Author: Healthy Life Foundation

SUPERFOODS

SUPERFOODS

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 15 February 2021

Healthy Super Foods that you should eat every day. 

đź’šSpinach contains many essential nutrients & antioxidants, such as carotenoids, Flavonoids, Vitamin E & Vitamin C that can help support the immune system.

❤️Kefir is a probiotic cultured drink made up of kefer grains, (which contain a combination of bacteria & yeast) and then added to milk. Kefir is incredibly rich in vitamins, minerals & has a host of health benefits from digestion, to bone health & inflammation. 

đź’śBlueberries contain flavonoids which is a type of antioxidant that can help reduce damage to cells & boost your immune system. They are also a great source of vitamins. 

❤️Tomato’s are a great source of Vitamins & Minerals including Vitamin C , Vitamin K, Potassium and folate, all which can help ensure optimum health.

🧡Carrots are packed with Beta-carotene. Beta Carotene is converted into vitamin A in the body, which is essential for good vision along with a healthy immune system & healthy skin.  

đź’™Walnuts are an antioxidant powerhouse, which is protects us against cancer. They also have a high content of ALA & other nutrients, which can improve the risk of heart disease along with their ability to significantly lower LDL “bad” cholesterol.  Walnuts may also help reduce inflammation, which can contribute to many chronic diseases.

đź’šBroccoli is rich in vitamins C & A, potassium, folate, fiber, protein, and iron. Broccoli also contains cancer-fighting sulforaphane.

🧡 Oranges have essential vitamins, antioxidants, protein, water percentage and fibre. These are all necessary minerals that help in keeping the nutrients in your body balanced. 

đź’šMatcha Tea has very high levels of EGCG, which is a part of the antioxidant family known as catechins. Catechins have been linked to better heart health, a healthy metabolism and improved aging.  Scientists have now discovered EGCG to be at least 100 times more effective than Vitamin C and 25 times more effective than Vitamin E at protecting cells  from free radical damage.

đź’ś Oats are a natural superfood because they are 100% whole grain with minimal processing. They contain a good amount of of vitamins, minerals and fibre.

World Cancer Day

World Cancer Day

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 4 February 2021

Today is World Cancer Day. This is a day that unites people, communities and entire countries to raise awareness and take action. 

To find out more visit 

www.worldcancerday.org

Cancer is a disease which occurs when changes in a group of normal cells within the body lead to uncontrolled, abnormal growth forming a lump called a tumour; this is true of all cancers except leukaemia (cancer of the blood). If left untreated, tumours can grow and spread into the surrounding normal tissue, or to other parts of the body via the bloodstream and lymphatic systems, and can affect the digestive, nervous and circulatory systems or release hormones that may affect body function.

Key Cancer Facts

  • 10 million people die from cancer every year.
  • At least one third of common cancers are preventable.
  • Cancer is the second-leading cause of death worldwide.
  • 70% of cancer deaths occur in low-to-middle income countries.
  • Up to 3.7 million lives could be saved each year by implementing resource appropriate strategies for prevention, early detection and treatment.

Help Reduce Your Risk Of Cancer: 

Cancers can be caused by a number of different factors and, as with many other illnesses, most cancers are the result of exposure to a number of different causal factors. It is important to remember that not all cancers can be prevented. However, around 1/3 of cancer cases can be prevented by reducing behavioural & dietary risks.   

Alcohol â€“ The evidence that all types of alcoholic drinks are a cause of a number of cancers is now stronger than ever before. Evidence suggests that , the more alcohol drinks people consume, the higher the risk of many cancers. 

Being overweight â€“ Excess weight has been linked to an increased risk of developing 12 different cancers, including bowl & pancreatic cancers. In general, greater weight gain, particularly as adults, is associated with greater cancer risks. 

Diet and nutrition â€“ Experts suggest that diets and nutritional intake, particularly diets high in red meats, processed meats, salted foods and low in fruits and vegetables have an impact on cancer risks, particularly colorectum, nasopharynx and stomach.

Physical activity â€“ Regular physical activity not only helps to reduce excess body fat and the cancer risks associated with this, but being physically active can help to reduce the risks of developing colon, breast and endometrial cancers.

Tobacco â€“ Tobacco smoke contains at least 80 different cancer-causing substances (carcinogenic agents). When smoke is inhaled the chemicals enter the lungs, pass into the blood stream and are transported throughout the body.

