The Science of Kekkai

Have you heard of a word “Kekkai” in Japanese? According to English dictionary, it means a barrier and often used as a spiritual or a magical meanings. Is Kekkai the place that Abeno Seimei, a powerful diviner (Onmyo-ji), prayed and purified to prevent evil spirits from coming in?

Today’s theme “Kekkai” is not such a psychic topic.
It is a spot of land where coal is buried to make the space full of negative ions. Well, this explanation is still difficult to understand, isn’t it?

Do you remember that I told about Iyashiro-chi (lands where more negative ions than positive ions are detected) in my old entry “Iyashirochi and Kegarechi” posted on July 7th?
To make Iyashiro-chi, first you need to excavate a hole of 1 meter across and 1.5m deep at each apex of an equilateral triangle with all sides of 30m. Next you bury 150kg of powder coal in the hole and then refill the hole with soil. By expanding and repeating this process, it’s possible to make even tens of hectares Iyashiro-chi where negative ions share the space predominantly. If you stretch a hemp rope across inside and outside of Iyashiro-chi, a lot of negative ions are detected in the inside area.

For example, when building a house in Japan, it is our old custom to invite Shinto priest to purify a building site. Shinto priest pours libation on the sides (corners) of the land surrounded as a quadrangular by ropes. If you measure ions inside and outside of the quadrangular, there are more negative ions inside than outside. You can say the inside area is Kekkai full of negative ions.

Dr. Higa, the developer of EM Technology, incorporated his own ideas of EM Technology with the concept of kekkai when the farms he supervises have trouble with sparrows depredating crops. Doctor would pour 500ml of EM all around the farm site. This creates Kekkai around the farm and is effective to keep birds out of the space.

Are there any common points between Kekkai by coal burying method and Kekkai with EM?
Yes, there is. The both Kekkai gives out 6.27 far-infrared wavelength grow light. If the land is surrounded, the wavelengths generated from all sides resonate with each other and eventually frequency will be generated stronger and stronger.
This wavelength makes the environment with dominant negative ions. Termite, mosquitoes, moth and food spoilage bacteria can’t enter this zone. If you bury 2/3 of 500ml EM bottles in the ground (1/3 of bottle sticking above the ground) at every corner in a farm, you can keep away moles.

A small company in Noto peninsula of Ishikawa sells the 10cm wide yellow tape for Kekkai which generates negative ions. They made a TV program to experiment of this product. In the trial, they placed a piece of meat in the center of the space surrounded by this yellow tape. On the other hand, there was another piece of meat in the space surrounded by normal tapes for a comparison. When crows were released, they picked up the meat in the space of normal tapes, but no crows could enter the area surrounded by this yellow, negative ion tapes.

In old Shinto shrines, people used to hang laid hemp ropes with strips of paper to keep sacred places. Back in old days, people knew and experienced the effect of Kekkai.

Based on the coal burying method mentioned above, I buried coal at 6 points close to the park and the elder care facility in Koto-ku and continue observation. Negative ions are always dominant in this place and this is obvious compared to the distant point over 100m from the park.
Changing a vast extent of land into Iyashiro-chi is just like playing a board game, Othelo. If we can flip the disks at the edges from black to white, it is pretty much possible to change all the black disks on the board to white.

Stretch a rope quadrangular space and hang strips of paper shown as above makes the space sacred, so-to-speak “Kekkai.”

“Teriyaki Recipes” is now available on Kindle Store!!

We are so happy to announce that we have released Dr. Akiko’s latest book in the series, “Akiko Sensei’s Healthy Recipes,” available now on the Kindle store. Co-authored by Mariko Watanabe, Teriyaki Recipes offers a new look at the traditional Japanese cooking style with more than 20 delicious recipes and full-color pictures.

Her latest book in the Akiko Sensei’s Healthy Recipe series, Teriyaki Recipes: Upgraded with Amazing New Ideas. The book is available for download today in both English on the and in Japanese on the website. While most people in the West equate teriyaki with chicken, the truth is that teriyaki is a traditional Japanese cooking method used across a wide number of applications and proteins. Chicken, beef, pork, and seafood are all proteins that lend themselves to wonderful recipes using teriyaki sauce.

In Teriyaki Recipes: Upgraded with Amazing New Ideas, Dr. Sugahara and her co-author, Mariko Watanabe, teach people interested in Japanese cooking and cuisine how to use teriyaki in recipes for teriyaki spareribs, teriyaki scallops, and even sweet dishes like deep-fried rice cakes. Each recipe comes with a gorgeous full-color photograph of the finished product.

