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Diet and Lifestyle

Udos choice super 8

Elsa Jones is a qualified Nutritional Therapist and author of the best-selling book Goodbye Sugar. As a nutrition consultant, she doesn’t subscribe to a one-size-fits-all approach. Her refreshing outlook on healthy living comes with balanced advice suitable for real people with busy lifestyles.

How important is committing to a good morning routine?

“What you choose to eat for breakfast can set the stage for blood sugar control for the rest of the day so it’s important to eat a nutritionally balanced breakfast. Porridge oats topped with berries and a spoonful of nuts/seeds or eggs with a slice of wholegrain toast will keep blood sugars stable whereas concentrated fruit juices, or refined sugary cereals will have the opposite effect. My husband will testify I’m not a morning person, so, I do small prep work on breakfast and lunch the night before to make things easier on myself in the mornings.”

If someone wanted to turn around unhealthy habits – perhaps shed the Covid pounds, what advice would you give?

 “If you’ve gained weight, start by identifying the main causes – are you snacking at night? Are your portions too big? Are you eating too many sweet treats? Are you grazing? Once you’ve identified the biggest contributors, start to tackle one thing at a time. So if night time snacking is an issue for you, set yourself a challenge to not eat anything after dinner for a week. Fasting for 12-14 hours at night is an excellent way to kick-start fat and improve digestion and sleep.”

If you find yourself self-isolating, what foods would you recommend stocking up on to help elevate mood/ boost your immunity?

“The best foods to support your immune system are fresh fruits and vegetables. They are our principal source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to support our immune system – try to get a mix of raw and cooked for optimal benefit. Frozen fruit and veg can be handy too especially if you want to minimize deliveries from the supermarket, useful to add to smoothies, soups, stews, and casseroles. I always make sure to have plenty of eggs too as they are so versatile for a quick meal and oats are a great staple from which to make anything and everything from oat bread and pancakes, to flapjacks and granola. Beans and lentils have a long shelf life and are a great source of plant-based protein and fiber – again handy to add to vegetable soups, stews, and casseroles. And don’t forget to stock up on healthy snacks like nuts, seeds, dark chocolate, and popcorn so you have healthy options to hand when temptation strikes.

Any advice for ‘mindful snacking’ while working from home?

“The best way to become conscious of everything you put in your mouth is to only eat sitting down. Most of the eating we do whilst standing up is impulse eating e.g. snacking as you prepare food or clean up after meals. There’s a real tendency to think that little nibbles here or there whilst going about your business don’t count or won’t have any consequences. But here’s the thing, they do! Not only will eating sitting down make you feel more physically satisfied, but it will also make you feel more psychologically satisfied if you see a full meal or snack spread out in front of you rather than grabbing bites here or there whilst on the move. The second most important tip to end mindless eating is to eat without distractions – If you’re distracted while you eat, it will reduce the degree of satisfaction you get from your food and you’re likely to eat more. So if you’re eating, just eat – don’t do it whilst looking at screens, driving, etc. Learning to eat more mindfully helps with portion control and hence weight management.”

Do you take supplements?

“Yes, I take magnesium at night, which helps to relax the body and promotes better sleep, something which I struggle with, unfortunately. I also take vitamin C, zinc, selenium, and vitamin D to support immunity and I do a few courses of macrobiotics a year to support my gut health. It’s important to choose your supplements wisely. So, for example, when choosing a Microbiotic, choose one that contains multiple strains of beneficial bacteria and is proven to survive stomach acidity and reach the gut such as Udo’s Choice Super 8 Macrobiotics. How you take it is important too, I recommend taking it with breakfast, swallow with a cold drink, and don’t consume hot drinks for 30 minutes after.”

What other supplements would you recommend?

“Well first and foremost a healthy, balanced and varied diet is key and there is no one-size-fits-all supplement regimen. As a Nutritional Therapist, I tailor make a supplement plan for a client based on their specific health needs. However, most people in Ireland will benefit from taking a vitamin D supplement especially during the winter months along with vitamin C and zinc for immune support. Magnesium and B vitamins can also be beneficial for energy, stress support, and mood balance”

When it comes to your corporate wellness work, what are the most common challenges employees are facing?

