Miso Soup Is Delicious and Good for Your Health
By Paul Rothbart
Japanese cuisine has become very popular in the west. It's lighter than the fare of many other cultures, exotic, and tastes really good. Sushi bars are everywhere these days, and heading out with a group for a night of hibachi is a good time. Japanese meals often include appetizers, just like other cuisines. One of these is miso soup. A soybean broth that contains seaweed, kelp, and tofu, miso is light and tasty. It is also very healthy.
A serving of miso soup contains only two grams of fat, and just 40 calories, 14 of which come from fat. None of the fats are saturated or trans fats and it contains no cholesterol. What miso soup does have plenty of is Vitamin K, copper, zinc, and manganese. It also has B vitamins, iron, magnesium, and calcium. Miso is an example of a food that contains plenty of things that are good for you and very little that isn't.
It May Improve Heart Health
The soybeans used to make miso broth contain substances called isoflavones. Clinical research has found a link between these chemicals and lower levels of bad cholesterol. They also may help to lower blood pressure. High cholesterol and high blood pressure are both major contributors to heart disease. Eating miso may well help to improve heart health and lower the risk of heart attack and stroke.
It May Improve Digestive Health
Miso soup is loaded with probiotics, especially A. oryzae. These are healthy bacteria that help break down food and improve digestive system function. Probiotics also reduce the risk of digestive problems such as inflammatory bowel disorder.
It May Lower the Risk of Cancer
Soybeans contain antioxidants that fight free radicals in the body that attack cells and can damage them, causing cancer. A study found that eating soybeans can reduce the risk of stomach cancer, particularly in women. Other research has linked soybean consumption with a lower risk of certain liver cancers.
It May Help With Menopause Symptoms
The isoflavones in miso soup are similar in structure to the hormone estrogen. They can bind with estrogen receptors. When experiencing menopause, lower levels of estrogen can cause symptoms such as hot flashes, irritability, and fatigue in women. Isoflavones can help ease these symptoms.
Japanese food is very tasty and generally very healthy. Miso soup is an appetizer staple that is nutritious and can benefit your health in several ways.
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