Lonising Radiation â€“ Manmade sources of radiation can cause cancer and are a risk for workers. These include radon, x-rays, gamma rays and other forms of high-energy radiation. Prolonged and unprotected exposure to ultraviolet radiations from the sun, sunlamps & tanning beds can also lead to melanoma & skin malignancies. 

Early Detection Testing-  Early Screening Tests means testing for early signs of cancer before people have any symptoms. If cancer is detected at an early stage, before symptoms even appear, it is easier to treat and there is a better chance of survival.

National Love Your Liver Month

National Love Your Liver Month

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 28 January 2021

Its National Love Your Liver Awareness Month! Our liver is an absolute powerhouse of an organ and is responsible for over 500 functions of the body. Amongst its many important roles, the liver filters, cleanses and breakdowns everything that passes through our body. Quite simply, it is our body’s natural detoxifier. When the liver becomes overwhelmed with toxins, its natural working cycle slows down. This happens when our body becomes overloaded with things such as alcohol, drugs, processed and fatty foods and chemicals (such as pesticides left on produce). The good news is, there are lifestyle habits you can make that will keep your liver healthy and help stimulate its natural ability to expel toxins from the body.     

 Here are 3 simple steps to improve your liver health:

  • Drink less than 14 units of alcohol & have 3 consecutive days off alcohol every week.
  • Eat a healthy diet & exercise more.
  • Know the risk factors for viral hepatitis & get tested or vaccinated if at risk.

Here are 8 powerful foods to eat to keep your liver healthy:

1. Citrus Fruits: Fruits like grapefruit, oranges & lemons all boost the liver’s cleansing ability as citrus fruits help the liver to produce the detoxifying enzymes that flush out pollutants.

2. Cruciferous Vegetables: Such asbroccoli, cauliflower, kale & cabbage as they contain glucosinolate, which helps the liver to produce detoxifying enzymes. They also contain sulfur compounds that aid with liver health. Leafy vegetables are high in chlorophyll, which leaches toxins out of the blood stream.  

3. Beetroot: Beets assist with increasing oxygen by cleansing the blood, & can break down toxic wastes to help them be excreted quicker. They stimulate bile flow and boost enzymatic activity. Beets also contain fiber & Vitamin C, which both are natural cleansers for the digestive system. 

4. Turmeric: The compounds in Turmeric have been found to improve liver function  & reduce the levels of toxicity in the body by stimulating the lymphatic system & removing toxins efficiently.  

5.Walnuts: Walnuts are high in the amino acid arginine & assist the liver in detoxifying ammonia. They’re also rich in glutathione & omega-3 fatty acids, which aid the natural liver cleansing functions.

6.Garlic: Garlic is packed with sulphur, which activates liver enzymes that help your body flush out toxins. It also is rich in selenium, whichis an essential micronutrient that has been shown to help boost the natural antioxidant enzyme levels in our liver. 

7. Avocado: Avocado’s are rich in glutathione, which is a substance that is present throughout the body. It’s function is to protect cells against oxidation & to help the liver rid itself of toxins.  

8. Apples: Apples have high levels of pectin, which helps the body facilitate the process of cleansing and releasing toxins from the liver. Apple juice (organic) is also recommended for liver detoxification 

9. Green Tea: Green Tea is rich in catechins, which is a powerful antioxidant known to improve liver function. 

Simple Nutrition Tips for Better Health & Longevity

Simple Nutrition Tips for Better Health & Longevity

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 19 January 2021

Good nutrition is an essential part of both mental and physical health. According to the World Health Organization, better nutrition is related to improved health at all ages, a lower risk of diseases, and longevity. Having good nutrition comes from eating a wide variety of foods and drinks to ensure your body gets enough vitamins, minerals and essential nutrients that it needs to function at its best. 

If you feel confused by all the conflicting diet and nutrition advice out there, you’re not alone. But having good nutrition doesn’t have to be overly complicated. By using these simple tips, you can cut through the confusion and learn how incorporate good eating habits to ensure optimum health not only for your mind but for your body as well.  

