Falling off the low carb diet wagon for 2 weeks in Japan and this is what happened
“How can you not eat rice? You are Japanese!” This is what my mother said to me when I told her that I wanted to be on the low carb high fat diet while I visit her and I didn’t want her to give me fruits nor rice. And there came other remarks…. “You don’t eat fruits either? You have to be more responsible, you are feeding your baby!” Cut the story short, I just told her it was not a big deal and I would eat whatever she cooks, no stress!
It is sad to admit, but not everyone is open-minded, especially in parenting. She also said that we should consider giving our baby water during the day, especially after he takes a bath or do exercises. We only use water to sooth him when he cries a lot at night, that’s about it. Babies at his age only needs breastmilk! But that’s what her mother told her. I do respect the tradition and wisdom only if it makes sense scientifically.
My mother has always been the most health-conscious person I have ever known. She always cooked everything. Hardly processed food was ever spotted in her kitchen. I only had freshly peeled fruits if I wanted something sweet. She believed in eating more than 40 different kinds of food a day. She has a rice-dehusking machine to make perfect rice with bran still attached to the grains. Since I was little, she always made sure she had her hands on the freshest, most organically grown food for her family.
Meals were still yummy and I really enjoyed them. But I was literally having at least 150g of net carb a day. Sugar – hmm, definitely over 50g. in Thailand I would only eat carb in the evening but I already started eating them in the morning.
Things I ate daily included: rice (at least twice a day) cooked with hijiki seaweeds and some vegetables & tofu, lots of vegetables, natto, miso soup, Japanese pickles, her special smoothie (cooked leafy vegetables, kinako, apple juice, yoghurt, matcha, okura, natto), azuki beans cooked with honey, carrot juice mixed with yoghurt, kanten (agar) jelly, grilled fish, ikura, tarako, poached egg in dashi, mochi, apples and kiwi. She was fine with me saying no to more fruits like grapes and bananas!
As far as fat is concerned, I hardly ate meat nor eggs. I did bring my ghee and MCT oil but I only used 2 tablespoons of them every day. My mother did use olive oil to stir-fry vegetables but I really don’t think it was much. I did eat around 30g of pili nuts every morning to catch up with fat. Twice a day, I had one serving of grilled mackerel, ikura or tarako (fish eggs).
Anyway, it is a very well-balanced diet and this is what I had always eaten when I was little. But this is what I experienced during the 2 weeks eating differently.
- Skin problems: very dry! OK, Japan is a lot drier than Bangkok, but I had some problem like before I changed my diet.
- Stuffed nose and sore throat: I thought it was hay fever but actually no pollen was flying around anymore
- Tiredness. My god, how my eyes looked!
- Sweet craving: there it was. I was always ready to eat. Whenever my mother offered me something, I just took it. No question asked! lol
- Brain fog: because I did not sleep so well while I was there, and felt tired a lot in the afternoon, sometimes I found it hard to find the right words to finish my sentence. May be it was also to do with the fact that I was feeding my baby a lot longer than usual.
Talking about my baby, he was affected, too:
- He was more hungry.
- His skin got very dry as well. And we were putting on caster oil every day, it did not help!
He was very happy in Japan though, enjoying the nature, experiencing so many new things. A lot of energy!!! Oh, all the sudden he got so much hair. That was funny.
Anyway, now we are back in Bangkok and I am resuming my previous diet again. The first meal we had was grass-fed ribeye. It was SO GOOD!!!!!!!!!