How do Japanese women eat rice every day and stay slim?

What are the secrets of Japanese women slender physique? Why they are so attractively thin and graceful? How do they eat rice every day and stay slim? Why do Japanese women have lit-from-within, wrinkle-free, and blemish-free complexions? Where does it come from? How do they manage to look 20 at 40 and 30 at 50? Maybe they have a beauty gene?

You would probably be surprised to know that the average weight of an adult female in Japan is around 54kg (119lbs).

No doubts, genetics and cultural norms play some part in it. According to biological and medical studies, genes account for about 10% of human disease but the vast majority, the other 90% of our health risks is determined by our lifestyle and environment. So, let’s speculate what these 90% could include.

Why Japanese women are so slim?

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Japanese women are some of the most weight-conscious in the world. The female obesity rate in Japan is about 3%, compares to 36% in USA, 23% in the UK, 24% in Australia, and 14% in Germany.

Why Japanese women are so slim? Several factors may contribute to this phenomenon:

How do Japanese women manage to look 20 at 40 and 30 at 50?

Dietary habits

The traditional Japanese diet is often cited for its health benefits and relatively low caloric density. Emphasis on fresh, seasonal ingredients, smaller portion sizes, and a balance of macronutrients may contribute to weight management. While Japanese food has noodles, rice, and similar carbs commonly associated with gaining weight, Japanese women consume lots of protein, omega-3s, fiber, and vitamins and their overall diet is very well balanced.

Cultural norms and body image

Japanese culture places importance on appearance, and there may be cultural pressures to maintain a slender physique. This emphasis on body image could influence women attitudes toward food, exercise, and weight management.

Physical activity

Japan has a culture that encourages physical activity, whether through daily walking, cycling, or participation in recreational activities like martial arts or traditional dance. Regular physical activity can contribute to weight management and overall health.

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Genetic factors

Genetic predispositions to obesity can vary among populations, and certain genetic factors may contribute to differences in body composition and weight distribution.

 

The secrets of Japanese women slender physique

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

So, what are the secrets of Japanese women slender physique? More likely, the secret is hidden in their diet.

The Japanese diet is one of the most beautifying in the world. Low in bad fats, rich in omega 3 fatty acids and vitamins – they eat well and the results are clear to see. The traditional Japanese diet is rich in rice, vegetables, mushrooms, fish, seaweeds, products, and green tea.

Rice

There are several reasons why Japanese women can eat rice every day and still maintain a healthy weight: they traditionally eat smaller portion sizes compared to many other cultures. They usually serve a small bowl of rice as a side dish, rather than as the main component of the meal.

As a cereal grain, rice is the most widely consumed staple food for Japan that eaten with no butter or oil. A low-fat complex carbohydrate, rice provides the body with a quick boost of energy. It’s also a filling food that leaves less room for other things resulting in eating less.

100 Grams of rice contains 80g of carbohydrates, 7g of protein and lots of group B vitamins. It also rich in essential minerals: calcium – 3% daily value,  iron – 6%, magnesium – 7%, manganese – 52%, phosphorus – 16%, potassium – 2%, and zinc – 11%.

Geishas wash their faces with boiled rice water that helps with the skin elasticity and gradually lighten the complexion. It’s an old trick used to keep their skin bright and fair. Even if you are not a geisha, you can do the same.

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Noodles

Like rice, noodles are another staple. The Japanese make noodles not only from wheat, but also from mung beans and buckwheat (soba noodles).

Fish and seafood

The Japanese annually consume more than 70kg of fish per person. This is compared to 26 kg in Western Europe and a mere 7kg in the United States. Fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. It is also an excellent source of low-fat protein, vitamins and minerals (calcium, phosphorous, iron, zinc, potassium, iodine and magnesium). Making fish your routine weekly menu item will turn you into a glowing gold fish, and it will be totally worth it.

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Soy beans

Miso soup, edamame, tofu, and natto beans. The Japanese consume an average of 50 grams of soy per day compared to less than 5 grams for the average Westerner.

Seaweed

Seaweeds (such as Kombu, Wakame and Nori) contain high amounts of minerals, fiber, vitamin C, beta-carotene, and pantothenic acid and riboflavin. Seaweeds contain skin-enhancing nutrients, proteins and detoxifying acids that help to draw out impurities and protects against free radicals.

Brassica vegetables

Brassica is a genus of plants in the mustard family (Brassicaceae) that include broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, kohlrabi, Chinese cabbage, and turnips. Brassicas are packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. At the same time these vegies act as a broom in your body. Comparing to the Western diets, the Japanese diet contains about 5 times the amount of Brassica vegetables.

Emphasis on fresh, seasonal ingredients

Central to the Japanese diet is the use of fresh, seasonal ingredients. Japanese women prioritize consuming a variety of fruits, vegetables, seafood, and grains that are locally sourced and in season. This not only ensures optimal flavor but also provides a diverse array of nutrients essential for overall health.

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Mushrooms

Being a low-calorie but rich nutrition food, mushrooms invigorate the immune system. Though neither meat nor vegetable, mushrooms are known as the “meat” of the vegetable world. They can be eaten cooked, raw or as a garnish to a meal. 100 Grams of mushrooms contain higher than 20% of the daily value (DV) of B vitamins, essential minerals, selenium (37% DV) and copper (25% DV). It’s also a good source (10-19% DV) of phosphorus and potassium.

Green tea

Why green tea? Both green and black teas come from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis tea bush, and how these leaves end up – green or black – depends on how they are processed after being picked. Black teas are made by undergoing varying degrees of fermentation, from several months to many years, whereas Green tea is made from tea leaves that are simply steamed and dried soon after harvest. Usually, fermentation is an open-air oxidation process which alters the nature of tea’s antioxidants, its aroma and colour. Green tea maintains the maximum possible amount of catechins – tea’s important antioxidants responsible for its many health benefits. The Japanese drink green tea a few times a day, and their tea ceremony is an important one – not only for the nerves, but for the skin.

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Tricks of chopsticks

If you’ve ever eaten with chopsticks, you know that they pick up much less food than forks and spoons. Smaller bites result in more efficient chewing and better digestion. But not only that: using chopsticks slows down the entire eating process tricking the brain by giving it time to realize that the stomach is getting full; therefore you eat less. However, you can finish one hamburger in a minute and still feeling hungry.

Balance and moderation

Since Buddhism arrived to Japan from China in the 6th century, the dominance of five colors – white, black, red, green and yellow – has been a tradition. The Japanese believe that these five colors have to be included in every meal. Indeed, this practice will help you serve balanced and healthy menu: white rice, black sesame seeds, red tomatoes, yellow omelet, and green beans boost the nutritional value of the dish. Each dish is served in modest-sized portion to ensure dining satisfaction.

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Last but not least: if you can’t eat it, don’t put it on your face

From generation to generation, Japanese women consider beauty simple, natural and edible. If you can’t eat it, don’t put it on your skin – is their golden rule and well learned habit. As skin is porous, anything you apply on it will be absorbed within minutes and end up in our blood stream.

*****

Remember, lasting beauty is a lifestyle, not a project, and alas there are no shortcuts.

 

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

Secrets of Japanese women slender physique

 

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