Articles, Blog

Benefits of Nutritional Yeast for Cancer

August 17, 2019

“Benefits of Nutritional Yeast for Cancer” In an article entitled “The Treatment
of Inoperable Cancer,” it was noted that “200 years ago, it
was observed that a certain number of malignant growths disappeared after
an attack of (a type of strep infection)” and that was 200 years before
1901, when this was published. A disproportionate number of cases
of spontaneous tumor regressions have followed various infections. The thought is that an infection may
kind of so rile up the immune system, the cancer may get caught
in the cross-fire, a phenomenon that
may have inspired healers dating back to the ancient
Egyptians thousands of years ago. But you don’t know
until you put it to test, though it wasn’t formally
studied until the 1800’s, when doctors started intentionally
infecting cancer patients. The most famous proponent
was William Coley, the so-called “Father
of Immunotherapy” at what would eventually become
Memorial Sloan Kettering. He “was convinced that having a severe
infection could cause cancer to regress,” so with a great deal of courage he
started injecting cancer patients. The problem, of course, is that causing
infections is quite dangerous and two of his patients died;
however, their tumors did shrink! If only there was a way we could boost
the immune system without killing people. Well, that’s the theory behind
therapeutic cancer vaccines, one of which has been
in practice for decades: squirting a weakened bovine tuberculosis
bacteria into the bladders of patients with bladder cancer to make
the immune system attack, boosting long-term survival up to 36%. OK, but is there something we can
eat that can boost immune function? In my videos on countering
stress-induced immune suppression and preventing common childhood
infections, I reviewed evidence about a type of fiber in baker’s,
brewer’s, and nutritional yeast, called beta-glucans, which are considered
immunomodulatory compounds, suggested to enhance the defense against
infections, and potentially cancer. Beta-glucans themselves do not appear
to have a direct cytotoxic effect in terms of killing cancer cells, but may boost anti-tumor immunity
by activating our immune cells. For example, if you take freshly excised
tumors of breast cancer patients and let loose natural
killer cells upon them, they can kill off a small
percentage of the tumor cells. But first, prime them in vitro
with some yeast beta-glucans, and they become about 5 times
more effective at killing cancer cells. What if you just eat it though? When 23 women with metastatic
breast cancer were given just a 16th of a teaspoon of nutritional
yeast worth of beta-glucans, they experienced a 50% increase in the
number of monocyte white blood cells in their bloodstream, which are
part of our natural defenses, as well as a significant increase
in their activation, but it was just a two-week study. The clinical significance
of this finding is unclear. What we want to know
is if they actually live longer? The only English language, randomized,
double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of breast cancer patients and beta-glucan
was more of a wound healing study, where they found that the women taking
beta-glucans healed so much faster after surgery that the tubes could be
removed from their chests and armpits, in some cases days earlier. This was the first clinical
study to demonstrate improved wound healing
using oral beta-glucans. The other two—showing benefits
for pediatric burns and leg ulcers— were performed using topical
beta-glucan preparations, putting it on the skin directly, something that did not appear to
reverse pre-cancerous skin lesions better than placebo. But that’s because the placebo
cream worked so well, too. Both groups showed a
significant reduction. They speculated that since each
patient acted as their own control, putting the beta-glucan
cream on one arm and the placebo cream
on the other, that the application of beta-glucans on one
arm may have been absorbed into the system and helped on the other arm, given
that systemic effects have been noted following topical administration. But what effect might
oral beta-glucans have on the progression
of internal cancers? Yeah, oral yeast beta-glucans can cause
dramatic tumor shrinkage—in mice, but there appears to be only one
human study published in English. Twenty patients with advanced
cancer on chemo were given a beta-glucan supplement in an
open label, uncontrolled trial. Sixty percent of the patients supposedly
reported a sense of well-being while taking the beta-glucan and
asked to remain on the treatment after the completion of the study, but that
just sounds like classic placebo effect. Same thing with reporting
being less tired. But this is interesting: “one patient with lymphoma
and enlarged lymph nodes in the neck who delayed his standard
chemotherapy for 4 weeks during the study…noted
a marked reduction in the size of the nodes while
taking [supplement] alone.” So this one kind of anecdotal case
is interesting, especially since there are no side effects, but
not exactly revolutionary. In Japan, there have been more than
20 randomized controlled trials on the use of beta-glucans as
an adjunct cancer treatment, which evidently show an enhancement
of chemo or radiation therapy, resulting in “a positive effect on
survival and quality of life…” For example, there was evidently a study
on taking a yeast beta-glucan supplement to help cancer relapse after surgery. There were no relapses
in the treated group, compared to about 1 in 5
in the control group. Even more intriguing, yeast beta-glucans
for inoperable cancer patients, end-stage cancer, since only about
1 in 20 patients made it 3 months, and by 6 months they were all dead, whereas in the treated group, most
survived for more than 3 months, not 1 in 20, but most, and 43%
were still alive after 6 months. Now evidently, it’s not clear
how patients were divvied up into treatment vs. control groups. If they weren’t randomly assigned, they
may have inadvertently cherry picked healthier patients for the treatment
group, which could explain the results. Now, I’ve looked for this study
everywhere so I could get it translated, but even the National Library
of Medicine couldn’t find it. If anyone out there can though,
I’ll do a follow-up video. But the amount of beta-glucans they
used is what you’d find in a single pinch of nutritional yeast, which
would cost less than a penny, and the only side-effect would be tastier
popcorn, so why not give it a try?


