It’s interesting being back in the U.S., because I get to experience that rarest of sensations, reverse culture shock, when things I see in my home country surprise me because of my years spent in Japan. I am often surprised at how unhealthy food is advertised at people by companies, such as AM/PM Mini Mart telling us that we should all live the “good life” and treat ourselves to a candy bar today, and that “more is more, at AM/PM.” Or Taco Bell promoting “Fourthmeal,” a meal between dinner and breakfast that supposedly we should all be eating. I’m a big fan of brewed iced tea, and make sure to drink it whenever I’m grabbing lunch, even if it’s in a fairly unhealthy place like McDonald’s or Taco Bell. But several times this trip I’ve found myself being told sorry, we don’t have unsweetened iced tea, would I like Raspberry Blast™ Super Sweet Iced Tea instead? It brings a tear to my eye, really. If you’re looking for a refreshing and healthy drink, we recommend Japanese mugi cha (barley tea), a great gift from Japan to the world.
You don’t see this kind of unhealthy food advertising in Japan.