“The feedback I get is that many of those working from home are struggling with detachment issues, you don’t get to walk out of your office and leave work behind you anymore. Being able to switch off and set boundaries is so important. I try to not check email or social media after 9 pm, I know when I do it will likely disrupt my sleep. Many people were used to getting lunches in canteens and cafés so it can feel arduous having to make three meals a day for the first time, but that’s where weekly meal planning can be useful and learning how to cook smarter, not harder. This is an area I give a lot of attention to when I’m working with individual clients or teaching group courses.”

Spring is a time for new beginnings, do you have any new developments on the horizon for 2021?

“Normally I run live group Nutrition & Weight Management Courses in Dublin several times a year. But with Covid, I’m looking to run these courses online, which means people from all around the country and abroad can join in which is great. Mind-Body Weight Management is at the heart of what I do, so not only do I offer nutrition advice, meals plans, etc., I also delve into what influences our eating behavior with a lot of work around cravings, emotional eating, motivation, and learning to eat in a balanced way that’s sustainable and enjoyable. Because nobody, including myself, wants to feel deprived. Life’s too short for that!”

Microbiotics range

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Diet and Lifestyle

MGO Manuka Honey 100+

Why Manuka Honey?

Manuka honey is used as a natural ointment for wounds of all kinds. It has been hailed as a go-to germ fighter in an age of resistance to conventional antibiotics. Proponents also claim that Manuka honey can treat other conditions from acne to sinus issues.

Manuka honey hasn’t been used very long as a traditional remedy. It’s the product of the New Zealand scrub plant that gives it its name. European honey bees introduced it to the area in the early 19th century. When bees pollinate from this plant, their honey is more potent than standard honey bee honey. This is because it has a higher concentration of methylglyoxal (MGO).

What are the benefits of Manuka honey?

When it comes to superfoods, raw honey is associated with health benefits. Manuka isn’t raw honey, but it is specialized. It’s antibacterial and bacterial resistant. This means that bacteria shouldn’t be able to build up a tolerance to its antibacterial effects.

Manuka honey is said to be effective for treating everything from a sore throat to clearing up blemishes on your skin.

Other purported benefits of honey include:

  • helping heal cuts and scrapes
  • clearing infections
  • easing stomach aches
  • improving digestion
  • boosting the immune system
  • providing energy

– 100% New Zealand Pure Manuka Honey
– MGO™ content guaranteed
– Traceability guaranteed from beekeeper to jar

Harvested over 4 short weeks each year, MGO™ Manuka Honey is sustainably sourced from beehives in remote and pristine areas of New Zealand with full traceability from beekeeper to jar.

This delicious, smooth and creamy honey contains a minimum of 100mg of MGO™ per kg and is available in 250g, 500g or 1kg jars.

The unique benefits of Manuka Honey are well documented and are scientifically tested. However, it is important to know that the level of methylglyoxal can vary greatly in Manuka Honey, so you want to be sure you know what you’re getting. That is why at Manuka Health we test and certify our MGO™ Manuka Honey to guarantee the level of methylglyoxal present, as indicated on the label.

Recommended Use:

Enjoy MGO™ Manuka Honey off the spoon, with food such as toast or drizzled over porridge, or add to a hot drink when you are feeling a little under the weather

Please note Manuka Honey is not suitable for children under 12 months.

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Diet and Lifestyle

SUPPORTING EXAM STRESS and Kids going back to School.


Tests and exams can be a challenging part of school life for children and young people and their parents or carers. But there are ways to ease the stress.

Watch for signs of stress

Children and young people who are stressed may:

  • worry a lot
  • feel tense
  • have headaches and stomach pains
  • not sleep well
  • be irritable
  • lose interest in food or eat more than normal
  • not enjoy activities they previously enjoyed
  • be negative and have a low mood
  • feel hopeless about the future

Having someone to talk to about their work can help. Support from a parent, tutor or study buddy can help young people share their worries and keep things in perspective.

Encourage your child to talk to a member of school staff who they feel is supportive. If you think your child is not coping, it may also be helpful for you to talk to their teachers.

Try to involve your child as much as possible.

Make sure your child eats well 

A balanced diet is vital for your child’s health, and can help them feel well during exam periods.