  • Reply tom smith January 17, 2018 at 3:08 pm

    Can you eat this if you have ibs

  • Reply Fool in the rain January 17, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    Beta glucan is in oatmeal as well

  • Reply ActiveHealing January 17, 2018 at 3:17 pm

    thank you I just added it in my cancer cure post I have a giant bin sitting and will include it in my raw and cooked recipes 🙂

  • Reply UKVeganJack January 17, 2018 at 3:24 pm

    Oh Nutritional Yeast, I shall maketh you rain upon thy tofu-scramble and freshly popped corn.

  • Reply Eelke Aptroot January 17, 2018 at 3:26 pm

    Probably not a good idea for leukaemia patients.

  • Reply Ally January 17, 2018 at 4:00 pm

    Nooch gang, YEET

  • Reply maremacd January 17, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    Does eating nutritional yeast increase your chances of getting fungal or yeast infections?

  • Reply esteffannyh January 17, 2018 at 4:40 pm

    Thank you Dr. as always.

  • Reply Victor Mattar January 17, 2018 at 5:12 pm

    that’s just wonderful, thanks you again for providing us with such up to date information Dr. Greger!

  • Reply sooooooooDark January 17, 2018 at 5:12 pm

    move your lymphhhhhhhhh

  • Reply Caliko Kat January 17, 2018 at 5:16 pm

    Yeast gives me headaches…sumthun to do with the sulfur contains amino acids

  • Reply sooooooooDark January 17, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    where is nutrional yeast found in nature?
    it sounds so artificial to me

  • Reply yourbeamofsunshine January 17, 2018 at 5:24 pm

    What about the free glutamate acid formed in the processing and damage to the neurons?

  • Reply E psilon January 17, 2018 at 5:29 pm

    the way you talk is really off putting.. too bad

  • Reply Plant Based Whole Food Lifestyle January 17, 2018 at 5:40 pm

    Ant thoughts on Dr. Fuhrman concerns about to much folate in regular nutritional yeast? Yeast that does not contain folate is very hard to find and super espensive.

  • Reply Replenish Rewire January 17, 2018 at 6:42 pm

    Is Vegimite / Marmite nutritional yeast?

  • Reply Dylan Mayes January 17, 2018 at 6:58 pm

    isn't the way this is made very environment unfriendly, though?

  • Reply nanomyou5 January 17, 2018 at 7:26 pm

    The Japanese research article you were looking for was wrongly referenced (author name misspelling, correct one is Ueno, Kenki) and seems like all the other researchers have copy-pasted the error (hence, they likely didn't even read the paper, esp. when it is Japanese, but wanted to reference it anyway. So much for quality of medical research). You can find the article in Japanese at:

  • Reply papparocket January 17, 2018 at 8:16 pm

    Some ground cashews and nutritional yeast on top of a no-cheese veggie pizza for all the wins. No indirect breastfeeding from another species, great flavor, and tons of Y-BG to get your immune system firing on all cylinders.

