I have a friend who visited Japan often. After every trip she raved about her health seeking female Japanese friends of a “certain age”—much older than me, true Super-Agers—who have been eating a pickled Ume Boshi Plum (actually an apricot) every day for years. This information encouraged me to try the plums. In the states the health food practice of eating one plum each day is expensive. The process of getting these abundant small inedible fruits ready for consumption is a long and tedious process. A small container of organic umeboshi plums is priced at $12.99 for about 20 plums. At Walmart the price is approximately $5.99—they aren’t organic. Non-organic umeboshi plums found in my local Chinese shops are usually less expensive.
The organic paste is also less expensive and I put a small spoonful in miso soup. This does seem to strengthen me. I have not developed the habit of using the paste daily. This posting may change that. After re-researching umeboshi plums in MACROBIOTIC HOME REMEDIES by Mishio Kushi and edited by Marc Van Cauwenberghe, M.C., my enthusiasm is increased. Kushi lists these 14 plus healing aspects of umeboshi plums:
PREVENTS AGING BY HAVING AN ANTI-OXIDIZING (AN ANTI-RUSTING/AGING) EFFECT OF THE BLOOD
Has an alkalizing effect on the body
Contains high amounts of minerals: iron, calcium, manganese, potassium and more (not listed)
Has antiseptic and antibiotic properties
Supports liver function and helps clean out artificial chemicals from the body
Speeds up the peristaltic movement of the intestines and helps digest proteins
Prevents fatigue caused by an accumulation of acids
Stimulates detoxification by liver and kidney cells at a more efficient level than normal
In addition umeboshi plums:
Helps with headaches, hangovers, nausea, anemia, intoxication by carbon monoxide and more
This book lists many ways and means of using this ingredient as a condiment, tea, broth plus even powdering the pit which seems a mystery to me.