Like peanut butter and jelly is in the U.S., Vegemite is an Australian sandwich staple. Made from leftover brewer's yeast, this thick, salty spread is low in calories and a good source of B vitamins but also a source of sodium. If you're looking to add Vegemite to your daily diet, knowing the nutrition information may help you determine how it might fit.
Low-Calorie Bread Spread
Compared to other bread spreads, Vegemite is very low in calories. One teaspoon of the yeast spread, which weighs 6 grams, contains 11 calories. By comparison, 1 teaspoon of butter contains 33 calories, and 1 teaspoon of peanut butter, 31 calories. Finding ways to cut calories here and there by replacing your high-calorie bread toppers with lower-calorie Vegemite might help you better manage your calorie intake, which may help improve weight management.
Some Protein With a Little Fat and Carb
Vegemite is not a significant source of carbs, fat or protein, but most of the calories come from its protein content. One teaspoon of Vegemite contains 1.5 grams of protein and less than 1 gram of carbohydrate and fat. Protein is an essential nutrient found in every cell, organ and tissue in your body. However, most men and women in the U.S. have no problem meeting their daily protein needs, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Men need 56 grams of protein a day, and women, 46 grams.
Excellent Source of Bs
Vegemite is an excellent source of a number of B vitamins; 1 teaspoon meets 94 percent of the daily value for thiamine, 62 percent of the daily value for riboflavin, 38 percent of the daily value for niacin and 57 percent of the daily value for folate. These B vitamins are essential nutrients you need for good health. They help extract energy from the food you eat and are necessary for making red blood cells. Folate is especially important to women of childbearing age because adequate intake helps prevent neural tube defects in their children.
Watch the Sodium
One teaspoon of Vegemite contains 207 milligrams of sodium. Getting too much sodium in your diet increases your risk of high blood pressure. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends you limit sodium to less than 2,300 milligrams a day, or if you already have high blood pressure, are African American or are 51 and older, limiting your intake to less than 1,500 milligrams a day.
- What's Cooking America: History of Vegemite - Vegemite Sandwich Recipe
- Vegemite: Vegemite Nutrition Information
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Yeast Extract Spread
- University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture: The Exchange List System for Diabetic Meal Planning
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Protein
- MedlinePlus: B Vitamins
- Office of Dietary Supplements: Folate
- U.S. Department of Agriculture & U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans
- HealthAliciousNess.com: Nutrition Facts: Yeast Extract Spread
- HealthAliciousNess.com: Nutrition Facts: Butter, Salted; USDA Peanut Butter, Smooth
- Photo Credit Graham Denholm/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
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