Wasabia japonica or Eutrema japonica is a member is found in the Brassicaceae family together with cabbages, horseradish, and mustard. The root of the Wasabi is used as a condiment and has a very strong aroma. Types of Wasabi include Wasabi Daruma and Wasabi Mazuma. Below are the various health benefits of eating Wasabi.
Cancer Prevention. Regular addition of wasabi to the diet can prevent certain types of cancer. The most notable and beneficial nutrients found in wasabi are the isothiocyanates. These form from glucosinolates after the plant is harvested or cut. The variousisothiocyanate antioxidants are very beneficial in eliminating free radicals throughout the body’s systems. Studies have shown that one form of isothiocyanate in wasabi, 6-MITC, has been clearly shown to inhibit the expansion of leukemia and stomach cancer cells. It actually promotes apoptosis (cell death) within 24 hours of consumption. The use of wasabi may prevent the growth of tumors, even at a pre-clinical or pre-treatment size. The most attractive thing about this type of treatment is that isothiocyanates appear to kill cancer cells without damaging the healthy, surrounding cells.
Prevention of Cavities. Wasabi helps in getting rid your mouth of the obnoxious cavities which cause you regular visits to your dentist. The bacteria responsible for this are the streptococcus mutans. Some studies conducted have shown that wasabi inhibits the growth of the said bacteria in the mouth due to the presence of the chemical compound isothiocynates. Isothiocynates prevent sugars from sticking on the teeth, which lead to cavities.
Wasabi is great for your circulation. As well as fighting cancer, that 6-MSITC that we mentioned also works to inhibit platelet aggregation, the clumping together of platelets into blood clots. In other words, it prevents blood clots forming and effectively reduces your risk of heart attack and strokes. The beneficial circulatory effects are also praised for helping to maintain cardiovascular health overall, as well as keeping the skin clear.
So, there you have it! Note: be careful if you’re taking any medicines that are metabolized by the liver, as too much wasabi can interact with such medicines in unpredictable ways. Around a teaspoon a day of wasabi should do the trick – or a few handfuls of wasabi-based snacks.