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Time-Tested Effective Japanese Foods for Weight Loss

Updated on September 23, 2012
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Japanese Foods for Losing Fats and Keeping Obesity at Bay

There are plenty of Japanese foods for weight loss.

In fact, these Japanese foods for weight loss have already become part of what is widely known in the western part of the world as the Japanese diet.

Some of these Japanese foods for weight loss are konnyaku, shirataki, natto, and okara .

These Japanese foods for weight loss, together with other healthy Japanese foods, have been credited as the main reasons for Japan’s relatively low obesity rate.

In recent studies, international researchers revealed that Japan has one of the lowest obesity rates among developed nations of around 3% of its total population, much lower than the obesity rate of the United States of around 30% of its total population.

Recent introductions of western-style foods like caloric hamburgers, deep-fried French fries, and loaded pizzas into the Japanese people’s diets might likely increase Japan’s obesity rate in the near future.

Notwithstanding recent trends in the Japanese people’s diets, there is still wisdom to be learned from traditional Japanese foods that can actually facilitate weight loss and keep weight in check.

Some of the top Japanese foods for weight loss are discussed below.

1. Konnyaku – the Japanese Food that Sweeps the Intestines Clean

Arguably the quintessential Japanese food for weight loss that the Japanese people have been eating for the past 1,500 years is the konnyaku, a virtually zero-calorie food that fills up the stomach very quickly.

This Japanese food for weight loss is made from the dietary fiber glucomannan and is composed of 97% water and three percent fiber.

Glucomannan helps clean the impurities in the intestines of humans.

Because of its glucomannan content, konnyaku has long been regarded as the “broom for the stomach” in Japan.

Other than the fact that it is very low in calories, high in dietary fiber, and has practically no fats, konnyaku also:

  • aids in averting diabetes
  • helps prevent high-blood pressure
  • facilitates in normalizing cholesterol levels
  • gives minerals like calcium
  • has the benefits of an alkaline food

2. Shirataki – the Noodle Version of the Japanese Food for Weight Loss Konnyaku

The noodle version of the Japanese food for weight loss konnyaku, shirataki is a kind of especially thin and translucent noodles that are fantastically low in carbohydrates.

Shirataki noodles are made from the Konjac plant that is widely grown in Japan and parts of China.

From the flour of the Konjac plant, shirataki noodles are made.

Just like konnyaku, this Japanese food for weight loss contains the dietary fiber glucomannan that is extremely low in calories, high in fiber, and is definitely filling to the stomach.

On their own, shirataki noodles are bland, making them an excellent mix with other foods like vegetables, seafoods, spices, and herbs.

They are also chewy and have a texture that is far different from western-style pastas.

3. Natto – a Distinct Japanese Food for Weight Loss

A Japanese food for weight loss with an incredibly sharp smell and distinct taste is natto, a food made from steamed and fermented soy beans that have grown healthy bacteria called natto bacillus.

Natto is a Japanese food for weight loss that can throw many people off and strike horror in their minds because of its smell and taste.

However, natto has been eaten in Japan since the country’s feudal days over 1,000 years ago and has survived up to the modern times to become a staple breakfast for many Japanese people.

While its smell and taste might be pretty strong, natto actually facilitates digestion because of the cellulose that it has, making it an indispensable part of any serious diets.

Other than its weight loss benefits, natto is also:

  • rich in Vitamin K2 that substantially prevents bone loss
  • loaded in Vitamin K that suppresses blood clotting, enhances proper functioning of the liver and facilitates the flowing of urine
  • high in soybeans that keeps the skin looking supple and glowing

4. Okara – the Soy Pulp that can Help People Lose Fats

Eaten in East Asia since the early 20th century and now a part of many Western vegetarian diets, okara has become a Japanese food for weight loss.

Okara is made from the off-white pulp of soybeans found during the production of soy milk.

Because it has soybeans as its main ingredient, okara is low in fat, high in fiber, and rich in nutrients like calcium, iron, protein, and riboflavin.

This Japanese food for weight loss can be eaten as cookies, burger patties, and ingredients in stews.

Copyright © 2011 Kerlyn Bautista

All Rights Reserved

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