Yes, wasabi, the fiery food, which is actually a member of the cabbage family, has been shown to have an assortment of healing benefits: anything from reducing the growth of bacteria that causes cavities, and increasing circulation and promoting oxygenation of the cellular tissue when topically taken, to getting over a hangover, even acting as a pout plumper when applied to women's lips, and an aphrodisiac when consumed by men!
Historically, the potent plant has been prided for its antimicrobial properties and used by Japanese natives to protect from food poisoning. It has also been proven as a natural antibacterial agent with a high concentration of potassium, calcium, vitamin C and phytochemicals, strengthening the body's antioxidant defenses and aiding the skin against free radicals.
Its power transcends just ingesting, and has been shown as equally beneficial when applied topically to the skin. Which, naturally, made the skincare industry and its inexhaustable search for interesting beauty-making ingredients take note. Seduced by wasabi's stimulating nature, its since been added into a slew of skin care products and included in facials and body treatments at spas across the country. Want to test out this stimulating face food for yourself? Here's how:
Make Your Own:
Wasabi Massage Oil: Combine ¼ cup vegetable oil and ¼ cup light sesame oil in a small saucepan. Heat on low for 2 to 3 minutes or until warm but NOT boiling or smoking. Immediately remove from heat and stir in ½ tsp wasabi paste. Be sure to use a wooden spoon since plastic can leach out chemicals. Cover and let cool for at least 1 hour. Add 5 drops of vitamin E oil (you can pop a vitamin oil pill if you have one) and still until mixed in. Massage!
At A Spa: Lake Austin Spa Resort in Austin, Texas stimulates their guests with the Wonderful Wasabi & Green Tea Facial. You can even have your body wrapped in the stimulating spice in Las Vegas at Treasure Island with their Wasabi Ginger Wrap.
Buy It: Take your wasabi therapy to go with Lather's Wasabi Hand Washes (you can even find the Lemongrass Wasabi Hand Wash on board Delta Air Lines flights). Naturopathica Green Tea Wasabi Mask helps to detoxify the face.