  • Reply Cody Novak January 17, 2018 at 8:18 pm

    I would think eating and healing don’t belong in the same sentence. Go on that digestion break then go get infected 🙂

  • Reply inGods2hands January 17, 2018 at 8:21 pm

    Dr. Greger you tested Braggs, Bob's Red Mill, Dr. Fuhrman's and Red Star to be lead free. However, you have also reported that Folic Acid is HARMFUL. Red Star, Bob's and Bragg's have added Folic Acid. Dr. Fuhrman's is the ONLY lead and Folic Acid FREE brand!!! Are there others?

  • Reply rei miyasaka January 17, 2018 at 8:34 pm

    Hi Doc, I found the article:

    I also happen to be a professional translator. I'd be interested in translating the article pro bono, provided that you feel confident with someone without a medical background working on it (my background is in computer science and software translation). Please contact me at rei at the fraser dot com, all one word.

  • Reply Jeff Lebowski January 17, 2018 at 8:43 pm

    Oats are high in beta-glucan, please do more videos on oats.

  • Reply MrUFClaw January 17, 2018 at 9:02 pm

    just ate big salad with n yeast !!! i knew it !!:)))

  • Reply Plantbased Outdoors January 17, 2018 at 9:10 pm

    She's got the nooch, baby. She's got the sweetest thing in the world.

  • Reply January 17, 2018 at 10:18 pm

    How do you find these things??? Luv ya ❤ in a manly way, of course! ?
    You are really one brave man, I have to give it to you. Thanks for all that you do.

  • Reply Melissa Menchaca January 17, 2018 at 10:24 pm

    How many of you say “put it to the test” with Gregger.

  • Reply SuperAtheist January 17, 2018 at 10:28 pm

    does anyone know if nutritional yeast goes well with white rice and steamed kale w/garlic?

  • Reply Mike Anthony January 17, 2018 at 11:17 pm

    Do you do paid nutritional consults?

  • Reply TRUTH HAS NO AGENDA January 17, 2018 at 11:40 pm

    In the last couple of months I just brought nutritional yeast back to my menu since finding it sold in a bulk aisle at a store I shop. And yes its been upgrading my popcorn! super yummy and I notice a general uplift in my overall well being after a bowel of non omg popcorn heavily sprinkled in Nutrtional yeast. I also share it with my dogs. I attributed this well being feeling to the B vitamins but maybe my immune system is also saying thank you!

  • Reply Alec Rodriguez January 18, 2018 at 1:04 am

    Why didn’t you mention yeast infections!? Yeast causes infections

  • Reply Peter B. Sims January 18, 2018 at 1:54 am

    "Put it to the TEST!" I love it! Evidence-based eating! Thank you, Dr. Greger!

  • Reply Kassi Dick January 18, 2018 at 3:54 am

    the beta-glucan/placebo study is weirdly set up… It seems pretty counterproductive to have both on the same patient lol

  • Reply Natalie January 18, 2018 at 4:52 am

    Recently a friend had a surgery, but after they said her heart rate was abnormally low (in the 20’s, but it needed to be at least 50). My question is: why can someone who is physically unfit and overweight have a low heart-rate? I already know her diet is bad, and maybe it has a link. Apparently her doctor didn’t know why, but thought it was concerning as she wasn’t an athlete. Why is this please?

  • Reply izeizei January 18, 2018 at 5:47 am

    This is a great way to get tons of Nutritional Yeast into yourself the fun, tasty and healthy way:
    You're welcome!

  • Reply Celia B January 18, 2018 at 7:14 am

    thank goodness, I have been incorporating it into my diet.

  • Reply Jessie Lee January 18, 2018 at 8:50 am

    Dr Gregor it's your gal jessie from nanabar!! I was wondering if you could do a video on c60 – I've heard lots of conflicting information about it and would love to hear your thoughts ?? best wishes ✨

  • Reply M. M January 18, 2018 at 8:54 am

    If it wasn't already expensive, I can see this video boosting its price

  • Reply yusef malik January 18, 2018 at 9:11 am

    Did you know that medical cbd oil helps to treat cancer and depression?To get some legally, you can visit the dispensary to order online with or without a medical card

  • Reply The Artificial Society January 18, 2018 at 10:12 am

    More cancer miracle stories. Ending this video with a paper that couldnt even be found. People eat bread that has yeast all the time, is that equivalent? There is so much more to learn about nutritional yeast like the connection to Crohn’s. Dumping this story on people without good science and cautions is questionable. How many cancer patients are gonna run to the store now in search of the this next miracle story that they hear all the time and this one did not seem to have solid random controlled studies.