  • Eat Oily Fish (such as Salmon, Mackerel, Sardines & Herring) 
  • Eat Whole Grains (such as Whole Grain Pasta, Brown Rice & Rolled oats)
  • Eat a Rainbow (a variety of colourful Fruits & Vegetables. Aim for 5 portions a day)
  • Eat your Greens (such a Kale, Spinach, Broccoli & Swiss Chard)
  • Eat Healthy Fats (such as Avocado, Nuts, Olive Oil & Cheese)
  • Eat Nuts & Seeds (such as Walnuts, Chia Seeds, Almonds & Flaxseed) 
  • Get Enough Fiber (Whole Grains, Fruits & Vegetables, Nuts & Seeds)
  • Eat Beans and Pulses (such as Kidney Beans, Lentils & Chickpeas)
  • Drink Water (Aim for at least 3.7 litres for men and 2.7 litres for women)
  • Include Protein with every meal (such as Lean Meats, Eggs, Tofu & Beans)
  • Support Gut Health with Priobotics (such as Kiefer, Yogurt, Miso & Sauerkraut)
  • Use Extra-Virgin Olive Oil (Extra Virgin is the least processed and refined type of oil)
  • Use Herbs & Spices (such as Ginger, Garlic, Cinnamon & Tumeric)
  • Eat Real Foods (Replace processed food with real food whenever possible. Eating food that is as close as possible to the way nature made it can make a huge difference to your health.)

DRY JANUARY and beyond…

DRY JANUARY and beyond…

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 4 January 2021

As the festive season comes to an end & everyone has drank probably more champagne than they would like to admit, more and more people seem to be jumping on the “Dry January Train” where you avoid drinking any booze for the entire month. Some do it as a way to detox from the excessive drinking over the holidays while others make it part of a New Year’s resolution to drink less.  Either way, giving up booze or limiting the amount you drink can have amazing health benefits on your mind and body.  This is because alcohol puts metabolic stress on the liver, raises blood pressure and can also weaken your immune system among many other health problems. (most dependant on how much you drink).

Here are some of the health benefits of having a Dry January:


1.) Better Sleep – Alcohol disrupts the quality of sleep as it decreases “Restorative REM Sleep” reducing the amount of time spent in a deep sleep.

2.) Your waistline may shrink – Boozy beverages are high in calories. So having a few drinks a day can increase your calorific intake which often makes you put on excess weight.  Alcohol also wreaks havoc on your blood sugar levels causing your body to crave salty, greasy, sugary and starchy foods.

3.) Improved Concentration and Mood – Alcohol has many different effects on your mental health. It can increase your risk of anxiety and depression because it depletes your brains serotonin levels. It also depresses the central nervous system which can make your mood fluctuate.

4.) Better Skin – Alcohol is extremely dehydrating and can leave your skin looking dry and sallow. It can also deplete vitamins and minerals that are essential for healthy skin.

5.) May change your attitude towards alcohol – Studies have shown that 64% of people who participated in Dry January drank less alcohol even 6 months after they finished.


The important thing is to continue healthy drinking habits beyond January. Studies have shown for optimum health, people should be drinking within the recommended low risk alcohol guidelines across the whole year which means that men and women are advised not to drink more than 14 units per week on a regular basis.

After Christmas Cleanse

After Christmas Cleanse

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 28 December 2020

Christmas is all about enjoying yourself which often means over indulging in alcohol, food and unhealthy treats which usually leaves us feeling bloated and sluggish. If you want to feel completely refreshed and energised for the New Year, a post Christmas detox can often do the trick. A detox has the ability to stimulate the liver and kidneys to drive toxins out of the body, and rejuvenate our organs, thus helping our body and mind feel completely re-energised.

Here are 5 quick and easy ways to give your body a total cleanse for the New Year:


1.) Drink plenty of Water (preferably with lemon) – Water helps your body function properly and is also essential for removing waste and toxins from the body. This makes it incredibly important to stay hydrated. You can also infuse your water with lemon and ginger which are great for aiding the cleansing process.


2.) Exercise – Exercise helps with the body’s detoxification process as it stimulates your digestive track and  lymphatic system which eliminates waste. Every time we exercise, we take in more oxygen which is essential to helping our cells to function which also helps our cells remove toxins.


3.) Eat Detoxing Super Foods and fuel your body with the Good Stuff – Eat lots of fruits, vegetables, healthy whole grains and beans. These are loaded with fibre which is essential for healthy bowel movements. Eat veg such as broccoli, kale and spinach as they are super beneficial for the liver and enhance detoxification in your system. Fruits and vegetables are also loaded with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that keep the body healthy and boost the immune system.


