Japanese Buckwheat Pillow - Makura and Sobakawa
Japanese buckwheat pillows provide proper neck support and other health benefits. Because buckwheat is not a grain, buckwheat hulls provide an excellent filling for pillows. The hulls are insect resistant, so dust mites do not gather inside the pillows as they would in another pillow format.
In addition, buckwheat hulls allow air to flow throughout the pillow eliminating the heat that often becomes trapped in the bed pillow's fibers causing you to overheat as you sleep.
A Brief Look at the History of Buckwheat
Buckwheat has been a stable crop in Asian for hundreds of centuries. It grows in acidic, dry soil making it easy to cultivate. Buckwheat flowers make exceptional honey and the buckwheat seeds are used to make animal feed, Soba noodles, flour and the hulls are used in bedding pillows and mattresses.
Over the centuries, Russia and Asia have dominated the market on buckwheat production. Millions of acres in both countries are dedicated to growing this crop.
Are There Allergies to Buckwheat?
While it is very rare, some people are allergic to buckwheat. Studies have found that new buckwheat pillows have higher levels of endotoxins than pillows filled with synthetic materials. If you have asthma related to dust, buckwheat bed pillows might not be suitable to you.
Buckwheat Supports the Neck
Buckwheat hulls adapt to pressure. They'll shift slightly when you lay on a Japanese buckwheat pillow, but they don't sink too much, as is common with fiberfill. In addition, they retain their shape when you get up.
Environmental Benefits to a Japanese Buckwheat Pillow
Because buckwheat is a staple in many diets, buckwheat seeds are harvest and shelled daily. Because buckwheat hulls are useful for filling Japanese buckwheat pillows, there is no waste. The hulls are cleaned, dried and then poured into pillows.
These bed pillows last for years rather than months. While traditional polyester fiberfill pillows generally must be replaced every year creating more trash for landfills, buckwheat hulls can be added to pillows. Your one buckwheat pillow is still supportive decades later.
It's recommended that you put your Japanese buckwheat pillow in the sun for a few hours a few times a year. This helps air out your pillow. While you lay the pillow in the sun, use that time to remove and wash the pillow cover.
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