Beastie Boys: Rock Group and Depression Buster?


You would think that when Ruth nominated “The Beastie Boys” as both a rock group and a potential depression fighting food in the current contest, that she would have in mind a beast such as this:

Smokey the Bear is, in fact, a depression-fighting food and a beast to some of us.
But I laughed when I got Ruth’s email because Ruth probably suffered from some problems with thrush (or other yeast-related ailments) as I did postpartum.


Ruth suggests that The Beastie Boys are named for the “yeastie beasties,” the pejorative name for candida overgrowth in internet land. But there is a form of yeast that is healthful – nutritional yeast. Nutritional yeast is what Ruth nominates as a depression buster food.
It’s a good source of B vitamins and nutrition icon Adelle Davis reported back in the day that nutritional yeast has some sort of anti-stress factor that helps give us an energy boost when we need it. I haven’t been able to get a hold of the original research she cites but I do know that my sister and I got through a lot of our high school activities on mom’s nutritional yeast recommendation. I took it through my dissertation defense as well.
As Sander heads into surgery and my mom prepares to take care of Frederick for at least four days, I noticed she has the nutritional yeast on the counter. She recommends the “debittered yeast” and dissolves it in water.
I asked Ruth how she eats nutritional yeast. She said:

I’ve occasionally (before starting low-carb) eaten yeast on popcorn, but I’ve found that I just can’t consume enough that way- I can get maybe a teaspoon onto the popcorn, not the 2T I use as a supplement. I have mixed it into a bowl of soup or tomato sauce though.

Nutritional yeast is not the best tasting thing to add to a glass of water, but Ruth added how she is getting through a particularly bad tasting brand that she purchased by accident:

I’ve been mixing this kind with hot water and adding a dash of tamari to it. This makes it tolerable but not tasty.

It’s not an official depression buster food, but Ruth, my mom, and Adelle Davis swear by it.

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