Friday, September 30, 2011

Basic Theory for Diet Success - Exercise

The first goal for beginners should be to gradually reach 10,000 steps on a pedometer a day. Once you reach this goal, you should include 20-30 minutes of fast walking. For the first 5 minutes, you should walk at your usual pace as a warm-up. Then, you up your pace until the last 5 minutes where you slow down again for a cool down.

If you continue walking at a speed of 80-100 meters a minute (88-109 yards) for 20 minutes, you will burn about 80kcal which is about the same as one egg. If you do the same for 40 minutes, you will consume the energy equivalent to one onigiri (rice ball).

It is import to exercise, but please note that it is difficult to reduce weight by exercise alone. Dieting should be done by:
  1. Reducing intake of food
  2. Exercies
  3. Improving your lifestyle
It is necessary for you to find a reasonable method of walking, one where you don't push yourself too hard but is a bit of a challenge. You should form your own walking method and make it part of your lifestyle. Moreover, if you can keep to about 1500-1800 kcal a day, you can assume your diet is successful.

For more information, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Criticisms of BMI

BMI is the most commonly used index to measure obesity throughout the world. It is measured by:

70-80% of those who are regarded as overweight using BMI do in fact have a lot of inner fat, and those are obese.

20-30% of those regarded as overweight using BMI actually are quite muscular, known as “katabutori” in Japanese. This is a common case for athletes.

naoya ogawa
A few years ago, Naoya Ogawa, an Olympic silver medalist as well as a Japan Diet Academy graduate, came to the Japan Diet Academy asking, “Why do I have such a high BMI even though I’ve reduced my weight? I know I’m not obese even though my BMI is 30. Why does this happen?”

He was sent to have a CT scan and discovered that his inner fat was actually 38cm2. His height is 193cm (6ft 4in) and weight is 115kg (254lb), but he is not obese, he is a katabutori.

hidden obesity
On the other hand, there are people with a low BMI who are obese. It is commonly referred to as “hidden obesity.” About 10% of those with a BMI in the normal range or lower have hidden obesity. Most of the time this occurs among young women who tried dieting, even though they had no need to, and repeated a cycle of rebound weight, or “weight cycling.” Others are middle men who are mostly skinny except for being chubby around the abdomen.

Obesity caused by high abdominal fat, referred to as “apple shaped obesity” in the last post, is a major factor to lifestyle diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and hyperlipidemia, referred to as the “deadly quartet.”

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Apple Shaped vs Pear Shaped Obesity

apple shaped vs. pear shaped obesity comparison image
Obesity is divided into two types based on where fat is accumulated. One form is called apple shaped obesity, also known as “beer belly” in both English and Japanese, which is seen on those who build up fat around the abdomen. Men are more likely to develop this form of obesity.

The other form of obesity is called pear shaped obesity, which is when fat accumulates in the lower part of the body, such as the thighs and hips. This form of obesity is more common in women, especially adolescent girls. Mainly this form of fat is due to the natural shape of a woman’s body, within the subcutaneous layer, and it is not recommended to completely reduce this fat. Many women who reach menopause will also develop apple shaped obesity. In Japan, this is known as “sandanbara” or “three layered stomach.”

For your reference, here is a list, in order, of people at risk for obesity.
  1. Women in their 50’s
  2. Women in their 60’s
  3. Men above 30

In addition, there are approximately 1.5 million obese men and 2 million obese women in Japan. In the US, there are approximately 51 million obese men and 54 million obese women.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Definition of Obesity

What is Obesity? Cartoon of person with fat cells all over his body
The real meaning of obesity is less to do with weight and more to do with having a high body fat percentage. The largest component of our body is water, which is about 50-60% of our body's composition; 8-10% of which is blood. The second largest component is fat, which is about 15-20% for men and 20-30% for women. The rest of our body is composed of proteins and minerals which are found in our bones and muscles as well as saccharides, or sugars.

