It is widely reported that the Japanese are the most long lived community in the world. 2006 statistics published by the Japanese Government pointed to the fact that there were 1.15 Million People living in Japan aged over 90 years, 29,000 of whom were over 100. It is feared, however, that Western influences will have the effect of shortening their life expectancy; and there is good reason to do so.
Weight plays a major role. The lighter you are (within reason) the less stress is placed upon your body and therefore it will remain healthier longer. It is the norm in Japanese culture to eat lightly, stopping eating when 70-80% full; it is also the norm to eat foods which are known to be healthy and low in animal fat and additives. Energy input, needless to say, is also balanced against its use. You simply wouldn’t see a (traditional) Japanese person hopping into their car to pop out to the local store; they would walk or go on their bicycle. Similarly they are more inclined to take the stairs than the elevator.
Contrast this to the Western culture, where diet is heavy in animal fats and artificial sugars, and simple everyday exercise is shunned in our quest for speed or image. For us “more” is better, be it in size of portions or in lavish attire and trappings. How have we developed such an attitude? And how can we change it? Because the only way in which we are to successfully reduce obesity levels is in the examination and understanding of our attitude and instinctive behaviors which flow from the way in which we think.
Perhaps this attitude stems from fear. Fear that we are going to miss out, or fear that we are going to be perceived as lesser than someone else. Certainly the opposite of fear is optimism, and the Japanese have this in abundance. They have a habit of giving thanks for what they have and taking every opportunity to savor what they have, no matter how small a thing it may be. In terms of food, each dish is prepared with an eye for beauty as well as taste; it is a piece of art, and this leads to taking time in its enjoyment. Contrast this with our fast food culture.
The Japanese are Buddhists and spiritual in nature, which promotes appreciation, respect and close family ties as well as optimism. If you have no deep seated beliefs about life and where it is leading you, then how can you be truly optimistic? Fear and worry are probably the greatest cause of health demise, alongside a poor diet. I remember reading a quote by a Dr Hinohara, who was at that time still practicing medicine at the age of 92, saying that the most important factor in longevity (which is directly related to having a balanced weight) is one’s outlook on life, one’s tendency to be optimistic.
Dr Hinohara provided the example that people might worry that they didn’t get a good nights’ sleep, whereas generally a lack of sleep is not a major problem; but worrying about it is. He observed that those who experienced tiredness after a night shift were more likely to do so as a result of resenting their obligations, far more than because of work stress.
Stress is only stress if you see it that way. To be optimistic and positive, and accepting of where you are at this moment would appear to be key factors in Japanese culture. And these underpin their tendency to be of balanced weight and to be the longest lived community in the world. A balanced attitude = a balanced weight. We know that diets alone simply don’t work. There are no short cuts to weight loss, not really. To lose weight and keep it off successfully you need to have a thorough examination of your core beliefs and the way in which you live.
Japanese culture is structured and has very clearly defined standards of behavior. We in the west have no clear standards or norms, which leaves it up to ourselves to create an environment which is conducive to health, happiness and longevity. In a lot of ways we have been given “too much rope” and it is up to each of us individually to harness our minds to create the lives we would prefer to live. We have the ability to lose weight easily, to think ourselves healthy and to rediscover the secret of youthfulness.
One aspect of Eastern culture which is easy to take on board is that of meditation, or hypnosis. Hypnosis is itself a state of relaxation, and thus an easy way in which to relieve stress. It also provides access to the subconscious mind enabling automatic thought processes and behaviors to be altered quickly and easily. It is easy to practice at home with the help of hypnosis downloads, and very inexpensive. Hypnosis downloads can help with many things, not just relaxation and stress relief.
The use of hypnosis to retrain your brain to lose weight easily is well known and extremely effective. It makes sense that hypnosis should work well for weight loss. Hypnosis helps you relax, relive stress, take a step back and see things from a different angle. As you create balance in your attitude and your life, with the help of hypnosis, it paves the way to easy weight loss and a balanced body weight.
Roseanna Leaton, specialist in hypnosis downloads for motivation and success.