2. Switch to Japanese Cutlery

Japanese Cutlery

Here, we should clarify that we mean serving cutlery, aka ladles and dinner plates. If you have observed the Japanese, they eat with square-shaped, smaller-sized plates, which aligns with their theme of “no food wastage”. When you have a smaller plate, you are less likely to camouflage large portions of fried foods within healthier greens and beans.

Portion sizes also become more in sync with your actual needs. This will encourage children, in particular, to be more conscious of what they put on their plates. As a consequence, smaller plates will automatically translate to healthier and more fulfilling choices at the dinner table. Healthier choices, in turn, translate to fewer cravings. It’s a win-win situation!

1. Get Moving

Get Moving

As you can see, the first six habits have Japanese parents actively engaging their children through good choices at daily meals. This wins a significant portion of the battle against disease. The last habit demands that you maintain a practice of active engagement and participation, in a purely physical sense, outside your meals. Choose to embrace one family activity that gets everyone in the home moving.

Walk with your children every day to the grocery store, or to their school, or even to the neighborhood library or park. Challenge them frequently at a cycling race. Go swimming with them every weekend. Or perhaps take them hiking every other weekend. Encourage them to join you in weeding or gardening, as you also teach them the significance of homegrown beans and greens.

The World Health Organization emphasizes that children need at least 60 minutes of active movement every day. It is this active playtime that will help them grow tall, strong, and supremely healthy.

In alignment with the theme of family, Japanese parents choose to nudge their children towards physical activity by setting strong examples themselves. Therefore, the success of this habit will depend on the dedication with which you choose to engage and partner with them. As that old Japanese adage goes, “As you practice, so shall you preach.” Wise words indeed!

Related: 9 Things to Lose If You Want to Lose Weight for Good


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