Japanese vegans and vegetarians

Let me write about Japanese people today.

I was always wondering why there were still so few vegans or vegetarians in Japan. I didn’t understand why most Japanese people wouldn’t want to change their diets. Recently, I finally understand.

Japanese people want to be the same as others. It’s our culture. We don’t want to look different or extreme.

When a typical Japanese person wants to start something new, she first looks around the others and ask their opinions. If nobody approves it, she just gives up. Even if she starts that without asking first, and others say “No one else does that,” she gives up. We don’t want others to say we are different.

My mother was one of these typical conservative people. When I started my vegetarian diet 20 years ago, she said “why can’t you be normal?” We had a lot of fights. It was a pretty difficult path to be a vegetarian. Now, she understands why I don’t eat. It took 10 years.

When I stared my BLE (Bright Line Eating), all of my Japanese colleagues said, “There is nothing good to live for if you can’t eat what you want.” They sounded like they wanted me to be “normal”. On the other hand, foreign colleagues just said, “good luck.” I felt being different is not easily accepted in Japan.

Japanese people typically worry about other people’s reactions. They are comfortable to be “the same”. That is why we are good at cooperation, but that is why Japanese people’s change is always slow.

But you can eat differently even if you are in Japan or any other countries. You don’t have to worry you might look like a freaky eater. Trust me.

Thanks for reading today.

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