Tag Archives: Brewing

Prunus besseyi

Botanical Name : Prunus besseyi
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Prunus
Subgenus: Prunus
Species: P. pumila
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Rosales

Synonyms:    Prunus pumila besseyi. (Bailey.)Gleason.

Common Names: Western Sand Cherry

Habitat : Prunus besseyi is native to Central N. America – Manitoba and Minnesota to Kansas and Utah. It grows on sandy hills, open plains, rocky slopes or shores.

Description:
Prunus besseyi is a deciduous Shrub growing to 1.2 m (4ft) at a medium rate.
It is in flower in May. Bloom Color: White. Main Bloom Time: Early spring, Late spring, Mid spring. Form: Rounded.

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The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil and can tolerate drought.

Cultivation:
Landscape Uses:Specimen. Thrives in a well-drained moisture-retentive loamy soil, doing well on limestone. Prefers some lime in the soil but is likely to become chlorotic if too much lime is present. Succeeds in sun or partial shade though it fruits better in a sunny position. Established plants are drought resistant. A very hardy plant, probably tolerating temperatures down to about -50°c when it is fully dormant. It is cultivated for its edible fruit in warmer climes than Britain, there are some named varieties. It flowers very well in this country but does not usually produce much fruit. Another report says that it sometimes fruits abundantly in Britain. The cultivar ‘Black Beauty’ crops well and has small black sweet fruits. ‘Hansens’ has large fruits with a good flavour. Most members of this genus are shallow-rooted and will produce suckers if the roots are damaged. Plants are inclined to sucker and can produce dense thickets. Plants in this genus are notably susceptible to honey fungus. Special Features:Attracts birds, North American native, All or parts of this plant are poisonous, Fragrant flowers, Blooms are very showy.
Propagation:
Seed – requires 2 – 3 months cold stratification and is best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe. Sow stored seed in a cold frame as early in the year as possible. Protect the seed from mice etc. The seed can be rather slow, sometimes taking 18 months to germinate. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle. Grow them on in a greenhouse or cold frame for their first winter and plant them out in late spring or early summer of the following year. Cuttings of half-ripe wood with a heel, July/August in a frame. Softwood cuttings from strongly growing plants in spring to early summer in a frame. Division of suckers in the dormant season. They can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. Layering in spring.

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Fruit; Seed.Edible Uses:

Fruit – raw or cooked. A sweetish flavour, the fruit can also be dried for later use. It makes a rather astringent but tasty jelly.The fruit is a reasonable size, up to 18mm in diameter, and contains one large seed. Seed – raw or cooked. Do not eat the seed if it is too bitter – see the notes above on toxicity.
Medicinal Uses:
Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, all members of the genus contain amygdalin and prunasin, substances which break down in water to form hydrocyanic acid (cyanide or prussic acid). In small amounts this exceedingly poisonous compound stimulates respiration, improves digestion and gives a sense of well-being.
Other Uses:
Dye; Rootstock.

A green dye can be obtained from the leaves. A dark grey to green dye can be obtained from the fruit. The plant can be used as a rootstock for plums. It produces mostly dwarf trees that are poorly anchored. Prone to severe suckering. Compatible with most prunes, it is incompatible with damsons and Victoria plums. Resistant to ‘Crown Gall’. Trees on this rootstock are productive and very cold hardy. Cuttings are often easy to root but seedlings vary widely
Known Hazards: Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, it belongs to a genus where most, if not all members of the genus produce hydrogen cyanide, a poison that gives almonds their characteristic flavour. This toxin is found mainly in the leaves and seed and is readily detected by its bitter taste. It is usually present in too small a quantity to do any harm but any very bitter seed or fruit should not be eaten. In small quantities, hydrogen cyanide has been shown to stimulate respiration and improve digestion, it is also claimed to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer. In excess, however, it can cause respiratory failure and even death.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prunus_pumila
http://www.pfaf.org/User/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Prunus+besseyi

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Gigartina stellata

 

