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Staircases to Save Lives: The TELL Tokyo Tower ClimbPeter Durfee

Sunday, September 10, is World Suicide Prevention Day. To raise awareness of suicide, which claims more than 20,000 lives each year in Japan, as well as funds to support its suicide prevention services, the Tokyo-based organization TELL will host a race up the Tokyo Tower stairs this weekend. Since its 1973 launch, TELL has been a quiet presence in Japan’s international community—but for those …
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A Third of Mothers Neglected Prenatal Checkups in Child Abuse Death Cases (News)

Tokyo, Aug. 17 (Jiji Press)--An experts' panel investigating fatal child abuse cases in Japan in fiscal 2015 reported Thursday that over 30% of the mothers of the dead children did not receive checkups during their pregnancies. Finding mothers who need support while they are still pregnant is widely seen as a key to preventing child abuse. But Kansai University Professor Yamagata Fumiharu, …
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Cosmetics in Japan

Japanese cosmetics span new and traditional varieties. The wide choice of beauty products also continues to adapt to meet the evolving needs of users.
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Confronting “Karōshi”: Actions to Prevent Death from OverworkKawahito Hiroshi

In response to the highly publicized suicide of a young employee at advertising giant Dentsu, Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare in December 2016 released emergency guidelines aimed at preventing karōshi, or death by overwork. As the issue attracts greater official attention, Japan must examine the factors that have made excessive overtime so pervasive and consider steps to protect employees from the health risks of overwork.
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Child Abuse on the Rise: Exploring the Societal FactorsNishizawa Satoru

The number of abuse cases handled by child guidance centers across Japan topped 100,000 for the first time last year. In this article, the author speculates why child abuse—including psychological, physical, and sexual abuse, as well as neglect—appears to be increasing in Japan.
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LDP Lawmaker Ōnishi Apologizes for Cancer Patient Comment (News)

Tokyo, May 22 (Jiji Press)—Ōnishi Hideo, a House of Representatives member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, apologized Monday for a remark he made about cancer patients. Ōnishi admitted that he said cancer patients facing work environments with passive smoke "don't have to work there" at a May 15 meeting of the LDP's health, welfare, and labor division, when measures to regulate passive …
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Japan Maternal Handbook App Offered for Refugees in Jordan (News)

Amman, Jordan, April 8 (Jiji Press)—Japan's maternal and child health handbook has been turned into a smartphone app for use by Palestinian refugees in Jordan, through the collaboration of the Japan International Cooperation Agency and a UN organization. With the app, even if refugees lose their handbooks while moving to new locations due to a conflict, their health records will be maintained e…
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Mask Culture in Japan

Wearing surgical-style masks, primarily to prevent the spread of illness, has become a part of social etiquette in Japan. The custom was spurred on by the H1N1 influenza epidemic of 2009, and there are now a huge variety of masks on sale.
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Japan’s Radio Calisthenics

Japan’s custom of radio calisthenics, short exercise routines set to music, first emerged around 90 years ago. It was once common for groups to practice different varieties of rajio taisō in parks and open spaces. While the custom has declined, many are now looking to the exercise routines as a way to help Japan’s graying society stay fit.
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Mexican-Style Maruchan: Japanese Food Overseas as Seen Through the Success of an Instant Ramen BrandIsami Romero

Washoku (traditional Japanese cuisine), designated as an intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO, is growing ever more popular overseas thanks to the legions of health-conscious diners. But what kinds of Japanese food have taken serious root in foreign cultures? Isami Romero looks into the case of Mexico, his homeland, sharing some childhood experiences along the way.
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