What is "Miso"?
Miso is a fermented soybean paste with a salty taste , a buttery texture and a unique nutrition profile that make it a versatile condiment for a host of different recipes , and a foundation for traditional miso soup. In addition to soybeans , miso can include rice , barley or wheat.
Miso is made by adding a yeast mold known as koji to soybeans and other ingredients and allowing them to ferment for a period of time ranging from months to years , depending on the specific type of miso being produced. When the fermentation process is completed , the mixture is ground into a paste similar in texture to nut butter.
The color , taste , texture , and saltiness of miso depend on the exact ingredient used and the duration of the fermentation process . Miso can range in color from white to brown . The darker the coloring , the more robust the flavor and saltiness.
The 6 popular types of Miso are :
1) "Hatcho Miso" ~ made from soybeans only.
2) "Kome Miso" ~ made from white rice and soybeans
3) "Mugi Miso" ~ made from barley and soybeans .
4) "Soba Miso" ~ made from buckwheat and soybeans.
5) "Genmai Miso" ~ made from brown rice and soybeans.
6) "Natto Miso" ~ made from ginger and soybeans.
What are Miso's Benefits?
Miso is a delicious fermented food that has been eaten in Chinese and Japanese for many centuries. Today it is a favorite of health minded people in the West because of its many anti-aging benefits. It can build up the inner ecosystem and assure the digestive tract is amply supplied with beneficial bacteria. These bacteria help digest , synthesize , and assimilate nutrients so necessary for good health and anti-aging. They also strengthen the immune system , keeping it at the ready to fight infection and cancer.
1) Miso can reduced risk of breast , lung , prostate , and colon cancer, and protection from radiation. Researchers have found that consuming one bowl of miso soup per day , as do most resident of Japan , can drastically lower the risk of breast cancer.
2) Miso has a very alkalizing effect on the body and strengthens the immune system to combat infection. Its high anti-oxidant activity give it anti-aging properties.
3) Miso helps the body maintain nutritional balance. It is loaded with other nutrients along with its beneficial bacteria and enzymes. Miso provides protein , vitamin B12 , B2 , E and K , choline , linoleum acid , lecithin , and dietary fiber. Its high content of the amino acid tryptophan makes miso a good choice right before bed time. Tryptophan is nature’s sleep inducer.
4) Miso help preserve skin beauty through its content of linoleum acid , an essential fatty acid that helps skin stay soft and free of pigment.
5) Miso is a good choice for women with menopausal complaints because it is able to fill estrogen receptors and produce some of the actions of estrogen in the body.
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