How to save yourself after OVEREATING! :「食べ過ぎをなかったことに!」

And….it’s December! My favorite month of the year, after January 😛 When we think of December, we probably have a picture of feasts coming our way. It’s both a sweet and bitter experience we have to go through each year: as we indulge ourselves into Christmas cake, fresh baked goods, superb New Year feasts (many rounds for some of us), we spend time into the night thinking about what we have eaten and feel (quite) guilty about the pleasure. So…what else can we do apart from feeling so guilty?

Here are some of the ways you can save yourself and prepare for the next normal routine of eating!

1. Make your digestion process go smoothly.
After you eat, your intestines and stomach are still weak, hence, cannot digest well, To help it to work well even in the case of a lot of food, you should regularly take care of your lifestyle. Instead of drinking “cold” drinks, which would burden your intestines, opt for “hot” drinks such as green tea, which contains the slimming elements to say it simply. Also, eat something that is really soft and easy to digest. I usually went for boiled rice or congee, or just veggie soup. Avoid steak, grilled chicken, or anything that requires cutting and chewing extensively.

2. Stretch your intestines
This can be done very easily by placing one pillow on your back and lay on it. This position will put your stomach at the highest point of your body and you can feel your body stretched. Just don’t put it too high and put at least 30 minutes after your meal before doing this stretch. This would help activate your blood circulation and digestion, which would make it harder for fat to be accumulated.

guilty dessert

3. Burn! within 48 hours after overeat with these 5 foods

Generally, it is said that it takes 2 weeks for the food you’ve eaten to turn into body fat. Hence, do something about it within the first 48 hours may help prevent your weight gain.
1. GINGER: contains enzyme that aids digestion and increases metabolism, hence you’ll burn more. Needless to say, ginger is one of the hottest ingredients in diet products in Japan right now.
2. BITTER MELON: contains Linoleic acid which helps break down the fat and burn energy. Also, it takes stored fat and uses it as energy as well as promotes the action of the recently known good “brown fat.” Eat it with eggs would ease its bitterness.
3. SEAWEEDS: (such as wakame, mekabu, konbu, or hijiki) contains Fucoidan, which prevents the absorption of fat into your body and disposes out. Seaweeds also contain Fucoxanthin, which reduces fat storage and uses excess fat as energy.
4. PINEAPPLE, KIWI, PAPAYA: contain an enzyme Protease, which breaks down protein and helps with digestive process. They also contain Potassium which helps dispose excess water, hence, prevents swelling/bloating.
5. LAMB, BEEF, OR RED PORK MEAT: contain…the famous “L-carnitine” which not only burns fat you recently take in but also the stored excess fat. It’s in red beef/pork meat, but even more so in lamb meat. Per 100 grams, lamb contains 2 times and mutton contains 6 times more L-carnitine than pork does. 

I hope now you have some backup plan and don’t be afraid to welcome the joy of feasts coming this year end!

Source: Gunosy news, July 17, 2014, written by 木土さや
Picture: http://www.sodahead.com, http://www.huffingtonpost.com

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Must-try healthy Japanese menus at Ootoya! : 大戸屋の「絶対ヘルシー」メニュ!

Must-try healthy Japanese menus at Ootoya! : 大戸屋の「絶対ヘルシー」メニュ!

Okay, so if you have a chance to visit Ootoya (in case you don’t know where to go for a light and healthy dinner after you have a heavy lunch or sweets earlier in the day), try to find this page on the menu book. (near the back) Now that you’re in Japan, why not try something healthy in the Japanese style! I know some may look daunting to you and might raise your eyebrows about the taste. How are they gonna taste like? Don’t worry, though it might look unfamiliar to you, the way to eat is sooo easy.

