This morning on the Today Show, they discussed how three countries manage to stay fit and trim, while eating decadent foods. Japan, Italy and France are far fitter than the U.S., which ranks as the heaviest country in the world (sharing the #1 and #2 positions with Mexico).
So how do they do it? The general rule across all three of these countries: portion control. America lives in a super size world, and we’re about the only ones who do. Can you incorporate their eating methods into your diet?
They eat smaller amounts of protein. Their meals focus on fruits, vegetables and grains- and let the meat act as a side dish. The Japanese derive a lot of protein from soy sources. They also eat clear soups prior to a meal- which is filling and makes you less likely to over-indulge at meal time.
Again, smaller portions are the rule of thumb here. They eat smaller amounts of better quality food. So they are satisfied in both the amount they’ve eaten, and the flavor. The French also use a smaller sized plate than Americans.
The Italians also serve smaller portions at their meals. A standard serving of pasta is about 5oz., versus the 10oz. or more typical here in the States. Olive oil and red wine are common fare at meal time- they also eat the grapes and olives whole, which are good sources of antioxidants and good fatty acids.
July 14th, 2008