  • Reply Patty Mattson January 18, 2018 at 3:31 pm

    Curious, why not boost immunity with Astragalus. Something that is not toxic to people with Crohns?

  • Reply Buddhabr0t January 18, 2018 at 5:34 pm

    Can i use fresh yeast instead?

  • Reply supersilverhazeroker January 18, 2018 at 6:03 pm

    Dr. Greger i have a question to you.. how in the world do you structurally, on a daily basis, get in the recommended amount of vitamin E? if you only consume whole foods, thus no oil, and you don't go berserk on almonds (and thus eat a high fat diet).
    I never ever get anywhere close to the recommended levels not even to half of it.. i generally get between 3 – 7.5 mg a day.
    i can remember from a long time ago that someone like mcdougall said you needed 7mg a day or something?
    i tell you it's impossible, unless you go eat certain stuff (in rediculous amounts) on a daily basis specifically to get in enough vitamin E.

    If "normal" people are getting this amount of vitamin E a day it's solely cause everything they eat is baked and topped with oils

  • Reply Banana Bandana January 18, 2018 at 6:07 pm

    This gave me a really hard boner.

  • Reply Jeong-hun Sin January 18, 2018 at 8:15 pm

    At the end, I thought I heard "taste your popcorn", but it did not make any sense. So, I turned on the caption. It was "tastier popcorn", but it still made no sense to me. Why popcorn? Popcorns are not created with yeasts, are they?

  • Reply Divan Cronje January 18, 2018 at 9:12 pm

    are oat beta glucans good enough

  • Reply Mr Bulgaria pepi January 18, 2018 at 9:35 pm

    Thanks again for everything

  • Reply Kriste Isopahkala January 18, 2018 at 11:27 pm

    Best news ever! Nutritional yeast is delicious! If it weren't so expensive, I'd put it on everything. 😀

  • Reply conrado k January 19, 2018 at 12:50 am

    What about oat beta glucans?

  • Reply strangertobluewater January 19, 2018 at 1:48 am

    This is what hormesis is all about: creating a stress on the body to stimulate and immunological response.. My favorite therapies are sauna and ozone for immune boosting. Google if you want to learn more.

  • Reply One Quick Tip January 19, 2018 at 2:50 am

    I always love how Dr. Greger backs everything up with research. It's hard to dispute it when there's proof!

  • Reply WaterspoutsOfTheDeep January 19, 2018 at 3:42 am

    that's absolutely amazing. imagine how good it would be for all the elderly even just for reducing infections at their age especially with how simple and cheap it is. and also for cats and dogs who are very prone to cancer nowadays it seems, imagine how cheap and easy this is for helping in that fight.

  • Reply Areno Ichimaru January 19, 2018 at 6:37 am

    Now I don't feel so bad about dumping it in all of my food!

  • Reply Ak Ak January 19, 2018 at 7:48 am

    Nutritional yeast on popcorn ?

  • Reply TheGreen Jarret January 19, 2018 at 10:06 am

    Too bad 90% of all nooch is grown on Glyphosate dessicated grains and is laced with MSG. This is absolute garbage. As worse as any transformed carbs. Was causing my candida to come back.

    Im done with this shit.

  • Reply Clifton Painter January 19, 2018 at 8:01 pm

    Very important subject for me, having multiple bouts with the bigC.

  • Reply Lingering Light January 20, 2018 at 12:42 am

    I would make love to nutritional yeast every night….if rice and potatoes would move over in the bed and give noochy some room.

  • Reply Emelie Steén January 20, 2018 at 12:52 am

    I thougt it was strange that they put the placebo-cream on one arm and the actual test-cream on the other, on the same person.

  • Reply De Stressfrlyf January 20, 2018 at 11:34 am

    Try Googling it

  • Reply lightdark00 January 20, 2018 at 11:38 pm

    So green tea kombucha must be a really heathy drink then. I'm not saying ones from stores with too much sugar, though.