Teriyaki Recipes: Upgraded with Amazing New Ideas is available now for purchase and download via the Kindle ebook store. Just go to and search using the keywords akiko sugahara to find her newest ebook.

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How to read food labels

Posted on FOX by Stacey Colino on July 24,2013

When it comes to food labels, any dietitian worth her salt will tell you to pay attention to them. But not all the words on those labels are created equal. Certain terms are backed up by law; others sound official but could mean anything—or nothing. Use this guide to translate the shelf talk and shop healthier with less hassle.

“Extra Lean”
Meat, poultry, or seafood labeled “extra lean” must meet strict requirements by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Every 100-gram serving (about 3.5 ounces) must have fewer than 5 grams of total fat, fewer than 2 grams of saturated fat, and fewer than 95 milligrams of cholesterol. That amounts to a pretty small dent in your total daily fat allowance, which is about 55 grams if you eat 2,000 calories a day and get 25 percent of your calories from fat. (That intake is on the low end of the recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.)

Related: 24 Nutritious (and Tasty) Snacks

Smart shopping tip: If you’re cutting back on fat, extra-lean products are a better choice than those labeled “lean,” which can contain up to twice as much total fat (10 grams) and saturated fat (4.5 grams) per serving, with the same maximum amount of cholesterol.

“Low Fat” or “Reduced Fat”
Foods labeled “low fat” are required by the FDA to deliver fewer than 3 grams of fat per serving. “Reduced fat” means the food must contain at least 25 percent less fat than the original form.

Smart shopping tip: Low or reduced fat isn’t always the no-brainer option. Sometimes there are nutritional tradeoffs: Reduced-fat peanut butter, for example, may contain more sodium and sugar to boost flavor. Compare the nutrition facts before you buy.

“Made With Real Fruit”
“Real fruit” doesn’t always mean whole fruit. It might also mean fruit extract or juice, which could contain fewer nutrients or more sugar than the whole fruit does. And there aren’t any rules for how much of it needs to be in a box of toaster pastries, cereal bars, or other food for the package to carry this claim.

Related: 5 Healthy Low-Fat Snacks From the Grocery Store

Smart shopping tip: The only way to figure out the amount of whole fruit in a product is to examine the order of the ingredients, said Angela Ginn, registered dietician (R.D.), a Baltimore-based spokesperson for theAcademy ofNutrition and Dietetics. Contents are listed in order of volume, “so don’t be impressed unless fruit—not fruit juice—is in the first three ingredients,” she said.

It means your chips, bread, cereal, or crackers contain two or more grains. But they’re not necessarily whole grains, which are a better nutritional choice than refined ones. With refined grains (such as white bread, or wheat breads that aren’t specifically labeled “whole wheat”), the nutrient- and fiber-rich parts have been milled out. The current recommendation is to make sure at least half your daily grains are whole.

Smart shopping tip: Whole-grain products list the word whole (as in “whole wheat” or “whole oats”) among the first few ingredients. You might also look for the Whole Grains Council’s symbol. Companies can pay to join this organization and receive its “stamp” on products that deliver at least 8 grams of whole grains per serving.

“99 Percent Fat-Free”
You may assume that means only 1 percent of the calories come from fat, but that’s not the case. Instead, “99 percent fat-free” means that 99 percent of a given weight of the food is fat-free, said Bonnie Taub-Dix, R.D., a New York City–based nutrition consultant and the author of “Read It Before You Eat It.” So put on your math hat here: If the food weighs 100 grams, 1 gram comes from fat. Every gram of fat contains 9 calories, so depending on the serving size, a 99 percent fat-free food may contain more fat calories than you would expect.

Related: The 30 Healthiest Foods

Smart shopping tip: As a general rule, the fat content in most products that you purchase should be no more than 20 percent of the total calories, Ginn said. The exception to this would be whole foods that are naturally higher in fat, such as nuts, eggs, oils, and meats.

