7 Things Japan Can Teach You About Living A Long, Healthy Life


7 Things Japan Can Teach You About Living A Long, Healthy Life

      Reblogged:From HuffingtonPost                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Japan, the land that gave us such treasures as HokusaiMothra and the delicious snack-stick known as Pocky , offers what may be the world’s best blueprint for a healthy life. Not only do Japanese men and women routinely rank at the top of lists detailing humanity’s longest and healthiest life spans, but, in the most recent World Health Organization study, Japanese women came in first with life expectancies of 87.0 years.

And it’s not all due to genes. We teamed up with Aetna to give a head-to-toe examination of all of the secrets of the Japanese lifestyle, from seaweed to mountain climbing to zen. So while you might never turn Japanese, you’ll be able to live more like them.


They value a seafood diet.fatty fish

The Japanese love them a good fish. According to the National Marine Fisheries Service, Japanese seafood consumption was 55.7 kilograms per capita in the last year of data available. (The U.S. ate just 24.2 kilograms.) The numbers put Japan in the top six of seafood consumption among larger nations. So important is their fish diet that trade groups and bureaucrats promoted a band to combat declining consumption levels among Japanese youth.

(The theme song they came up with goes: “Fish Fish Fish. You get smart when you eat fish.”)

The biggest benefit of eating fish may be this: many people that eat it outlive their fish-phobic friends. The consumption of fish lowers the risk of death by heart disease by 36 percent. More astounding, older people who have higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids, largely due to their consumption of fatty fish, lived an average of 2.2 years longerthan those with lower levels. Diets heavy in fatty fishes are also proven to elevate mood and prevent certain types of cancer and inflammation.

Scientists recommend eating two servings of fatty fish, like tuna or salmon, each week. For best results, make sure you poach, grill or steam it.                                                                                                                                                              But they don’t forget about all the other bounty of the sea.

 seaweed

The U.N. reports that Japan consumes about 100,000 tons of seaweed per year. And they aren’t picky about type: The Japanese use over 20 species of the stuff in their cuisine. In fact, residents of Japan’s southernmost island of Okinawa, known for breeding centenarians,eat more seaweed than anywhere else in the world.

Okay, but is kelp actually good for you? All signs suggest it is — amazingly so. Seaweed packs between 2 and 9 grams of protein per cup, and some varieties deliver exponentially more potassium than a banana. It’s also the rare food to contain natural iodine — a useful thing for regulating thyroids. Additionally, Harvard researcherstheorize that seaweed’s ability to regulate estrogen and estriadollevels may explain the island nation’s significantly low rates of breast cancer. (They may also ease symptoms of PMS.)

If you don’t like the flavor, you have options. (See: seaweed pasta.) That being said, seaweed is so nutrient-dense it can have side effects.Limit your intake of certain varieties to two tablespoons per week. But don’t worry too much; your sushi rolls are still good to go.

They made singing a national pastime. 

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Visitors might be shocked at just how prevalent — as in, it’s everywhere– karaoke is in Japan. The numbers do a little to help demonstrate the size of the Japanese pastime: In 2010, the Japanese karaoke industryraked in over 10 billion dollars. (To put that in perspective, that same year its film industry took in a record high 2.66 billion dollars.) The largest karaoke chain, Big Echo, operates in 229 locations across the country.

Well, here’s some good news for all the singers out there: Karaoke is good for you. In a 2009 study of almost 20,000 men, researchers at the Ehime University Graduate School of Medicine and Osaka University found that moderate drinking with friends improves cardiovascular health. To quote the study’s author: “Singers use deep breathing, which is good for the nervous system. After singing, they usually receive applause. It is a good kind of social support, and helps in the face of adverse occasions or stressful events.”

So gather some friends, and belt out a few notes.


One word: fermentation.

miso
We’re not talking sake here (although there’s evidence that it might have some benefits when imbibed in moderation). No, Japanese cuisine is rich in fermented foods, from the colorful tsukemono, or pickled side dishes, that paint every meal to the ubiquitous soy sauce, of which the average Japanese consumes 1.8 gallons per year. Japanese staples like soy, miso and the not-for-newbies bean paste natto are all achieved through fermentation.

In Japanese fermentative processes, fungal agent koji acts as the world’s tiniest mama bird, partially digesting food before it reaches human mouths. Research suggests that fermentation not only eases digestion, but also strengthens the immune system — scientists notethat the vast majority of immune cells live in our guts.

You don’t need more than a few servings a week for a benefit. Add miso paste as a marinade to your dishes, and enjoy better health and the amazing flavor.


The Japanese go green. 

japanese forest shrine
You might think the entire archipelago is covered in vast cities, but it’s actually pretty green; portions of the country are temperaterainforests. Given its beauty, it’s not surprising that reverence for nature has rooted its way into Japanese culture.

