Although it’s not common in American cuisine, Miso soup is a soothing and delicious addition to our way of eating.  Since it is made from soybeans, which are in the legume family, it is a great source of of protein and fiber.  The word, “Miso,” literally means “fermented beans” in Japanese and is typically found as a thick paste .  The fermentation process of Miso may involve incorporating grains like rice, barley, or buckwheat to enhance the flavor.  Let’s learn more about Miso together today!

Many varieties exist depending on the added ingredients.  Make sure to avoid added ingredients such as monosodium glutamate (MSG).  Generally, there are three types of Miso:

  1. Red Miso:  This is usually the saltiest form of the fermented legume and can actually be dark brown in color.  The darker forms are also more pungent in flavor.  
  2. White Miso:  This is the sweetest variety of Miso and comes in varying shades of beige.  The lighter colors have a more delicate flavor and are best in soup, dressings, and light sauces.  
  3. Yellow Miso:  This is the result of soybeans being fermented with barley.

Soybeans raise some concerns in my mind.  Because they are so widely used in many processed foods, soybeans are commonly associated with allergic reactions.  Since these legumes undergo an extended fermentation process, Miso may be less allergenic than other foods containing soybeans.  Fermentation is a process that substantially changes the protein in the soy and can alter the allergy-causing proteins such as P34.  Historically, the Chinese did not eat unfermented soybeans.  Another consideration regarding soybeans is the fact that most are genetically modified and they are often ridden with pesticides.   

So what are the LIVE YOUNGER benefits of Miso?  Here are five to consider:

  1. Because it is fermented, Miso provides beneficial probiotics to the gut.  Probiotics enhance the immune system and improve the availability of nutrients from food.  
  2. It is a complete protein because it contains all of the essential amino acids.  Those are the protein-building blocks that our bodies cannot produce and must be included in our food.
  3. It stimulates the secretion of digestive juices in the stomach.
  4. Miso is a quality vegetable source of B Vitamins, including Vitamin B12.
  5. It is a source of Vitamin K.  Bacillus subtilis is a bacteria used in the fermentation process of Miso and this bacteria is able to form a type of Vitamin K called “menaquinone-7”.  Also known as MK-7, this vitamin is excellent for healthy bone density.   

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about Miso with me.  Today’s research makes me even more interested in the incredible benefits of fermented foods.  START SOMEWHERE today eating intentionally to give you body what it needs to thrive.  You can do it.  I will help you.  

Learn More About Miso

Learn More About Miso