Top 10 Tips for Optimising Health

I’m writing this in the early hours of the morning, thoughts buzzing through my head after speaking at a health themed event organised by Kirsty James of the Colony Networking Group, Lymm. There was a vast array of interesting speakers and Kirsty had a tough job keeping everyone to their allotted time as we all had so much to say!

In my haste to get to the event on time, I left my flyers with my ‘Top 10 Tips for optimal health’ at my office, so I thought I’d share them with everyone here on my blog. It’s actually difficult to keep to 10; I have up to 5 more but like the old Top 40 that I used to listen to on my transistor radio as a student (no, don’t ask me how many years ago!), certain tips come in and out of my top 10, many times to suit the individual I’m talking to.

Children perceive bitter tastes differently

Children perceive bitter tastes differently

You will see one of the entries on the list suggests disguising vegetables and healthy fats in different ways to ensure ‘fussy eaters’ don’t miss out. The reason for this is that the event was titled ‘Think Family Health’ and a number of parents in the audience had expressed their concerns regarding their children not being too keen on the taste of some fruits and many vegetables. Our taste perceptions change as we age and is discussed in Changing Tastes:Food and Ageing by Amy Fleming. However, even as adults, some may still dislike the taste of certain vegetables due to genetics. The important thing is not to turn into nagging parents as children then grow up to associate vegetables with negative experiences.

 

Introducing a wide variety of different fruits and vegetables to children from a very young age should be encouraged and should be a fun activity. A tool I use often with clients is the IFM Phytonutrient Spectrum Chart which I showed in my talk.

Eat a rainbow!

Eat a rainbow!

This explains the benefits of all the different phytonutrients (i.e. nutrients from plants- bioflavonoids, polyphenols, pro-anthocyanidins + many, many more!) that come from all the different colour groups and their benefits to out health. Now if a company could market a drug that provides all these benefits then it would make an absolute fortune but the truth is that these compounds not only have fantastic individual properties, as discovered when isolating them in a lab, but together as whole foods they work synergistically i.e. the effect is greater than the sum of the individual components.

 

The main aim of this blog was to give you my aforementioned tips- so here they are. Let me know if you agree or disagree and please share your own tips for healthy living in the comments section below or on my Facebook page.

TOP 10 TIPS

  1. Eat a rainbow every day- focus on the veg rather than fruit. (PDF available on email request)
  2. Think about disguising vegetables and healthy fats in different ways to ensure ‘fussy eaters’ don’t miss out.
  3. Always eat at a table- never on the run
  4. CHEW
  5. Take 3-4 deep breaths before starting to eat (rest & digest)
  6. Remove distractions/stressors when eating- TV, radio, mobile phones, emails, the boss!!
  7. MOVE- we are not made for sitting 8+ hours a day. Sitting is becoming the new smoking with regard to health risks. Exercise- pick something you enjoy and schedule it in REGULARLY
  8. Portion control- the 2 hand rule
  9. Reduce/remove processed food and check labels- if there’s something you can’t pronounce in the list of ingredients then do you really want it in your body?
  10. Live life in colour- live and eat vibrantly- Have fun and ditch beige, dead food!

Have a great weekend

Mel x

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