The Japanese government cemented nature-loving as policy when itapproved the country’s 16th national holiday, Mountain Day, which celebrates exactly what you think it would. And Japanese octogenarians have set records for mountain climbing. (Yes, an 80-year old climbed Everest. Feel bad about sitting on the couch tonight.) Furthermore, the Japanese are pioneering forest therapy, which consists of recuperative jaunts to local green spaces.

Time spent in nature provides serious health benefits. Almost every organ in your body is a battery for Vitamin D, and not getting enough of the wonder-nutrient leads to cancer, autoimmune disorder and arthritis. Furthermore, research shows that time in nature improves cognitive and creative function by 20 percent and 50 percent, respectively.

So do what your Mom told you, and get some fresh air.


They have the best baths.

snow onsen
Bathtime is serious business in Japan. As anyone who has been to asentō or onsen (public baths and hot springs) can tell you, they are an extremely relaxing way to spend time. About 85 percent of Japanese end their day in a bath, and some 128 million bathers visited the country’s public baths during 2010. As early as the 17th century, Japanese medical texts were touting a hot soak as a way of warding off ailments.

As it turns out, they may have been onto something. Japanese scientists confirmed that a bath in mineral-laden water can treat rheumatism, skin disorders and neuralgia. And if, like us, you use bath time for your daily meditation, that has health benefits too: two-thirds of patients who meditate showed significant drops in blood pressure.


Japan always makes time for tea.
green tea
The tea ceremony is a gorgeously stylized ritual in a country full of them. The tradition, studied for years by practitioners, takes place in a small structure modeled to look like a hermit’s hut. The idea is to lead your mind away from the everyday of life.

Despite the specialized ritual, tea consumption is an integral part of the everyday Japanese lifestyle. This habit puts them in the top tentea-drinking nations — ahead of their bigger neighbor, China. Most tea consumed in Japan is green. In fact, without a qualifier, the word for “tea” in Japanese automatically means green.

Green tea is not only delicious (have you had green tea ice cream?), but also insanely beneficial. Studies have connected drinking green tea to reduced risk of heart disease and cancer and higher levels of cognitive function. And Japanese citizens who drank five cups of green tea per day had 26 percent lower mortality rates.

 

Can Vegetarians Go Paleo?


Can Vegetarians Go Paleo?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Reblogged: from Huffington Post                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bacon, steak and more bacon is often associated with the much-hypedPaleo Diet, which is undoubtedly having a moment. Can vegetarians take part in a diet that puts so much emphasis on meat?

It is possible. Our Paleolithic ancestors were very much about meat, yes, but vegetables, nuts and seeds were also part of their whatever-we-can-get-our-hands-on meal plan. The basic premise of this stone-age eating is to eat like hunter-gatherers did 10,000 years ago. They didn’t have farms, which made it impossible to eat wheat or dairy. Proponents of the lifestyle argue humans were genetically predisposed to consume food the way our ancestors did, and that mimicking those ancient eating habits can help decrease chronic disease and support a healthy weight.

The millennial version gets specific: You can eat meat, poultry, fish, eggs, fruit, vegetables and nuts. Nixed from the list? Grains, legumes, dairy, refined sugar and vegetable oils.

It’s not surprising that vegetarians are among those eager to give Paleo a go; it was the most Googled diet of 2013 and hasn’t lost much traction. For some, it may be impossible to imagine quitting staples like pizza, sandwiches and ice cream, but thousands have tried. There are hundreds of books and blogs on the lifestyle along with millions offood porn-esque hashtags.

Whether vegetarians should go Paleo is a more complicated story.

For starters, herbivores who want to go Paleo will have to rely on eggs for their main source of protein. Beyond the health risks associated with overdosing on eggs, eating them for every meal could get a little tiresome.

“The most quality sources of protein for vegetarians are prohibited on the Paleo diet,” Alexis Joseph, a registered dietician and the author ofHummusapien blog, told The Huffington Post. No peanuts (they’re legumes). No dairy. No soy. No quinoa. All of these “nos” can make it really tough to get the body the nutrients it needs. Nuts, which are permitted on the Paleo plan, are problematic. “They’re a really good protein, but they’re extremely high in calories,” Joseph says.

Joseph is also skeptical of the entire diet. “We can’t mimic cavemen. They had to hunt and gather for their food — which was physically taxing. Their meat wasn’t factory-farmed and saturated with antibiotics, pesticides and chemicals.” Plus, she says, many of the animals hunted by our cave-dwelling ancestors are now extinct. Paleo diets often emphasize a meal plan low in carbohydrates, but the body and the brain run on carbs, Joseph says. “Low carbohydrate, high protein diets can be dangerous for the body. Eliminating legumes and whole grains reduces fiber and nutrients like B vitamins, which are proven to promote healthy weight, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and lower blood pressure.”