Botanical Name : Gigartina stellata
Family: Petrocelidaceae
Genus: Mastocarpus
Species: Mastocarpus stellatus
Domain: Eukaryota
Division: Rhodophyta
kingdom: Plantae
Class: Florideophyceae
Order: Gigartinales

Synonym: Mastocarpus stellatus

Common Names: Clúimhín Cait, Cats’ puff, False Irish moss, Carragheen, Chondrus crispus

Habitat: Chondrus crispus is common all around the shores of Ireland and Great Britain and can also be found along the coast of Europe including Iceland, the Faroe Islands western Baltic Sea to southern Spain. It is found on the Atlantic coasts of Canada and recorded from California in the United States to Japan. However, any distribution outside the Northern Atlantic needs to be verified. There are also other species of the same genus in the Pacific Ocean, for example, C. ocellatus Holmes, C. nipponicus Yendo, C. yendoi Yamada et Mikami, C. pinnulatus (Harvey) Okamura and C. armatus (Harvey) Yamada et Mikami

Description:
Chondrus crispus is a relatively small red alga, reaching up to a little over than 20 cm in length. It grows from a discoid holdfast and branches four or five times in a dichotomous, fan-like manner. The morphology is highly variable, especially the broadness of the thalli. The branches are 2–15 mm broad, firm in texture and dark reddish brown in color bleaching to yellowish in sunlight. The gametophytes (see below) often show a blue iridescence at the tip of the fronds and fertile sporophytes show a spotty pattern. Mastocarpus stellatus (Stackhouse) Guiry is a similar species which can be readily distinguished by its strongly channelled and often somewhat twisted thallus. The cystocarpic plants of Mastocarpus show reproductive papillae[clarification needed] quite distinctively different from Chondrus. When washed and sun-dried for preservation, it has a yellowish, translucent, horn-like aspect and consistency.

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Medicinal Uses:
Because of its mucus forming properties, carrageenan has been used in lung diseases and to improve bitter drug taste. Carrageenan has also been used in cases of digestive tract irritations and in diarrhea and dysentery. In France and Great Britain, carrageenan has been used to treat stomach ulcers due to its mucous properties. When used against ulcers, the body has no necessity to gastrointestinally absorb carrageenan, so that carrageenan acts directly on the mucous surface. Codfish liver oil emulsions have been prepared with carrageenans. Cotton-wood soaked in carrageenan decoction has been used as cataplasm.

Medicinally it is useful in chest and bronchial infections, as well as in the treatment of stomach ulcers and diseases of the bladder and kidneys. A syrup to combat coughs and colds can be made by adding ? cup of rinsed carragheen moss and the thinly pared rind and juice of 2 lemons to 6 cups of water. Boil the mixture for 10 minutes, add a dessertspoonful of honey and simmer for a further 10 minutes before straining. Serve the syrup hot or cold.

It is collected in Ireland and Scotland, together with Chondrus crispus as Irish moss, dried, and sold for cooking and as the basis for a drink reputed to ward off colds and flu.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mastocarpus_stellatus
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chondrus_crispus
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mastocarpus_stellatus

Kombucha


 

Kombucha tea is a popular health beverage .Kombucha is the Western name for sweetened tea or tisane that has been fermented using a macroscopic solid mass of microorganisms called a “kombucha colony,” usually consisting principally of Acetobacter-species and yeast cultures. It has gained much popular support within many communities, mentioned by talk show hosts and celebrities. The increase in popularity can be seen by the many commercial brands coming onto the retail market

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Biology of kombucha
The culture contains a symbiosis of Acetobacter (acetic acid bacteria) and yeast, mostly Brettanomyces bruxellensis, Candida stellata, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, Torulaspora delbrueckii and Zygosaccharomyces bailii. The culture itself looks somewhat like a large pancake, and though often called a mushroom, or by the acronym SCOBY (for “Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast“), it is clinically known as a fungus.

The Kombucha Culture, sometimes mistakenly referred to as a mushroom, is a symbiotic, probiotic colony of yeast and bacteria (the friendly type). Kombucha Tea is made by combining the culture, with a mixture of black tea, and sugar. The ingredients are allowed to “ferment“, usually from 7-10 days. The resulting beverage contains dozens of elements, many of which are known to promote healing for a variety of conditions.

