Never heard of miso soup before? Then you’re in the minority. With the widespread popularity of Asian cuisine - Japanese food in particular - more and more food lovers are frequenting their local Japanese restaurants. While miso soup has been enjoyed in both China and Japan, you’ll more than likely find this delicious item at any Japanese restaurant. However, miso is more than just a soup. You’ll be surprised to know that the ingredients contained in this popular dish not only taste great, but can do wonders for your health.
The great thing about this Japanese dish is that you don’t have to dine out in order to enjoy its health benefits. There are a number of homemade recipes available online that will allow you to put together your own miso soup meal right in the comfort of your kitchen. There are even different types of miso soup you can make. Because there are a variety of ways this dish can be made, let’s keep things simple and break down the health benefits of the most basic ingredients needed to create this delicacy.
Perhaps one of the first things you notice when you order miso soup at a Japanese restaurant is that there is tofu in it. Needless to say, tofu has become one of the powerhouse food items people turn to in order to boost their health and encourage better eating habits. Tofu is rich in soy protein as well as calcium. Additionally, eating tofu makes for easy digestion, which is a plus for individuals whose stomachs are prone to indigestion problems. Because tofu is chockfull of soy protein, it also contains a high amount of what are known as isoflavones. Without getting too scientific, isoflavones have the power to lower a person’s risk of developing certain cancers, including prostate and breast cancer, osteoporosis and even has the ability to reduce the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes and mood swings.
Another common sight you’ll find in a bowl of miso soup at a typical Japanese restaurant is seaweed. Once a food most people wouldn’t dare to touch, seaweed can now be found in a number of not only food items but beauty and cosmetic products as well. Clearly, seaweed has a score of benefits for not only our bodies but the skin and hair as well. Nutrition-wise, the seaweed contained in miso soup is loaded with antioxidants in the forms of B vitamins (B1, B2, B6, B12), vitamin A and vitamin C. Consuming seaweed also makes hair stronger, healthier and thicker. This is due to the minerals that are naturally found in seaweed. This ingredient is also responsible for improving the metabolism, the appearance of our skin and complexion and removes impurities and toxins from the intestines.
Miso itself is a major health booster, too. In a nutshell, miso is a paste that is thick and made from fermented soybeans. Many of the health benefits that miso possesses are similar to those of tofu. In general, miso is ideal for keeping your immune system in top shape. Consuming this ingredient in miso soup allows for maximum absorption of nutrients, which also strengthen your immunity. This means you can easily prevent yourself from becoming prone to illness and disease. Who knew a bowl of soup could do so much?
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