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Change Your Lifestyle

 

Body & Soul
How do you feel today on a scale of one to 10?
If you score below six, you need help.
Here's how to capture that elusive feel-good factor...


Being under pressure isn't good for your body or soul: it affects your health and happiness. Whether you're worn down by the daily pressures of parenthood or worried about your finances, if you're not feeling great, your sleep and skin can suffer, and stress has a major impact on work and relationships.Take a holistic approach to life: look after your body and your emotions will also benefit. The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do to improve your wellbeing. So follow our action plan and send stress packing
Fuel Your Body
You are what you eat, so make sure you:
  • Have at least five portions of fruit and vegetables every day. Fruit and veg contain antioxidants – especially vitamins A, C and E, which help to protect against some cancers and heart disease.
  • Cut down on sugar and salt.
  • Increase your intake of wholegrain bread and cereals and pulses.
  • Reduce your intake of fatty foods, especially those containing saturated fat or cholesterol, such as butter and cheese.
  • Drink at least eight glasses of water every day: it aids digestion, reduces the risk of constipation and makes your skin clearer.
  • Don’t smoke. According to research in the journal Addiction, smokers have higher stress levels than non-smokers.
Get Moving
Human beings weren't designed to live a sendentary existence, so if the only exercise you get is walking to the bus stop, it's time to shake a leg. Besides making you look and feel fitter, exercise increases energy levels and boosts blood levels of beta-endorphins - naturally occurring opiates, which heighten your mood. So as well as benefiting your physique, your mental state will also improve.

Make an effort to incorporate exercise into your everyday life: use the stairs instead of the lift; walk instead of drive; dance yourself dizzy to your favourite CD. Swim before work, cycle to the shops, make love!

Yoga is an excellent way to gently tone your muscles and because it teaches you to focus your mind and improve your breathing technique, it's also very relaxing. Classes always end with a wind-down to release tension, which is great if you're overwrought. For details, call the British Wheel of Yoga on 01529 306851. Or learn t'ai chi, an ancient martial art that helps to relax the muscles and nervous system. For details, log on to the website of The T'ai Chi Union for Great Britain at

www.taichiunion.com
Useful Tips 1
If you’re feeling low, boost your immune system by taking a vitamin C supplement (500mg-1g daily); and give depression, loss of libido and general exhaustion the brush-off by taking a zinc supplement (10-15mg daily).
Useful Tips 2
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Eat a banana. They provide slow-release energy and are a rich source of potassium, essential for brain function; plus they may also help to lower blood pressure.


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