The Japanese Diet: Deconstructed

The Japanese diet is one of the world’s lowest in fat. Other attributes include fish as a mainstay and soy foods. The Japanese also care about appearance and think of food as an art – resulting in more appetizing and satisfying foods. Do these characteristics contribute to the Japanese record of low rates of major chronic diseases and the fact that they boast the world’s highest life expectancy – age 76 for men and 82 for women?

In contrast, in 1980, 30 percent of U .S. adult population were affected by at least one chronic condition. Today it’s 60 percent. The percentage of those affected by two or more chronic diseases has grown from 16 percent to 42 percent. What and how do the Japanese eat? Often, it is Interesting to study lifestyles, in particular what and how other cultures eat to gain some insights as to what exactly is a healthy diet. No one expects the typical American to start munching on seaweed but the study indicates that what and how we eat can affect our overall health and longevity.

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Wearing a Mask?

FYI: What does wearing a mask have to do with FOOD, FACTS & FADS? Absolutely nothing! However,  I thought it was prudent to pass it along,  You may not agree, but there has been a lot of controversy recently as to whether to wear a mask or not due to the virus that continues to plague our lives. Sometimes it’s easy to just think that since there is less talk about COVID in the news, the virus magically will disappear – but alas, it is still out there, last I heard.

I don’t consider myself to be an infectious disease expert or public health official – but I do have a strong background in microbiology/immunology due to the fact I have a Masters Degree in Microbiology and I taught a course titled “Etiology of Infectious Disease” for several years. I also have  worked in academia in the department of Microbiology/Immunology at another major university where I participated in organizing and preparing for publication a textbook titled “Basic Medical Microbiology.

I have read several articles about the success of the Japanese with the viral spread, which in my opinion. gives a lot of credit to the benefits of wearing masks. Therefore, the following article just makes sense.  Stay safe!

Sally Feltner, MS, PhD

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