After I got married, I gained 36 pounds. All my co-workers, even the ones with kids, were skinny. It made me wonder how Japanese people stayed thin without any effort. I’ve turned to anime and manga (and my Kinesiology background) to find the answers.
|Anime/Manga Advice||True or False?|
· Eat brown rice instead of white rice.
· Cook at home.
· Avoid eating out.
· Eat small portions.
· Take 45-minute baths before going to sleep.
|· Brown rice has more dietary fiber and fewer calories than white rice.· Cooking at home will mean you won’t overeat or buy unnecessary food.· Your body operates on an input-output cycle. Smaller portions mean smaller fat deposits.
· Steam may exfoliate the skin, but 45-minute baths do not cause weight loss. They only cause you to lose water weight, or weight that can easily be regained by drinking water. Sure, your heart rate goes up, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good thing—some people have heart problems or palpitations. Hot baths also dry out your skin. I would stick with a 20-minute bath for relaxation.
|Real Clothes (Unlicensed) Exercise and Heartbreak·
· Go running in the morning.
· Get dumped by your lover and pine away by refusing meals.
|· If you exercise in the morning, your metabolism will get a wake-up call greater than your cup of coffee. Plus, you get better sleep than people who exercise in the evening.
· Some people experience heartbreak–and quickly ditch their meals to dwell on the shards left by their lovers. Results may vary.
High School Debut (Licensed by Viz) Exercise
· Go running in winter gear.
|· Heat will help you lose weight, but it is only temporary. You’re just sweating water weight, which will return once you drink water.|
Crimson Hero (Licensed by Viz) Exercise
· Play a sport.
|· Tired of running past the same scenery? Devote yourself to a sport like basketball, boxing, soccer, or in Nobara’s case, volleyball.|
Doubt! (Licensed by Yen Press) Food and Exercise
· Don’t eat sweets.
· Use a treadmill or home exercise program.
· Do a diet program.
|· Ditch the processed sweets and pick up fruits, nuts, veggies, and yogurt.
· If you don’t have a treadmill or gym membership, I would suggest a home exercise program like FitnessBlender Youtube videos or Jilian Michaels’s DVDs.· Diet programs may help you lose weight, but if you don’t make it your lifestyle, you’ll balloon into a state worse than your previous weight. Certain diet programs were created for specific types of bodies (ex. Atkins’ No-Carb Diet was made for obese people). My advice: re-create your eating habits and stick to it.
The Wallflower (Licensed by Tokyopop) Drink Water
· Drink water as soon as you wake up.
|· Nothing metabolizes fat better than water. Drink lots of it instead of sugary alternatives. Soda, energy drinks, and sports beverages all have exuberant amounts of sugar that’ll send your energy downhill when it hits 3 o’clock. If you don’t like plain water, squeeze a lemon into it. Also try green tea or black coffee for your energy fixes.|
Anime and manga say that this idea of effortless thinness is not so effortless. On a daily basis, Japanese people are mindful of their eating habits, portions, and exercise regiments—something that the rest of us can do in a quest towards weight loss.
I’ve tried all of these suggestions, and the one that has worked for me the most is my diet. Without exercise, I lost 13 pounds by revising our eating habits and sticking with it. My husband and I stopped eating meat and processed foods—chips, ketchup, soda—and replaced them with vegetables, fish, fruits, and wheat. Our lunches are measured every day, and they usually include beans, eggs, rice, salad, vegetable soup, and pasta. This lifestyle of cooking most of our meals is a little tough, but we plan ahead.
Exercise won’t account for most of your weight loss. In some cases, exercisers will see increased weight. What exercise does is build muscle, and that muscle will help burn some fat but not all of it. Your waist might get smaller and your arms might get leaner, but the real fix for your fat is your diet. If you’re about to make an excuse for not losing weight—“It’s too hard”, “I don’t have time”, “I don’t have money”—I’m sure collapsed lungs (around $20,000), heart failure ($20,000-$93,000), diabetes ($7,000-$13,000 per year), and death ($3,000-$6,600 average cost) can convince you to re-think those excuses.
How to get started for free?
Change 1 meal out of your day. That meal can be breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Make sure that meal has lots of veggies, fiber, and lean protein such as grilled chicken or fish. When you’re ready to change another meal, do it! You’ll start to see changes in your body after 30 days.
Eat less processed food. They aren’t good for you. Did you know soda is used by police officers to watch blood off the streets? Did you know mechanics use soda to take the corrosion off car batteries? Imagine what it can do your stomach. Did you know most processed food is made up of sugars, corn, and salt? Next time, look at the label and find the nutritional value.
Cook at home. A restaurant isn’t going to understand your taste buds or weight struggles. Make your food at home and check out Youtube and websites for awesome and delicious recipes. My favorite is AllRecipes.com!
Try FitnessBlender’s (or any other Youtube channel’s) chair or low-impact cardio programs. They take 10 to 30 minutes, and they’re great for anyone who has leg or knee injuries (like myself).
Go walking with a friend or loved one. When my friend was learning English, we used to take walks twice a week around our neighborhood. If you want to burn more calories, add a 1-minute jogging interval to your walk, and you’ll burn triple the calories of walking.
Laugh those pounds away! Depending on the intensity of the laughter, you can trim 10 to 40 calories off with comedy. If you’re a comedy head like me, watch George Carlin, Bill Hicks, Steve Colbert, Kevin Hart, Patrice O’Neal, Sommore, and Loni Love.
Squat it out while watching TV or listening to a podcast. Every time I tune into Sleepy Hollow or Elementary, I do squats, pushups, and tricep dips. It’s better than being a couch potato…and later becoming a potato.