History
The recorded history of this drink dates back to the Qin Dynasty in China (around 250 BC). The Chinese called it the “Immortal Health Elixir,” because they believed Kombucha balanced the Middle Qi (Spleen and Stomach) and aided in digestion, allowing the body to focus on healing. Knowledge of kombucha eventually reached Russia and then Eastern Europe around the Early Modern Age, when tea first became affordable by the populace

Traditionally, Kombucha use has spread (for over 2000 years) by the passing of Kombucha Cultures from family to family, and friend to friend.

Russian “tea mushroom”
The process of brewing kombucha was introduced in Russia and Ukraine at the end of the 1800s, and became popular in the early 1900s. The kombucha culture is known locally as chayniy grib, (?????? ???? – ‘tea mushroom’), and the drink itself is referred to as grib (???? – ‘mushroom’), “tea kvass” or simply “kvass”, although it differs from regular “kvass” which is not made from tea and is generally fermented only with yeast and not the other bacteria which ferment tea to form kombucha.

Components:
Kombucha contains many different cultures along with several organic acids, active enzymes, amino acids, and polyphenols.For the home brewer, there is no way to know the amounts of the components unless a sample is sent to a laboratory. The US Food and Drug Administration has no findings on the effects of kombucha. Final kombucha may contain some of the following components depending on the source of the culture: Acetic acid, which provides much anti-microbial activity; butyric acid, gluconic acid, glucuronic acid, lactic acid, malic acid, oxalic acid, usnic acid, as well as some B-vitamins.

Health effects:
A review of the published literature on the safety of kombucha suggests no specific oral toxicity in rats, although other reports suggest that care should be taken when taking medical drugs or hormone replacement therapy while regularly drinking kombucha. It may also cause allergic reactions. It is common for urinary samples to obtain a chemical like scent due to the fermenting process of kombucha which releases into the liver. If this is the case, take another urine sample. If it continues to smell, consult a local physician to be checked for liver complications.

Kombucha is also low in calories, and thus a good alternative to other (fermented and non fermented) beverages such as beer, lemonade, and fruit juice . Because of this, home production of kombucha is increasing in popularity.

Claims:
Advocates believe that kombucha helps by competing with endogenous microbes without toxic constituents, when it is cultivated carefully. Increased glucuronic acid conjugates in the urine after kombucha consumption may support this hypothesis.

Early chemical analysis of kombucha brew suggested that glucuronic acid was a key component of it, perhaps assisting the liver by supplying more of the substance during detoxification. But more recent analysis of kombucha offer a different explanation, as outlined in the book in Analysis of Kombucha Ferments by Michael Roussin. Roussin reports on an extensive chemical analysis of a variety of commercial and homebrew versions of kombucha, and finds no evidence of glucuronic acid at any concentration.

But Roussin suggests that another component may have health benefits:
D – glucaro -1,4 lactone, also known as glucaric acid. It serves as an inhibitor of the beta-glucuronidase enzyme, a bacterial product from the gut microbiota that can cleave the glucuronic acid conjugates and send bodily wastes back into circulation, thus increasing the exposure time before the waste is ultimately excreted. Therefore, the active component of kombucha likely exerts its effect by preventing bacterial disruption of glucuronic acid conjugates and increasing the detoxification efficiency of the liver. Glucaric acid is being explored independently as a cancer preventive agent.

Reports of adverse reactions may be related to unsanitary fermentation conditions, leaching of compounds from the fermentation vessels, or “sickly” kombucha cultures that cannot acidify the brew. Cleanliness is important during preparation, and in most cases, the acidity of the fermented drink prevents growth of unwanted contaminants. If a culture becomes contaminated, it will most likely be seen as common mold, green or brown in color.

Safety and contamination
As with all foods, care must be taken during preparation and storage to prevent contamination. Keeping the kombucha brew safe and contamination-free is a concern to many home brewers. Key components of food safety when brewing kombucha include clean environment, proper temperature, and low pH.

