Experimenting with new diets – turning Japanese

Recently I have been diagnosed with IBS after having a particularly bad few weeks. I have been told in the past that I might have it, and I worked out for myself that I was probably lactose intolerant, but after this particularly bad flare up I decided we really needed to do something about what we eat. Our meals aren’t ‘bad’, but not great either, and the snacks on top don’t help.

I immediately started researching what I should be eating, and perhaps influenced by the toddler watching My Neighbour Totoro for the fifth time that day, I started looking into Asian, and more specifically Japanese cuisine.

I’ve always loved Chinese food, and anyone who knows me knows about my long standing obsession with noodles. I have never dared Japanese food though, as I don’t really like fish, particularly raw! The more I looked into it though, the more I began to like the idea, fresh ingredients cooked in a healthy way, and with all the flavours I love.

I took a deep breath and researched sushi. I found, to my delight, it was not the horrifying raw fish ordeal that I imagined. You could even have vegetarian. I wrote my list, headed on down to the local supermarket that I knew sold everything, and filled my basket.

First I tried Miso soup. After 24 hours with little food, I found this broth to be a really delicious and filling treat. That night we tried the sushi. We set it up, and after watching a tutorial on Youtube we went for it. We used seafood sticks, carrots and spring onions for one, and the other was tinned tuna and cucumber.

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I think you’ll agree that it’s not bad for a first go, and it was absolutely delicious. Not only that, for the first time in ages we left some as we were so full. We served it with kale crisps, which is just shredded kale leaves sprayed with oil, seasoned and baked. No reaction afterwards, which meant that for the first time in days I went to bed without a bad tummy.

Spurred on by this success I decided to try Vietnamese spring rolls for my lunch. Not the deep fried kind, but instead a very light meal of chicken, vermicelli noodles and salad wrapped in rice paper with a chilli dipping sauce. I have been having  bad reaction to bread, particularly whole wheat, and this makes a great, healthy alternative to a sandwich. You can pretty much fill it with what you like. Incredibly tasty and no bad reaction afterwards.


I really think I’m on to something here, and I’m excited about all the possibilities. Next up, won ton soup. Bring it on!


9 thoughts on “Experimenting with new diets – turning Japanese

  1. Miso soup is great. I buy a tub of the paste from the oriental supermarket and aswell as a bowls of soup I sometimes put a scoop into rice while it’s cooking in more water than usual for soupy miso rice. I love it.

  2. This post was really inspirational!. I have found bread and pastry really hard to digest in recent years and am always looking for lighter and fresher ways to eat. I had to smile when I read the bit about your inspiration being Totoro – my 26-year old daughter is a great Totoro fan and I still have some felt Totoro’s she made one Christmas!

  3. Most vegan recipes these days encompass gluten free cooking and that sounds like where you are at the moment. You can start with their recipes and add your meaty componants as you see fit (just don’t tell them I gave you permission or I would get drummed out of the vegan confraturnity all over again! 😉 ). Sorry to hear you have health challenges but at least you have discovered the source and are able to get cracking on sorting them out. Always a good place to be 🙂

  4. Our kids love all the Miyazaki films. It’s so good to know that someone else watches them. We even took them to the cinema to see Ponyo. They were the oldest kids there, but they just love them. Emily’s favourite is Princess Mononoke, George’s is Pom Poko and I think my favourite Spirited Away or Howl’s Moving Castle. Hope you get your IBS sorted soon. Not wanting to worry you, but the hospital once said my husband had it, but it turned out to be kidney stones.

    • Oh wow! I’d love to have seen Ponyo at the cinema. She’s just seen that one. I really love Spirited Away, I might introduce her to that next, or maybe Kiki’s Delivery Service 🙂 I had tests and things to rule out other causes, so no need to worry there 🙂

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