Sunday, August 25th, 2013
With Gut Week running all last week, here at Love Your Gut, we have been talking – even more than usual – about our digestive health. We hope you have too!
But what steps can we take to ensure we look after our bowels?
We have created some simple tips to help improve digestion:
Breakfast: Evidence shows that people who eat a healthy breakfast tend to eat more dietary fibre, more vitamins and less fat. This may all help to stimulate the bowels to empty more regularly.
Fruit, vegetables and wholegrain cereals: High in fibre as well as antioxidants and other protective nutrients, these types of foods can offer benefits to the digestive system. However, individuals who experience digestive symptoms such as diarrhoea, IBS and bloating should be aware that foods like this may also contain poorly absorbed sugars or starches that may not help with such symptoms.
Exercise: Regular exercise can really help to stimulate the digestive system. At least 30 minutes per day can offer numerous health benefits.
Alcohol: Not only will alcohol damage the liver, it can also cause harm to the digestive system. The risk of disease increases with consumption of 14 units per week for women and 21 units for men.
Smoking: STOP! Smoking is linked to a number of diseases.
Sleep: Poor sleep can affect a number of aspects of our health, including bowel function.
Stress: This can cause changes in our bowel habits and is frequently liked to IBS.
Monday, July 8th, 2013
The Perfect Picnic
Why not make the most out of the sun with The Perfect Picnic?
This is a great opportunity to have a meal with family and friends, top-up your vitamin D levels, get active and help contribute to your 5-a-day of fruit and vegetables.
Why not try out the healthy salad recipe below:
1 can (400g) of red kidney beans
2 ripe avocados, peeled and chopped
80g cherry tomatoes, halved
1 can (150g) sweet corn1 orange pepper, sliced into thin strips
2 green apples, chopped into cubes
Handful of red seedless grapes, halved
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lime juice
Salt and Pepper to taste
1) Mix the kidney beans, avocados, tomatoes, pepper, sweet corn, apples, and grapes in a bowl.
2) Then add the olive oil and lime juice.
3) Add the salt and pepper to taste. Mix all the ingredients and dig in.
A handful or 80g of any fruit or vegetable, raw or dried makes one of your 5-a-day. So include these in your picnic in
stead of high-calorie and high salt treats, such as chocolates and crisps. Additionally, instead of sugary, fizzy drinks, why not make your very own lemonade or fresh fruit juice, to help contribute towards your 5-a-day.
To add carbohydrates to the healthy picnic, why not roast potatoes in olive oil, add a pinch of salt, pepper and dried herbs. Carbohydrates provide an important source of energy for the day. Choose wholemeal or wholegrain breads and pasta. This provides a great source of fibre.
Get active with a walk around the park or some fun games. Finally, don’t forget the sun protection – cream, sunglasses, and hats, and make sure you drink plenty of water too!
Monday, May 20th, 2013
Recent press attention has once again highlighted the issues associated with excessive consumptions of salt. A significant amount of the salt that is consumed in the diet is hidden in processed foods.
One of the best ways to reduce salt content is to stick to a diet which is as natural as possible. The benefits of this can be further reaching too, with increased nutrients, more fibre, less saturated fats often benefits of a more natural diet.
See below for some healthy recipes to help you avoid jumping to those salt laden foods during lunch time.
Mix 100g cooked couscous with a can of chickpeas, a can of brown lentils, a small can of chopped tomatoes, 1 roasted courgette, 1 roasted aubergine, 2 roasted onions, a handful of chopped parsley leaves, the juice of 1 lemon and a drizzle of olive oil.
Mix 100g of cooked Quinoa with 1 chopped red pepper, 2 chopped tomatoes, 6 olives, 2 chopped spring onions, a handful of chopped basil leaves the juice of 1 lime and a sprinkling of mixed seeds.
Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013
Happy New Year everyone!
2013 has arrived and the Christmas period is well and truly over leaving many of us with bulging bellies filled with guilt from all the delicious festive food we consumed.
With many of us making New Year resolutions and failing within the first few days why not scrap the idea of saying you are going to stop eating this, going to do that etc. and set out a list of goals or achievements for the coming year instead.
For example instead of saying you are going to lose weight perhaps state what weight you would like to be by the end of the year (or by a certain date) and what steps you are going to put in place. This may help you to reach your goal. It is also important to have reasonable expectations of what you can achieve as there is no point putting a plan into place that does not fit into your daily routine setting you up for an instant fail.
It may also be a good idea to not stress over putting your New Year ‘resolution’ into place straight away. Research has shown that there is a high instance of New Year resolutions being broken shortly after they were made. Getting back into the way of things after the Christmas period can be a bit of a struggle as the January blues set in and we get back to the grind stone. Why not ease yourself back into things first before setting your resolution.
Furthermore, our digestive health may not be at its best due to all the luxurious food we have eaten as well as the size of portions tend to be more generous and that extra chocolate too tempting. Not to worry though as once you are back into your usual routine, things should start to level out and your digestive system running more smoothly. To give yourself an extra digestive boost why not try to add a bit of extra fibre into your diet though eating brown bread, pasta and rice instead of white and a glass of orange juice to help kick start things. A brisk walk in the evening may also help to get things moving as well as making you feel more energised and good about yourself.
Whatever your plans for 2013 are, may we wish you the best of luck and success in achieving them!