Kanten diet

Kanten diet has gathered a lot of media attention and popularity due to its claims of slimming power. Its origin is Japan and its theory is simple.

What exactly is a Kanten diet? Does it cause weight loss? What is its logic? What are its benefits? Find all answers below.

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Kanten diet

The Kanten diet is a Japanese diet to lose weight. Kanten means agar agar. This is a substance derived from seaweed, and red algae. Originally, people used seaweed Gelidium and they used snow to dry it.

Modern agar is made from Gracilaria seaweed, reveals the Tokyo Foundation. This swells with water and therefore after consumption, it makes the stomach full.

In this diet, the dieter adds red algae-derived products with his or her meals or has it as a snack. This has low calories and has filling power. And it has high fiber content.

Therefore, it makes a person eat less and thus helps in weight management. Tokyo-based cooking coach Mickey Horiike says:

It’s actually a traditional food,”

“Japanese people have been eating it for ages.”

Kanten diet
Agar agar flakes (Source: Nitty Grits)

The actual meaning of Kanten is ‘cold sky’. Hence, it was used for the agar since people dried trays containing the congealing agar either in the sun or snow-layered rice fields. People eat it raw or after freezing.

Preparations of agar

In this diet, you can eat agar fresh or raw. It comes as a powder, flakes, or in bar form. Reconstitute the agar powder or flakes in water.

Flavor this with your favorite flavor. Let it set at room temperature to form a jelly. One can add fruits to it for extra taste and nutrition.

Mickey loves yuzu. For this, she adds 2 g of Kanten powder to 500 ml of water. And to this mixture, she adds a few spoonfuls of the yuzu citrus jam. She pours this into a shallow container. It sets in 30 minutes. Mickey claims:

The beauty of it is, unlike gelatin, it sets at room temperature,”

“And of course, it’s totally healthy.”

Kanten diet
Flavored jelly from afar agar or kanten (Source: Pinterest)

Nutritional value and benefits

100 grams of agar or kanten has 306 calories. But at one serving you use only 4 to 9 grams. Therefore, this would amount to only 12 to 28 calories. 100 g of kanten has 7.7 g of fiber and this is 0.5 g in 1 to 2 tsp.

The fiber makes you feel full. The food is taken after it is less in amount. Additionally, content itself has fewer calories. It also increases bowel movements and thus lowers body cholesterol. Therefore, you lose weight healthily with kanten.

Kanten diet
Agar agar vegetarian jelly (Source: YouTube)

In a kanten diet, there is no structure or plan. There is no strict schedule too. The advice is to have some before the meals. And again take them after the required portion of meals to give fullness and decrease cravings.

You can eat it as a dessert or add it to soups to thicken them. Eating unsweetened agar is better and preferable.

Read more: Mushrooms: their types, nutritive values, and health benefits!

This diet idea is put up in a study of 2005 that is in the journal Diabetes, Obesity & Metabolism. Two groups of study participants were obese diabetics with type 2.

One group was on a regular diet and the second was on a kanten-supplemented diet for 12 weeks. The latter group had more weight loss, better sugar control, lower blood pressure, and lower level of blood cholesterol.