Start with the top left: tofu, okra, natto (fermented soy beans), dry seaweed, grated yam and raw egg. To eat this, pour the shoyu (soy sauce) provided at the table into a little vessel that have a drop of wasabi (the green spicy stuff eaten with sashimi or sushi), and use chopsticks to mix just a bit of wasabi with the shoyu. Don’t mix the whole thing if you’re not good with the wasabi taste. Then pour it into the bowl, then mix it together. Don’t be afraid to break the tofu. It’s meant to be soft acting as a glue to hold all the ingredients together. Then use the spoon to scoop the mixture up. Try circling your spoon like a helicopter for a bit to cut the slime of the natto. Believe me, you belly will love you as the whole 247 kcal of that dish has all the glorious healthiest ingredients you want your body to have.

Similarly is the one below it called Bakudan. Basically, it has almost the same ingredients as the one above, except it doesn’t have tofu but instead have a few pieces of raw maguro (sashimi). Eat it the same way as above mentioned.

PS: These menus might be considered as side dishes but I would recommend those of you who really wanna go on a cleansing diet for a while to just pick item by item instead of going for a set. This way, you can cut the rice, and substitute it with sooo many more healthy side dishes. (just if you’re on a diet)

Salted kelp : 塩こんぶ

I know you might wonder why would I write about kelp. But this post is not going to be only about kelp, it’s about “salted kelp” which I think you could only find in Japan. I never knew about this food before but, believe me, it has long been eaten widely among Japanese households in a variety of dishes. I came across it first time when I went to a really good healthy restaurant in My Lord department store, Shinjuku. I ordered sauteed broccoli with scallops. Inside the mild flavor stood out this salty, intensely aromatic taste inside my mouth. I tried to figure it out for a while, then finally spotted little kelp strips hidden in the dish. From that day, I went straight to the supermarket and tried to figure out what kind of product it is. I was sure that it must be some kind of seaweed. I was surprised how blind I had been towards this one aisle of the supermarket I frequented for more than a year. Lying on the shelves were all types and all shapes for all purposes of seaweed, and there I saw my salted kelp.

It is usually sold in a medium to small pack, written as “塩こんぶ”. It looks like this…

Basically, it is kelp that is cut into 2mm strips and braised in shoyu (soy sauce) and then mixed with salt. Japanese people usually put it on top of the rice to give it flavor and texture. It is also widely used in cooking many main dishes such as pasta and put in various kinds of salad. Well, you can say that this salted kelp can be incorporated into any kind of cooking whenever you want an outstanding salty taste instead of merely putting salt. And don’t worry that your sodium level will skyrocket. one serving of it (5 grams) actually contains less salt than a bowl of miso soup or one Japanese plum (ume).

AND I’M TELLING YOU THIS THING WORKS MAGIC! It has its own place in my pantry now! 🙂 Really hope you guys can try it out!

Check out this product that I saw on TV recently from “Kurakon”. The salt used here is sea salt and the soy sauce is its own special recipe passed on for years, so you can be sure to get real intense flavor!

くらこん塩こんぶくらこん無添加減塩塩こんぶ

Better yet, visit its super fun website: http://www.kurakon.jp/shiokonbu/

I visited the “factory” and tried out all the games. hahaha I’m kinda free today so.. lol

Anyways, try it out!

Crispy Seaweed snack (パリパリごまわかめ)

As a continuous post in the theme of “chips”, this time I would like to recommend this product: “Paripari goma-wakame” or “crispy sesame-seaweed”.

As you can see from the package, it’s ONLY 70 kcal! (and about 3-4 grams of fat)
The “crispy” factor? I give it 100%.
The “flavor” factor?…its balanced saltiness would make you forget it is actually seaweed.
The “texture” factor?…The sesame seeds give it an interesting texture..each piece is thin yet airy with several layers…can’t stop munching and hearing the sound!

photos from the courtesy of this blog:http://blogs.yahoo.co.jp/taka24562002/23618113.html

Where to buy it? Easy, go to Lawson or Natural Lawson (the healthy store brand of Lawson), some of the “it’s demo” shops (which I’ll blog about later), or some other stores that sell beauty and health related products such as “Ranking-ranqueen”.

Verdict: GIVE IT A TRY! With 100-something yen, you’ll have the perfect afternoon crunch! Trust me, it’ll become your go-to snack just like it became mine! 😉