Some parents find high-fat, high-sugar and high-caffeine foods and drinks, such as energy drinks, cola, sweets, chocolate, burgers and chips, make their children hyperactive, irritable and moody.

Where possible, involve your child in shopping for food and encourage them to choose some healthy snacks.

Read more about healthy eating for teens.

Help your child get enough sleep 

Good sleep improves thinking and concentration. Most teenagers need 8 to 10 hours’ sleep a night. Learn more about how much sleep children need.

Allow half an hour or so for your child to wind down between studying, watching TV or using a computer and going to bed, to help them get a good night’s sleep.

Cramming all night before an exam is usually a bad idea. Sleep will benefit your child far more than a few hours of panicky last-minute study.

Be flexible during exams

Be flexible around exam time. When your child is revising all day, do not worry about household jobs left undone or untidy bedrooms.

Staying calm yourself can help. Remember, exams do not last forever.

The Family Lives website has more about coping with exam stress.

Help them study

Make sure your child has somewhere comfortable to study. Ask them how you can support them with their revision.

Help them come up with practical ideas that will help them revise, such as drawing up a revision schedule or getting hold of past papers for practice.

To motivate your child, encourage them to think about their goals in life and see how their revision and exams are related to them.

Talk about exam nerves

Remind your child that it’s normal to feel anxious. Nervousness is a natural reaction to exams. The key is to put these nerves to positive use.

If anxiety is getting in the way rather than helping, encourage your child to practise the activities they’ll be doing on the day of the exam. This will help it feel less scary.

For example, this may involve doing practice papers under exam conditions or seeing the exam hall beforehand. School staff should be able to help with this.

Help your child face their fears and see these activities through, rather than avoiding them.  

Encourage them to think about what they know and the time they’ve already put into studying to help them feel more confident.

Encourage exercise during exams

Exercise can help boost energy levels, clear the mind and relieve stress. It does not matter what it is – walking, cycling, swimming, football and dancing are all effective.

Activities that involve other people can be particularly helpful.

Support group Childline says many children who contact them feel that most pressure at exam time comes from their family.

Listen to your child, give them support and avoid criticism.

Before they go in for a test or exam, be reassuring and positive. Let them know that failing is not the end of the world. If things do not go well they may be able to take the exam again.

After each exam, encourage your child to talk it through with you. Discuss the parts that went well rather than focusing on the questions they found difficult. Then move on and focus on the next test, rather than dwelling on things that cannot be changed.

Make time for treats

With your child, think about rewards for doing revision and getting through each exam.

Rewards do not need to be big or expensive. They can include simple things like making their favourite meal or watching TV.

When the exams are over, help your child celebrate by organising an end-of-exams treat.

When to get help

Some young people feel much better when exams are over, but that’s not the case for all young people.

Get help if your child’s anxiety or low mood is severe, persists and interferes with their everyday life. Seeing a GP is a good place to start.

Some basic rules coming up to exam time

A quiet place to study – A suitable environment to study is important to help concentration levels.

A balanced diet – Good nutrition is essential at any time of year, but especially during exam time. Batch cook some healthy meals and stock up on nutritious snacks. Having some of the student’s favourite dinner to hand is important too.

Omega 3 is essential to fuel the hard-working brain at this time. Keep brain and vision in tip top shape by making sure to top up your good fats daily. Consider taking Cleanmarine® Krill Oil High Strength. It contains 590mg of concentrated, high strength Omega 3 Krill Oil. This concentrated formula of EPA, DHA, Astaxanthin and Choline provides the essential fatty acids required for the normal function of the heart, brain and vision. DHA contributes to the maintenance of normal brain function and vision, the beneficial effect is obtained with a daily intake of 250mg. Also eating 2 – 3 portions of oily fish a week will provides more essential fats for your body. Examples include salmon, mackerel and herring. Easy to cook in steam parcels in the oven with garlic, lemon and oil.