Our bones are mainly composed of protein and calcium, however the total weight of bones is relatively light and only amounts to about 5% of our total body weight. We gain weight either by an increase in water or an increase in fat. When our body has too much water it is known as edema. When it has too much fat, it is known as obesity.
Too much... fat is obesity, water is edema

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Importance of Keeping a Journal When Dieting

Visual of girl writing a diet journalWhen we write down what we do each day, we will know:
  1. How many empty foods we are eating
  2. How much we are not exercising

The merits of writing down our daily activities are the following:
  1. Knowing how much excess food we eat subconsciously
  2. Knowing how well or poorly we balance our nutrition
  3. Knowing which of our habits are leading us to weight gain
  4. Knowing the relations between out eating habits and lifestyle
  5. Knowing our personal balance between calorie consumption and calorie intake
  6. Preventing overeating
Regardless, gaining weight is caused by excessive calorie intake. Do you know how many calories you can get from soft drinks, juices, alcohol, cakes and sweets? Do you know how many calories exceed your daily limit?
It is said that when we have the craving to eat something but are not really hungry, the feeling will subside in 5 minutes. Also, we sometimes feel hungry when we are actually thirsty. When you feel this craving, it is best to drink a small amount of water or tea then wait 5 minutes to see if this feeling subsides.

Friday, September 23, 2011

The Relation of Adipocytes and Obesity

skinny girl and larger girl dressed in exercise clothesWhen comparing the effects the same dieting method has on different people, some people will get results while others don’t. This is related to our adipocytes, or fat cells, which are a main factor in obesity. When looking at adipocytes through a microscope, we see three different ways they can contribute to weight gain.

1. There are an increased number of cells.
2. Each cell increases in size but the number of cells stays the same.
3. Both the number of cells and size of each cell increases.

cartoon of an overweight boy growing up to be a man with a large belly.It is said that the number of cells increase during the fetal period, infancy and adolescence. Once the number of cells increases, they cannot change after reaching adulthood. This is why those who were overweight as children are more susceptible to regaining that weight even after becoming skinny. It is clear that since they have a large number of large fat cells, they have a harder time losing weight. This is why it is so important to prevent childhood obesity.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Lawsuits Against Fast Food

There was an incident last year where a labor court Brazil accepted a lawsuit from a worker in McDonald’s who claimed that he gained 12kg (26.5lb)because the company forced him to eat hamburgers. The company was required to pay him 30,000 BRL ($17,500 USD) in compensation.

image of an overweight person unhappily viewing fast food items; french fries, burger and soda.A similar lawsuit occurred in the US as well. A group of teenagers sued McDonald’s claiming that their skillful PR encouraged continuous eating of their burgers, which encourages obesity in the US. The suit was not accepted however the result was easier access to nutritional information such as calorie amounts on fast food menus as well as some improvements to the menu.

The responsibility of the fast food industry in causing obesity is handled differently in each of these circumstances. Although we have been aware for a long time that fast food is not generally healthy, these lawsuits help us to increase our awareness and should encourage us to better inform ourselves on how to eat more healthily.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Worldwide Views on Dieting

Globe frowning. Worldwide dieting view.
Earlier this year, Reader’s Digest in the USA brought up research results on the worldwide consensus of dieting.

Globe expressing an idea. DietMaster, diet master.According to the research, surveying 16,000 people throughout 16 countries, the country that is most concerned about dieting is Finland in which 83% of the population has tried dieting at least once in their life. The second is Poland even though they were far behind Finland. Also, the country in which people sought a nicer figure the most was Brazil. This may be related to the many carnivals held there. The country where the most people use dieting pills is China. 37% of the population has tried pills for dieting. The report tells us about the differences in the views on dieting among different countries.

We are in a so called “worldly obesity age.” We at Japan Diet Academy would like to introduce our DietMaster program to each country someday in the future.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Make Lifestyle Changes, Not Just Diet

Cartoon of a slender woman choosing to walk up the stairs rather than use the escalator.
The most fearful situation for dieters is rebound. What can we do to avoid it? The only solution is to improve your lifestyle by adapting behavior modification therapy and developing a body that is less likely to gain weight.

In 5-10 years... two sided arrow pointing to a slender woman and an overweight woman.
Even after you successfully lose weight, you will return to your original weight once you return to your previous lifestyle.