“Reduced Sugar,” “ Low Sugar,” or “ No Sugar Added”
Unfortunately these labels aren’t synonymous with “low calorie.” “Reduced sugar” means the product contains 25 percent less sugar than the original form. “Low sugar” isn’t a regulated term and can mean anything. “No sugar added” simply indicates that no sugar was introduced during the preparation, cooking, or baking process—not that the product is low in sugar. It may contain fructose, which still shows up as “sugar” on the nutrition-facts panel (as with unsweetened applesauce, for instance).

mart shopping tip: Give yourself a reality check by calculating sugar content in teaspoons. First find the number of grams of sugar in one serving of the product. Four grams of sugar equal about 1 teaspoon. The American Heart Association recommends women consume a daily maximum of about 6 teaspoons (or 24 grams) of added sugar (meaning sugar that’s beyond what food naturally contains). And remember: Even if you don’t see sugar in the ingredients, it might be there.

“Sugar is the master of disguise,” Taub-Dix said. It goes by many other names, including molasses, evaporated cane juice, nectar, corn sweetener, honey, syrup, and anything ending with -ose (sucrose, dextrose, fructose, maltose). It’s all still sugar.

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How well can you interpret food labels?  This article helps you and gives you wisdom when making your food selection!  Also, do not forget to check the original article so that you will find more related information!


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What Today’s Company Cafeteria is All About

The other day I visited an ex-colleague at the company at which she works and she bought me lunch at the company cafeteria. My ex-colleague now works at a brilliant office building and the cafeteria, on the 15th floor, is fantastic like a luxury hotel lounge with large windows from which you can see fancy downtown buildings. It surprised me. The cafeteria offered a wide variety of healthy entrees and they were all visually beautiful. That’s what today’s company cafeteria is all about.

I chose one of their healthy set menus – grilled cod special. The main entree looked like fried fish, but it wasn’t actually fried. The fish was grilled with herbs and spices, then lightly seasoned. I was satisfied with and enjoyed the dish, which was garnished with plenty of veggies. The plate looked substantial but since I took a smaller amount of rice, I probably consumed less than 500 kilocalories in total.

As many of you may have noticed, company cafeterias in Japan have dramatically changed in recent years. The interior designs and atmosphere have become sophisticated, but the biggest change has been the food itself. Originally, the main purpose of a company cafeteria was to eliminate the inconvenience of going out for lunch and to provide employees with the place to rest.

Recently, however, as lifestyle-related disease prevention has been taken more seriously, a body fat & weight scale manufacturer’s best practice drew nationwide attention. The meals provided at the company cafeteria have helped the employees with successfully controlling their weight. Registered dietitians at the company were largely responsible for the success: they planned, cooked and provided low-calorie and tasty meals containing a lot of veggies for the cafeteria. Some of those menus were published as a series of books containing recipes from the company’s cafeteria, and the series has sold over 5 million copies so far. This success story was eventually made into a movie. Not only has the health appliance manufacturer gained a higher reputation, but the company also expanded into the food-service business.

Following the company’s success, other companies began to upgrade their company cafeteria. In the previous century, they valued quantity rather than quality in company and school cafeterias; well-balanced nutrition and tastiness were secondary. At the company I visited, I heard that in addition to improving the content of the meals, they have recently redesigned the interior of the cafeteria so that they could use it for office parties and for entertaining their clients. The company now regards its cafeteria as a place for creating values.

In 21st century Japan, society has evolved to where we tend to choose quality over quantity and seek new values. I think I saw an example of such a change in values in this today’s company cafeteria.

Reported by Yukari Aoike, Sugahara Institute

Middle-aged women commonly become ill with stress

Released on EurekAlert! On June 3, 2013

In four out of ten cases, long-term stress suffered by women leads to some form of physical complaint. This is shown by a study of 1,500 women carried out at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Within the Population Study of Women in Gothenburg, researchers at the University of Gothenburg’s Sahlgrenska Academy have followed around 1,500 women since the late 1960s.

The latest study within the project, which focuses primarily on stress linked to psychosomatic symptoms, showed that one in five middle-aged women had experienced constant or frequent stress during the last five years. The experience of stress was highest within the 40 to 60 age range, and those women who were stressed were more often single and/or smokers.

Among those women who reported stress, 40 percent had psychosomatic symptoms in the form of aches and pain in their muscles and joints, 28 percent suffered from headaches or migraines, and the same proportion reported gastrointestinal complaints.

“Even when the results have been adjusted for smoking, BMI and physical activity, we can see a clear link between perceived stress and an increased incidence of psychosomatic symptoms,” says Dominique Hange, researcher at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg.

Of those women who experienced long-term stress but who did not report any stress-related problems when the study began in 1968-69, 27 percent had new symptoms in the form of muscular and joint pain when they were followed up 12 years later, and around 15 percent experienced new complaints in the form of headaches and/or gastrointestinal problems.

