There is a herb, similar to horseradish, that is known for its pungent taste and intense aroma. Lately dubbed ‘the key to brain health’, this herb has gained popularity worldwide and is said to set the brain in motion like a game of chess.
Curious to find out which plant it is?! Well, we’ll give you another hint: this plant is the basis of many sushi or sashimi dishes and is associated with Japanese dishes, and its green color and strong, spicy flavor have made it a popular ingredient in Asian and Japanese cuisine.
Wasabi, also known as the ‘key to brain health
Wasabi, or Japanese horseradish, is a cruciferous vegetable that grows naturally along riverbanks in the mountain river valleys of Japan. Known for its pungent flavor and bright green color, wasabi is a staple seasoning for sushi and noodles in Japanese cuisine. In addition, some compounds in this vegetable, including isothiocyanates (ITCs) responsible for its pungent aroma, may provide several health benefits.
A 28-gram serving of wasabi contains 30.5 calories and 0.2 grams of fat. In terms of minerals, wasabi contains calcium, iron, manganese, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus and potassium, all necessary for a balanced diet. It also contains vitamins such as A, B1, B2, B3, B6, C and folic acid. In addition, it has a high level of isothiocyanates – an antioxidant that provides a multitude of health benefits. Best of all, it has zero cholesterol!
According to Japanese chefs, this plant gets the brain going like a game of chess, but it’s also an excellent antidote that neutralizes food poisoning. It also improves blood flow, which reduces the risk of blood clots.
Wasabi keeps you young
Another reason to consume wasabi is the spice’s anti-aging benefits which are credited to the 6-methylthiohexyl isothiocyanate (6-MSITC), a sulfinyl compound present in it. 6-MSITC helps the body lower reactive oxygen. Reactive oxygen has a direct link to many cancers and weakening of the body. 6-MSITC also prevents pollen allergies and improves circulation and reflexes.
A teaspoon of wasabi a day keeps aging at bay.