In every step of the preparation process, it is important that hands and utensils (anything that is going to come into contact with the culture) are dish soap clean so as not to contaminate the kombucha. For safety reasons, Kombucha should be brewed in food-grade glass containers only. Kombucha should not be brewed in lead crystal, ceramic, plastic, painted, or metallic containers including stainless steel, as the acidic solution can leach by-products into the finished product.  Keeping cultures covered and in a clean environment also reduces the risk of introducing contaminants and bacteria.

Mold contamination on the culture surface.Maintaining a correct pH is an important factor in a home-brew. Acidic conditions are favorable for the growth of the kombucha culture, and inhibit the growth of molds and bacteria. The pH of the kombucha batch should be between 2.5 and 4.5. A pH of less than 2.5 makes the drink too acidic for human consumption, while a pH greater than 4.5 increases the risk of contamination. Use of fresh “starter tea” and/or vinegar can be used to control pH. Some brewers test the pH at the beginning and the end of the brewing cycle to ensure that the correct pH is achieved.

If mold does grow on the surface of the kombucha pellicle, or “mushroom,” it is best to throw out the batch and start over.

Click to see->Unexplained Severe Illness Possibly Associated with Consumption of Kombucha Tea

Probable gastrointestinal toxicity of Kombucha tea

Kombucha–toxicity alert.:

Additional observed effects
Aside from any possible health benefits, it can be intoxicating. It is generally characterized by mild euphoria, relaxation, and an overall sense of physical and mental well-being. Kombucha contains variable amounts of alcohol and caffeine, though the effects felt in drinking the beverage are disproportionately profound in comparison with the amount ingested, suggesting something more at work. Alcohol amounts vary from 0.5% to 1.5%, depending on anaerobic brewing time and proportions of microbe. Pasteur said that alkaline fermentation increases alcohol content. Commercial preparations are typically 0.5% for distribution and safety reasons.

Another possible cause of these effects is the psychoactive amino acid L-theanine, which is naturally present in tea. Stimulation of the circulatory and immune systems, and associated glandular releases, may also account for some of these effects. Some reports of more intense effects could be explained by toxins resulting from contamination of the culture

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kombucha
http://www.kombucha.org/
http://altmedicine.about.com/od/kombuchakombuchatea/Kombucha_Kombucha_Tea.htm

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Star Anise

Japanese star aniseImage via Wikipedia

Botanical Name: Illicium verum
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Austrobaileyales
Family: Illiciaceae/Magnoliaceae
Genus: Illicium
syn: I. anisatum
Other Names:-Anise Stars, Badain, Badiana, Chinese Anise
French: anis de la Chine, anise étoilé, badiane
German: Sternanis
Italian: anice stellato
Spanish: anis estrllado,badian
Chinese: ba chio, ba(ht) g(h)ok, bart gok, pa-chiao, pak kok, peh kah
India:Chakra Phool
Indonesian: bunga lawang

Habitat: Native to China and Vietnam, star anise is today grown almost exclusively in southern China, Indo-China, and Japan. It was first introduced into Europe in the seventeenth century.

Plant Description and Cultivation:
A small to medium evergreen tree of the magnolia family, reaching up to 8m (26ft). The leaves are lanceolate and the axillary flowers are yellow. The tree is propagated by seed and mainly cultivated in China and Japan for export and home markets. the fruits are harvested before they ripen, then sun dried.

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Spice Description:
Star anise is the unusual fruit of a small oriental tree. It is, as the name suggests, star shaped, radiating between five and ten pointed boat-shaped sections, about eight on average. These hard sections are seed pods. Tough skinned and rust coloured, they measure up to 3cm (1-1/4”) long. The fruit is picked before it can ripen, and dried. The stars are available whole, or ground to a red-brown powder....CLICK & SEE
Bouquet: Powerful and liquorice-like, more pungent and stronger than anise.
Flavour: Evocative of a bitter aniseed, of which flavour star anise is a harsher version. Nervertheless, the use of star anise ensures an authentic touch in the preparation of certain Chinese dishes.

