4 Health Lessons from Asian Diets

Healthy Vegetable DietSouth Korean women are going to outlive everyone. This is based on a recent study, which predicted that women from South Korea will have a life expectancy of 90.8 years old by 2030. One of the reasons of their longevity has something to do with their lower body-mass index and blood pressure compared to most Westerners. Meanwhile, some residents of Okinawa in Japan also tend to live up to 100 years old and longer.

As opposed to most western countries, diets from these Asian nations rely heavily on vegetables and the use of simple cooking methods such as steaming and boiling. Here’s a peek of their diets and the lessons about healthy eating which Americans can learn from them.

  1. More Vegetables, Less Meat

A South Korean meal is usually full of vegetable side dishes such as seasoned soybean sprouts, spinach, cucumber, and eggplants. The kimchi, fermented cabbage, is a real staple in the country. For locals in Okinawa, their diets involve plenty of vegetables, whole grains, tofu, and seaweed.

  1. Hot, Hot, Hot

Soup is a filling, nutrient- dense food. Most Asian soups are a combination of vegetables and bone broth that make them rich in vitamins and minerals. For hard-working Americans who do not have much time boiling bones for broth, a beef soup base is an alternative.

Drinking tea is a practice in some Asian countries. Drinking a hot beverage 30 minutes before a meal improves a person’s digestive abilities.

  1. Less Fat in Cooking

South Koreans use a minimal amount of fat when cooking. Instead, they roast or broil their meats and steam or boil their vegetables. If they have to stir-fry, they usually use sesame oil instead of animal-base cooking oil.

  1. A Fishy Diet

According to The Washington Post, eating fish among Americans is still an underdeveloped culture. In fact, between 2009 and 2013, almost half of all edible seafood in America went to waste.

Okinawan residents love their squid, and a lot of other Asian countries have fish firmly integrated into their diets. Seafood such as squid and octopus are rich in taurine that helps lower cholesterol and blood pressure while fish contains oils that are good for the body.

Asians have cracked the secret of longevity with their vegetable-heavy diets and taking the time to prepare a filling meal using the right ingredients.