Japanese Women Don't Get Old or Fat

Japenese Women dont get old or fatAnother diet book criticizes how Americans eat and invites its readers to look into other countries for inspiration. Just like "French Women Don’t Get Fat," Japanese-born marketing consultant Naomi Moriyama wrote her experiences that keeps her energetic lifestyle and svelte shape in "Japanese Women Don’t Get Old or Fat."

The gist

Moriyama believes that the secret why the Japanese have long lives and low rates of obesity have a lot to do with the kinds of meals they are eating, and no, it does not involve eating raw fish all the time. Japanese cuisine, as Moriyama claims, has seven secrets.

Among these secrets are the preferred ingredients of fish, soy, vegetables and fruit; the use of rice instead of bread; smaller portions; having a bowl of miso soup for breakfast; and eating small amounts of food whenever you like until you are 80 percent full. The book includes family recipes interspersed with lightweight discussion regarding the health benefits of Asian diets along with appropriate Japanese folk sayings.

The book recommends a walking-intensive lifestyle. Readers are encouraged to take a walk wherever possible, whenever possible.

Advantages and disadvantages

Asian diets are generally healthy, as it promotes the consumption of plant-based foods, fruits, and grains that are packed with nutrition yet low in fat. However, Japanese cuisine tend to have high amounts of sodium with its liberal use of soy sauce and vegetables preserved in salt, which is why Moriyama recommends using low-sodium soy sauce instead.

She also urges to use brown rice instead of refined white rice that is common in Japan in order to gain the benefits of whole grains on cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Meanwhile, although many ingredients are accessible in your local supermarket, some food items like bonita flakes (dried mackerel) or hijiki (a type of seaweed) may require a visit to specialty stores.

Also, Moriyama’s claim that Japanese women do not have problems on their weight does not hold much weight, as recent studies show that college-age Japanese women are among the most body-conscious in the world.


Although eating Japanese meals can be very filling despite smaller portions, the guarantee that you will lose weight doing this is still vague. The book advocates a change in lifestyle, but does

 not provide specific guidelines about controlling the amount of calories that readers should eat.


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