Star anise is a spice that closely resembles anise in flavor, obtained from the star-shaped pericarp of Illicium verum, a small native evergreen tree of southwest China. The star shaped fruits are harvested just before ripening. It is widely used in Chinese cuisine, in Indian cuisine where it is a major component of garam masala, and in Malay/Indonesian cuisine. It is widely grown for commercial use in China, India, and most other countries in Asia. Star anise is an ingredient of the traditional five-spice powder of Chinese cooking. It is also one of the ingredients used to make the broth for the Vietnamese noodle soup called ph?. It is used as a spice in preparation of Biryani in Andhra Pradesh, a south Indian State.

Medicinal Properties:
Like anise, star anise has carminative, stomachic, stimulant and diuretic properties. In the East it is used to combat colic and rheumatism. It is a common flavouring for medicinal teas, cough mixtures and pastilles.

Medicinal uses:
Star anise has been used in a tea as a remedy for colic and rheumatism, and the seeds are sometimes chewed after meals to aid digestion.

Shikimic acid, a primary feedstock used to create the anti-flu drug Tamiflu, is produced by most autotrophic organisms, but star anise is the industrial source. In 2005, there was a temporary shortage of star anise due to its use in making Tamiflu. Late in that year, a way was found of making shikimic acid artificially. A drug company named Roche now derives some of the raw material it needs from fermenting E. coli bacteria. There is no longer any shortage of star anise and it is readily available and is relatively cheap.

Star anise is grown in four provinces in China and harvested between March and May. The shikimic acid is extracted from the seeds in a ten-stage manufacturing process which takes a year. Reports say 90% of the harvest is already used by the Swiss pharmaceutical manufacturer Roche in making Tamiflu, but other reports say there is an abundance of the spice in the main regions – Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi and Yunnan.

Japanese star anise (Illicium anisatum), a similar tree, is not edible because it is highly toxic; instead, it has been burned as incense in Japan. Cases of illness, including “serious neurological effects, such as seizures”, reported after using star anise tea may be a result of using this species. Japanese star anise contains anisatin, which causes severe inflammation of the kidneys, urinary tract and digestive organs.

Culinary Uses:
Star anise is used in the East as aniseed is in the West. Apart from its use in sweetmeats and confectionery, where sweeteners must be added, it contributes to meat and poultry dishes, combining especially well with pork and duck. In Chinese red cooking, where the ingredients are simmered for a lengthy period in dark soy sauce, star anise is nearly always added to beef and chicken dishes. Chinese stocks and soups very often contain the spice.. It flavours marbled eggs, a decorative Chinese hors d’oeuvre or snack. Mandarins with jaded palates chew the whole dried fruit habitually as a post-prandial digestant and breath sweetener – an oriental comfit. In the West, star anise is added in fruit compotes and jams, and in the manufacture of anise-flavoured liqueurs, the best known being anisette. It is an ingredient of the mixture known as “Chinese Five Spices”.

Star anise contains anethole, the same ingredient which gives the unrelated anise its flavor. Recently, star anise has come into use in the West as a less expensive substitute for anise in baking as well as in liquor production, most distinctively in the production of the liquor Galliano. It is also used in the production of Sambuca, pastis, and many types of absinthe.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://www.theepicentre.com/Spices/staranis.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_anise

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Brewer’s yeast

Description
Brewer’s yeast is an ingredient that is used to ferment sugars to alcohol in the brewing of beer. It consists of the ground, dried cells of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a one-celled plant that is a variety of fungus.

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Brewer’s yeast contains all the essential amino acids, 14 minerals, and 17 vitamins. It is one of the best natural sources of the B-complex vitamins thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, B6, pantothenic acid, biotin, and folic acid. It is also high in minerals, including chromium, zinc, iron, phosphorus, and selenium. Brewer’s yeast is also a good source of protein. It contains approximately 16 g of protein per 30 g of powdered yeast. Brewer’s yeast is a good source of RNA, an immune-enhancing nucleic acid that may help in the prevention of degenerative diseases and slowing the aging process.

