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Japanese Super Food “Natto” (Vegan/Vegetarian/Gluten-Free)

Today I am going to tell you about Natto which is a traditional Japanese SUPER FOOD. It is made by fermenting soybeans with Bacillus subtilis var. Natto.

The taste of Natto itself comes from the soybean. We stir and drizzle Natto with Dashi stock and soy sauce when we eat so it tastes really good with steamed rice. it has a gooey texture and threads a lot when stirred, and it also has an ammonical smell. Therefore, most Japanese is really love it, but some people don’t like it, especially the smell.

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However, Natto is incredibly nutritious and there is one kind of nutrition, Nattokinase (an enzyme) we can get only from Natto.

1. Nattokinase

Nattokinase is an enzyme. This enzyme is very important catalyser for human digestion after ingesting food. Nattokinase has also been known to dissolve blood clots.

2. Vitamin K

Natto is high in Vitamin K and good-quality protein. Vitamin K leads to activation of protein. Low vitamin K may cause osteoporosis and arteriosclerosis. Foods containing high vitamin K other than Natto are sea weed, parsley and spinach.

3. Probiotics

Natto’s fiber and Bacillus subtilis var. Natto are probiotics so Natto improves our intestines environment which has a huge effect on our immune system.

4. Bactericidal effect

Many studies show Natto sterilizes Escherichia coli and Salmonella. In the pre-antibiotic era, Natto was used as a medicine for some epidemics.

5. Antibacterial effect

Dipicolinic acid that is contained in Natto has high antibacterial effects on Streptococcus pyogenes, Escherichia coil and Vibrio.

{How to eat}

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Open the package and you will usually see a pouch of sauce and mustard along with the Natto. Transfer Natto into a small bowl and stir until it becomes gooey and threads. Add the sauce (and the mustard to taste) to the bowl and mix. If there is no sauce, you can drizzle with soy sauce. You can also add some Dashi stock to taste.

When you add mustard or some chopped green onion, the Natto’s smell is reduced.

When you add some Tofu or steamed rice to Natto, the gooey texture is reduced.

I want you to try eating Natto once. And if you like it, I highly recommend eating one pack of Natto a day. If you don’t like it very much, you can get similar nutritions from Tempeh instead.