It takes 5-10 years for the human body to be changed by both genetic and environmental factors. Therefore, we must solve the lifestyle factors that are causing weight gain or obesity; otherwise it is hard to anticipate a more simple solution.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Carbohydrates are good energy for your brain

I often hear about diet methods that don’t recommend people to eat carbohydrates. In fact, it’s not true that carbohydrates, which include lots of starch, cause people to gain a lot of weight. Of course, if you eat lots of rice at every meal you’ll gain weight easily. However, eating a reasonable amount of rice won’t make you gain weight.

The starch included in rice, bead, noodles and grains are major complex carbohydrates and take longer to digest than simple carbohydrates like fruit or sugar. Complex carbohydrates don’t make us feel hungry so they are indispensable for dieting. Also, carbohydrates, in the form of glucose, are the only source of energy for the brain, so we feel apathy when we lack it which will lead us to an unhealthy condition. We recommend you to be wary of diet methods that restrict carbohydrates.

glucose is the only source of energy for the brain!

Friday, September 16, 2011

The Calories in Drinks

try not to stock drinks in the refrigerator to avoid temptationMany soft drinks include lots of sugar. If you buy soft drinks, try not to keep in the refrigerator, otherwise you will be tempted to drink them such as with some alcoholic drinks.

It is recommended to try and minimize the amount of soft drinks you drink and to drink water or unsweetened tea instead. You may think that sports drinks or 100% fruit juices do not contain a lot of calories but, as you see in the chart, that is not true. In addition, a lot of drinks contain a lot of sugar.

All beverages listed in the chart are based on the drinks sold in Japan.

Coca cola, 350ml, 12oz, 137kcal. Cider, 350ml, 12oz, 129kcal. Coffee with milk, 250ml, 8.4oz, 115kcal. Milk tea, 340ml, 11.5oz, 105kcal. 30% pure orange juice, 200ml, 6.8oz, 102kcal. 100% pure orange juice, 200ml, 6.8oz, 80kcal. Low-sugar coffee, 190ml, 6.4oz, 38kcal. Unsweet black tea, 340ml, 11.5oz, 0kcal. Oolong tea, 340ml, 11.5oz, 0kcal. Green tea, 340ml, 11.5oz, 0kcal.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Obese Gene and the ob/ob Mouse

Some people may think they are predisposed to being fat when their parents or siblings are obese. They feel that their genes prevent them from losing weight, even if they try.
Obesity and genetics. Visual of overweight parents with an overweight child.
It is true that genetics can affect obesity. There are situations where people who eat a lot don’t gain fat while those who eat less do. Some research resulted in the conclusion that 80% of children are likely to be obese when both their parents are obese. In the case of only the mother being obese, about 60% of children will become fat. When only the father is obese, 40%.

Photo of the ob/ob mouse or obese mouse.
Recently, more research has been done on obesity from the stand point of molecular biology. Studies first appeared in 1950, where a US laboratory discovered obesity in mice. Once the ob gene was isolated, in 1994 further research on the ob gene resulted in discovering the importance of leptin, which is mainly manufactured in white adipose tissue, as an important factor in weight maintenance. The ob/ob mouse has an abnormality in its genes which prevents the body from producing sufficient leptin. As a result, the mice continually overeat and become obese. Once treated with an injection of leptin, the mice stop getting fat.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Basics of Dieting

The basic method for dieting is to keep the balance between calorie usage and calorie intake in mind. By doing so, fat, which is accumulated in white adipose tissue, can be used up for energy.
The human body is composed of about 80% pure fat and 20% water and other materials.