Brewer’s yeast is an active yeast used to make beer and can also be grown specifically to make nutritional supplements. It is a rich source of minerals (particularly chromium), protein, and the B-complex vitamins. Brewer’s yeast is bitter in taste and should not be confused with baker’s yeast, nutritional yeast, or torula yeast as these forms of yeast are low in chromium. Chromium is an essential trace mineral that helps the body maintain normal blood sugar levels. It occurs naturally in the environment and is an important contributor to human health. Some experts estimate that as many as 90% of Americans don’t get enough chromium in their diet.

Active dried yeast, a granulated form in which yeast is commercially sold

General Uses:

Baking:Yeast, specifically Saccharomyces cerevisiae, is used in baking as a leavening agent, where it converts the fermentable sugars present in the dough into carbon dioxide.

Bioremediation
Some yeasts can find potential application in the field of bioremediation. One such yeast Yarrowia lipolytica is known to degrade palm oil mill effluent,TNT (an explosive material), and other hydrocarbons such as alkanes, fatty acids, fats and oils.

Industrial ethanol production
The ability of yeast to convert sugar into ethanol has been harnessed by the biotechnology industry, which has various uses including ethanol fuel. The process starts by milling a feedstock, such as sugar cane, sweetcorn, or cheap cereal grains, and then adding dilute sulfuric acid, or fungal amylase enzymes, to break down the starches in to fermentable sugars. Yeasts are then added to convert the fermentable sugars to ethanol, which is then distilled off to obtain ethanol up to 96% in concentration.

Kombucha:
A Kombucha culture fermenting in a jar Yeast in symbiosis with acetic acid bacteria is used in the preparation of Kombucha, a fermented sweetened tea. Species of yeast found in the tea can vary, and may include: Brettanomyces bruxellensis, Candida stellata, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, Torulaspora delbrueckii and Zygosaccharomyces bailii

Medicinal Uses
Vegetarians have used brewer’s yeast as a source of protein, vitamins, and minerals for many years. In addition to being an excellent nutritional supplement, brewer’s yeast is often recommended to regulate blood sugar levels, improve the health of the skin, control diarrhea, lower cholesterol, and repel insects.

Brewer’s yeast is one of the best sources of the mineral chromium. Two tablespoons of brewer’s yeast yields about 120 micrograms (μg) of chromium, an amount equal to the recommended daily allowance. Chromium is an important factor in regulating blood sugar levels. High levels of chromium increase glucose tolerance. Diabetes and hypoglycemia are two conditions in which blood sugar levels are unstable. Brewer’s yeast has been reported to help improve symptoms of diabetes and hypoglycemia, and may act to prevent diabetes from developing in persons with a family history of diabetes and in those who have problems with blood sugar metabolism. One Danish study reported that people with hypoglycemia showed an improvement in their symptoms after taking 2 tbsp of brewer’s yeast every day for one month.

B-complex vitamins are important for healthy skin and nails. Persons deficient in these vitamins may benefit from taking brewer’s yeast as it is rich in B-complex vitamins. A compound derived from brewer’s yeast, skin respiratory factor (SRF) reportedly has wound healing properties. SRF has been a component in over-the-counter hemorrhoid remedies for more than four decades. SRF also has been used to treat skin problems. Brewer’s yeast has been used in the treatment of contact dermatitis, a condition of the skin characterized by red, itchy, and inflamed skin.

Another component of brewer’s yeast also has wound healing properties. Glucan, a substance derived from the yeast, has been shown to improve wound healing in mice by activating macrophages and promoting the growth of skin cells and capillaries.

Brewer’s yeast may help to prevent constipation. Thirty grams of brewer’s yeast contains approximately 6 grams of dietary fiber (24% of the recommended daily amount). Fiber is an important part of the diet as it helps increase the bulk of fecal matter, thereby promoting healthy bowels and intestines. Brewer’s yeast has also been found to be helpful in cases of diarrhea. The yeast acts to encourage the growth of good bacteria in the intestines.