For those vegetarians who are determined to dip their toes into the Paleo fad pool, Joseph suggests making a few modifications to the diet. Incorporate quality vegetarian sources of proteins like lentils, quinoa and beans. The changes will make the diet resemble more of a gluten-free vegetarian meal plan but still promote the essential qualities of the Paleo diet, which can support certain healthy habits, like eating fewer processed foods and hydrogenated oils.

If you’re curious what an entirely Paleo and vegetarian dish might look like, Joseph does have one recipe to share:Joseph says this recipe boasts the good stuff: The sweet potato is made up of complex carbs and beta-carotene, the egg provides some protein and the avocado cubes are full of healthy fat. To make it, scrub a medium sweet potato, stab it with a fork and bake it in the oven at 400 degrees for about an hour. Once it’s cooked, take it out and slice it in half and fill it with cubed avocado and salsa. Cook up your egg however you like (consider prepping it sunny-side up in a bit of coconut oil) and add it to the stuffed potato.

Just Checking In

What IsThe Paleo Diet?

Just Checking In

Sorry I haven’t posted in some time, life has been kinda crazy the past few months. So enough about me..How are you all doing, any success stories you would like to share. Remember even those little goals you accomplish are also success stories. So think about all the goals you have set for yourself. How many have you reached? Or How close have you come at reaching your goal?  Let’s stir up some inspiration,  leave a comment of inspiration on your success… No matter how small you think it may be, It  might just be what another needs to hear… Okay well I look forward to hearing all about your accomplishments… I will be posting some other success stories as well..

Lighten Up 20 Tasty Healthy Recipes


Sorry I haven’t posted much lately,I been pretty busy so I thought I would give you all a little treat here is one of the many Ebooks I was given recently. I thought you all might like to check it out feel free to download a copy for yourself as my gift to you. I have a lot going on right now but I will try to post again soon. To get to this e-book just click the link below, after  you click on the link it will come up again so you will have to click the link again and it will bring up the Ebook. I just tried it myself to make sure it was working hope you enjoy these yummy treats.                                                                                                                                                              Lighten Up 20 Tasty Healthy Recipes for the New Year from Mr Food

 

30 Foods Under 40 Calories


30 Foods Under 40 Calories

Have you ever heard the theory that certain foods have a negative caloric effect, meaning they burn more calories during the digestive process than they contribute? (Celery and apples are often cited as examples.)

Turns out the negative calorie theory is a myth. But that doesn’t mean some foods aren’t incredibly low-calorie and super-nutritious. Here’s a list of our favorite almost zero-calorie foods.

Calories: 4 per cup

This delicate, peppery amazingly low in everything you don’t want, especially calories, fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol. It is, however, loaded with crunch and packed with fiber, vitamins A, C and K, and other nutrients, including potassium.  green is Perfect in salads, soups, or anywhere you would use leafy greens, arugula may even boost your romantic life! Evidence suggests that the minerals and antioxidants packed into dark, leafy greens are essential for our sexual health because they help block absorption of toxins that dampen the libido.

Calories: 27 per cup

Asparagus is traditionally known as a detoxifying food, because it contains high levels of an amino acid that act as a diuretic, flushing excess fluid out of your system. It also helps speed the metabolism of alcohol and other toxins (it’s a surprising hangover remedy).

Asparagus is also a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C, E, and K, B6, folate, iron, copper, and even protein. We love the tender shoots in their most natural form, raw and tossed into salads, or steamed


Calories: 10 per cup

Clear beef, chicken, miso, seafood, or vegetable broth is a dieter’s secret weapon, nourishing and filling your body for almost zero calories, especially if you toss in leafy greens and lean meat. Broth is the ultimate “high volume food,” meaning you can eat large amounts for very few calories and still feel full. It all comes down to calories per bite, or in this case, slurp

“By choosing foods that have fewer calories per bite, your portion size grows, but your overall calorie count decreases,” explains Barbara Rolls, PhD, the creator of volumetric and author of the new book The Ultimate volumetric Diet. “So you end up with a satisfying amount of food.” If you would like to read more visit the link below. http://health.yahoo.net/articles/nutrition/photos/30-foods-under-40-calories#4

I Lost Weight: Holly White Committed To Nutritious Eating And Lost 100 Pounds


  Reblogged:from Huffington Post                                                                                                                                             Name: Holly White                                                                                                            Age: 25                                                                                                                                    Height: 5’4″                                                                                                                         Before Weight: 275 poundsI Lost Weight Holly White

How I Gained it: When I was in college, I started eating out a lot at lunch, mostly at fast food restaurants because it was easy to grab a burger between classes. The habit of eating burgers and fries every day stuck with me even after college was over; I continued to eat unhealthy meals when I started working, as well. I would get fast food three to four times a week. I wasn’t eating enough fruits and veggies at the time, either. I would always go for the quick snacks like chips and candy, I didn’t control my portion sizes and I didn’t get enough exercise in my daily routine.