visual representation, body is 80% fat and 20% water and other materials.Fat contains about 9kcal per gram, therefore 9kcal x 1,000g x .8 = 72,000kcal which is the amount of calories needed to lose 1kg of fat. In the case of an average Japanese man who consumes 2,000kcal a day can subtract 1,000kcal for his daily activities a day to lose about 1kg a week (1,000kcal x 7 days = 7,000kcal). If he continues to do this for a month, he will be able to reduce his weight by 4kg a month. This is just a hypothetical situation and does not always go this smoothly in real life.
The basic method of DietMaster is to burn fat effectively by controlling food intake with aerobic exercise to reduce to create a negative calorie intake. However, the fact is a real effort is needed from this point. We do not need a great deal of effort to reduce weight. Most importantly, we have to be careful of weight rebound after losing weight. The real success to dieting is to get over plateaus and prevent rebound. Let’s eat only until we feel 80% full every time we eat a meal!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Most obese people have inactive sympathetic nerves

keeping everything in reach leads to obesity.
MONA LISA hypothesis, visual of the Mona Lisa painting.Those who do not exercise much look for available seats when they get on trains. They want to use the escalator or elevator instead of the stairs. They have magazines, newspapers, the TV remote control, sweets, fruit and tissues, basically everything they could possibly need, within reach of their sofa. These are the types that are likely to use little energy in their daily lives. If they continue such a low energy lifestyle, their muscles, which contribute to our basal metabolism in consuming energy, become weak. As a result, their body will become one that stores more fat. We call this the MONA LISA hypothesis, which stands for Most Obesities kNown Are Low In Sympathetic Activity. The basis is that most people become obese because their sympathetic nerves become dull. If they continue their inactive lifestyle, their sympathetic nerves become duller.

When our world wasn’t as automated, we had no choice but to be more active. Nowadays we can accomplish many things without moving as much. Though exercise does not consume a lot of energy, without moving our body, all the energy will be stored in the body as fat. It is important to remember how people used to live a long time ago to see why we need to reserve time for exercise now.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Learning Helps You Lose Weight

The other day, a Japanese TV program reported that learning about dieting helps to reduce weight. Many people may doubt this; however, it is true that just learning about it works because you will know the following:
1. when we should or shouldn't eat, 2. what we should eat, 3. how many calories per day?
  1. When are good times and bad times to eat when controlling weight
  2. Which works better to reduce weight, two meals or three meals a day
  3. What kinds of food cause us to gain weight
  4. How many calories we should consume a day when dieting
  5. How much is the proper amount of calories for each person
When you learn the above points, you will start making more effort. Without the proper knowledge, people are prone to adapt the wrong diet methods that are advertised on TV and magazines.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Weight Loss Plateau

We can clearly see our weight drop during the 1st or 2nd week of a diet. The main reason is that we lose a lot of water weight during this period. However, after the 3rd of 4th week, our pace starts to slow or stop.

During this time, the human body starts to consume calories more effectively to prevent our fat storage from being used, regardless of reducing calorie intake. This results in a cease of weight reduction and is called the plateau period.

A plateau is caused by the splendid ability our bodies have to survive starvation. The plateau period usually lasts for 1-2 weeks. Most of us who fail at a diet do so during this period. They give up dieting and return to their usual eating habits and sometimes become so frustrated they end up eating too much. Then, rebound begins.

It is important not to give up even when you feel your weight reduction stops. This is the period in which you can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The theory is that as long as we reduce our calorie intake by a few hundred calories less than those needed to maintain our size, we are sure to lose weight.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Obesity Prevails in Any Developed Country

Do you know the term “global obesity”?

According to statistics conducted by WHO, the population of people with a BMI over 25 in developed countries are as follows:

USA 66.7%
Germany 66.5%
UK 61%
Canada 59.1%
Australia 49%

As we can see, obesity is prevailing in developed countries.

The main reason for this it too much intake of high calorie foods as well as the convenience of fast food. Also, the increased usage of the internet leads people to lack exercise, which means less energy use.

The same situation is happening in Japan as well. Nowadays, 13 million Japanese men and 10 million Japanese women are at risk for obesity.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Why Eating Fast Causes Us to Gain Weight

Our appetite is controlled by our satiety and feeding centers in our brain. Once food is in the stomach, glucose in the blood increases. Then, blood-sugar and insulin increase. This stimulates the satiety center which makes us feel full. At the same time, while we feel full, the feeding center becomes inactive which tells us to stop eating. When we become hungry, the feeding center becomes active again and we want to eat.

