cause bread to rise without the need for yeast. As an added benefit, these substitutes work right away, while yeast takes time to make bread rise. These baked items, such as muffins, pancakes, waffles, cakes, brownies, breads, cookies and scones, are appropriately called “quick breads.”
There are many less-obvious foods that contain yeast, such as dried fruit, cereal, condiments, several types of berries, aged cheese, cured meats, mushrooms, buttermilk, yogurt, gravies and sauces. Seasoning mixes and stock or broth cubes can also contain yeast. Additionally, any food product that is stored too long after opening can contain yeast. Proper food preparation and storage can help prevent this from happening.
Alcohol and Yeast
If you enjoy alcoholic beverages, you might be disappointed to learn that without yeast, there would be no beer or wine. These beverages are produced when yeast converts sugar to alcohol during fermentation. However, the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics states that distilled spirits, such as whiskey, rum, brandy, vodka and other hard liquors, usually don’t cause symptoms of yeast intolerance, so you can try sipping on these beverages to see how they affect you.
Yeast in Supplements
Yeast can be found in certain dietary supplements. According to Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research, brewer’s yeast is a particularly popular supplement due to its high B vitamin content. Yeast also contains essential amino acids and can be found in some energy boosters and protein supplements. Read supplement labels carefully to identify these yeast products if you have an intolerance.
Benefits of nutritional yeast
Nutritional yeast comes from a species of yeast known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae. There is another form of this yeast species, which is called brewer’s yeast. Although people sometimes use the terms interchangeably, it is essential to note that nutritional yeast is not the same as brewer’s yeast.
Manufacturers can grow nutritional yeast on a variety of sources, including blackstrap molasses, whey, and sugar beets.
Nutritional yeast is similar to the yeast that people use in baking, but it undergoes a heating and drying process that renders it inactive.
Nutritional yeast is dairy-free and usually gluten-free. As a result, it can be a useful supplement for people with food allergies or sensitivities, as well as those on restricted diets. It is also low in fat and contains no sugar or soy.
Nutritional yeast is an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, and high-quality protein. Typically, one-quarter of a cup of nutritional yeast containsTrusted Source:
- 60 calories
- 8 grams (g) of protein
- 3 g of fiber
- 11.85 milligrams (mg) of thiamine, or vitamin B-1
- 9.70 mg of riboflavin, or vitamin B-2
- 5.90 mg of vitamin B-6
- 17.60 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin B-12
It also contains vitamin B-3, potassium, calcium, and iron.
The benefits that nutritional yeast may offer people include:
1. Boosting energy
While some manufacturers fortify nutritional yeast with vitamin B-12, not all of them do, so it is best to check the label. Vitamin B-12 may help boost energy, as a deficiency of this vitamin can lead to weakness and fatigue.
Nutritional yeast can be particularly helpful for vegetarians and vegans if it has added vitamin B-12, as this vitamin mostly occurs in animal products.
Adults need about 2.4 mcg of vitamin B-12 per day. Just one-quarter of a cup of nutritional yeast provides more than seven times this amount.
2. Supporting the immune system
Research has shown that S. cerevisiae, the strain of yeast in nutritional yeast, can support the immune system and reduce inflammation resulting from bacterial infection. It may also be helpful in treating diarrhea.
3. Promoting skin, hair, and nail health
Some research suggests that nutritional yeast can combat brittle nails and hair loss. It may also help reduce acne and improve other common skin problems, particularly in adolescence.
4. Improving glucose sensitivity
While some people believe that nutritional yeast improves glucose sensitivity in people with type 2 diabetes, studies have yet to prove this.
However, some research on chromium-enriched yeast, which is usually brewer’s yeast, found that this type of yeast could lower fasting blood glucose levels and cholesterol in an animal model.
5. Supporting a healthy pregnancy
Nutritional yeast can also support a healthy pregnancy. The United States Preventive Services Task Force recommend that all women who are planning a pregnancy take 400–800 mcg of folic acid a day to prevent congenital abnormalities and support the growth of the fetus.
Manufacturers frequently fortify nutritional yeast with folic acid, which can make it a useful supplement for pregnant women.
Some brands of nutritional yeast may contain more than a standard serving of folic acid though, so individuals should consult a doctor before using it as a supplement.