April 07, 2021 4 min read
Did you know that in Japan they drink coffee before a nap? And in oriental culture, people regularly cleanse their soul with steam baths?
Every culture has it´s own beauty and health tips. Fortunately! Because that way we can learn from other cultures and then integrate health tips into our own daily lives.
Many tips may sound strange at first, but if you investigate a bit closer, they all have their benefits and justifications.
We have put together a small selection of beauty and health tips from 5 different cultures.
Indian wisdom is full of history and beliefs about some dos and don'ts when it comes to the body and health.
One conventional Indian beauty tip is the turmeric mask. Turmeric acts as an antioxidant and reduces the process by which cells age and die. As a result, skin is said to age more slowly and look more radiant. In addition, turmeric is said to prevent pimples and help with acne. This is mainly because fat is stored in the skin due to sugar and fat-heavy foods. Turmeric boosts fat metabolism, so that fat can be converted back into energy.
Also, turmeric has a positive influence on collagen formation.
To try the turmeric mask yourself mix 2 tablespoons of turmeric, 1 tablespoon of honey, 1 tablespoon of plain yogurt and 1 teaspoon of oil. Mix it into a solid orange cream and apply it to your skin. After 20 minutes of exposure, you can get rid of the Indian face and body mask.
Et voilà! Enjoy a soft and healthy skin according to Indian tradition!
Japan is considered a role model country when it comes to obesity. The number of overweight Japanese is impressively low. So, it's no wonder that we have a lot to learn from the Japanese.
One health tip that is particularly widespread among the Okinawans (Okinawa: a prefecture consisting of over 150 islands in the East China Sea) is to eat only until you are 80 percent full. The idea behind this is to stay in peace with yourself and eat only as much as you really need. This way you also avoid bloating and a feeling of fullness. Many Japanese leave leftover food on the plate, which unlike in other cultures, is not considered rude.
Another interesting health tip from Japan is to drink a coffee before going to bed. What? Wait! Isn't coffee supposed to wake you up? In a Japanese study, people drank 200 mg of coffee before taking a 20-minute nap. The result: these people felt more awake after their nap than the people who didn't take coffee.
The reasoning for this is because of adenosine: when you consume coffee, the caffeine kicks in and breaks down adenosine, a molecule in the brain that triggers wakefulness. So, when adenosine levels rise, you become more tired. Therefore, napping at this time helps flush out adenosine and drinking coffee further reduces the molecule's effect.
Try it for yourself and let this Japanese health tip convince you!
In Chinese culture, there are many habits and traditions to grant one's health. A traditional Chinese health tip is to avoid cold drinks and foods. The reason is simple: our stomachs like warmth.
Too many iced drinks or foods can slow down digestive function. To make your digestion easier, it's a good idea to have warm drinks and foods.
For example, many Chinese drink green tea before and after every meal. According to a study in theJournal of the American College of Nutrition, drinking green tea can speed up your metabolism.
However, it is important that you drink the tea only before and after the meal and not during it because this could disturb the digestion.
Let's move on to another culture that is full of traditions and wisdom when it comes to health and beauty. In Islamic culture, cleansing the body plays an important role. The traditional Hamam refers to a ceremony of oriental steam bathing. Going to a Turkish bathhouse is a combination of a body cleansing, a massage and a steam bath.
According to oriental wisdom, this body cleansing serves not only to cleanse the entire body, but also the soul. After a visit to the Hamam, one's energy reserves are recharged, the head is clear and the body is loosened and relaxed by the massage.
Steam baths in different temperatures are also said to strengthen the immune system and help the general well-being. Maybe you don't have a traditional Turkish bathhouse near you but going to a spa also helps to forget the stressful everyday life.
For Turks, at least, going to the Hamam regularly is an important and effective health tip.
In Hungarian cuisine, many fermented foods are used: Cucumbers, peppers, cabbage and tomatoes. Fermenting is a natural process of fermentation, which is carried out thanks to bacteria, moulds or yeast. These are either already in the food anyway or added to it. The healthy thing about pickled foods is the lactic acid bacteria. The lactic acid bacteria are healthy for the stomach and support digestion. As a result, metabolism runs smoothly and the body can absorb all the important nutrients.
For this reason, we should all learn something from Eastern European eating habits and integrate many more pickled cucumbers and cabbage into our everyday life.
But be careful when buying fermented foods: Many fermented foods contain high levels of salt. So pay attention to the label when you buy them and the sodium content.
Every culture is unique and so are their beauty and health tips! While Japanese drink coffee before naps and always leave something on their plate, Indians take care of their skin with orange turmeric masks. In Turkey, people regularly visit steam baths to escape the stresses of everyday life and boost their immune systems.
Chinese try to avoid cold foods and drinks, so they drink a comforting green tea before and after a meal. And from Eastern European cultures we can learn that adding fermented foods to our diet has a positive effect on the intestinal flora.
What strange health tip is there in your culture?