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Okinawan cuisine is the cuisine of the Japanese island of Okinawa. Due to differences in culture, climate, vegetables and other ingredients between Okinawa and mainland Japan, Okinawan cuisine is very different from mainland Japanese cuisine.
Okinawan cuisine incorporates influences from Chinese cuisine and Southeast Asian cuisine due to its long history of trade. The sweet potato, introduced in Okinawa in 1605, became a staple food in Okinawa from then until the beginning of the 20th century. An article about Okinawan food written by Kikkoman states that Goya (bitter melon) and Nabera (luffa or towel gourd) were "likely" introduced to Okinawa from Southeast Asia. Since Ryukyu had served as a tributary state to China, Ryukyuan cooks traveled to Fujian Province to learn how to cook Chinese food; Chinese influence seeped into Okinawa in that manner. The same Kikkoman article states that the method of distillation of awamori likely originated from Siam (Thailand) and traveled to Okinawa during the 15th century. After the lord of the Kagoshima Domain invaded the Ryukyus, Okinawan cooks traveled to Japan to study Japanese cuisine, causing that influence to seep into Okinawan cuisine.
Besides vegetables and fruits, the influences of southern and southeastern Asia are evident in Okinawan cuisine in its use of herbs and spices, such as turmeric, used in Okinawa more often than in mainland Japan, but less frequently than other tropical island cuisines. Okinawan cuisines' condiments consist mainly of salt, miso, bonito flakes(katsuobushi) or kombu. Compared to mainland diets, Okinawan dishes do not use so many kinds of mushroom.
Another characteristic of Okinawan cuisine is its reliance on meat. Okinawa is a detached island, but Okinawan cuisine doesn't use seafood much, main protein sources are derived from livestock, especially pigs. Also, in Okinawa, Buddhism didn't spread as widely, so Okinawa was not influenced by the 'non-meat eating practices' of the Tokugawa shogunate, Okinawan had a culture of using livestock since the Edo era. An Okinawan saying states that Okinawan cuisine "begins with pig and ends with pig" and "every part of a pig can be eaten except its hooves and its oink." 
Edible kelp varieties are also popular ingredients, such as kombu. Okinawans make salad, soup, or tempura using Cladosiphon okamuranus(モズク), Hijiki and so on. Okinawan cuisine frequently uses kombu, not only in making soup stock, but also in preparing braised dishes, stir fried dishes and so on. Okinawa is one of a largest consumers of kombu in Japan. but they don't cultivate it.
After the second world war, Okinawa was occupied by U.S.Army, various canned foods were popularized. American hamburger shops entered into the Okinawa market earlier than on the mainland. It was during this period that Okinawans became familiar with Americanized food culture. Okinawan staple foods are traditionally potatoes, such as sweet potato or taro root, but they are substituted to rice or wheat flour, then Okinawan developed original dishes such as taco rice, etc.
After the end of the occupation, they still have original food cultures, and Americanized foods are frequently eaten in their diets. But, Okinawan people do not consume dairy foods so much, such as milk and cheese. Bread is not so popular as a staple food.
- Meat and meat products
- Passion fruit
- Citrus fruit
- Bean products
Common Okinawan dishes 
Main dishes 
Side dishes 
Alcoholic beverages 
Health benefits 
Traditional Okinawan dishes are low-fat, low-salt foods, such as fish, tofu, and seaweed. Okinawans are known for their longevity. Five times as many Okinawans live to be 100 than the rest of Japan, and the Japanese are the longest lived nationality in the world.[page needed]
- BEARE, Sally, (2006) 50 Secrets of the World's Longest-Living People, Marlowe & Co, NY