How To Read And Understand Your Japanese Health Check Report

If you’ve lived in Japan for a while now, in one way or another you have most likely come across the annual health check, or 健康診断 (kenkou shindan), the once-a-year reality check that — despite often being the bearer of bad news — makes things a tad more complicated by having way too many kanji. Typically organized by your company, Japan’s health check practice is a brilliant system in place, making sure that all employees are being regularly advised not to put on extra weight, smoke and drink less, and consume more vegetables in addition to, of course, exercise regularly and have less stress.

For the lucky few usually working in foreign companies, the report will include at least a brief English translation. For the rest of us, however, we can feel our blood pressure rise as we wonder what those little lines of kanji comments are trying to



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