“Since 1968, women’s lifestyles have changed in many ways,” continues Dominique Hange. “For example, many more women now work outside the home. Naturally, these changes can affect the experience of stress. But although we’ve used exactly the same question ever since 1968, we can’t take it for granted that the term ‘stress’ has exactly the same meaning today. It might also be more socially accepted today to acknowledge one’s experience of stress.”

The researchers have been able to follow all 1,500 of the women who took part at the beginning of the study in 1968 up until today, including information about cause of death. The studies do not show any clear signs that stress leads to an increased risk of an early death.

“The most important conclusion is that single women, women who do not work outside the home and women who smoke are particularly vulnerable to stress. Here, we see a greater need for preventive measures from society.”

The next stage will involve the researchers evaluating which methods can be used within healthcare, particularly within primary care, in order to help the individual to deal with stress-triggered complaints and illnesses, and to study how the individual and society can reduce the risk of exposure to stress at work.

Original Article released:

Link Cited on: LINK de DIET

Best foods to beat the heat this summer

By Jacqueline Silvestri Banks Published June 19, 2013


Summer conjures images of barbecues and pool parties but too many charred burgers may leave you feeling drowsy and sweaty. Lightening up your diet can make extreme heat more bearable. Eating the wrong foods during the summer can make you feel run down, tired and sluggish, while eating seasonally can have a cooling effect on the body, which is ideal during scorching temperatures.

We are instinctively drawn to different foods during the cold and warm months. The draw of the different foods has little to do with calories and a lot to do with the warming or cooling effect they have on the body when we eat them.

A diet full of large quantities of meat and moderate sodium will have a warming effect on the body which is great during the cold winter months but not great during the summer.

Foods that need a lot of sunshine to grow typically contain high levels of potassium which, when eaten, can have a naturally cooling effect on the body, keeping you feeling light and airy instead of hot and sticky.

With such an incredible variety of food available, many of us have lost touch with the seasonality of food. The easiest way to avoid confusion about what’s in season during the summer is to visit your local farmer’s market. Traditional farmers can only grow what’s compatible with their environment, so this ensures you’ll be making the right, cooling, summer choices.

Salads, tomatoes, cucumbers and delicious summer fruits such as watermelons and berries are all great cornerstones to your summer diet. Switch warming meat dishes for cooling seafood choices and accompany them with seaweed products since they also have cooling properties.

If you’re looking for more substance, amaranth, barley and millet are the best summer grain choices and navy, kidney and lima beans all make great cooling salads.

Summer foods don’t have to be boring; fresh ginger, cilantro, marjoram, peppermint and even white peppercorn are cooling spices that add delicious flavor to summer dishes.

When it comes to cooling your insides, the lighter and quicker you cook your food the better. Try lightly steaming, quickly sautéing or sticking with raw vegetable dishes drizzled with olive oil. Cold soups such as gazpacho or cucumber soup can be an elegant treat on a hot summer night, and using yogurt as a base for cold cream sauces can easily add richness and depth of flavor to any dish.

Although ice-cold drinks sound refreshing during the summer, they will have you sweating again in no time. While they will provide a temporary cooling effect, sticking with room temperature beverages is ideal.

Instead of switching to an iced coffee, try kissing your coffee habit goodbye altogether. Instead, opt for herbal teas that have cooling properties even when warm or fresh fruit and vegetable juices at room temperature.

Jacqueline Banks is a certified holistic health counselor and busy mother. Her focus is on helping other busy moms in all stages of motherhood keep themselves and their little ones healthy and happy. She uses natural and organic solutions to solve individual health problems and promote clean living. Check out her website at

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Recommended Exercise, Radio Taiso

When I joined my son’s school activity the other day, I did a warm-up exercise called “Radio Taiso.” When did I do this exercise last? Nearly 20 years have passed since I graduated from high school when I did this exercise in PE class. Although I occasionally worked out in a gym or played sports with my friends in the meantime, I still felt my body stiff as doing this simple and easy Radio Taiso. But I also felt very refreshing. It was so weird that I never felt that way when I had chances to do this exercise daily during schooldays.

There are few Japanese people but know Radio Taiso.  It was created in 1928 as to promote the people’s health. Primarily, it was called “National Health Exercise” and broadcasted through radio throughout Japan. Later in 1951, it was rearranged and renamed as current “Radio Taiso, Part 1 and Part 2.”

