Miso Much?


A staple in Japanese cuisine, Miso Soup, is a must to start off the day right, in combination with white rice as breakfast; I indulge in Miso Soup before sushi, it’s the perfect broth to settle your tummy. Although this light broth may not be substantial enough to be your whole meal, it is the perfect pairing option.

If you love to indulge in Miso soup, you have probably wondered what the soup consists of… so the ingredients are simple: Water, Miso, Scallions, Seaweed, Tofu, Sesame Oil and a dash of Soy-sauce. That last ingredient makes Miso Soup NOT GF, but… if you are like myself you will cheat with Miso and will overlook the tummy ache.

So what is Miso? LOL

The stock that Miso Soup consists of is called ‘Dashi’ made from softened Miso paste which oddly enough is made from dried: baby sardines (Niboshi), dried kelp (Kombu), smoked bonito/ tuna (Katsuobushi) or dried Shiitic… @TheYLife bets you didn’t know that! In America the Miso Paste is often dissolved in vegetable, chicken or fish stock, and on occasion certain Japanese households will add potatoes and carrots.

According to nutritionists pure Miso paste could be an ingredient to be weary of since it consists of 275 g of sodium, which equates to about 400% sodium, but Miso does have some excellent additional nutritional attributes: fiber, protein, amino acids, Vitamin K, riboflavin and Omega- 3 & 6 fatty acids.

While doing my ‘Misosearch’ I found a study from the Researches at Japan’s National Cancer Centre and published by the Journal of National Cancer Institute, and reported by the BBC News in 2003, where it was discovered that three or more bowls of Miso Soup daily ingested by Japanese women had actually reduced their risk of getting breast cancer, by 40%! Since the ‘isoflavones,’ which are chemicals found in plants, most often in soybeans, mimic the female sex hormone oestrogen, the isoflavones prevent breast tumors and inhibit the development of breast cancer, “by blocking the cancer causing effects of oestrogen.”)

BBC News Link

You see, the soybean has been used as a food source for more than 5,000 years and traces of soy can be found in most foods today. According to researchers from The American Cancer Society, after numerous laboratory experiments on animals and observational research studies on humans, soy may actually reduce the risk of several types of cancer, including: Breast, Ovarian, Prostate and Uterine in women before they reach the post-menopausal state. The effects of soy on the post-menopausal woman, have yet to be determined.

The American Cancer Society Link

So the next time you are craving something light to warm you up, grab a cup of this great and easy Miso soup at home; incorporate this Japanese tradition into your diet, by purchasing the single-serving instant Miso packets, simply add boiling water and serve!