Miso: benefits and therapeutic properties

Miso: benefits and therapeutic properties

An oriental condiment with multiple virtues

It can be compared to ours cube for the broth as far as its use is concerned, but while the meat concentrate is carcinogenic, miso is a highly healthy product. 


Full of amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and lactic ferments, is considered by the Orientals to be one of the secrets for longevity according to the epidemiologist Franco Berrino. 


Originally miso was the result of the fermentation of molluscs, fish, but also of animal meats; later it was discovered that too from the fermentation of soy it was possible to obtain a perfect pasta as a condiment: in fact it is produced by fermenting yellow soybeans in large cedar vats together with cereals (usually rice or barley) and salt, with a mushroom (Aspergillus Oryzae).


There are for sale different types of miso depending on the fermentation time, whether or not other cereals are added or the color (Shiromiso, white miso or Akamiso, red miso etc.).


Fermentation is the procedure that enriches miso's excellent virtues: in the western view the very rich in enzymes and lactoferments make miso an excellent ally for the well-being of the intestine and its bacterial flora. 


This food is particularly suitable for those who adopt a diet free from animal products, as it is a source of essential amino acids, vitamin B12 and in general of the whole B group, as well as having a good dose of mineral salts, in particular sodium, magnesium and calcium which help to keep the metabolic processes in the body active. 


Also those suffering from high cholesterol it can exploit the action of lecithins and linoleic acid present here, helping to safeguard arteries and blood vessels. Also, it would play a purifying and anti-tumor function on the body, thanks to its high content of dipicolinic acid and genistein. 


- isoflavonesinstead, they lower the level of cholesterol in the blood reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, work as anti-oxidants and they favor the rebalancing of the mood. Zinc, copper and manganese which contribute to the proper functioning of the immune system.


These benefits are associated with a low calorie (30kcal per spoon), of which only one g of fat. However, it is necessary to pay attention to the high salt content, which can be harmful in case of hypertension.


Although the benefits of this food are many and its applications in the kitchen are varied and delicious, it is good not to abuse it (the recommended dose is a maximum of two teaspoons per person), both because of the aforementioned risk of hypertension and the tendency of the body to react to the abuse of salty foods with the desire for sweets. 


Furthermore people allergic to soy should avoid it completely as this legume is the basis of the preparation of miso. 


Miso in the kitchen: how to use it?

Rule # 1: miso should never be cooked. In fact, it is important to remember not to cook miso so that it does not lose its precious properties. In fact, cooking would "kill" all those live microorganisms such as Halophilus Tetragenococcus, rich in beneficial properties. 


For this reason miso is added to soups and broths, as in Ramen, or in Dashi or other foods only a few seconds after turning off the flame. Furthermore, since it is already salty, I do not recommend adding more salt to recipes.  


Rule # 2do not overdo the miso doses because it could give too much flavor to the dish. The most correct dose would be a teaspoon of miso paste for a cup of broth or a bowl of soup.  


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