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Jonosuke

Disappearing Banana and Morning Banana Diet

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The latest in the nation of fad followers, otherwise known as Japan is "Morning Banana Diet".

There are currently half a dozen banana diet books on their bestsellers list but what started the latest madness was Japan TBS-TV's "Dream Press Inc.", 4 hour long documentary program. They had a diet special program on September 19 featuring eight female "talento" following a diet plan.

In the program Kumiko Mori, plump opera singer, followed "Morning Banana Diet" plan for a month and half losing 7 kg. Since then supermarkets across the nation have been bombarded by shoppers purchasing banana so that some were running out of banana by mid day.

"Right now we are finding ourselves unable to meet the demand and it has been going on for over a week. We have never experienced a situation like this in at least several years," said a spokesperson for importer, Doles. "Generally in summer months more people buy pineapples and watermelons so we even have meetings to come up with how to sell bananas." According to Doles, they sold 25% more banana this August compared to the last year while their base price going up 12%

"Actually we cannot really be overjoyed over the phenomenon. Banana is not like manufactured goods. We can't just start producing more immediately. So at the moment we are trying to divert those going over to the Middle East to Japan," said an official at another importer, "Fresh Del Monte Japan".

The "boom" started with a book from Bunka-sha Publishing called "Morning Banana Diet" in this March. The book already sold over 400,000 copies. The book has been featured in several magazines as well as a popular daytime TV program "Omoikkiri TV" hosted by Monta Mino three times since June 5.

According to the author of Morning Banana Diet book series, if you eat banana and just drink water in morning, it helps digestion because of the enzymes and you can still lose weight regardless of what you eat in lunch and suppers.

Last year another TV program, "Hakkutsu Aru Aru Jiten' (Discover Encyclopedia) featured a Natto diet claiming it helps body metabolism but it was later found that the producers "cooked" its diet effects so some are saying viewers should remember no one specific food won't be effective.

Meanwhile in Kansai region, a major supermarket chain, "Life" says they sold over 30% more banana in August and in one week period ending September 23, they had 70% more sales compared to the last year.

(A sign in a supermarket in Nara City on September 25.)

Edited by Jonosuke

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I had noticed the massive increase in the size of banana stand displays of late.

Banana diet, phft! that did the rounds a wee while back....yet a another fad

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Like what my daddy told me...

"Martin, throw away the hammer! There are Bananas for sale at the Konsum (GDR shop)!"

And he ran to get his Baby (guess who (On the banzuke...) ) Bananas.

No Bananas in the German Democratic Republic...like in Nara now...

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Apparently more people than I originally imagined are interested in this diet, so I will give you all more details here. Please remember I don't guarantee that you lose your weight and eating only one type of food will obviously not be so desirable to your optimum health but hey this is a diet after all.

Personally I did try this for a month and I lost a bit of weight but I cannot attribute it all to this diet. I sort of got tired of eating banana every day and also sometimes you can only get non-ripe banana or too ripe banana and I am not really into eating those.

OK first this is a simple diet. Basically all you do is to eat as many banana as you'd like in morning and drink water. That's all. You don't eat anything else for breakfast.

Banana must not be treated with heat or processed in any way. It must be raw as above 43 degree C, enzymes that break down fat will be destroyed.

After breakfast, you can eat anything you want for your lunch and dinner.

On the largest Japanese SNS site, mixi, 300 people challenged this diet and it worked for them but obviously millage will differ depending on your weight to start with.

The reason for eating banana alone is to put less stress on your digest systems and to help its nutrients to be absorbed most effectively. Eating it in morning will help digest food eaten in the previous night.

Banana also contain quite a bit of fibers so it's been reported that anyone with constipation has been naturally healed as long as they stay on the diet.

Some believe eating lots of banana make you fat as it contains sugar but the sugar in banana is fructose and it helps to burn fat by accelerating your metabolism.

So here's an instruction on the banana diet:

1. Eat banana slowly and chew well. There is no limit. You can eat as many banana as you want.

2. You drink about a glass of room temperature water, not cold water. You can drink more but not less. After half an hour or so you can drink any other liquid if you wish. Try to drink little water throughout day if you can.

If you get so hungry after eating just banana and water, again wait for at least half an hour and try to eat one kind of food that can be easily digested. Obviously banana will be nice but it does not have to be.

3. In the banana diet, you can eat desert in afternoon too. Chocolate is OK but avoid something cold like ice cream. Try to eat only one kind but if you can be satisfied with a fruit, it will be better.

4. Do not have late night snack. If you get hungry after supper, try a fruit. Obviously you can eat banana but other fruits are OKas long as you only eat one type of fruits so not to stress your digestive systems again.

5. You do not need to do any exercise if all you are interested in is losing weight. Obviously if you can do exercises as well, all the better, like light weight training, walking and jogging.

6. Try to follow a regular life style. Eat your supper at least four hours before you go to bed, hopefully by 8 PM and try to sleep by midnight..

The most important thing is not to give up easily as the banana diet is not a quick way to lose weight. It is more like losing 3 kg in 3 months rather than losing 5 kg in one month.

You won't see quick results but the trick is not to give up easily after not seeing quick weight loss. It's a gradual weight loss diet.

And lastly I don't work for any banana importer nor any book publisher or author of banana diet books. Also please note CNN or any other news organization can use this information without any permission.

FWIW when I was in Japan briefly last December, there were lots of banana still on sale in supermarkets so obviously some people have given up already.

Edited by Jonosuke

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I can't help but notice that if you follow this advice you'll probably lose at least some weight even if the bananas don't do what they claim to do.

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Yes, "eat fruit in the morning", "don't eat different deserts and fruit would be best" and "don't eat at least 4 hours before sleep" seem to be staple advice for people who want to change their eating habits and lose weight gradually. My friend swore by fruit and yogurt (NOTE: not fruit-yogurt!) in the morning, as it's filling enough to last you till lunch and gives you everything you need. I swear by "no bread with lunch", which would translate to "only small bowl of rice with lunch" for the Japanese. :-)

One important thing to remember - if you stop any diet regimen after you reach your ideal weight, you'll only get the weight back on. So, pick a (well-balanced, mind you) regimen you can live with, and live with it.

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