Did you know that Japan has the lowest obesity ranking every year? Japanese genetics must have something to do with it, but there are still a few tips which you can incorporate into your life.

  1. Use chopsticks.

The Japanese use chopsticks much more than spoons and forks. In my case, I use chopsticks 80% of the time and I use a spoon, fork, or my fingers for the rest. By using chopsticks, each bite becomes smaller and you eat much slower. If you are not used to chopsticks, that’s even better because you will not eat as quickly as you would with a fork or spoon.

Whenever you have a chance to use chopsticks, try them instead of forks or spoons. I suggest you get a set of chopsticks to use at home.

  1. Chew 30 times per bite.

This is hard for me, but when I was in school, I was told to chew 30 times per bite. This is what is taught as part of health education. To be honest, I don’t think I chew as many as 30 times per bite. Yet it’d be great if you could be more conscientious about how many times you chew. The more you chew, the better.

So why is more chewing good for you?

First of all, the more you chew, the quicker you feel full because eating itself takes longer. It takes time (generally about 20 minutes) for your brain to signal to your stomach that you’re full. To put it simply, the slower you eat, the better.

Second, chewing makes it easy to digest and absorb nutrients. Chewing breaks your food down from large pieces into smaller pieces that are easily digested. This also makes it easier for your intestines to absorb nutrients and energy from the food particles. Thoroughly chewing your food also prevents improperly digested food from entering your blood stream and causing a wide range of adverse health effects.

  1. Add something blue to the table.

It’s known that warm colors like orange, pink, or red increases your appetite while blue decreases it. No wonder many restaurants use warm colors on the table, wall, or any other interior design aspects. Why not add some blue around the table, like a blue table matt, blue plates, or blue posters on the wall to decrease your appetite?

In Japan, there was even a funny trend of blue curry rice. People were challenged to eat this dish to prove that you could beat its unappetizing appearance.

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