4.) Drink Matcha Green Tea – Matcha Green Tea contains high levels of catechin polyphenols that help stop damaging toxins from recirculating in your body. They also help encourage the body to make glutathione which is a liver antioxidant.


5.) Sleep allows your brain to reorganize and recharge itself as well as remove toxic waste that has accumulated throughout the day. Sleep deprivation prohibits your body from performing necessary functions so toxins can build up and affect several aspects of health. Aim for 7 – 9 hour of sleep per night.

The Breast Cancer Diet

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 17 December 2020

There are many factors associated with developing breast cancer and no single food can prevent or cause it. However, research shows that by having a healthy diet can vastly improve your overall health, which ultimately can make a difference to the risk of developing cancer. But even with a healthy diet, you still need to get regular breast cancer screenings like mammograms and manual checks as these early detection tests can significantly increase survival rate. 

Many foods contain powerful compounds that could help decrease the growth of cancer. There are also several studies that show that a higher intake of certain foods could be associated with a lower risk of the disease.

Here are 7 of the top Breast Cancer Fighting Foods: 

• Leafy green vegetables such as kale, spinach and chard contain carotenoidantioxidants, including beta carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin which are associated with reduced breast cancer risk.

• Citrus fruits such as lemons, oranges and grapefruit are packed full of compounds that may protect against breast cancer, including folate, vitamin C, and carotenoids like beta cryptoxanthin and beta carotene, plus flavonoid antioxidants like quercetin, hesperetin, and naringenin.

• Fatty fish such as salmon, sardines and mackerel contain vital nutrients such as vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids that have been linked to a lower risk of cancer.

• Berries are an antioxidant powerhouse. Berries also contain flavonoids and anthocyanins, which have been shown to protect against cellular damage, as well as the development and spread of cancer cells.

• Beans- According to Harvard Researchers, for every 10 grams of fiber consumed daily, a woman’s breast cancer risk decreases by 7 percent! The researcher’s speculate the fiber helps to reduce high estrogen levels in the blood, which are strongly linked with breast cancer development.

• Herbs and spices like garlic, oregano, thyme, turmeric, cinnamon and ginger contain powerful plant compounds that may help protect against breast cancer. These include vitamins, fatty acids and polyphenol antioxidants. 

• Walnuts are full of the disease-fighting omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and phytosterols whichmay reduce the risk of breast cancer, according to a study presented at the American Association for Cancer Research.

Gut  Health Cheat Sheet

Gut Health Cheat Sheet

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 8 December 2020

Signs of an imbalanced gut include:

  • Stomach problems such as gas, bloating, diarrhoea and constipation 
  • Mood swings
  • Fatigue
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Suppressed immunity or autoimmune disorders
  • Skin problems, like eczema
  • Food allergies or intolerances. 

Here is your Gut Cleanse Cheat Sheet

FOODS TO ADD TO YOUR DIET:

  • Water, this is crucial for cleansing your entire body. 
  • All fresh seasonal vegetables especially Cabbage, Kale, Asparagus, Broccoli and other Brassica Vegetables.
  • All fresh seasonal fruit especially Watermelon, Bananas, Raspberries and Pears.
  • All fresh herbs and spices especially Ginger, Garlic and Turmeric.
  • Probiotics are the “good bugs” and can be found in fermented foods as Sauerkraut, Kefir, Coconut Kefir Yogurt, Kombucha, Miso and Kimchi.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar – which stimulates digestion
  • Gluten free grains (Rice, Quinoa, Buckwheat and Millet) 
  • Beans and Legumes
  • Avocado, extra virgin Olive Oil, Raw Nuts and Seeds, Nut butters & Coconut oil.
  • Herbal tea and Green tea
  • Psyllium husk (a great source of fibre for bowel function)
  • Cultured yogurt

FOODS TO AVOID:

  • Dairy (natural unflavoured yogurt is ok)
  • Gluten (wheat bread, cous cous, pasta, rye, spelt)
  • Fried Foods
  • Highly Processed meats such as deli meats, red meat, bacon and sausages 
  • Processed/ Refined foods 
  • Sugar, sweets, milk chocolate, jams, fruit spreads
  • Alcohol, coffee, soft drinks
  • Processed foods containing high fructose corn syrup, sorbitol, and other artificial sweeteners
  • Non-Organic Meats which may contain antibiotics. 
  • Margarine, artificial colours, flavours, additives, flavour enhancers & hydrogenated fats
Keep Your Defenses Strong

Keep Your Defenses Strong

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 25 November 2020

As the Coronavirus pandemic continues, one of our most important priorities should be keeping our immune system strong and healthy. The immune system consists of cells, tissues and organs that work together to maintain overall health and protect the body against infection. You can help keep your immune system strong by not only ensuring you are getting enough vitamins and minerals but by also avoiding habits and behaviours that can weaken your immune system. 

