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Posts tagged “Lifestyle”

Calories – and calorie counting – have been the mainstay of weight loss regimes for many years, regardless of how they’re packaged or marketed. Or which celebrity is endorsing them (!). 
 
The logic is quite simple. We all know it by heart, it goes like this: 
 
Excess calories = weight gain. 
 
Therefore fewer calories = weight loss. 
 
Which naturally leads on to the “more is better” approach. Or, more accurately, “less is better” one (!). 
 
In other words, the more controlled and restricted the diet is, the fewer calories are consumed and the greater – and quicker – the weight loss. Well, in theory (!). Which means we can then go back to eating the foods we really want to. 
It’s something we all do automatically – and unconsciously – from time to time. Usually when one of our buttons are being pressed or our emotions threaten to overwhelm us, both positively and less so (!). Often a couple of deep breaths – or counting to 10 – are all that’s needed. A potential downward spiral is averted and everyone concerned lives to fight another day. Well, hopefully, not fight but you know what we mean… 
 
So why are deep breaths so powerful and often save the day? 
Food diets and crazes may come and go but some mantras seem to stand the test of time. Having your five a day is a great example – although this is only a starting point and not nearly enough (!) – which leads us neatly on to what we’d like to talk about today. Fibre, also known as “roughage”. 
 
It may not be the most exciting of subjects, but fibre is universally seen as a “good thing”. An important part of a healthy diet. Interestingly, we tend to focus on its ability to fill us up – so stopping us reaching for sugary snacks between meals – as well as slowing down the rate that food is broken down and absorbed. In other words, it helps stop the “sugar high” following sugar laden meals or snacks. At the same time, it’s important for – as it’s rather euphemistically called – “regular movements” and we’ll leave the rest to your imagination… 
 
However, there’s another aspect to fibre we’d like to talk about today, which tends to get overlooked. In fact, we can almost guarantee you won’t have thought of it in these terms before (!). 
And, yes, it is one of those slightly trick questions designed to get you thinking! So, if you’re ready, here we go. 
 
Allowing for a little natural reticence (!), we all know exactly how old we are. Well, more accurately, we know how many years – and in some cases days, weeks and months (!) – since the day we were born. Despite our bodies having changed in many ways since that time – not least in “growing up” and then later in “ageing” – we see them as solid and permanent. 
 
However – and this is what we were hinting at with the title of this week’s blog post – is this really the case? That our bodies are as constant as we like to think they are. The simple answer is no. 
From time to time we look back at the ever growing list of our Blog posts – over 300 to date (!) – and are surprised we haven’t covered a particular topic. This week’s is a very good example of what we’re talking about, particularly as it’s something we can virtually guarantee that everyone has experienced at some time or other. 
 
Despite this, it tends to be thought of as just “one of those things” which will usually disappear as quickly as it appeared. Although, often, it’s a gentle reminder we haven’t been looking after ourselves quite as well as we thought. Or, perhaps, have overstretched the mark. 
 
Have you guessed what we’re talking about yet? Headaches. 
How things change. A few years ago, Vitamin D was only mentioned in connection with helping maintain healthy bones. Although, as an aside, this is still the case on NHS Direct when we googled it a few days ago… 
 
Moving swiftly on (!), the good news is that the message is finally getting out that Vitamin D does so much more than help support healthy bones. In fact, it’s increasingly becoming clear that it’s just as important as Vitamin C in supporting the Immune System. And much more besides. There’s also been some interesting recent research in connection with the current madness – as well as to winter bugs in general – showing just how important it is. Not only in helping reduce susceptibility, but also in improving the outcome, should the worst happen. More about this later. 
With the rather strange year we’ve been having – in every way (!) – and people having to spend much more time at home, it’s not surprising that the barbeque season started much earlier than usual. In fact, if there’s been one saving grace, it’s that the weather has been remarkably kind to us since the spring; allowing us to spend more time outside in our gardens… 
 
Like us you’ve probably experienced your fair share of barbeques over the years; with the all too common “raw on the inside, burnt on the outside” offerings (!). All going well, you’ve survived them without any ill effects, although they account for a large number of food poisonings every year. 
 
So, with the school holidays just starting it seemed like a good time for a gentle reminder – or two – about how to survive the barbeque season without any ill effects. 
With many people spending much more time outside than usual – whether in their gardens or out walking – we’ve noticed how many of them are appreciating things they would never normally notice. Or, more accurately, never have time to notice as they rush around in their busy lives… 
 
Having waxed lyrical about the delights of Elderflowers a couple of weeks ago – and been heartened by the number of people who actually make Elderflower cordial – we thought we’d focus on another seasonal delight today. And, this time, no potentially messy cooking is involved. Hurrah, by those who normally do the clearing up! 
 
It’s another sign that Summer really is here, with even the least horticulturally inclined person being able to easily identify it. Lavender. 
We’ve all experienced Concussion at some time – or times (!) – in our lives. Ranging from a light bump on the head which is quickly forgotten about; to a more serious blow followed by a few seconds of unconsciousness and, perhaps, a trip to the Casualty Department. 
 
Despite it coming in many different forms and from a huge variety of causes – and we’ve heard some very “interesting” stories of the events leading up to it, which we’ll leave to your imagination (!) – Concussion is generally considered to be a form of mild traumatic brain injury without long term effects. But is this really the case? 
As clients and regular readers of this blog will know by now, we find the human condition endlessly fascinating. And not, as we always hasten to add, in an “OMG” way. Or any other unkind or judgemental way (!). 
 
Rather, what interests us is the myriad of different ways in which people can view the same event. And then react to it. Not surprisingly, the events of recent weeks have provided a very good example of this. And continue to do so… 
 
Interestingly, many of the responses – particularly in the early days – were those we more often see in connection with grief. Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance. The classic stages which many people go through, although often not in that particular order or at the time. It’s a topic we’ve covered before and our post can be found here
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