Weight loss/gain

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Weight loss/gain

Postby Quercus » Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:21 am

Has anyone noticed if they gained or lost weight while being on the programme, due to the change in diet with eating more Japanese foods? Also I'm wondering about if it did have an effect on you, if it differs from where you came from or not, US, UK, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, Canada, Trinidad & Tobago (did I leave anyone out?).
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby WhiteBear » Sun Jul 10, 2011 8:07 am

Quercus wrote:Has anyone noticed if they gained or lost weight while being on the programme, due to the change in diet with eating more Japanese foods? Also I'm wondering about if it did have an effect on you, if it differs from where you came from or not, US, UK, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, Canada, Trinidad & Tobago (did I leave anyone out?).


I've found from my trips to Japan is that I'll put on weight at first (mainly because there's so much yummy food that I want to eat), then as I adjust, I lose more weight.
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby Siyris » Sun Jul 10, 2011 8:15 am

Not there yet, but during my semester in Nagoya I lost 50lb in 5 months. And that was with my host mom feeding me enough food to make me uncomfortable every meal.
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby Takamizawa » Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:19 am

WhiteBear wrote:I've found from my trips to Japan is that I'll put on weight at first (mainly because there's so much yummy food that I want to eat), then as I adjust, I lose more weight.


I actually had the opposite results. I lost a bunch of weight when I first went to Japan (healthier foods, smaller portions, cooking for myself), but after I joined a sumo club I had a backlash to all the healthy eating. I put on like 50lb eating McDs, yakiniku, and all you can eat ramen. Then, realizing I was getting ridiculously fat, I re-embraced the healthy lifestyle, losing 70lb for a net win :D . It was a 2 year rollercoaster, but all in all it's pretty damn easy to be healthy in Japan in my opinion, especially compared with the States.
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby Pyrography » Sun Jul 10, 2011 10:31 am

It is easier to be healthy, but there's a few things that can get you, as well. If you eat school lunch, meals are designed to be very calorie-dense for growing kids, and taking seconds is encouraged (especially for foreigners!). Also, beer is plentiful at enkais and other gatherings - I drink far more beer here than back at home, which is something to watch out for.

On the other hand, if you eat a school lunch, it means you are likely at an elementary school or middle school, and can thus burn it all right back off playing with the kids after lunch. Playing tag with 100 7 year olds is about the best cardio I can think of!
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby aranako » Mon Jul 11, 2011 1:32 am

While I was studying abroad I lost around 15-20lbs, and that was with a similar experience to Siyris with my host mom (2 full plates of food @least, plus rice!) and eating McD's 4-6 times a week because it was significantly cheaper than the cafeteria. My American friends (who weren't already rails) seemed to talk about losing weight too, although I don't recall my Danish friend every talking about it.

I think it largely depends on lifestyle--here in the US, I have to drive nearly anywhere unless I want 1-2hr one way bike rides (with hills that KILL), so in Japan where I could bike/walk to anywhere and town and walk anywhere from the train stations, I was more active and therefore lost weight. If you're already pretty active, though, you might not notice a difference--my one friend who was obsessed with running and not eating more than 1 total meal a day at home (and therefore unhealthily skinny) actually gained weight back (and returned to normal levels).
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby king » Mon Jul 11, 2011 1:37 am

If you've been living with your parents back home then I'd imagine a definite loss- I've gained so much since I finished uni and moved back home! Really want to lose this in Japan!
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby Quercus » Mon Jul 11, 2011 1:48 am

I'm actually wanting to lose some, like 10 lbs or so, maybe 15. I am not as active as I need to be, my town you have to drive to go anywhere (it's a suburb), and since I graduated my university back in May I don't have access to a good gym like I used to where I went 3 or so days a week, so I've gotten a bit lazy. And living with parents haha yeah you can put on some weight, especially with Southern US cooking. So I guess it's not really weight loss I'm looking for as opposed to a bit of fat loss. I'm hoping with the ease of getting around in walking/biking in Japan in addition to (I think) their food is less in fat content (for the most part) that I'll slim down to being lean.
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby jesh » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:13 am

I put on an extra 2.5kg this year. In winter it's too rainy and miserable and summer is too blazingly hot/humid, so it's hard to get motivated to go jogging or whatever.

