What Is Brewer’s Yeast?
is an ingredient used in the production of beer and bread. It is made from Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a one-celled
fungus. Brewer’s yeast has a bitter taste.
Brewer’s yeast is used as a nutritional supplement.
It is a rich source of chromium, which may help your body maintain normal blood
sugar levels. It is also a source of B vitamins.
Brewer’s yeast is considered a probiotic, and is
used to aid digestion.
What Does Brewer’s Yeast Do?
contains small organisms (microflora) that help maintain the proper functioning
of the digestive tract.
As a nutritional supplement, brewer’s yeast may
enhance energy levels and strengthen the immune system. It is a rich source of chromium,
protein, selenium, potassium, iron, zinc, and magnesium. It is also a rich
source of B vitamins that provide:
- thiamine (B1)
- riboflavin (B2)
- niacin (B3)
- pantothenic acid (B5)
- folic acid (B9)
- biotin (B7)
What Are the Benefits of
characteristics of brewer’s yeast may make it an effective way to prevent
diarrhea. It has been used to treat other disorders of the digestive tract,
- diarrhea caused
- irritable bowel
Because of its nutritional
value, brewer’s yeast can provide energy and may help maintain healthy skin,
hair, eyes, and mouth. It may be effective at supporting the nervous system and
enhancing the immune system.
chromium in brewer’s yeast may help control sugar levels for patients with type
2 diabetes by improving glucose tolerance (University of Michigan
What Are the Side Effects of Brewer’s Yeast?
Patients should speak with a
healthcare provider before taking brewer’s yeast. Supplements such as brewer’s
yeast can interact with some medications.
The side effects of brewer’s
yeast are generally mild. The most common are excess gas, bloating, and
Stop taking brewer’s yeast
and contact your healthcare provider immediately if you experience chest pain
or throat or chest tightness, or if you have difficulty breathing. These side
effects may indicate an allergic reaction to brewer’s yeast.
Though brewer’s yeast is a
source of B vitamins, it does not contain B12. Assuming that brewer’s yeast
provides all necessary B vitamins can place a patient at risk for a diet with
inadequate amounts of B12, which can cause anemia.
How Is Brewer’s Yeast Administered?
Brewer’s yeast is available
as a powder, flakes, liquid, or tablets. It is also an ingredient in beer and
The average adult dosage is
1 to 2 tablespoons daily. It can be added to food or mixed with water, juice,
What Are the Risks of Brewer’s Yeast?
Consult with your healthcare
provider before taking any supplements such as brewer’s yeast. No specific
preparation is necessary to take brewer’s yeast. In powdered form, it can be
taken alone or added to food or beverages.
When starting to take
brewer’s yeast, patients may take a smaller than recommended dose to test for
Brewer’s yeast can interact
with several different types of medications. Talk to your doctor before taking
brewer’s yeast if you use:
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). These include tranylcyporomine, selegiline,
and isocarboxazid. They are used to treat depression. The large amount of
tyramine in brewer’s yeast can cause a hypertensive crisis when mixed with
MAOIs. This reaction is an immediate and dangerous increase in blood pressure.
It can cause a heart attack or stroke.
is a narcotic pain medication. A hypertensive crisis can occur when brewer’s
yeast interacts with this narcotic.
- Diabetes medications. Brewer’s yeast may lower blood sugar levels. Taking
it can place a patient at a higher risk for lower than optimum blood sugar, or
hypoglycemia, when combined with these medications.
Consult your healthcare
provider before taking brewer’s yeast if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, if
you have a central venous catheter, or if you have any of the following
- Crohn’s disease
- frequent yeast
- yeast allergies
- weakened immune