Breaking Point: I couldn’t stand having my picture taken because of the way I looked in photographs. I also got tired of going to the store and seeing all of the really cute outfits that I loved but couldn’t wear. It just really hit me one day that unless I made up my mind to do something about my weight, things would never change.

How I Lost It: I started Weight Watchers again (a few years before, I had actually lost about 30 pounds on the program, but I didn’t stick with it), and I started exercising every day. Exercising is definitely not the easiest or most fun thing when you first get started, but I knew it was something I needed to do in order to lose weight and get healthy. I started off by walking about 25 to 30 minutes each afternoon for about a week or so. Then, I just started working my time up and switching off between the treadmill and bicycle. I would walk outside sometimes, if the weather permitted. Once the weight started coming off, I was more motivated to exercise and continue losing. Now I walk, jog or bicycle around three to four miles every afternoon and I really enjoy it. I just don’t feel right if I don’t do some type of exercise now!

I also make healthier food choices; instead of eating a 100-calorie chocolate snack (even though it may only be a couple of WW points), I go for lots of fruit and veggies because they’re a lot better for me in the long run. I have become addicted to peaches and watermelon!

I think being older and more mature helped me to realize that my weight was very unhealthy and that I needed to do something about it now, not put it off until later. Everyone at work and my family was very supportive and really encouraged me the entire time, which I think is a really important thing. When someone is trying to lose weight, hearing the occasional “How much have you lost now?” or “You’re doing great, keep it up!” is really motivating and helps keep you going even on those rough days!

I definitely feel better about myself, both mentally and physically. And I can wear some of those cute outfits now!

After Weight: 173 pounds

‘Extreme Makeover’: Jarvez Hall Loses Nearly Half His Body Weight


Reblogged:from Yahoo News                                                                                                                                                                                                  Extreme  Makeover‘: Jarvez Hall Loses Nearly Half His Body Weight                                                                                                                                                                                                      By the time Jarvez Hall reached his 28th birthday, he was already dangerously obese.

His weight gain had started years before, spurred by a passion for playing football and encouragement from others.

“Middle school is when I started getting big,” Hall of Portland, Ore., said. “People encouraged me to get big. ‘Oh, you’re big, that means you’re more manly. You’re big. You’re strong and tough.’””So I was actually excited,” he said. “I wanted to be big.”

Hall went on to play football at Oregon State University but eventually  his football career and the weight piled on, reaching its peak as his  beloved mother struggled with sickle-cell anemia.

“When my mom got sick, that is when my weight got worse,” he said.

Hall met the love of his life, Adriana, and asked for her hand in marriage. The day before they walked down the aisle together, however, he wrote a letter to Chris Powell, fitness expert and the trainer on                 ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition,” asking for help.

Watch: Man loses more than half his body weight on ‘Extreme Makeover’

When Powell arrived to help, Hall weighed 548 pounds at his first weigh-in.

“Wow, I look at this number and I’m motivated,” he said at the time. “My goal is to get into the “twos” and officially bring sexy back.”

In the next year, with Powell at his side, Hall pushed through the highs and lows of his weight-loss journey.

“I’m just going to keep pushing because I can’t be 548 [pounds],” he said. “The next number after 548 is death.”

After one year on Powell’s program, Hall weighed in at 267 pounds and had dropped from a size 70 waist to a size 38. His total weight loss came to more than 280 pounds.

“My world is so different now because I can appreciate the small things in life,” Hall said today on ”        Good Morning America” alongside Powell. “Just coming here, I got to fly on an airplane and sit in one seat and not have a seat-belt extender. I don’t have to worry about where I’m going to sit. I can sit in a movie theater.”

Powell says it was the same determination that helped Hall succeed as an athlete that pushed him in his weight-loss journey.

“He [Hall] is the epitome of perseverance and persistence,” Powell said. “He fell sometimes like we all do. We’re all human and it happens on the journey but every single time he did he got right back up. He attacked every single day like it was a brand-new day and he kept going and this is where it gets you.”

Also appearing on “GMA” with Hall was his now-wife, Adriana, the woman who sparked his weight-loss journey on the eve of their wedding. Adriana, who lost weight along with her husband, is now expecting the couple’s first child.

“I can go places and live life with my wife and enjoy it,” Hall said of his new life. “It’s amazing.”                                                                                                                                                                                                   Here Is a link to Hall’s Inspiring Video http://gma.yahoo.com/blogs/abc-blogs/extreme-makeover-jarvez-hall-loses-nearly-half-body-134034289–abc-news-health.html