Ah Japan, lovely land of breathtaking natural beauty, fabulously interesting people, cutting edge style and innovation, quirky pop culture, samurai, sushi and sumo. It also boasts some of the world’s healthiest and longest lived people.
Japanese women today can expect to live well into their 80s remaining as gorgeous and active as they ever were. It’s a fact that the Japanese are not plagued by many of the common, often debilitating, health woes we face in the west, especially as we age.
Here are some healthy habits we should try and adapt from the Japanese.
It is Japanese tradition to finish every meal with green tea instead of dessert! So instead of reaching for a sugary treat boil the kettle! Green tea has been scientifically proven to improve the risk factors of heart disease and is associated with small weight loss.
Load Up On The Carbs
Yes, you read that correctly. In Japan carbohydrates are eaten at every meal of the day! They choose their carbs wisely loading up on rice and noodles, which have more fibre and protein than traditional bread and pasta. They are also low GI (glycaemic index) so won’t spike your blood sugar and provide long lasting energy.
WH top pic: Hakubuku Soba Noodles – they are also a good source of magnesium and thiamine.
Hara Hachi Bu
“Hara Hachi Bu” translates in English to eat until you are 80% full. Experts confirm that it takes your body 20 minutes to send the signal “I’m full” from your stomach to your brain. The Japanese eat slowly and pause when eating this will help you stop eating too much food and helps you avoid that food coma!
Embracing Healthy Bacteria
Fermented foods have been a part of the Japanese diet for centuries. Eating fermented foods not only boosts your immunity but it stimulates the growth of ‘good’ bacteria and keeps your digestive tracts clean and healthy.
The Japanese are notorious for using small plates and bowls and are healthier for it! Experts back them up with evidence revealing that you are less likely to overeat if you use smaller plates.