  • Reply Angela January 21, 2018 at 5:26 am

    My cancer – and my popcorn – are fine just the way they are.

  • Reply Arweqah company January 21, 2018 at 1:50 pm

    What about I have Candida?

  • Reply heymisterderp January 24, 2018 at 3:08 am

    We got it solely because we wanted to add it to McDougall's Penne Florentine like a certain lady on Youtube did in her recipe. Now that we have Dr. Greger's new cookbook, it's finding its place in more and more dishes. Thanks, Dr. G.

  • Reply Ivan B January 24, 2018 at 5:20 pm

    Can Dr. Greger do a video investigating garlic's effects on immunity and cancer? I think this would be an interesting topic. Thanks ?

  • Reply scrumper10 January 26, 2018 at 7:25 pm

    This guy’s voice is annoying

  • Reply Nicolas January 28, 2018 at 2:18 pm

    dr greger!! u should do a video series of mistletoe therapy for Cancer… there's a lot of papers!

  • Reply Jimmy Hellas February 2, 2018 at 2:33 pm

    What amazed me the most is that a Dr suggests such remedy.
    Hope to see a video regarding NaHCO₃ and I₅₃ in the near future!

  • Reply The Verbally Abusive Clown February 3, 2018 at 6:28 pm

    I eat 2 tablespoonfuls of non-fortified nutritional yeast every single day, among a ton of other supplements.  I don't want to say that I'm immortal at this point, but I'm going to anyway.  I'm immortal.

  • Reply JellyfishGroupStan February 12, 2018 at 3:10 am

    nutritional yeast really is having ur cake and eating it too. delicious and can help my immune system? on it!

  • Reply WisdomTooth February 15, 2018 at 9:35 am

    yeast is yeast period a fungus not belonging in human body

  • Reply William Read February 17, 2018 at 5:23 am

    Mycotoxins and aflatoxins in Beans, Corn, Coffee, Nuts, especially PEANUTS, apple cider vinegar, mushrooms, grains and dried dates, prunes and raisins would make a great video. Also mold poisoning and detoxing of the cytoxins that cause CIRS chronic inflammatory response syndrome.

  • Reply Brian Richards March 10, 2018 at 2:35 pm

    I am wondering what important completed clinical studies are buried in foreign languages like Russian or German and await translation into English before we can evaluate them and benefit?

  • Reply Jen L April 15, 2018 at 10:14 am

    You have such a great voice and it keeps me interested in your video!

  • Reply Angeles Rivera April 17, 2018 at 10:00 pm


  • Reply Nicky J May 4, 2018 at 2:30 am

    Thanks for the info Dr Greger! Just thought I'd share a link to a comment made by a guy named Mark Gailmor who claims that nutritional yeast has naturally occurring Vitamin B12. You can find his full comment under this video about nutritional yeast

    In summary, he stated that he has been vegan since the early 1990s. He said that in those days nutritional yeast wasn't fortified with B12 and that it contained it naturally. Manufacturers used to have the amount listed on the nutrition label, but because each batch was different, there were varying amounts of B12 – there wasn't a standardised amount.

    Apparently, the government stepped in and made manufacturers fortify with B12 (and other B vitamins to help absorption) to an EXACT amount if they wanted to claim that their product had B12 in it. I found this fascinating as I thought that nutritional yeast didn't have any naturally occurring B12. Has anyone else heard of this before?

  • Reply kam wolf May 22, 2018 at 12:25 am

    EXCEPT….. most nutritional yeast manufacturers add synthetic folic acid. Folic acid is well known as a cancer PROMOTER. Gotta find the stuff that IS NOT fortified .

  • Reply sam mas May 26, 2018 at 5:59 pm

    I have multiple sclerosis and I just started taking nutritional yeast a couple of weeks ago, the amount of energy that it gives me is phenomenal, as most people would know with autoimmune diseases lack of energy and fatigue is a major problem. I take nutritional yeast with food or by itself and in a very small quantity such as a tablespoon and I have become so much more active and I don't fall asleep during the day which in turn gives me a good night sleep, how about eight hours! you like that! I I know that this is not due to some placebo effect because my spouse started taking nutritional yeast almost the same day and she is so much more active and do not complain of fatigue and the side effects caused by fatigue. I hope my observation is beneficial to the reader. Thank you, God bless have a great day.

