Japanese Vegan Cooking @ Lorna Sundberg UVA International Center, September 24, 2010

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We had another vegan cooking class at this location in University of Virginia.

The program was started by a short health talk on three longest living people in the world, which was first introduced by Dan Buettner on November Issue of National Geographic Magazine in 2005.  These people are in Okinawa in Japan, Sardinia in Italy and the Seventh-day Adventist in America. What they had in common were they ate plant-based diet (high in antioxidant, lots of legumes and nuts), they had strong family bond and/or (faith based) community, they were physically active, have a garden, and had their purpose to live.  US News and World Report had an article called “10 Health Habits That Will Help You Live to 100” which included “to live like a Seventh-day Adventist” as one of the ten.  We also looked at a few studies involving Japanese people. We looked at one study (“Dietary Factors Related to Higher Plasma Fibrinogen Levels of Japanese-Americans in Hawaii Compared With Japanese in Japan”Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2006;26:1674-1679.) which concluded “Higher intake of iron, sugar, and caffeine, in addition to obesity, account largely for higher fibrinogen levels with Westernized lifestyle”. Interestingly Japanese in Hawaii took more supplements than those in Japan, but they had higher cholesterol as well as Higher Plasma Fibrinogen. Another research (“Preventing diabetes — applying pathophysiological and epidemiological evidence”, British Journal of Nutrition (2000), 84:S173-S176) among Japanese Americans in Seattle, Washington, showed a higher prevalence of type 2 diabetes than in Japan, which suggested that factors associated with ‘westernization’ might be playing a role in bringing out underlying susceptibility to diabetes. A diet higher in animal fat and lower levels of physical activity were risk factors leading to increased type 2 diabetes.

Taking the best of these three was the menu of the day because we had Japanese style vegan with some Mediterranean ingredients.  We even had some light exercise using spiral slicer.

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