What is the Okinawa diet and what are its advantages and disadvantages?
Okinawa is one of the “water areas” in the southernmost part of Japan, whose inhabitants have the longest life expectancy on earth and younger diseases.
While there are probably many reasons for people to live longer in Okinawa, they have a good chance of eating a healthy diet.
The Okinawa diet is made up mostly of vegetables and legumes, especially soy, is low in calories and fat, and high in carbohydrates.
What the experts say:
Okinawa’s diet includes vegetables and soy, along with small amounts of fish.
While experts believe that the emphasis on plant-based foods is wise, the lack of grains, meat and dairy products can make this diet difficult and is likely to lead to nutrient deficiencies.
Scientists have been researching since 1975 and have continued to do so to this day, researching the reasons for their longevity.
Many feel that the Okinawa diet plays a major role in the health of its inhabitants and their longevity.
“Features such as low levels of saturated fat, high antioxidant absorption, and low glycemic levels may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, some cancers, and other chronic diseases,” a study reported in updatebody “.
How effective will the Okinawan diet be?
Most carbohydrates in the Okinawa diet come from vegetables, and there are only small amounts of legumes or grains, and no refined sugar or sweeteners.
There is only a little red meat and a small amount of dairy, and fish is consumed on average.
Common foods in this diet include:
sweet potatoes, soy, bitter melon, shiitake mushrooms, poppy seeds, jasmine tea, seaweed, and a variety of herbs and spices.
Is Okinawa diet effective in weight loss?
There is no doubt that consuming high fiber and reducing processed foods is effective in weight loss and longevity, but this is not the only reason why we recommend this diet.
This diet focuses on people’s health rather than on the number of calories.
In fact, the Okinawa diet insists on eating for a healthy life, not living to eat.
By using the Okinawa diet, you can increase the health of your body and avoid harmful fats.
- Vegetables, especially sweet potatoes
In the past, wealthier Okinawans ate sweet potatoes.
Rice, especially white rice, was more expensive and therefore a symbol of the condition of the people and most ordinary people did not eat it.
Sweet potatoes are rich in nutrients and rich in vitamins A and C, calcium and potassium, and they are also high in fiber and contain vitamin E.
Other common vegetables in this diet include dark, leafy vegetables and bitter melons.
Bitter melon is a food that is used in salads and low-fried meals and can be made in the form of fruit juice or tea, which contains high fiber and vitamin C, and also has large amounts of phytochemicals.
Legumes, especially soy in the Okinawa diet
The Okinawa diet includes soy in the form of miso paste and tofu.
Soy is an excellent source of plant protein and provides most of the protein in the diet, and also contains plant chemicals called flavonoids and phytoestrogens that can have good health benefits.
Herbs and spices in the Okinawa diet
Some of the spices used in this diet have good potential for health and flavor without adding calories, and they include turmeric, rice, Okinawa pepper and fennel.
Fish (in small quantities) in the Okinawa diet
Since Okinawa is an island, you might expect its inhabitants to eat plenty of fish and seafood, but fish make up only a very small portion of their diet (perhaps as much as one percent) and 90 percent.
They eat plant foods.
- Beans or vegetables
The traditional Okinawa diet includes soybeans in the form of meizu dough and tofu.
Soy is an excellent source of plant protein and provides dietary protein.
It also contains flavonoids and phytoestrogens that will be very effective in human health.
- Shitaki mushrooms in Okinawa
Large shiitake mushrooms are found in many types of Asian cuisine and they are very nutritious and may have some health benefits that affect the immune system and help regulate cholesterol.
Combo, Hijiki and Mozuku are common seaweed in this diet.
Noodles are also used in salads and served with vegetables.
A cup of algae contains a lot of iodine, folate, iron and magnesium and is also rich in calcium and high in nutrients.
- Meat (less common in the Okinawan diet.
This is due to their cost and cultural preferences and simplicity of life.)
- Dairy products (except sometimes they are very low and the reason for this may be related to cost and cultural preferences.)
- Sugar (Okinawa diet includes beans and the amount of sugar used in them is very low.)
Refined carbohydrates (Okinawa diet contains almost no grains and unlike other Asian diets that have a lot of rice and also no added sugar.)
Okinawa Suggested Timing:
There is no set time for the Okinawa diet.
Researchers have mainly studied the types of food in this diet, not the timing of the meal.
Okinawa regime reform:
You do not have to follow the whole Okinawa diet to see some of the benefits.
Some of its components can be easily incorporated into your diet:
Eat more vegetables, preferably those that are completely green or light in color.
Choose soy dishes.
Try eating tofu or changing your milk from cow’s milk to soy milk.
- Change your red meat to fish or it is better to increase the consumption of beans.
Add mushrooms to your meals.
Try different types of mushrooms such as shiitake, oyster and king trumpet.
They can replace meat.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Okinawa diet
This diet has many health benefits due to its low fat and calorie content and high fiber and antioxidants.
It also reduces the risk of diseases due to old age and, of course, has disadvantages that you will read about below.
