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From: Dave (
Subject:         Traditional Okinawan Diet nearly vegan?
Date: August 19, 2008 at 5:43 pm PST

Jeff, in a previous post, you included the following table, which indicates that the total fish consumption of the traditional Okinawan diet is only 1% of calories. Is this correct? There seems to be a general notion that the Japanese and Okinawans both eat plenty of fish?? Thanks, Dave

Caloric Restriction, the Traditional
Okinawan Diet, and Healthy Aging
The Diet of the World’s Longest-Lived People and Its Potential Impact on Morbidity and Life Span
Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 1114: 434–455 (2007).

TABLE 1. Traditional dietary intake of Okinawans and other Japanese circa 1950

Total calories 1785
Total weight (grams) 1262
Caloric density (calories/gram) 1.4
Total protein in grams (% total calories) 39 (9)
Total carbohydrate in grams (% total calories) 382 (85)
Total fat in grams (% total calories) 12 (6)
Saturated fatty acid 3.7
Monounsaturated fatty acid 3.6
Polyunsaturated fatty acid 4.8
Total fiber (grams) 23

Food group Weight in grams (% total calories)

Rice 154 (12)
Wheat, barley, and other grains 38 (7)
Nuts, seeds <1 (<1)
Sugars 3 (<1)
Oils 3 (2)
Legumes (e.g., soy and other beans) 71 (6)
Fish 15 (1)
Meat (including poultry) 3 (<1)
Eggs 1 (<1)
Dairy <1 (<1)

Sweet potatoes 849 (69)
Other potatoes 2 (<1)
Other vegetables 114 (3)
Fruit <1 (<1)
Seaweed 1 (<1)
Pickled vegetables 0 (0)
Foods: flavors & alcohol 7 (<1)

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