  • Reply Eshqa June 1, 2018 at 8:44 am

    Thank you for this video!

  • Reply matt jensen June 4, 2018 at 8:24 pm

    I enjoy your company common sense and sense of humor.
    Just wanted to say thank you .

  • Reply Abdullah Shameem June 25, 2018 at 12:28 pm

    After 2 and a half years of being vegan I just bought and tried my first dose of the nooch haha xD Feels much better than taking a b12 supplement, cheaper and has other good nutrients in it. I've heard so many times that it taste like cheese but I'm not getting that, still like it tho 🙂

  • Reply Kimberly Thomas July 6, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    Dr. Blaylock says it is MSG? Is it??

  • Reply TheVeganBerkeleyBeauty July 6, 2018 at 7:41 pm

    My Goddaughter just had a double mastectomy last week. Guess what I’m on my way to pick up for her.

  • Reply Prepperjon July 26, 2018 at 4:51 am

    Thumbs down and unsubscribed. Tired of videos just showing pages being highlighted and read. Also way to much information unrelated and/or unnecessary for the topic the video is supposed to be about. Misleading and confusing Bye

  • Reply Florin August 19, 2018 at 2:25 pm

    The Vegan crack

  • Reply Amy אָהַב September 8, 2018 at 1:53 pm

    Gerson Therapy CURES cancer.

  • Reply Dave Trimble October 12, 2018 at 9:34 pm

    You were looking for a study on Beta-glucan that was in a Japanese journal:

    [46] Ueno, H., Beta-1,3-D-glucan, its immune effect and its clinical use

    Jap. J. Soc. Term. Syst. Dis. 2000, 6, 151-154

    Here's a link:

  • Reply Paul Galick November 22, 2018 at 1:52 pm

    Here is a link to the article he is looking for
    you can link to the second page at

  • Reply daVideo Camera December 28, 2018 at 7:45 pm

    dont tell people to eat nutritional yeast……….its filled with folic acid!

  • Reply A G January 8, 2019 at 8:12 pm

    I'm going back to eating yeast flakes on a daily basis again.

  • Reply Appleja Kanta January 19, 2019 at 9:48 pm

    Thank you so much for making this vedio

  • Reply Nabil Eskander January 21, 2019 at 1:38 am

    However it is not suitable for people with Crohn's disease according to this video from Dr Gregor "Those with certain autoimmune diseases such as Crohn’s disease should probably not eat nutritional yeast" .

  • Reply Dave Forgot February 25, 2019 at 7:06 am

    Enriched or regular?

  • Reply Samara March 19, 2019 at 11:40 am

    Where to find nutritional yeast?

  • Reply noisettes choco March 22, 2019 at 3:40 am

    "…for cancer" trust you mean AGAINST cancer!

  • Reply Maria Reyes March 24, 2019 at 6:54 pm

    I love rice and beans and avocado

  • Reply Flatdec1 March 29, 2019 at 7:37 am

    Have become addicted to nutritional yeast..
    Makes a great cheese substitute..

    3-5 TBS per day..

  • Reply Dante Gabrielle April 1, 2019 at 7:22 am

    Love your presentation style, fun and never boring.

  • Reply * Lotusblume * April 8, 2019 at 2:27 am

    Just had some today on my popcorn! So glad I saw this!! I’m healing from surgery right now!! I hope this helps!! Going to eat lots more! Thank you? !

  • Reply Karl Scheel May 4, 2019 at 2:21 am

    I find the taste of nooch to be so addictive, that when I got it, I want to sprinkle it onto just about everything!

  • Reply Rufus Cusack August 2, 2019 at 6:30 am

    Dr. Gregor, Thank u 4 ur service! Thanx 4 empowering me 2 be my best own health advocate & be my beloved relatives' also, who r struggling w/ cancer. AND just so u ALL know, this special Dr. wrote 2 books & tours the country empowering people 2 research & take charge of their health decision, AND the icing on the (plant-based cake), is that he is DONATING ALL HIS PROFITS 2 CHARITIES!!!! A profound thank u from my heart, Dr Gregor!!

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