Wasabi (Wasabia japonica)


The wasabi plant grows naturally along stream beds in mountain river valleys in Japan, but is cultivated in certain regions in Japan and North America. Traditionally, the root is shredded to create a pungent condiment used with fish, especially sushi. In laboratory studies, wasabi has inhibited cancer cell growth and survival. However, one wasabi constituent also promoted cancer cell growth. Wasabi has also shown anti-inflammatory activity, antiplatelet activity, and anabolic bone metabolism activity in laboratory tests. However, there is currently insufficient available evidence in humans to support the use of wasabi for any indication.

Related Terms

Allyl isothiocyanate, alpha-tocopherol, Brassicaceae (family), Cochlearia wasabi, desulfosinigrin, Eutrema japonica, Eutrema wasabi Maxim, isothiocyanates, Japanese domestic horseradish, Japanese spice, Japanese wasabi, Korean wasabi, wasabi-derived 6-(methylsulfinyl)hexyl isothiocyanate, Wasabi japonica, Wasabi japonica Matsum, wasabi leafstalk, wasabi powder, wasabi roots, Wasabia japonica.
Note: This monograph does not include horseradish (Armoracia rusticana), which is a common substitute for wasabi.

evidence table

These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.