And the school lunches are really doing me in -- I realised last week that I could have McD's for lunch and still be taking in less calories! Lately I've started leaving at least a 3rd of my kyushoku and I don't feel hungrier in the slightest. Coming from Australia, I really feel like I'm in a constant state of carb overload with all the bread and white rice.

Since I cut back on school lunches the weight has dropped a little, but I'm looking forward to going home and hitting the gym and eating whatever I damn well want for lunch :lol:
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby saikick » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:17 am

I've gained 6kg since I came here due to stress related issues and therefore, over eating.

However, since January I've been going to the gym so I've slowly started to lose some of the excess weight.

I can't resist the food here. They're all so delicious! (especially sweets :oops: )
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby maulen » Mon Jul 11, 2011 2:39 pm

This depends a lot on the person.

Personally, I lost a lot of weight in the first 6 months and stayed stagnant for a couple after that. Then winter finally thawed...in April...and I started running, which I've come to enjoy. The weight loss has started again...so much so that one of my JTE's starts every class off with 'Wow, xxxx-sensei has lost weight, hasn't he!' (I go to that school like twice a month..).

Anyway, I'm from the States, ate horribly before Japan, and never exercised. If I so desired, I could continue that lifestyle here in Japan. Most people can, as well...it's up to you to make that change.

As said before, becareful with those school lunches...the rice is a killer. A dude at my yakuba said he lost about 20kg just by cutting out rice from his dinner. Half the teachers I know don't eat the rice, either...I think the lunch menyu lists the lunches between 700 and 1,000 kcal. Varies between what's being served and whether it's elementary or middle school for me.
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby urania » Mon Jul 11, 2011 3:22 pm

Wow! I am amazed at how many of you lost weight! Go you :).

I on the other hand gained 7kg. I certainly experienced a lifestyle change. I used to go to the gym 3 to 4 times a week but there are no gyms in my area. Stress related eating certainly didn't help. Winter was also a huge factor.

Since the end of winter though, I've lost 9kg. So now I'm less than when I came here - crazy! Most of it in the last month - I think it's the warmer weather :). I haven't really been trying so I'm not sure.

I think in the end it totally comes down to lifestyle. I wouldn't expect to lose weight just because you're moving to Japan - all the unhealthy options are still available. It's the same everywhere. It comes down to choice and exercise.
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby jesh » Mon Jul 11, 2011 3:42 pm

maulen wrote:Half the teachers I know don't eat the rice, either...


Man, wish I was at your school. At any of my 4 schools, from the way the teachers act you'd think not eating every scrap of lunch is tantamount personally to spitting in the lunch lady's face. The kids at elementary give me grief about it every time! I don't know where they put it all...how can so much cold sticky rice fit in their tiny bodies?!
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby kurilolhara » Tue Jul 12, 2011 10:57 am

I think the people with the most to fear are the ones who did study abroad in a host family setting. You lose weight eating the food that's prepared for you (even if it's a lot by our standards) but then you come back on your own and gain because you're in charge of feeding yourself (and assume you can eat whatever you want because you did the first time).

As long as you're smart you'll be OK, Japan has as many bad choices as your home country! I told my school that I'd like to bring my own lunches and they didn't have a problem with it at all (as my pred did the same). I eat with the staff at JHS and use it as a "culture tool" at ES, the kids go crazy for it.
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Re: Weight loss/gain

Postby tint01 » Tue Jul 12, 2011 2:22 pm

I've now been here a year and I've lost 5kg. I eat school lunch everyday and just tell the teachers I want a little less. There's always some little boy who wants seconds of rice. :) Junior high I don't have to worry the boys have epic janken battles to see who will get the leftovers after its all been served. My boe didn't give me the choice about school lunch. I have to eat it and can't bring a lunch. The perks are I can now eat anything because I have to eat things I don't like such as milk on a daily basis.
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