Thursday, August 26, 2010

fibroid shrinking in Japan

Haven't had a chance to write much personal lately, was in Japan for over a month on a combination of business and pleasure.

Japan is a hard place to be for fibroid shrinking, because it's hard to control what one eats. (This is for three reasons -- 1. I was often eating with clients or others and could not control restaurant choice, 2. Even when could control restaurant choice, most Japanese food comes in set menus each with a variety of different things, and 3. Since portion sizes are small, if you skip one part of the meal everyone notices, plus you risk not getting enough to eat!)

I felt it was kind a mixed bag for me food wise.

On the positive side:
1. Seaweed is often served -- I could usually eat it once a day.
2. Sally Fallon would be happy -- lots of seafood, eggs, and meat with some fat still on it are served
3. Lots of detoxifying daikon and cabbage are served
4. Lots of pickles (a nice fermented food)

On the negative side:
1. Lots of soy, and it's delicious too so it's tempting (tofu in Japan is a zillion times more delicious than tofu in the U.S.)
2. Japanese are totally unaware of hormones in meats.  A nice restaurant might stress that its meat is domestically raised (as opposed to being from China, which means goodness knows what is in it) but "raised without antibiotics" or "raised without hormones" or "grass fed" are issues that are just not on the radar screen.
3. Lots of carbohydrates, which is particularly hard since I am supposed to be working on getting rid of my Candida.  White rice everywhere, and a lot of wheat too (Italian is now popular in Japan, plus noodles were always a staple anyway).  Plus the cutest most delicious deserts. 
4. Overall, not enough vegetables. Combined with too many carbohydrates, on several days I felt seriously imbalanced (too acidic)
5. Lots of food is fried (think tempura).  In some cases, fried is the only way to get a vegetable!
6. Lots of MSG and other additives in the food.
7. At one restaurant, I spied them warming up the food in the microwave, with saran wrap over it and touching it. Yikes!
8.  Lots of trans fats.  They still use margarine and shortening in cooking with zero awareness of the negative health effects.  So every time you eat a bakery product you might be getting trans fats in there.
9. Often the only place to get a snack is a convenience store, and almost nothing sold in there is healthy.  In a pinch I would get a bag of nuts. I do admit to grabbing chocolate covered almonds more than once though. (I had planned ahead, and had made a batch of soaked-then-dehydrated nuts (recipe from Nourishing Traditions) to bring with me using my new food dehydrator, but unfortunately I didn't get them dry enough (first time doing it) and after a week they started to get moldy and I had to throw them out, what a waste!
10.  Most Japanese health food type restaurants are macrobiotic style, and very heavy on the soy and rice.  So not a very good option for me.

Even though I have been to Japan many times before and used to live there, at the beginning of this trip I was thinking that I could try to keep to a semblance of my normal eating style.  I even looked up a restaurant in Tokyo that had naturally raised meats and organic veggies, and convinced a Japanese friend to go there with me.  It ended up being rather embarassing, as the food was quite mediocre.  And let me tell you, you have to work to find mediocre food in Tokyo!  At some point I just gave up, and other than completely avoiding dairy and minimizing wheat and desserts, decided to just go with it rather than let being fussy about food spoil my trip.

Of course I had all my supplements with me -- it took me a full two hours to dole out the portions of my daily vitamins and get everything else all packed up!  It was hard to keep up fully with the regimen, but I think I did a pretty good job considering.

It's very hot in Japan this year, and humid. So basically everytime you go outside you are soon completely sweaty.  Unpleasant, but in a way it was like spending extended time in the sauna, so good for detox!

I also went to a great Asian treatment especially for uterine fibroids, more in the next post.

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