Radio Taiso has become a standard warm-up exercise in Japan. School children do it at the beginning of PE class or athletic meets. Construction workers or those who are engaged in physical labor are usually required to do Radio Taiso in their morning meeting. It is effective to stimulate their mind and body to awake before their work. Some people make it a daily habit to do Radio Taiso. But it is definitely true that there are many people who have a negative image of Radio Taiso as they recall it as one of the displeasing assignments for elementary school children during the long summer vacations, when it’s supposed to be fun and free from school. Typically, children wish to rise late in the morning and they expect it possible during the summer vacation. Bur in reality, they must get up early enough to attend Radio Taiso gathering in a school playground or a park in their neighborhood. Despite the aim of Radio Taiso as to maintain children’s daily routine even during a long vacation, most children including me did not like it.

Author Kakko Nakamura, Publisher Kodansha

Radio Taiso has such history, but it has been a boom among young people, especially women recently. The beginning of the boom was a book “It’s actually amazing! Radio Taiso for the adults. (Kodansha)” published in April 2012. The author, Dr. Kakko Nakamura is also an athletic doctor who is in charge of giving guidance and treatment for national rhythmic gymnastics members says Radio Taiso moves the whole body stimulating every muscle and it is effective to make slender body. The book comes with a DVD showing how to do Radio Taiso properly. This idea caught attentions and interests of young women who care about diet and their figures. DVD allows them to do Radio Taiso at home in private.

Radio Taiso has two parts, Part 1 and Part 2, and each part has 13 kinds of exercise which moves all the joints and muscle to the sides, back, and forth with a balance and thoroughly. Every step of Radio Taiso is simple and easy to understand but it was designed and created by a team of gymnastics professionals who precisely calculated that the exercise required no excessive force. Both Part 1 and 2 takes about 3 minutes. Plus, each movement intentionally uses the parts we seldom use. These are the significant factors to make into a daily habit. The sequence of movements is also designed precisely for hardness increases step by step.

Did you know that we only use 30% of total muscle in our daily lives? Radio Taiso seems so simple but if you pay attention to each movement, you cannot help but feel a slight pain. It means that where you feel a slight pain is not used unless you move intentionally as Radio Taiso. I used to make fun of Radio Taiso until my son’s school event the other day. Radio Taiso after 20 years was quite an exercise for middle-aged woman.

Radio Taiso lasts for just three minutes. When I was a child, I moved my arms and legs at random. But I realized if I move with intentions and master each movement, I am able to appreciate effects of aerobic exercise, muscle training, stretching, and body balance.

Bending and stretching knees and waist or twisting the upper half of the body can ease the stiff muscle, and stimulate the whole body leading to the acceleration of blood circulation. Stimulated blood circulation enhances the basal metabolism which helps burn body fat, beef up muscle, and changes one’s physical constitution to lose weight. Immune system will also improve and we tend to stay away from getting sick. Radio Taiso eventually moves our internal organs, which shall be helpful to relieve constipation. This whole body exercise surely eases back pains and lumbago.

Partially Cited from Kampo Insurance Co., Ltd.

From the web site below you can get detailed pictures or video about steps of Radio Taiso. (Available only in Japanese.)

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Staying healthy is to continue good eating style and moderate exercise. Radio Taiso has gained its status as a nation’s most famous exercise because it has the factors to be healthy. Nowadays, you can find music or movie of Radio Taiso on YouTube, but what I strongly recommend is to follow the original radio broadcast at 6:30 every morning. Do this simple exercise first thing in the morning so that you will feel refreshed and inspire you for the rest of the day. If possible, try to keep time for second Radio Taiso before going to bed.

As a matter of fact, the origin of Radio Taiso has something to do with a physical education class during militarism era back in the history. Contrarily, in recent days when individualisms are highly praised, there are some people who choose to sleep in or who believe that they cannot exercise unless they pay to enroll a private sports club. Traditional style of Radio Taiso is for anybody in the local community to get together and exercise. Even for a short period of time, as people gather, they’ll greet and get to know each other. It is worth reviewing Radio Taiso as one of the trends of cool Japan.

Retiring later cuts risk of dementia

New research boosts “use it or lose it” theory
Posted on The Japan Times July 17, 2013 by Marilynn Marchione

Retirement’s for wimps: June Springer, 90, poses at her workplace in Alexandria, Virginia. | AP

BOSTON – New research boosts the “use it or lose it” theory about brainpower and staying mentally sharp. People who delay retirement have less risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia, a study of nearly half a million people in France found.