Studies show that brewer’s yeast may be helpful in decreasing cholesterol and raising HDL levels (the good cholesterol). A study performed at Syracuse University in New York reported that persons who consumed 2 tbsp of brewer’s yeast daily for two months reduced their cholesterol levels by 10%.

Pet owners have known about the ability of brewer’s yeast ability to repel ticks and fleas for many years. Wafers that contain brewer’s yeast can be given to animals for this purpose. Powdered brewer’s yeast may be sprinkled on the animal’s food also. The large amounts of thiamine in brewer’s yeast may act to repel mosquitoes from humans as well.

Generous doses of brewer’s yeast may help to prevent cancers such as prostate cancer. When combined with wheat germ, brewer’s yeast is helpful in preventing heart problems. Brewer’s yeast may also be helpful in the treatment of fatigue or low energy.

Brewer’s yeast is often used as a source of B-complex vitamins and chromium. The B-complex vitamins in brewer’s yeast include B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), B9 (folic acid), and H (biotin). These vitamins help break down carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, which provide the body with energy. They also support the nervous system, help maintain the muscles used for digestion, and promote the health of skin, hair, eyes, mouth, and liver.

Stress

Some consider B-complex vitamins to be important during times of physical and/or emotional stress. Therefore, a healthcare professional may recommend using brewer’s yeast as a source of B vitamins for ongoing or recurrent illnesses, such as chronic fatigue syndrome or depression.

Injury
Similarly, the B complex is considered an important nutrient following an injury. Therefore, sources of vitamin B may be recommended during recovery, for example, from a wound or a burn.

Diabetes
Some studies suggest that chromium supplements may help individuals with diabetes. This condition is characterized by abnormally high levels of sugar in the blood. People with diabetes either do not produce enough insulin—a hormone that is needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into energy needed for daily life—or cannot use the insulin that their bodies produce. Chromium may reduce blood sugar levels as well as the amount of insulin needed by individuals with this condition. Given that brewer’s yeast is a rich source of chromium, this may prove to be a valuable nutritional supplement for people with diabetics, particularly because brewer’s yeast is more easily absorbed than other sources of chromium.

High Cholesterol
As stated earlier, brewer’s yeast is an important source of chromium. This mineral can help lower LDL (“bad” cholesterol) levels in the blood and raise HDL (“good” cholesterol) levels. In addition, some experts suggest that other factors found in brewer’s yeast also help lower cholesterol.

Weight Loss
Although some studies suggest that chromium may improve lean body mass and reduce body fat, its effects are minor compared to those of exercise and a well-balanced diet.

Available Forms
Brewer’s yeast is available in powder, tablet, and liquid forms.

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How to Take It
Pediatric
There are no known scientific reports on the therapeutic use of brewer’s yeast in children.

Adult

4 Tbsp/day dissolved in juice or water. If this amount causes gas (which can occur in individuals with diets low in B vitamins), begin with 1 Tbsp/day and slowly increase dosage.

Precautions
Because supplements may have side effects or interact with medications, they should be taken only under the supervision of a knowledgeable healthcare provider.

Individuals with frequent yeast infections should avoid taking brewer’s yeast as this supplement may aggravate symptoms.

Possible Interactions
If you are currently being treated with any of the following medications, you should not use brewer’s yeast without first talking to your healthcare provider.

Antidepressants, Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs)
Brewer’s yeast contains a significant amount of tyramine, a substance that should be avoided by individuals taking antidepressant medications known as monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). Examples of MAOIs include phenelzine, tranylcypromine, pargyline, selegiline (also used for Parkinson’s disease), and isocarboxazid. This interaction may lead to “hypertensive crisis,” a rapid and severe increase in blood pressure that is characterized by nausea and vomiting, headache, and irregular heartbeat. This reaction may even result in a heart attack or stroke.

Narcotics for Pain
As with MAOI antidepressants, brewer’s yeast may also lead to “hypertensive crisis” if taken with meperidine, a narcotic medication used to relieve intense pain.

Help taken from:www.healthline.com , www.umm.edu and en.wikipedia.org