Here are five habits to be mindful of as you work on boosting your body’s defenses.

1.) Avoid too much Alcohol– In a paper published in the journal Alcohol Research, researchers note that there’s been a long-observed relationship between excessive alcohol intake and a weakened immune response. The effect includes an increased susceptibility to pneumonia, and a greater likelihood of developing acute respiratory stress syndromes (ARDS)—factors that could potentially impact COVID-19 outcome. If you find yourself drinking too much, cut back to a moderate amount of no more than one drink per day for women or two for men.

2.) Curve your Sweet Tooth– High sugar intake can wreak havoc on your body and lead to some of the most serious health conditions there are such as: heart disease, diabetes, obesity and cancer.  It can also take a toll on your oral health and mental health. A study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that after an overnight fast, humans fed 100 grams of sugar experienced a reduction in the ability of immune cells to engulf bacteria. You don’t need to cut it out sugar completely, just limit the amount you have to ensure optimum health. 

3.) Not Getting enough Fibre – Fibre is probably best known to normalise bowel movements and promote a healthy gut. However, it also provides other health benefits such as maintaining a healthy weight, lowering cholesterol and controlling blood sugar levels. Research shows that a higher intake of dietary fiber and prebiotics also supports healthier immune function, including protection against viruses. The best way to upgrade your fiber intake is to eat more whole foods, including vegetables, fruit, whole grains, pulses (beans, lentils, peas, chickpeas) nuts, and seeds.

4.) Not Eating enough Fruits & Vegetables– Making sure you eat plenty of fruits and vegetables is one of the best ways to improve your health and keep your immune system strong. This is because a good intake of fruits and vegetables will provide you with a plethora of health benefits including fibre, vitamins, minerals and plenty of antioxidants. By ensuring that you consume these every day, your body will feel more satisfied since its getting the essential nutrients that each cell requires to function properly and fight off infections.

5.) Caffeine Overload– Coffee and tea are health-protective, due to their high levels of antioxidants linked to anti-inflammation. However, too much caffeine can interfere with sleep, and that result can increase inflammation and compromise your immune system. 

How to Meditate for  Depression & Anxiety

How to Meditate for Depression & Anxiety

By Healthy Life Foundation in Health Tips, Lifestyle Tips on 16 November 2020

Understanding anxiety and depression is the first step in managing it. If we can begin to recognise the triggering situations, we can then start to recognise its onset and find ways to help alleviate its symptoms. This is where meditation comes in.   

Through meditation we familiarize ourselves with anxiety-inducing thoughts. Meditation is a way of learning to see those thoughts, recognise them and then let them go. 

Here is a quick and easy way to get started:

1. Get comfortable

It’s often helpful to sit down but if you feel better standing up or lying down, that works, too. 

The key is to feel comfortable and relaxed. Closing your eyes can also help.

2. Begin with your breath

Take slow, deep breaths through your nose. For several seconds, just focus on breathing. 

Pay attention to:

  • how it feels to inhale
  • how it feels to exhale
  • the sounds of your breath

Your thoughts might wander away from your breath, Try to keep redirecting your focus to breathing whenever you catch yourself thinking about something else.

3. Move from breath to body

Begin shifting your attention from your breath to the various parts of your body.

You can start with your feet, or if you prefer, you can start with your hands or head. 

Focus your awareness on your body, moving from one part to the next. As you continue to breathe slowly and deeply, note how each body part feels. 

Do any areas hurt? Or feel tense? 

If you notice a troublesome sensation, like tension or aches, you can add a visualization exercise. 

Imagine yourself sending relaxing breaths to that part of the body. Picture that tight muscle loosening and pain easing. Getting more comfortable with your bodily experiences and sensations can help you become more tuned in to changes as they come up.

When you’ve finished scanning your body, return your focus to your breath for as long as you need.

Depression & anxiety can be serious. While meditation does show promise as a helpful approach for depression, it’s often not enough on its own. If you have symptoms of depression, consider seeking support from a therapist before trying alternative approaches.