It is not the myth that obesity rate is so low in Japan. All the surveys that are conducted on the head account in various countries that are suffering with obesity have revealed that obesity rates are quite low in Japan. Let us look at the reasons for this wonderful fact about this country.
Different obesity cut off:
In general, obesity is figured out by measuring the body mass index of the person who is being evaluated for obesity. While all the countries that are now ranking in top positions for obesity use the BMI value of 25 to 29.9 to represent the overweight situation and use the BMI value of 30 and above as obesity, Japan government has taken the BMI value of 25 as the cut off for obesity. Because of this new value definition for obesity in Japan, many people are warned in the early stages of overweight and hence would never reach the real critical curve of BMI. This has resulted in Japan ranking very low obesity rate when the whole population is taken into consideration.
More often when we assess the root cause for the weight gain in any individual, it is the mismatch between the number of calories taken in by food and the number of calories that are burned by doing exercise. A person who is taking nearly 3500 calories in excess on a daily basis that want is spent by the body is likely to increase by one pound. So let us see to the food that the Japanese would eat. Japanese diet is likely to include the rice along with vegetables and low fat containing fish. With this menu they are likely to maintain a pattern in which they ensure less amount of calories are consumed by the body.
Calculation on calories:
When the food calorie balance sheet is prepared and evaluated the amount of calories made available in the food are high in other countries when compared to that of Japan. For example, when we compare Japan and United States from two different decades with 1960 and 2003 as reference years in these two decades, we should notice that the calorie availability has shifted by 267 calories only for Japan, with 2291 in 1960 and 2258 in 2003. But in United States this difference is quite high at 800 calories per person, with 3100 in 1960 and 3900 in 2003. While the calorie count itself has a major difference for the respective years, the shift in calorie availability in both the countries in between two decades is also varied by a great number. This indicates the level of control that Japan government has made in rendering food items with low calorie while the United States and other countries offered food that are rich in calories and hence tempted the individuals from having such high calorie diet.
Money spent on food:
While the Japanese have spent nearly 23.2 percent of their income on the food, they spent nearly 19.6 percent of amount on food consumed at home and only 3.6 percent for food consumed outside. When you take United States again as a reference though the people there spent only 13.1 percent of their total income on food, only 7.7 percent of money is spent on food consumed at home where as nearly 5.4 is spent on food consumed outside. This indicates that people used to have more outside than preferring the healthy food from home.
All these statistics show that Japanese having health life style than what the other countries had and hence is the reason obesity rate is low in Japan.