Why People in Japan Sit on the Floor to Eat

While sitting, relaxed, at the dining table might be very comfortable, it isn’t necessarily the best thing for your health. We spend a lot of our time sitting at work, and we return home whilst sitting in the car or on a public transport only to find ourselves sitting yet again to have dinner. But most Japanese families have their meals while sitting on the floor, and you most likely won’t find chairs, even in 5-star restaurants in Japan.

1. It helps digestion.

When you sit on the floor with your legs crossed and eat, you are effortlessly doing yoga at the same time. This cross-legged position is called “easy” pose, or sukhasana, and it’s believed to increase blood flow to the stomach, helping you to digest food easily and to get the most vitamins and nutrients. When you bend forward to take food from your plate and then go back to the starting position to swallow it, you are strengthening muscles in your abdomen, which, in turn, can prevent bloating.

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