For those of you skipping out on your workouts and using poor excuses to do so, we’re on to you. A recent study involving 1,018 British gym goers found that a whopping 58% lie about heading to the gym, with those in Bristol, Liverpool and Glasgow gymmers topping the scales for most likely to fib. The study also found that the younger generation, those between 18-24, were much more likely to twist the truth about their gym attendance; 48% of the younger ones confessed to doing so, as opposed to just 9% of those aged 55 and over. When asked to give reasons, it seemed lack of sleep was used more often that any others, while a small minority cited ‘No headphones’ as an adequate excuse to pass on the gym. We understand that winter is fast approaching, but summer bods aren’t built over night. Time to lose those excuses.
9 out of 10 Brits ditch gym plans at least once a week
46% said they were too tired for the gym
36% blamed the weather on their skipped workout
42% pointed to a forgotten gym kit
26% blamed an overcrowded gym
53% women avoid the gym, as opposed to 47% of men
1/3 confessed to wasting money on their membership, by not going enough
Most of us know what its like having stress and anxiety become part of the daily routine, but it seems that women might be more affected than men. During the summer, Cambridge University found that females are almost twice as likely to suffer from anxiety than guys. New research from Young Women’s Trust has backed this up, and also suggests that young women are feeling the weight of work, housing and finance issues, as well as a dip in confidence. In a bid to help improve moods, doctors suggest eating foods rich in tryptophan, a substance that allows the body to produce the happy hormone, serotonin, found in foods like eggs and oats. Omega-3 also tops the board as the anxiety-tackling ingredient, putting oily fish high on the grocery list. Finally, it seems the outdoors is also a great mood improver – never mind the wet British weather; fresh air each day should help you feel a little brighter.
University is usually a time when we pile on a few pounds, from those boozed-up nights out and lazy takeaways. This might be part of the reason that graduates today are looking for a healthier workplace to settle into once the degree is in the bag. Findings from a recent study conducted by the British Army show that only 13% of recent grads in new jobs feel that their organisation is taking an active interest in their health and fitness. The study – which interviewed 1,001 employed UK adults who graduated in the past 5 years – informs the ‘With Heart With Mind Officer Recruitment’ campaign, touring UK universities to encourage students to think about their fitness and life goals post-graduation. Granted, it’s not surprising that a typical office job might not promote the best in health. Nonetheless, the graduates of today are increasingly eager to get more from their job than the health risks associated with sedentary working.
Often the unsung hero of breakfast time, the almighty oat packs a great deal of health benefits. With October being National Cholesterol Month, researchers have been paying attention to the many positive qualities of this versatile food. Packed full of fibre, porridge is a perfect way to lower cholesterol naturally. As a source of slow-releasing energy, without any hidden sugars, this delicious morning meal is also great at stabilising your energy levels until lunchtime, to prevent those mid-morning snack hunts. As a whole grain its also full of vitamins and minerals, including magnesium, iron, zinc and vitamin B1. This means they do a great job in helping to support the immune system and the body’s energy production. What more could you ask of from a breakfast grain? it’s certainly one of our favourites.
Ever wondered why Nordics are so happy, or why Singaporeans have flawless skin? It would seem it’s all down to the health of the countries themselves, having been ranked in the top 5 of the healthiest countries in the world. Coming up trumps is Iceland, whose strict environmental regulations and geographical isolation result in the purest food. With fish taking centre stage of the Icelandic diet, Omega-3 and its hunger-curbing benefits help keep these people healthy. Singapore also features on the list, at number two. Spices such as ginger feature prominently in their local cuisine, giving them glossy hair and radiant skin. In at number 5 is our very own, would you believe. Us Brits seem to be keen on seasonal produce, making our winter stash nutrient-packed and our summer plates full of hydration. Not too shabby, we think!
It may seem impossible to keep on top of every vitamin intake that will benefit your health, but theres certainly one that a lot of us may be deficient in; the very same one that could cause major issues if ignored. Magnesium is a powerful supplement that can prevent diabetes and poor heart health, but is also a great way to tackle insomnia and migraines. Having been proven to reduce inflammation in the body, its a great way to relieve muscle tension and spasms, and can also boost your body’s energy production. This is especially true for the energy within your muscles; weaker muscles have been directly linked to magnesium deficiency, as it enables energy creation within the cells of the muscle itself. So how do we stock up on this nutrient? Pumpkin seeds, buckwheat, almonds, spinach, broccoli and dark chocolate should all give a good magnesium boost.
Some of you reading these pages will have been lucky enough to receive a free TREK Bar with your issue. Our street teams were busy handing out samples of the delicious Peanut Power energy bar, which contains dates, soya protein crunchies, fruit juice concentrate, peanut butter and more, all squished together to make one awesome snack. Made using natural ingredients for lasting energy, rather than sugar-laden energy gels, the TREK bar is a filling and nourishing bar using only wholefood ingredients.
The vegan-friendly Peanut Power bar packs in 10g of protein and is gluten, wheat and dairy free. It has no added sugar or syrups, meaning you’ll avoid the sugar crash you get with other bars, and it counts as one of your five a day. It’s cold pressed and made in Britain too. Local goodness!
The Peanut Butter TREK Bar is available from various stores and health-food outlets.
We’ve all heard the stories and statistics telling us of deaths by preventable diseases; far too many of us Brits are suffering from severe health problems that can be avoided. Throw in a struggling health system, and you can start to understand why some are looking to take their health into their own hands. Cue health start-up Thriva who have launched a new DIY home health kit called Baseline. These finger-prick blood tests offer a wealth of data for your body that you can track, manage and work on to improve if neccessary. The test allows you to monitor your liver function through enzyme checks; your cholesterol to prevent developing heart disease; your body’s iron levels to prevent iron deficiency anaemia; and your Vitamin D levels, as deficiency in this is common. Understanding that we still value a GP opinion, Baseline results come complete with doc recommendations. Sounds like the start of a health revolution.