Thursday, October 27, 2005


Everyone Should Have a Japanese Mother

Naomi MoriyamaThis spring's bestseller French Women Don't Get Fat has a new challenger. Writer Naomi Moriyama will soon publish her book Japanese Women Don't Get Old or Fat, and it looks like a great read!

As the story goes, Moriyama spent two years in Japan and promptly lost 25 pounds. I have to say, every time I go to Japan, I feel this incredible collective pressure to lose weight -- everyone is so lithe and energetic, so I'm excited that someone has written a book on this subject.

The book is very timely for the US, where a full 34 percent of American women are obese. Japanese women weight in at a teeny tiny 2.9%. This is quite intriguing when you consider what a food obsessed culture Japan really is. And yet, the emphasis is on small portions, healthy ingredients, and very little cream or butter.

One of the things that I love about Moriyama's book is that it is subtitled: Secrets of My Mother's Tokyo Kitchen. This, of course, is one of the secrets to the Japanese diet -- to have a Japanese mother in the first place.

I grew up after the WWII and there were hardly enough thing to eat. Everybody then was thin as you can imagine. However, gradually the situation got better and we had plenty to eat. But my mother used to say one must eat twice as much vegetable than meat or one's blood become too thick and one is asking a lot of trouble ahead. I am living over thirty years in the US but I still remember what my mother once taught us and I remain thin but strong. After all one is what one eats.
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