Okinawa diet to help you lose weight:
The Okinawa diet is low in calories and high in fiber, so it can help you lose or maintain weight, which is important for preventing chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and some types of cancer.
Okinawa an anti-inflammatory diet:
An anti-inflammatory diet can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases for several reasons:
Low in fat (especially saturated fat), but still rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
At least some types of saturated fats can reduce swelling.
Low refined carbohydrates (such as sugar), therefore, can have a huge impact on blood sugar levels.
High blood sugar can play a role in causing inflammation in your body and increases the risk of developing chronic disease and inflammation.
Rich in vitamins C, E and A and photochemicals.
These nutrients act as antioxidants to protect your cells from free radical damage (things like smoke, pollution, fats and oils, etc.).
These nutrients may also help reduce inflammation.
Disadvantages of the Okinawa regime
This diet is very low in red meat, eggs and poultry.
Great, because you can still get a lot of protein from soy and fish, but it also has a small number of grains, even whole grains and very little dairy, and you can get enough without those food groups.
Get nutrients but it is difficult to follow a very restrictive diet.
Sodium-rich Okinawa diet:
If you are on a salt-free diet, talk to your doctor before adding some sodium-rich foods to your diet, such as miso, salted fish, or soy sauce (even if soy sauce is low in sodium).
It should neutralize the abundance of fruits and vegetables rich in potassium and calcium sodium, but you should not take risks.
Comparing the Okinawa Diet with Other Diets:
The Okinawa diet is similar to other diets that doctors believe may promote health, disease prevention and a healthy weight.
Everyone is rich in nutritious vegetables, but the Okinawa diet is more restricted to other food groups.
While the USDA guidelines support the Okinawa diet’s emphasis on nutritious vegetables, the guidelines also recommend eating (in small amounts) meat or fish, low-fat dairy, and whole grains.
All of these are rare in the Okinawan diet.
Okinawa diet calories:
There is no specific calorie count for the Okinawa diet, but it includes low-calorie foods (vegetables, soy).
This can be a challenge to meet the USDA recommendations of around 2000 calories to maintain weight (this number varies by age, sex, weight and activity level).
Researchers have also studied some of the other longevity-related diets associated with the Okinawa diet.
These include the Mediterranean diet (also a geographical diet) and the Dash diet (diet methods are methods for stopping high blood pressure).
Other information about the Okinawa diet:
The Okinawa diet contains a lot of antioxidants and fiber but lacks meat, dairy and whole grains, which can mean losing some important nutrients.
This is not a formal diet plan designed to lose weight.
This method uses the traditional Okinawa diet as a resource for those outside of Okinawa who want to enjoy the health benefits and thus can be modified to make it easier.
With a limited number of foods and calories, maintaining this diet for a long time can be challenging, and of course this is what Okinawans do to live to be 100 years old!
The Mediterranean diet also includes many vegetables and legumes (except soy), along with fish, eggs, whole grains, and some dairy products, thus providing more nutrients than the Okinawa diet.
This is a strict diet with a lot of rules about what you should eat and avoid, and instead this diet emphasizes some foods and other things, so it has a lot of flexibility.
As long as you are not a big meat eater, this diet can be easily followed in your life.
The Dash diet, like the Mediterranean diet, is rich in fruits, vegetables, fish, legumes and low-fat dairy products, and it covers all the major food groups and reduces salt, sugar and fat. Give.
This diet has rules, because it is designed to reduce high blood pressure.
You can eat foods that are recommended in the program and you prefer them, but you should keep up to 27% of calories, up to 18% of protein and 55% of carbohydrates.
However, instead of analyzing each bite, you can use the recommended daily schedule (six to eight servings of grains, two to three servings of dairy, etc.).
The goal of this diet is to pursue it for a long time for more health benefits.
Like the Okinawa diet, this diet is plant-based, with the main difference being that they completely avoid all animal products and eat more seeds than the Okinawa diet.
This is not a specific diet plan, but a eating philosophy.
While animal products are outside, everything plant-based is inside and within that parameter, there is freedom in what, when and how it is consumed.
For many people, this is a lifelong dietary change, but it is difficult to avoid all animal-based products.
How to start the Okinawa diet?
You do not need to change your eating habits overnight.
Instead, you can gradually use the common foods in this diet and incorporate it into your daily routine.
For example, gradually add sweet potatoes to your daily diet and convert it to daily consumption.
Avoid processed sugars as much as possible.
Avoid white pasta and white rice as much as you can.
Use more vegetables such as broccoli and mushrooms and substitute white meat for red meat.
A final word on the Okinawa regime:
If your goal is to live to be 100, you can try the Okinawa diet to get there.
However, it is best to talk to your doctor or nutritionist about your needs so you can find your diet that works for you, your body and your lifestyle, and may include some Okinawan diet principles.
However, eating lots of vegetables at meals will be very beneficial and harmless, but you may also need more variety, fats or carbohydrates than this diet.