Japanese Food - Carbs?


I am new with a pump and started counting carb only some months ago. At home, it’s easy, you have your tables, nutricional tags, calculator, etc.

Now I am going to visit Japan for 2 weeks and I am afraid how different the food is. I would like to taste and inmerse the Japanese food, no eating only occidental or known food.

I have read some websites and I have difficulties to find a clear idea how to calculate the carbs I will eat at every food time. Please, I would like to collect some information about the most popular food.

For example: I write down a list of the main food and you can help me typing how many carbs (in grams) has each food in a standard size (bowl, piece, etc.)

  • Sushi / Sashimi (mainly rice). unit: a piece
  • Rice. Unit: a bowl (Would I increase the CH for the starch?)
  • Noodle. Unit: a bowl
  • Miso soup: Unit: a bowl
  • Bread: Can I follow the European standard of 20g is 10g CH?or it is sweeter
  • Tempura: Unit: Per piece (speaking about the batter)
  • Ramen: Unit: a bowl
  • Okonomiyaki:
  • Udom/ Soba: Unit: a bowl

I know that everything’s relative depends on many factors such as sauces, quantity, added sugar for tradition in the cooking process,

Thank you

I’m envious - that sounds fun and delicious. So first, have fun and know you will have some roller-coasters especially if you’re eating out.

A few other comments: Sauces and batters are a complete mystery carb thing, and commonly way more than you would think. Be restrained with noodles and rice. If you have a cgm it will be your new best friend, if not, test more often than you think you should.

Tell us your favorite foods after you get back!

My daughter and I went to Japan for 3 weeks. Her undergrad graduation present. I got to share! Do you use a CGMS? If so, that is pretty much what saved me! I ate only Japanese food for 3 weeks! No McDonalds, nothing American (at some of the breakfast buffets there was both Japanese and American type foods offered). I found Miso soup didn’t affect me to much, Udon however that was another story! Remember too the serving portions of traditional Japanese foods are way different than US standards. And also I was taught that with rice you finish what you put in your bowl so usually I would limit those known carbs. We spent our days walking, lots of stairs too with the temples and shrines we visited. So we usually tried to have our big meal mid-day and not in the evening. Often our evening meals would be more vegetable based and limited known carbs like rice or breads. I would go back in a heartbeat! I so loved the Japanese food - even Sushi! Okonomiyaki (Osaka Pancakes), fried octopus, salads for breakfast, and don’t forget the Sake! Enjoy your trip!

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I would practice guessing (or eyeballing) different food quantities and then measure or weigh them. I haven’t been to Asia but I guess a serving of rice isn’t some standard thing. It could be fun; set it up in your kitchen and have the whole family practice their estimating skills. And there must be prizes, of course.

I would download the MyFitnessPal app.
I don’t know if it’s made to specifically work in Japan, but so long as you can get an internet connection (which should be easy there), then you should be able to still access the Western database Restaurantt food is always tricky. Foreign food even moreso.

MyFitnessPal let’s you search for various foods, change the serving size, see nutritional info including carbs/fiber, and record it if you want to track it. Plus many other features. I like the ability to enter my own half-carb recipes and let it figure out the math. I don’t know how well it will work in Japan, but I know in the US a lot of restaurants will upload their menus and nutritional info to the database, so it takes the guess work out of eating out.

For instance, this picture shows the nutritional info for one piece of tempura shrimp at Benihana. A good traditional version in Japan may vary from from the American counterpart, but it’s a good starting point. If you scroll down the app farther, it shows that the single piece contains 7.8g of carb and no fiber.

The hardest part is actually learning measures. You need to actually learn what a cup of noodles or rice looks like. Or equivalencies of weight to size. There are lots of guides online in the dieting community for portioning. I.e two dice sized cubes of cheese equaling one ounce or a palm sized piece of meat is three ounces, a tightly clenched female first is approximately one cup (no big man hands for that one), etc… Learning to eyeball the size/weight of food is seriously the key to success with this approach.

I’m pretty jealous of your travels myself. I love Japanese culture and food! Good luck

Thank you, thank you very much. I didn’t know how nice the people in this forum are.

If I could, I will invite you all :grin:

Yes, I’m using CGM, dexcom G4, so it will be my best friend.

I will take all your advices. My idea was to have a starting point and not to be afraid of facing with crazy BG levels.

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