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What constitutes traditional and modern eating? The case of Japan

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-05-11, 04:03 authored by G Sproesser, S Imada, I Furumitsu, P Rozin, Matthew RubyMatthew Ruby, N Arbit, C Fischler, HT Schupp, B Renner
Traditional Japanese dietary culture might be a factor contributing to the high life expectancy in Japan. As little is known about what constitutes traditional and modern eating in Japan, the aims of the current study were to (1) comprehensively compile and systematize the various facets of traditional and modern eating; and (2) investigate whether these facets also apply to traditional and modern eating in Japan. In Study 1, an extensive international literature review was performed. Forty-five facets of traditional and modern eating were compiled and systematized into the dimensions of what and how people eat, and into eleven separate subdimensions. In Study 2, 340 adults from Japan answered a questionnaire. Results showed that traditional and modern eating in Japan is reflected in both what and how people eat. Within these two dimensions, ten subdimensions were found: the ingredients, processing, temporal origin, spatial origin, and variety of consumed foods, as well as temporal, spatial, and social aspects, appreciation, and concerns when eating. This study provides a broad compilation of facets of traditional and modern eating in Japan. Future research should investigate how these facets are related to life expectancy and health.


This work was supported by the JSPS KAKENHI Grant (Grant Number JP16KT0097, granted to Sumio Imada) and by the German Research Foundation (DFG) within the project "Why people eat in a traditional or modern way: A cross-country study" (Grant SP 1610/2-1, granted to Gudrun Sproesser). Additional funding came from the Zukunftskolleg and the International Office of the University of Konstanz within the second funding period of the Excellence Initiative of the German Federal Government. Publication costs were kindly covered by the DFG and open access publication funds of the University of Konstanz.


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© 2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (