London - If you are woman and want a long and healthy life, eat like a Japanese.
Britain's Office for National Statistics (ONS) has released data from a study which indicates the benefits of a diet rich in raw fish, vegetables and green tea, with Japanese females having the highest life expectancy of women in selected countries, living for an average of 86.4 years.
The study found that Japanese men had an average life expectancy of 79.9 years - not too dissimilar to British men, who live to an average of 78.9 years.
ONS is the largest independent producer of official statistics in the United Kingdom.
Adopting a lifestyle similar to Japanese women will enable British women to achieve a similar longevity, said a report on the study, by the Independent newspaper.
British women live to 82.7 years.
The traditional Japanese diet incorporates lower-calorie foods served in controlled portions.
It is based on sweet potatoes, leafy greens and whole grains, along with fish, rice, pork and soya - all rich in anti-cancer and anti- ageing antioxidants.
According to Ms Naomi Moriyama, co-author of Japanese Women Don't Get Old Or Fat: Secrets Of My Mother's Tokyo Kitchen, the average Japanese person eats around 25 per cent fewer calories than the average Western person.
And leading gerontologist Crag Wilcox told British newspaper The Times that the Japanese diet is full of disease-fighting foods.
"They eat three servings of fish a week, on average," he said.
"Plenty of whole grains, vegetables and soy products too, more tofu and more konbu seaweed than anyone else in the world, as well as squid and octopus, which are rich in taurine - that could lower cholesterol and blood pressure," he added.
The reports, however, did not explain why the Japanese men do not reinforce the trend.
The findings were published as part of an international compendium of data published by the ONS.
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