It takes us 15 to 20 minutes to start feeling full after we start eating. Therefore, those who eat fast eat too much before they feel full. When they continue this, they cannot exactly feel when they are full or hungry, causing them to eat food while they're not hungry.

Stop eating when you feel full.Those who usually finish eating first should try to keep the same pace as others. This will work not only to stop overeating but also makes those eating with you feel more comfortable. It is also more polite this way. When you eat food alone, it is recommended to put the fork and knife down each time you put food in your mouth. Please bare in mind that fast eating should be avoided when dieting.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Top 7 Ways of Dieting

Japanese internet research shows the top 7 dieting methods:
  1. Being mindful with what they eat
  2. Reducing the food they eat between meals
  3. Reducing portion sizes and the number of meals
  4. Jogging and exercising
  5. Stretching and muscle exercise
  6. Taking diet pills and supplements
  7. Taking long baths
Though I do not recommend all of these methods, any of these should work when trying to reduce weight if continued for three months or so. Losing weight is not very difficult; it’s keeping the weight off that’s hard.

Reducing the amount we eat leads to lower calorie intake. As a result, we are sure to lose weight. Be careful not to eat less than your basal metabolic rate otherwise you may hurt your body. Another issue is that if, once you lose your desired weight, you return to your previous eating habits, you will likely gain rebound weight. When you lose weight, you will lose fat and muscle, especially if you are not exercising. When you gain rebound weight, you only gain back the fat. This is the serious point.

If you continue a cycle of losing and gaining weight, or yo-yo diet, your body will end up with an increasing body fat percentage. There is only one way to diet without gaining rebound weight. That is to learn the correct theories to dieting healthy so that you can make proper lifestyle changes. Dieting the healthy way, which includes aerobic and resistance exercises, can help you prevent weight rebound.

If you really want to learn the healthy way to diet, you should first understand the following:
    No rebound diet!
  1. Your personal basal metabolic rate
  2. How much energy you use and how much you take in
  3. The metabolic system
Please feel free to contact us if you wish to gain more knowledge on how to diet correctly and healthily.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Alcohol & Dieting

visual of cartoon alcoholic beverages.
The reason why alcoholic drinks cause people to gain weight is because they contain a lot of calories. Pure alcohol has 7kcal per gram and 5kcal of those 7 are used as energy in the body. Protein and saccharides, complex sugars, have 4kcal per gram. Alcohol is second to lipids, or fat which has 9kcal per gram, for highest calories per gram.

Some people think that beer and sake have high calorie amounts while whiskey and shochu do not have as much. While it is true that beer and sake do have a high calorie amount, only 3 shot glasses of whiskey (about 130cc) has about 400kcal. When you try to get the same amount of alcohol through beer, you would need to drink 3 medium sized bottles (1100cc). In the case of sake, you would consume 400kcal in about two and a half bottles (500cc). Also keep in mind that the higher the alcohol content, the higher the calories will be.

chart showing amount of alcohol, whiskey, sake and beer, to equal 400kcal.cartoon of a Japanese man getting drunk

As we can see, whiskey does include a high amount of calorie so we can’t say that whiskey does not contribute to weight gain. In short, any type of alcohol, if we consume too much, can easily lead to obesity.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Fuji TV Reports Diet Research

Yesterday I saw an announcement by Fuji TV, a major TV news channel in Japan.

The program said Tsukuba University had concluded from research that knowing the correct theories and education on dieting can be good motivation for dieting. This was also reported in the Europe Dieting Institute’s periodical. The TV program showed several people in Europe who were successful in losing weight including one old gentleman who reduced his weight from 113kg (250lb) to 75kg (165lb) by learning good diet information.

2/3 of Japanese people die of lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases, stroke, cancer, hyperlipidemia and others. In most cases, lifestyle diseases can be prevented by avoiding obesity. Though it seems as though many people know enough about lifestyle diseases, the fact is not so many do.

The Japan Diet Academy has sold their own educational materials on how to diet correctly for 7 years now, and have sent a few thousand dieting experts to share this information to the public.
DietMaster regular course, DietMaster advanced course.

- Chairman