is an organism which requires food, warmth and moisture to thrive and reproduce. It converts sugars and starches via fermentation into carbon dioxide and alcohol.
There are different types of yeasts which benefit the health of the body by improving immunity and nutritional status and also some which may contribute to fungal infections.
The different types of yeasts are Brewers Yeast, Torula and Bakers Yeast.
Their uses in the food industry differ and their nutritional effect in the body also differ. Some yeasts are beneficial for health and some cause negative effects on the body. Yeasts are also found in other foods such as Vegemite and fungus.
Whether a yeast is positive or negative for health also depends on the amount consumed, sensitivities or allergies or if Candida is present.
Small amounts of yeasts can improve health by increasing nutritional levels of B Vitamins, however over consumption of yeasts can cause bloating and Candida in people who are susceptible to them.
Beneficial nutritional yeasts
Brewers Yeast (Saccharomyces carlsbergensis, Saccharomyces uvarum, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Saccharomyces pastorianus) is produced as a by product of beer brewing.
It contains many vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin B, Zinc, Chromium, Iron, Magnesium, Folic acid and Biotin.
Its beneficial effect on the body is to enhance the functioning of the immune system due to the Beta Glucan polysaccharides, normalising blood sugar levels, improve energy production and suppression of unfavourable bacterias (although has no effect on Candida).
Torula is a derivative of molasses. It contains B Vitamins, Chromium, amino acids and Selenium.
Bakers Yeast (Saccharomyces carlsbergensis,
Saccharomyces uvarum or Saccharomyces cerevisiae) is a strain of yeast used in the baking industry of bread production which produces large amounts of carbon dioxide and is made by adding water to molasses. This yeast yields Beta 1 3 Glucans which support immunity.
Not so beneficial yeasts
The problem from a health perspective is that yeasts may feed detrimental bacteria such as Candida and contribute to asthma, Crohns Disease and gout. It is therefore recommended to reduce or eliminate the consumption of yeasts if you are afflicted with these conditions.