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How the Japanese Diet Reduces Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the leading cause of death in America. While poor diet is one of the key risk factors associated with heart disease, studies show that when North Broward part-time caregivers encourage their loved ones to adopt alternative diets, such as that of the Japanese, it can actually reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.

The Japanese diet traditionally consists of mostly grains, vegetables, and fish. Outlined in an official capacity by the Japanese government in 2005, the “spinning top” food guide advocates moderation in addition to nutrition. Water and tea reside at the top of the food guide, followed by the rest of the food groups in order of daily dietary recommendations:

  • Five to seven servings grains (rice, bread, noodles, pasta)
  • Five to six servings vegetable dishes
  • Three to five servings fish and meat dishes (meat, fish, egg, and soybean dishes)
  • Two servings dairy
  • Two servings fruit

By following this food guide and consuming snacks, confectionery, and beverages in moderation, the Japanese maintain a healthy and well-balanced diet rich in vitamins and nutrients. Additionally, the Japanese also practice healthier cooking habits, such as using water instead of oil and limiting portion sizes.

According to a study conducted by the American Heart Association, the Japanese exhibit few incidences of cardiovascular problems due to the low intake of saturated fats and the preferred consumption of soy and fish. To reach this conclusion, medical risk factors for heart disease and dietary variables were taken from Japanese residents living in Japan and Japanese emigrants living a primarily Western lifestyle in Hawaii. Results indicated the Japanese in Japan had much lower body mass index, lower levels of both low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL), and a higher intake of polyunsaturated and polysaturated fatty acid ratio and omega-3 fatty acids than the Japanese living in Hawaii.

The results of this study indicate that dietary variables play a significant role in lowering risk factors associated with heart disease and stroke. The Japanese diet is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, heart-healthy nutrients and low in Western diet staples such as processed food and red meat. By following a well-balanced Japanese diet, North Broward post-stroke caregivers can ensure that cholesterol and blood pressure levels remain low, thus drastically reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke.

Learn more about reducing stroke and cardiovascular disease risk when you turn to Home Care Assistance of North Broward, FL. We are a leading home care agency dedicated to helping seniors maintain health and wellbeing by promoting nutritious diet, regular exercise, and socialization. Additionally, we help seniors with various tasks around the house including housekeeping and personal care. Contact us today at 954-906-5161 to learn more about our services and schedule a complimentary in-home consultation.