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Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/3/30 19:24
Good day,
I recently recieved recommendations from my doctor to avoid consuming milk products as much as possible, meaning those containing milk proteins.

I am not too familiar with Japanese cooking but I think the usage of milk products is more common here in the west compared to Japan.

Anyway, are there any typical Japanese food, deserts, etc containing milk products (milk proteins)?

In case I would like to ask in a restaurant or shop if it contains milk protein what would I say?

Not sure how much Japanese people know about milk proteins but as far as I heard it is better to avoid it and stick to soy products instead (at least non GMO soy products).
by Jojo (guest)  

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/4/1 00:42
Stay with Japanese restaurants and you can avoid milk products easily as I can't recall any traditional Japanese cuisines using milk.

Avoid snacks/candies though. Yet most of Japanese traditional sweets are milk free.

Print this words and show it when eating.
私は乳製品を摂取できません。大丈夫ですか?
(I can't take milk products. OK?)

by Jay Kay (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/4/1 15:30
Bad news first:

It's been only a century and a half old since cow milk as well as beef was introduced to culinary art in Japan, but actually, it's hard to define Japanese cuisine in the first place.

Nowadays, dairy products are commonly used in authentic Japanese restaurants and food, and in the less authentic foods, some kind of milk subtract is used in many products.

Good news:

Cow milk is one of the top 3 allergens in Japan now, along with chicken egg and soy, so it's very easy to make yourself understood when you try to avoid milk for health-related reasons. In particular, culinary professionals are educated to be aware of food allergy.

I'm not sure if your case is an allergy, but it would be easy if you simply say it is. You can say "nyu-seihin no a-re-ru-gii ga arimasu" or rather you should have it written down in Japanese by a trustworthy conceirge at your hotel, and have it proofread while you're at it. Don't trust annonymous internet users like me for health topics.

The great thing is that your doctors only says you should avoid them "as much as possible." If it so happens that your food was prepared on the same cutting board that milk products were, it wouldn't hurt as long as they are generally avoided from your plate.

Milk protein is called nyu-tanpaku 乳タンパク in Japanese. But it's not a common word, so it would be easier to just avoid "milk products (nyu-seihin)" 乳製品

By the way, GMO in Japanese is "i-denshi-kumikae 遺伝子組み換え

One of the safest treats for you is probably grilled food. Look for things like kushi-yaki (spit roasts) or yaki-zakana (grilled fish) and, when asked, order shio (salt) instead of tare (sauce), because in the less authentic places the sauce may contain milk substances, plus salted ones makes the fresh Japanese materials taste much better!

Bon appetit!
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/4/1 19:16
Uco and Jay Kay,
Thank you very much for your answers.

It's correct I am not allegic to milk products but I was recommended by the doctor to avoid it as much as possible for health reasons, meaning I will not be sick if I would accidentally consume milk products or if food utensils have been used with milk products previously.

Anyway, I will stick to the phrases and make a printing of them to show in restaurants.

I have seen some... breakfast items in chains like Toyoko Inn being in a saucy-like mixture, not sure if that is milk products however. Maybe I should consider that when picking breakfast items there.
by Jojo (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/4/2 01:12
Uco, can you give an example or two? I'm trying to think of a product that would likely contain milk.

OP - If it's not serious, I wouldn't worry about it much. If they just use milk as an additive I don't think they would use much.

Besides grilled foods, sushi seems like a safe choice.
by ChicagoMike rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/4/3 23:40
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/4/4 00:46
Milk with miso! I'm really out of touch.
by ChicagoMike rate this post as useful

Off-topic 2014/4/4 21:32
Off-topic, milk and dairy products go well with soy. For example, cheese is very commonly used with food seasoned with soy sauce. Isobeyaki topped with melted cheese is great, rice gratin or risotto of course is topped with cheese, and I often mix a bowl of cooked rice, natto, yogurt and soy sauce for breakfast. Any kind of fermented food does go well together. And since miso-matsukaze is said to have been around since the Nobunaga era, it's obvious that any kind of sponge cake would go good with miso.
by Uco rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2014/4/6 18:46
Very interesting food ideas, I never thought of topping such things as tofu with cheese. However, some time before the doctor advise I had slowly started disliking cheese, especially melted. But of course it's up to everyone's taste and liking.

About the milk usuage, if it is obiously much milk, like in "european" (?) pancakes there are a dozen of milk used for the batter, or obviously much cheese like pizza or those things then I would avoid it.

I feel a lot better in my body since reduing milk intake, and I know I felt good when I was in Japan last time, eating more Japanese type food.
by Jojo (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2015/5/29 11:19
What exactly is meant when you say nyu-seihin?

I showed the store clerk a dessert looking type of jello (I suspected it might have milk in it and wanted to ask to be sure) . I asked if it had milk in it. The clerk looked at the ingredient list and shook her head to say no, but then she did say it has nyuseihin.
by ME (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2015/5/29 18:32
My mother visited Japan a few years ago with lots of allergies and she found that if someone wrote down in Japanese what she was allergic to and it worked a treat. We just politely showed the waiter/ress the piece of paper and they were always uber helpful and would tell us if something could not be eaten.

She often has trouble eating out in Australia but found that her stomach problems all but disappeared once she had this written down in Japan.
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: Usage of milk products in Japan food 2015/5/29 22:03
nyu-seihin, 乳製品 is a product made from milk.
milk means raw (fresh) milk.

milk powder does not contain milk, but it is a milk product,乳製品.
by ken (guest) rate this post as useful

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