Buying yeast beta glucan? What is it and where do you have to pay attention to?
Have you read something about yeast beta glucan or did someone recommend it to you? In this blog we explain what beta glucans are and where you have to pay attention to when buying supplements!
What are beta glucans?
Beta glucans are sugars that are found in the cell wall of yeasts, moss, fungi, mushrooms, algae’s and in cereals like oat and barley (see picture). Beta glucans are used for high cholesterol, diabetes, common colds, influenzas, allergies (like hay fever), etc. Beta glucans are also used to modulate the immune system. This means that they strengthen the immune system when it’s weakened and they restrain the functions of the immune system when it’s over-active and starts to attack the body’s own tissues or friendly tissues.
Which beta glucan should I take?
There are many different beta glucans with different functions and applications. Here it is important to pay attention to the structure of the beta glucan. Many researches have shown that only a beta glucan with a 1,3/1,6 linkage has immune modulating functions. The most studied beta glucan is the one extracted from bakers’ yeast, which also has the most proven benefits. in the schedule below you find a clear summary of different beta glucans, different structures and the benefits of the beta glucans.
Where do I have to pay attention to when buying yeast beta glucan supplements?
Different yeast beta glucan supplements contain different amounts of these 1,3/1,6 linkages, also called the ‘active’ linkages. The products differ from 8% to 90% active linkages. This is also why the prices range from $10 to $60. The amount of these active linkages is also called the purity. The quality of the product is based on how well the manufacturer is capable of removing unwanted linkages, proteins and fats, without damaging the active linkages. Each manufacturer does this in his own way and that is why there is a lot of differences in the purity of yeast beta glucan.
The most researches on the functioning of yeast beta glucan are done with a yeast beta glucan with a minimal purity of 80%. It also turned out that the higher the purity of the product, the more effective the product will be. Everyone who sells yeast beta glucan knows the purity of their product.
You have to be careful when the purity isn’t specifically mentioned on the product, this probably means that the seller didn’t mention this on purpose because the purity is very low. When it says that a capsule contains for example 110 grams of yeast beta-glucan, than it doesn’t say anything about the purity and thus nothing about how well the product works. With products with a high purity there will always be a specific percentage mentioned.
So watch out!!!
Different yeast beta glucan are not the same and can sometimes not give the desired result. Always look for the purity before purchasing a product with yeast beta glucan. Keep in mind that studies on the functioning and effects of yeast beta glucan is based on yeast beta glucan with a purity of at least 80%.