“Amazake” and “Koji”

“Amazake” is said to have been described in the Nihon Shoki (Nara period) in ancient times. In the olden days, it was considered a sacred drink to be offered to the gods. Even today, when you go to shrines and temples during the New Year holidays, you will see amazake being served to worshippers. Amazake has been introduced to the world as a Japanese superfood and is considered a highly nutritious drink that has attracted attention from vegans and dieters. * The term “superfood” originated in the U.S. and Canada and refers to foods with outstandingly high levels of active ingredients that are necessary for maintaining good health. “Miso,” “Natto,” “Koji,” and “Amazake” are typical fermented foods in Japan.


“Koji” used for “Amazake”

“Koji” is made by adding koji mold to steamed grains, such as rice, wheat, and soybeans, and letting it grow. * Koji fungus is a general term for the filamentous fungi that produce koji, and is a type of mold. There are three main types of koji, each made by growing and fermenting koji mold.

Rice koji     Miso, Sake, Amazake, etc.
Barley koji    Mugi miso, barley shochu, etc.
Soybean koji   Mame miso (Hatcho miso), etc.

Koji is also used as an ingredient in foods and seasonings (miso, soy sauce, mirin, etc.), and the word “koji” has two kanji characters with the same meaning.

  Kanji from China
 Kokuji created in Japan

The Japanese national character “Koji” represents the appearance of mold growing on rice like a flower blooming, and the character expresses the Japanese people’s love for rice.


Two Types of “Amazake”

There are two types of amazake: one made from sake lees and one made from rice malt.

Made with sake lees
Alcohol (less than 1%) is added by adding sake lees, water, and sugar.
Made with rice malt
Rice malt and rice are fermented to produce sweetness by fermentation ingredients without sugar. Non-alcoholic.

Nutritional ingredients and effects of “Amazake”

[Main nutritional ingredients]
Vitamin B group (B1, B2, B6, Biotin, Folic acid)
• Pantothenic acid
• Amino acids (glutamine, cysteine, etc.)
• Glucose
• Dietary fiber
• Oligosaccharides

[Main effect]
Beautifying effect on skin (vitamin B group)
• Improvement of intestinal environment (oligosaccharide, dietary fiber)
• Supports the metabolism and absorption of nutrients (vitamin B group, pantothenic acid)
• Helps relieve fatigue (vitamin B group, pantothenic acid)

It is also called “drinking drip” because the ingredients contained are similar to drip.

What I realized after continuing to drink “Amazake”

source: www.unsplash.com

I no longer catch colds throughout the year.

I can’t say that amazake is working because I’m trying various foods to improve my diet. However, I have been drinking at least one cup of amazake (made from rice malt) every day before bedtime throughout the year (in fact, drinking it in the morning seems to be better). As a result, I haven’t had a single cold in a year. Even when I feel a little sick, it goes away the next day without getting worse. This is just my personal opinion, but I think it’s because of amazake.

Beautiful skin effect, recovery from fatigue!?

Amazake’s nutritional ingredients have a beautiful skin effect and relieve fatigue. The vitamin B group in amazake supports the activation and metabolism of the skin and is effective in moisturizing and firming. It is also said to be highly effective in relieving fatigue due to its high content of glucose and amino acids.

Improvement of intestinal environment and constipation?

I’ve been drinking amazake for about a year now, and I’ve lost about 10 kg from what I weighed a year ago. If you were to ask me if this was due to the effects of amazake, I don’t think it was the only effect, but since I continued to drink amazake every day, I’m sure there was some kind of effect. Amazake is also rich in oligosaccharides and dietary fiber. Since it contains oligosaccharide, an ingredient that feeds the good bacteria that have a positive effect on the body, it may improve the intestinal environment and have a positive effect on constipation and diet.

Simply taste “Amazake”

“Amazake” has processed products, flavors, and arrangements, but I think it’s best to simply drink it as it is. You can buy its products on the market, or you can do it by hand using a yogurt maker (or even a thermos or rice cooker). If you continue to drink it every day, you will see a positive reaction in your body. I would also like to try amazake made from sake lees, which are highly nutritious, by replacing sugar with honey. I want to continue to enjoy amazake, one of Japan’s most popular superfoods.