Investing in Your Health

Helping to manage stress and anxiety, tip 2...

Essential oils. Often sniffed at (excuse the pun), but research has shown that essential oils can be highly effective with helping to relieve stress, anxiety and depression. Some of the best for the aforementioned are: Lavender, Ylang Ylang, Bergamot, Chamomile and Frankincense. They all have their own properties and it's about finding what you like and what works for you. The most effective way to use them is as aromatherapy as our sense of smell can trigger powerful emotional responses. So pop a few drops in a warm bath, or try hot water vapour or an oil burner. #aromatherapy #essentialoils #destress

How to manage stress & anxiety tip 1

Breathing. Yes, we all automatically breathe but what we often don't pay attention to is how we breathe. If we're stressed or anxious most often our breath will be more shallow and quick. A great way to relieve stress is to focus on slow deep breaths, when you inhale allow your abdomen to expand fully as far as it will comfortably go so that you are fully filling your diaphragm, then slowly exhale gently pushing your abdomen in as far as it will go so as to empty the diaphragm. You can place your hand/s on your abdomen for the first few attempts to help get the feel of it. Repeat this breathing action approx 10 times or until you feel calmer and more relaxed. #relaxingbreathing #destress #

Warm ups and Cool downs

When you're going to exercise it's vitally important to warm up before hand and then cool down afterwards. This helps to increase blood flow around the body, which allows our muscles and tissues to move more freely and can help with wear and tear. This can include light aerobic activity such as cycling or brisk walking/relaxed jogging followed by gentle stretching exercises. Warming-up stretches your muscles and joints, making them more flexible with less likelihood of injury. Cooling down after a training session also helps to avoid injuries, as it assists the body to dispose of waste products that have built up in the muscles while exercising. No matter how pushed for time you may be w

Natural energy drink

Exercise depletes the body's stores of fluids and minerals, which must be replaced. It has been determined by most experts that if you engage in light to moderate exercise, drinking water will do this fine. However if exercising strenuously, you'll also need to replenish some of the salts that your body loses through sweat. These salts, also known as electrolytes, are found in most sports drinks, and also in natural juices like orange juice. The proper concentration of electrolytes in your blood is essential to your health, for example your cardiovascular and nervous system require electrolytes to function well. If you were lost in the desert and drank nothing but water then you would still

Fruit juice facts

FRUIT JUICE... what we often don't realise is that the majority of shop bought fruit juices are made from concentrate. These are often filled with chemicals and a lot of sugar, there is very little nutritional benefit in these drinks. For example to make apple juice the general process is as follows. They start by pressing the apple and removing all of the fibre, it's then heated up through pasteurisation at a high temperature, dried and turned into a concentrate. Then the sugar, food coloring and flavorings are added. If you are going to drink ready made fruit juice then read the label first and check that it is fresh and not made from concentrate and that there isn't any added sugar. Coc

Be Active in Autumn / Winter

We're more likely to be more active during the summer months, when the weather is fine we love to spend time outside. This results in moving our bodies more naturally, whether it's walking, cycling or swimming. However as the Winter months approach it can lead to us moving our bodies less as we instead take to more sedentary activities indoors. As mentioned in one of our earlier posts, exercise is great for boosting the immune system, so it's important to keep moving during these next two seasons. We love effective core strengthening exercises using kit such as BOSU and TRX suspension training, easily carried out indoors and extremely versatile. Yoga or Pilates are also good forms of exerc

Butternut Squash Soup recipe

Butternut Squash soup is by far one of our favourite winter warmers. There are a variety of recipes out there, this one is nice and easy and you can tweak it, adding extra veg or spicing it up with extra chilli. Butternut Squash Soup with Chilli & Crème Fraîche 1 butternut squash, about 1kg, peeled and deseeded 2 tbsp olive oil (3 tbsp if not using butter) 1 tbsp butter (optional) 2 onions, diced 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced 2 mild red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped 850ml hot vegetable stock 4 tbsp crème fraîche, plus more to serve Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. 1. Cut the squash into large cubes, about 4cm/1½in across, then toss in a large roasting tin with 1 tbsp of olive

Autumn pudding

Try this simple, seasonal, delicious baked apple recipe for a sweet treat. Serve with a low-fat fromage frais, mixed with a little honey. Spiced Roasted Apples & Blackberries 4 medium Bramley apple each weighing about 200g/8oz 4 tbsp clear honey ½ tsp ground cinnamon finely grated zest and juice of 1 large orange 250g blackberry Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4/fan 160C. 1. Core the apples so you have a hole the size of a pound coin in each one. Make a cut just into the skin around the middle of each apple. 2. Stand the apples in a shallow baking dish large enough to take all four. 3. Mix together the honey, cinnamon and orange zest, put an equal amount into the cavity of each apple, th