What are some high-fiber Japanese foods?

Ms. Ashley Koff, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics
At an amazing lunch hosted by Japan's External Trade Organization and featuring The Beverly Hilton's Chef Katsuo "Suki" Sugiura, I learned that the true "Japanese Secret" may just be the fiber content of several core ingredients.

The fiber story begins with Kanten, an aquatic fiber that expands in the belly and helps one to feel full. It is also a great replacement for gelatin as it is a vegetarian source that delivers the same cooking properties as gelatin. The gazpacho mold made from kanten was light, delicious, fiber-rich and happily, for someone who doesn't like a jelly consistency, surprisingly not slimy.

Hijiki seaweed is another Japanese stealth fiber-rich ingredient. It also delivers a great mineral ratio of calcium to magnesium (2:1). The Hijiki crostini was an impressive way to take seaweed from a sea vegetable, less likely to have mass appeal, to an Italian taste that is perfect for a cheese-less but still calcium-rich crostini option excited to try.

Konnyaku jellies are a much enjoyed candy. On the other end of the spectrum, Konnyaku is also used as a diet tool because the high fiber and no calories helps to fill you up -- consider it a "free food" for those who understand "dieter's speak."

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