Japanese ingredients for your healthy life

How is katsuobushi good for you?

Shaved nutrients

Katsuobushi is a key food in the Japanese diet. Itfs affordable, plentiful, delicious and best of all really good for your body! So you may be wondering just how it is good for us and in what way, well, today, letfs delve a little deeper into that topic, how is katsuobushi good for us? Letfs find out and about this and just why the Japanese swear by it.


Itfs so hard nowadays to stay on top of your health given the kinds of busy lives we lead. So many of us work long hours, donft get enough exercise and find it hard to get the right life balance. Itfs very important to give our bodies a good balanced and healthy diet and this is where katsuobushi is just so vital and I think one of the key reasons for why Japanese woman live the longest. Thatfs right, Japanese women have the highest life expectancy in the world. They eat a diet rich in seafood, vegetables and rice and many would say have a healthy outlook on their approaches to life also. For many people in Japan, katsuobushi is the equivalent of butter to many westerners. You probably wouldnft think too much about spreading butter on some toast or adding it into a cake mixture, well, for Japanese people, katsuobushi is kinda similar, itfs just a normal thing to have in the pantry and it usually makes its way into their food.


Letfs look at the health benefits. First of all, katsuobushi is really rich in protein and I mean really rich. In fact, 25% of bonito are made up of protein. Protein is one of the most important things we can consume for positive benefits in our brain development and general brain functioning. When we eat protein, we are giving our bodies amino acids, this is really important for making neurotransmitters in our brains. These neurotransmitters are really important for our brain as they ensure it can send signals to our others parts of our bodies. Our moods for example are dependant on these neurotransmitters as these make sure that we have appropriate levels of serotonin and dopamine, these neurotransmitters are crucial for how well we concentrate, learn and how well we use our memory. So, lots of protein is a really good thing, and this is just one reason why we should eat lots of katsuobushi. If youfre stressed, try adding this to your food for a month.


Katsuobushi contains lots of amino acids and are extremely rich in many important vitamins and minerals like vitamin B12, niacin, iron and taurine which keep you strong and healthy.


Another key point about katsuobushi is something known as docosahexaenoic acid or DHA for short. This is an omega 3 fatty acid and its one of the key reasons why Japanese people swear by this food and one of the first health benefits that would come to mind for many. DHA is very important for our brains and eyes, it is what makes up over 95% of the omega 3 fatty acids in our brains, and more than 90% of the omega 3 fatty acids in our retina. DHA is really important for keeping our brains functioning at its best. When people talk about brain food, DHA is polarized to the top of the list, itfs great brain nutrition. We donft make it ourselves so need to ingest it, of course, many people take supplements to do the trick but those who eat well, eat it. One of the harsh realities of the modern day diet is that we donft get as much DHA as we used to because the foods we eat have changes. We tend to eat a lot of processed foods which donft contain enough nutrients and we eat a lot more farmed fish which are lower in DHA than fish that grow naturally in the ocean. Fish in the ocean donft naturally develop more DHA, they get it from the algae they eat in the ocean.


To summarize, katsuobushi and its numerous health benefits are extremely helpful with the following:


  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Arteriosclerosis
  • Heart attacks
  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Allergic rhinitis
  • Improving eyesight
  • Dementia
  • Depression

A rich tasting beauty

Bonito is rich in inosine acid due to its large amounts of protein and they say that this is the secret to its it particularly strong and delicious savoury flavour. In Japan they refer to something called umami, which is referred to as the fifth taste sensation in English, Katsuobushi is high in umami meaning that its perfect for savoury food and really goes with anything whether itfs sprinkled on, mixed in, warm, hot, however itfs used, itfs good. Because katsuobushi and indeed bonito has high amounts of inosine acid it makes it delicious which in turn adds another less obvious health benefit to the list, that derived from the pleasure of eating it and the knowledge that itfs good for you, relaxation and the increased blood flow in our bodies that come from this.


Interestingly enough, the area of the fish that contains the highest concentrations of nutrients containing the health benefits discussed in this article is near the spine of the fish, this part is usually a deep red colour. Japanese people when theyfre eating fish will often cook the whole fish and pick all the flesh from it including these red parts. Itfs part of the culture and a fact that is generally taught from mother to child ensuring that the healthy tradition continues. Many of us why away from eating fish this way and tend to just go for whole fillets as this may be what wefre used to, if youfre on of these people, why not give this a go, you might surprise yourself and find you love it.


So there we have it, with katsuobushi we really are dealing with a complete package. Not only is it ginormously delicious as its high in umami (the fifth taste sensation) it has so many health benefits that itfs just not funny! If youfre concerned about your health or just looking to eat well, please give it a try if you havenft already and make this great food something you enjoy for the rest of your life.