Victoria Beckham's Japanese Diet

The skinny Mrs. Beckham talks about her love for all Japanese food

  Victoria Beckham is a strict follower of the Japanese diet
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When it comes to putting the words "Victoria Beckham" and "diet" in the same sentence usually signals the beginning of a very long expose, riddled with rhetoric questions such as "does she really starve herself" or "I wonder if it's possible for any other woman out there to keep that thin". The fact is, it all becomes much less impressive and more down-to-earth the moment we are all aware of the fact that Victoria's weight is not the result of a crash diet or of a constant, self-punishing abstinence form food, but rather the direct consequence of a choice in lifestyle. To be more precise, Victoria's diminutive frame and her waspish waist are a by-product of Mrs. Beckham's love for what is generally known as "the Japanese diet".

"I eat really healthy, I love Japanese food, lots of fish, any sort of fish, any sort of vegetable, lots of fruit, that kind of thing," Victoria herself stated on one occasion. In fact, the whole concept of "Japanese diet" is a lot more complex than we might initially imagine. It's not simply a matter of mixing and matching some miracle ingredients, but rather a question of adopting a particular lifestyle that blends healthy, cleverly-prepared food, regular exercising plus a little extra wisdom on the side - for emotional and spiritual comfort.

A very important concept of the Japanese diet is that of ''hara hachi bunme" - which translates into eating until you are about 80 percent full. As most of you probably know, the Japanese keep their portions small, usually in accordance with plate size. Also, various types of food are not piled onto a single plate, but rather eaten and enjoyed separately. Last but not least, the average Japanese consumes about 25% fewer calories per day than the average American - and the switch for McDonald's or KFC to the less calorific, more healthy Japanese food doesn't have to be the most painful thing you ever did.

The secret is replacing energy-dense food (that is, the food containing a higher number of calories per gram) like chocolate or cookies with those less energy-dense things such as fruits, vegetables, and broth-based soups. Not coincidentally, the "seven pillars of Japanese food" are fish (with all the nutritional benefits, including less fat), vegetables, rice, soy, noodles, tea, and fruit. As far as Victoria Beckham is concerned, control is the way to go when it comes to eating. "I think there's a big difference between someone having an eating disorder and someone who is controlled about what they eat. There's a big difference, and every now and then of course I go out and eat what I like. But I do try to be quite disciplined in the way that I eat".

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By    23 Apr 2008, 13:29 GMT