It’s by far the largest study to look at this, and researchers say the conclusion makes sense. Working tends to keep people physically active, socially connected and mentally challenged — all things known to help prevent mental decline.

“For each additional year of work, the risk of getting dementia is reduced by 3.2 percent,” said Carole Dufouil, a scientist at INSERM, the French government’s health research agency.

She led the study and gave results Monday at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Boston.

About 35 million people worldwide have dementia, and Alzheimer’s is the most common type. In the U.S., about 5 million have Alzheimer’s — 1 in 9 people aged 65 and over. What causes the mind-robbing disease isn’t known and there is no cure or any treatments that slow its progression.

France has had some of the best Alzheimer’s research in the world, partly because its former president, Nicolas Sarkozy, made it a priority. The country also has detailed health records on self-employed people who pay into a Medicare-like health system.

Researchers used these records on more than 429,000 workers, most of whom were shopkeepers or craftsmen such as bakers and woodworkers. They were 74 on average and had been retired for an average of 12 years.

Nearly 3 percent had developed dementia but the risk of this was lower for each year of age at retirement. Someone who retired at 65 had about a 15-percent lower risk of developing dementia compared to someone retiring at 60, after other factors that affect those odds were taken into account, Dufouil said.

To rule out the possibility that mental decline may have led people to retire earlier, researchers did analyses that eliminated people who developed dementia within 5 years of retirement, and within 10 years of it.

“The trend is exactly the same,” suggesting that work was having an effect on cognition, not the other way around, Dufouil said.

France mandates retirement in various jobs — civil servants must retire by 65, she said. The new study suggests “people should work as long as they want” because it may have health benefits, she said.

June Springer, who just turned 90, thinks it does. She was hired as a full-time receptionist at Caffi Plumbing & Heating in Alexandria, Virginia, eight years ago.

“I’d like to give credit to the company for hiring me at that age,” she said. “It’s a joy to work, being with people and keeping up with current events. I love doing what I do. As long as God grants me the brain to use, I’ll take it every day.”

Heather Snyder, director of medical and scientific operations for the Alzheimer’s Association, said the study results don’t mean everyone needs to delay retirement.

“It’s more staying cognitively active, staying socially active, continue to be engaged in whatever it is that’s enjoyable to you” that’s important, she said. “My parents are retired but they’re busier than ever. They’re taking classes at their local university, they’re continuing to attend lectures and they’re continuing to stay cognitively engaged and socially engaged in their lives.”

The Original Article:

Ramadan and Dates (Report from Malaysia)

Ramadan as a month of fasting is from July 10 to August 7 this year. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and Muslims have to observe fasting from dawn until sunset during the time. In Kuala Lumpur, Muslims have breakfast before dawn about 5:45 a.m. and can’t eat and drink anything until sunset about 7:30 p.m. Malay stalls and restaurants in whole towns are closed in daily time and opened after dark.

It’s amazing that they can’t drink even water. For example, in case of accidental drinking water while swimming, the fasting of that day is invalid. So, swimming during Ramadan is discouraged.

I asked some friends whether they lose a lot of weights through Ramadan period, but they say no. It’s because they have heavy dinner and breakfast for many hours. It’s more likely that they are rather gaining weights so that they eat a lot in the celebration called “Hari Raya Puasa” after Ramadan.

By the way, dates are displayed in the shop-front in this Ramadan season. It’s because Muslims have a custom to eat a few dates when they break from fasting after sunset.

Dates are very sweet fruits and an excellent source of minerals such as potassium, fiber, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. They are also rich in dietary fiber including pectin which is a relief for constipation!!
So, dates are ideal fruits for those who are anemic, constipation, pregnant etc. It’s also good for people on a diet. In Middle East, pregnant woman is recommended to eat dates every day to have a healthy baby.

Well, I am nine months pregnant now and I haven’t known this ideal fruit until now. I will start to eat dates for coming puerperal and nursing period.

Please let me add explanations about Ramadan to eliminate your concern. Pregnant and nursing women can leave fasting. Also, those who are ill, travelling, elderly are not obliged to fast, but they still must make up the days missed later.

I will give birth to my second child next month in Kuala Lumpur and this is a big challenge for me. I look forward to reporting local information about childbirth and childcare comparing to Japanese ways. Just wait till you see my next report!

Reported by Makiko Wada, Sugawara Institute