Japan

Japan’s low carb consumption makes it lightest of all G8 nations

By RJ Whitehead

- Last updated on GMT

Japan’s low carb consumption makes it lightest of all G8 nations

Related tags: Nutrition

An analysis of the G8 nations has highlighted striking differences in calories and other macronutrients purchased from packaged food in these countries with Mediterranean and Japanese diets being the healthiest, according to Euromonitor.

In mature markets, where packaged food makes up a significant share of people’s overall diet, the research agency’s exercise has been particularly insightful. 

Japan lowest on the calories

Out of Germany, France, the UK, Italy, the US, Canada, Russia and Japan, Germany consumes the most calories from packaged food, with a total of 1,733 Kcal per person per day, while Japan, ranks at the bottom: the average Japanese consumers purchase “only” 1,086 Kcal per day from the category.

The countries with the lowest obesity levels—Japan and Italy—are also the ones whose consumers have the least sugar in their diets.

Italians purchase three times less sugar from soft drinks than the average US consumers, who buy on average 50 grams of sugar per person per day from the category​,” said Filippo Battaini, research analyst at Euromonitor. 

Japan fares better than any other G8 country with just 5 grams of sugar per capita per day purchased from soft drinks, about three times less than Italian consumers and 10 times less than US consumers.

Asian vs. washoku diets

According to Euromonitor International’s Countries and Consumers data, with just 3% of the total population, Japan has the lowest percentage of obese population among G8 countries, way below the second lowest, Italy, where 11% of the population is obese.

The Asian and the Mediterranean countries fares much better than the US and the UK, which with 42% and 27% respectively rank first and second in terms of percentage of obese population among the G8 countries. 

Perhaps, after all the consideration that the Mediterranean diet enjoyed in the past from nutritionists, it is time now to investigate the potentials and the benefits of Japanese diet​,” said Battaini.

The healthiness of Japanese diet played an important role in making washoku, the traditional Japanese cuisine, gaining the Unesco’s Intangible Cultural Heritage status in 2013​.”

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2 comments

Reply to Chris Forbes-Ewan

Posted by FoodNavigator-Asia,

Hello Chris, Thanks for pointing this out. The original number came from a media statement from Euromonitor.

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Incorrect claim about sugar intake from soft drinks

Posted by Chris Forbes-Ewan,

The article includes the claim that intake of sugar from soft drinks is 99 grams per capita per day in Japan, and states that this is ten times less than applies to US consumers. I assume that this is a typo, and it should read '5 grams'. (Earlier in the article, it is stated that US consumption of sugar from soft drinks averages 50 grams per day.) Can a future newsletter correct this glaring error, please.

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