Seaweed is one of the outstanding foods that project the uniqueness of the traditional Japanese diet. Seaweed and sea vegetables have been a key ingredient in Japanese cooking for thousands of years, and it has been claimed that this is one of the key factors in the longevity of the population. The Japanese cuisine has seven types of edible seaweed, but here the focus is on one type that is highly nutritious, yet still relatively unknown in the western world: kombu.
The charming hot spring village of Kurokawa in Kyushu is such a gem that I had a dilemma about whether or not I wanted to divulge the details! Many people visit Kyushu for the famous hot spring resort of Beppu, but venture a little further inland and you will discover the quaint village of Kurokawa.
The next time you see a traditional kimono, a Japanese hand towel or a purse, take a close look at the patterns. Notice anything familiar? More often than not, you will. Wagara are a set of traditional Japanese patterns used throughout history to modern day, inspired by nature and Chinese calligraphy and each with different meanings. Below are just a few examples.
Although the fitness and wellness industry in Japan is really expanding and embracing some international concepts, there are still a few areas that stick with their traditional ideas and customs. As a personal trainer with a specialization in pre and post-natal fitness, I believe it’s important to keep up with exercise during pregnancy. I was pretty stunned the other day when I was asked to leave the gym and renounce my membership once the staff realized that I was pregnant (and possibly not just slacking off on the cardio and core work!).