ôô

Vitamin K and Natto - What's the Connection?

Natto is one of the richest sources of vitamin K2, which is important for bone and heart health. Here's what you need to know about this little-known nutrient and even lesser-known food source. 

By
Monica Reinagel, MS, LD/N, CNS
February 26, 2014
Episode #273

Page 2 of 2

What Is Natto?

               

Natto is made from fermented soybeans.  Although it's a daily staple for many Japanese, most Westerners have never heard of it, much less tried it. Like many fermented foods, natto has a somewhat strong flavor and aroma. Some might even describe it as "funky."  Let's just call it an acquired taste.

If you want to try it, I suggest first preparing it in the traditional Japanese way. Here's how a friend who grew up with a Japanese mom once made it for me: 

Whisk together 1 raw egg, 4 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon prepared mustard or wasabi, and 1 finely chopped green onion. Combine natto with the sauce mixture and spoon over hot white rice. The result is a flavorful, savory dish that you can enjoy as a light lunch, snack, or appetizer. 

In addition to being a potent source of vitamin K2, natto is also a good source of protein, fiber, and isoflavones.

See also: All About Soy

 

In addition to being a potent source of vitamin K2, natto is also a good source of protein, fiber, and isoflavones.

You can vary the proportions of soy sauce, sesame, and mustard to suit your taste. Although the raw egg is traditional (and does a lot to mellow the flavor of the raw natto), you can omit this if you have any concerns about eating raw eggs -- or use eggs that have been pasteurized in the shell.

See also: Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy

 

Where to Find Natto?

You'll find natto at Asian grocers or health food stores. It's usually sold frozen or in vacuum-sealed pouches. If you can't find it locally, there are several online Japanese and Asian grocers who can ship it to you. Natto is very inexpensive, about $1 per serving.  Serious do-it-yourself-ers can even make natto at home, using dried soybeans and natto spores.  Natto spores and instructions are available from www.culturesforhealth.com

Keep in Touch

Post your comments, questions, and or topic suggestions below, or join the conversation on the Nutrition Diva Facebook page. I always love to hear from you!And don't forget to subscribe to my free weekly newsletter for more nutrition tips, recipes, and answers to your questions.

Have a great week and eat something good for me!

Pages

Related Tips

You May Also Like...

Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest