} Is Real Wasabi the Master Key to Nrf2 Switch? – Real Wasabi, USA
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Is Real Wasabi the Master Key to Nrf2 Switch?

What is the importance of Nrf2 and
how does Nrf2 factor into longevity

Nrf2 (Nuclear factor erythroid 2–related factor 2) is a transcription factor that plays a crucial role in regulating the body's antioxidant and detoxification defenses. It is involved in the expression of many genes that encode proteins involved in cellular defense mechanisms, including the antioxidant enzymes glutathione peroxidase, catalase, and superoxide dismutase, as well as the detoxification enzymes cytochrome P450 and glutathione S-transferase.

Nrf2 is activated in response to oxidative stress and inflammation, which can occur as a result of exposure to environmental toxins, pollutants, and UV radiation, as well as normal aging processes. By activating Nrf2, the body can increase the production of antioxidant and detoxification enzymes, which can help protect against oxidative damage and reduce the risk of chronic diseases associated with aging, such as cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, and cardiovascular disease.

Research has shown that the activation of Nrf2 can have anti-aging effects, and that Nrf2 may play a role in promoting longevity. Studies in animals have shown that the activation of Nrf2 can extend lifespan and delay the onset of age-related diseases, such as cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. Additionally, genetic variations that increase Nrf2 activity have been associated with increased lifespan and reduced risk of age-related diseases in humans.

Nrf2 plays a critical role in the body's antioxidant and detoxification defenses, and its activation can have profound anti-aging effects. While more research is needed to fully understand the role of Nrf2 in human longevity, it is clear that Nrf2 activation can help protect against age-related diseases, boost immunity and optimize overall health and wellness.


Authentic wasabi aka real wasabi is a powerful nutraceutical and functional food. Cherished for decades in the East for its unique flavor and healthful influences, Wasabia japonica is best known as an age-old food pairing with sashimi or sushi dishes that include raw fish. Wasabi is also served as a garnish with Soba noodles and made into pickles, jams, wine and other foods. While distinguishing itself with unique and versatile flavors earns it a special spot in any self-respecting gourmand's pantry, true wasabi also serves up powerful nutritional benefits that strengthen our immune systems.

Wasabia japonica owes its flavor and healthful benefits in part to a suite of isothiocyanates (ITC's) with unique characteristics including powerful anti-bacterial properties, which help mitigate microbial elements or pathogens potentially present. Rich in beta-carotenes and glucosinolates, wasabi also kills some forms of E-Coli and Staphylococcus.

Studies also indicate Wasabi benefits include a reduction in mucus, which has made it the focus of experiments relating to its use in combating asthma and congestive disorders. The unique ITC spectrum present in wasabi includes long-chain methyl isothiocyanates uncommon in most American's diets. Long-chain methyl ITC's have proven efficacy and potency in supporting natural liver and digestive detoxification functions than other more common types of isothiocyanates.

The powerful antioxidant scavenging characteristics of Wasabia japonica are also attracting additional scientific study. As more evidence accumulates, suggesting that glucosinolates and their hydrolysis products are efficacious in reducing cancer risk, legends that refer to wasabi as the "King of Herbs" are gaining credibility.

As a result, we’re finding more and more answers to the question, “What is Wasabi good for?” Glucosinolates transmute to become isothiocyanates. A member of the brassica family, Wasabia Japonica owes both its pungency and healthful benefits to a suite of isothiocyanates that occur due to enzymatic activation when the plant tissues are crushed during grating. Two glucosinolates, sinigrin and glucocochlearin are especially important in Wasabi’s benefits. While both are essentially tasteless compounds on their own, when exposed to the myrosinase enzyme (also present in wasabi in separate plant cells), hydrolysis transmutes these sulfur compounds into pungent allyl isothiocyanate (CH2=CH-CH2-NCS) and sec-butyl isothiocyanate (CH3-CH2-CH(CH3)-NCS), respectively.

The transmutation process in wasabi occurs within a few minutes of processing, but wasabi flavors are notoriously volatile and dissipates quickly if left exposed to air. This makes wasabi extremely tricky to process, which partially explains why so many producers substitute horseradish for wasabi.

Other trace components identified in the volatile fraction are 6-methylthio hexyl isothiocyanate, 7-methylthioheptyl isothiocyanate and 8-methylthioocytl isothiocyanate. These ω-methylthioalphyl isothiocyanate compounds are concentrated more so in wasabi than other plants and are believed to be responsible for Wasabi’s health benefits and the characteristic taste so loved by connoisseurs of Japanese cuisine. Wasabi is very low in Saturated Fat, Cholesterol and Sodium. It is also a good source of Vitamin B6, Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium and Manganese, and an excellent source of Dietary Fiber and Vitamin C.

With so much healthful activity going on within one plant, it is not surprising that studies and laboratory tests continue to indicate that wasabi shows promise as a nutraceutical or pharmaceutical component.


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