Tuesday, June 15, 2010

No Wonder Japan Has Only A 3% Obesity Rate!

I saw this video on Dietivity.com and found it to be very interesting. Here are some of the key differences mentioned:

Japan's obesity rate is only 3% as opposed to the U.S. obesity rate of 30%. This would indicate they must be doing a lot right when it comes to eating. Apparently those Suma Wrestlers are a minority and eat differently from others in their culture.

The Japanese generally eat twice as much fish as they do meat as opposed to the U.S. eating 47% more meat than fish. Salmon, sardines and tuna are high in good fat. I used to eat tuna every day but loaded mayonnaise.  I like salmon but once I got sick one day when I had it for lunch and since then my husband told me not to eat that anymore.  I like sardines with mustard so I could see adding these to my diet.

Japan is a veggie nation.   They cook as opposed to me who does not.  They eat lots and lots of vegetables.  Mostly, the only vegetables I get are through the V8 Fusion drink.  Oh, I do have salad two or three times a week now which is an improvement.  So I have cucumbers, lettuce, eggs, tomatoes, flax seeds, carrots and green peppers with no dressing!

Japan eats rice in place of potatoes.  In the video, Natalie says rice is a good carbohydrate.  Even though they eat white rice.  I like rice okay, but much prefer mashed potatoes which I have on special occasions.  

Portion size & Speed.  Here is an area I can actually improve.  Japan has smaller portion sizes generally than the U.S. and eating with chopsticks slows them down.  All those vegetables takes more time to chew too.  I try to keep my portion sizes down, but fail when it comes to scrambled eggs and bread pudding at Hometown Buffet once a week.  Their bread pudding is SO GOOD and I figure eggs are one healthy thing that I really like to eat so I stock up on those.  I usually eat a very quick small supper.  I gobble my lunch while reading the newspaper, in a hurry to get outside or read my book.  The only time I eat slow is breakfast on Saturday at Hometown Buffet when I'm not in a rush.

Dessert:  The Japanese usually have fruit for dessert--LOL!  Of course, the U.S. has lots of dessert choices, most loaded with sugar.  That's what makes them taste so good:  bakery, ice cream, candy.  I go in spurts on this.  I can do without these things for only so long.  Again, I do try to watch portion size and frequency but lately am not doing too well on the frequency.  It's so hard for me to pass these by.  Fruit just isn't the same.

Variety:  The Japanese do not eat the same things every day (like I do).  They eat 30 different foods a day and 100 different foods a week!  All those different vegetables add up.  I am doing good if I eat 10 different foods a day!  Our grocery list is pretty much the same every week although last week, I did add something new that we haven't had in a very long time:  Gelatin cups and Weight Watcher's dark chocolate raspberry ice cream bars!

Finally, here's the biggest difference of all:  the main drink.  Can you guess?  Japan drinks Green Tea, the U.S. drinks soft drinks.  I have cut out pop but do drink the V8 Fusion (for vegetables & fruit).  Mostly I drink water and milk but could not stand the Green Tea.  I really did give it a try. 

The video is long but so well done that it kept my interest all the way through.  She also goes into the difference in flour and sugar consumption.  If you have some time, I think you would enjoy watching this. How do you do at incorporating some of the Japanese eating habits into your lifestyle? What did you think of the video?

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Mesina said...

oh, there is so much we can learn from the Japanese! Great post! I am going to bear this in mind on my slimming adventures!

thanks for stopping by on my SITS day!!! x

Mesina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Daisy said...

Daisy's "mom" here:
I, too, tend to get in a rut and eat a lot of the same things over and over. It's so much easier! I have discovered a delicious and not-too-unhealthy desert: it's Diana's Bananas frozen chocolate dipped bananas on a stick. There is not that much chocolate on it, and you get a serving of fruit. Also, it takes a while to eat, so it's pretty satisfying.

ps: What do you think of the Bachelorette this week? I can't believe she kept Kasey; he scares me a little.

ruthinian said...

Thank you for posting this Karen. I will never have the chance to know about this if you didn't post it. I don't have the time to search anymore. This is indeed very informative and enlightening. I know this for a fact as an Asian but I don't pay much attention. I gained weight when I migrated here in the US and I was thinking why. I stopped eating rice that is one... and my in-laws hate fish. They don't like the smell of it so I never eat fish unless it is tuna sandwich. Thanks again

Sandee said...

Want an experience with the American diet? Got to a McDonald's and just watch the folks come and go. It's an eye opener for sure.

Great video and so very true.

Have a terrific day. :)

tahtimbo said...

That is really interesting! I would really like to add more fish to our diet, but it is so expensive. As for veggies, once our garden comes in, there will be some that I can use. I can also start making more salads. I also need to start adding variety to our diet, as we eat the same thing every day.
Thanks again for the info!

BeadedTail said...

Very interesting comparisons between us and Japan. We eat something different pretty much every day but not nearly enough vegetables and fruit although we're trying. We also need to watch those portion sizes but boy that's hard to do!

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