It isn’t every day that I see a headline in the medical literature that truly makes me jump for joy. But I just did. And this one bears repeating:
“Japan’s low-carb consumption makes it lightest of all of the G8 nations.”
Read that again. Then join me in savoring the details…
The headline appeared on a leading industry website, Food Navigator, in a report on recent data released by Euromonitor International, a market research firm.
First, if you don’t know what the G8 nations are, they are generally the richest nations on the planet. And they make up the largest economic block among the world’s developed countries. Including Germany, France, the UK, Italy, the US, Canada, Russia and Japan.
When I finally looked past the headline, though (after gazing lovingly at it for what seemed to be an hour), I found that the analysis of the G8 nations highlights some very significant differences between these countries in terms of their health. And the Mediterranean and Japanese diets are the healthiest, thanks to a few key common factors.
Of course, as I’m sure you can guess…there are some major differences in how these countries deal with carbs, sugar, and packaged foods. In other words, some deal with it and some don’t.
For example, Germany consumes the most calories from packaged food (a total of 1,733 Kcal per person per day), while Japan consumes the least (1,086 Kcal per person per day).
And the US and the UK rank first and second in terms of being the fattest. With 42 percent of the US population being obese and 27 percent of the UK. Now compare those percentages to those of Japan and Italy—just 3 percent and 11 percent respectively!
Yes, you read that right…only 3 percent of Japan is considered obese according to the Euromonitor International data.
Japan and Italy also happen to be the countries whose consumers eat the least amount of sugar.
As it turns out, my countrymen (Italians) purchase three times less sugar from soft drinks than the average US consumer, who buys on average 50 grams of sugar per person per day from soft drinks alone. Incredibly scary and sad.
Sugar kills, as you know, and Japan clearly knows this too: they fare better than any other G8 country when it comes to sugar consumption. They consume just 5 grams of sugar per capita per day purchased from soft drinks (that’s 10 times less than US consumers!).
A shocking difference…and I’ve seen it firsthand: I have been to Japan many times and there are vending machines literally everywhere. But what they vend is far different than what you see in the vending machines in America (think eggs, farm-fresh veggies, and unsweetened tea).
Despite the fact that this research is depressing, it was, at the same time, exciting for me to read. That’s because it perfectly validates what I’ve been arguing for years: that carbs are the enemy. Even carbs in supposedly “low-fat,” “fortified,” “fiber-rich,” or “multi-grain” versions of the yogurt, bread, cereal, etc. that are being breathlessly marketed to you every day.
It’s getting to the point where it’s harder and harder to argue against the low-carb lifestyle. And these statistics provide yet more proof.
And, by the way, even though you live in one of the carbiest (not a word, I know) countries in the world, you do not have to be a statistic.
Your life can be just as healthy as so many in Japan, Italy, and other countries that don’t rely on packaged, preservative-filled foods for virtually all meals, as we do here. And it can be easier than you think. Review my past Reality Health Check newsletter on a study that shows why it’s critical to kick carbs to the carb, starting right now. Cut those carbs and you’ll live like the world’s healthiest do.