A good night’s sleep – Studying all night may seem like a good idea but if your child doesn’t get enough sleep, they are more likely to forget the information or under perform. When your mind is buzzing with exam questions, quotes and scientific theories, having something to help you switch off, relax and support deep sleep is a must. Try melissa-dreams which contains all-natural ingredients including the herbs lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) and Chamomile in combination with selected B-vitamins, Magnesium and the amino acid L-theanine. Magnesium contributes to a reduction of tiredness and fatigue while vitamins B6 and B12 contribute to the normal function of the nervous system. With no drowsiness or side effects the next day, Melissa Dream helps you to wake up rested and full of energy.

Exercise – Even a 20-minute walk will help your child to relax and destress their mind, this will also help oxygenate the entire body.

Stress is the biggest obstacle to overcome. It’s so important to get enough B vitamins in foods like broccoli. Kale, spinach. Getting your 5-a-day is bound to be the least of your worries as exam time approaches; ironically this is when your nutritional and energy needs are at their highest. Make sure you keep your nutrient and energy levels up with One Nutrition® Organic Power Greens. This is a unique combination of nature’s finest green foods including kale, broccoli, spirulina, wheat grass and barley grass juice powders in a handy capsule or powder to add to your morning smoothie.

Take time out to do something you love such as walking your dog, reading a magazine, chat online to your best friend. Journaling is also therapeutic, to put your thoughts and feelings onto paper. Try family time such as playing a board game to distract your mind from the books for a while.

Don’t forget to celebrate – when the exams are over, go out and celebrate together, hopefully everything will be back to normal by then.


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Diet and Lifestyle

Go Cal Plus Saffron Slim

If a person has gained some weight during the quarantine period, it is important for them not to be too self-critical. Several manageable adjustments can help people lose the weight they gained in lockdown.

Quarantine is an effective measure to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

However, life under lockdown comes with its own mental and physical challenges.

As a result of quarantine, some people may notice weight gain during the pandemic — one study suggests 22% of adults reported gaining weight during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many challenges and disruptions to daily routines may play a role in this.

Factors, such as less sleep, less physical exercise, and eating more, may contribute to what many refer to as the “quarantine 15,” referencing the weight gain that many people experience during the pandemic.

However, for those with concerns regarding weight gain, it may be possible to adapt gradual changes into daily routines that may help manage and maintain a moderate weight.

This article explores possible causes of weight gain during the pandemic and suggests some tips and strategies that may help people maintain a moderate weight.

How has the pandemic led to weight gain?

a person trying to lose weight after quarantine weight gain performs sit ups with a water bottle
evrim ertik/Getty Images

The restrictions that quarantine places on everyday life are likely to alter and interrupt many people’s daily routines.

The rise in unstructured time, the closure of gyms and recreational centers, movement restrictions, and the enormous stress of the pandemic will all likely affect people’s sleeping patterns, eating habits, and levels of physical exercise, which may contribute to weight gain.

People may also struggle to focus on weight management due to increasing work demands, unforeseen hardships. with the help of Go -call saffron slim and plenty of excersise you can get back to a weight you can manage and feel good in yourself again.

– Contains Saffron, Apple Cider Vinegar and Chromium
– Irish Brand
– Gluten free, dairy free, suitable for vegetarians

The natural ingredients in Go Cal include Saffron, which is arguably the most expensive herb in the world due to amount of time and energy it takes to harvest. As well as 1200mg of Apple Cider Vinegar, Green Tea, which is known for its antioxidant properties, Dandelion Root, Nettle Leaf, L-Tyrosine, and L-Carnitine. It also contains Chromium, which helps to support the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels. This combination of bioactive ingredients is formulated to assist in maintaining optimum calorie control when taken as part of a calorie controlled diet:

The new and improved Go Cal contains a selection of powerful ingredients to help you with your calorie control. The formulation includes Green Tea, Saffron, Apple Cider vinegar, Nettle Leaf, L-Tyrosine, Dandelion Root, L-Carnitine and Chromium Picolinate. Chromium can help with blood sugar balance and ease sugar cravings. Saffron helps you to feel fuller for longer. Green Tea and Apple Cider Vinegar may help to speed up the metabolism. Green Tea may also provide one with the energy to continue their exercise programme. The Nettle Leaf extract may help to curb your appetite. Dandelion can help to ensure healthy digestion. L-Carnitine and L-Tyrosine are also believed to help with weight mangaement. This is a gluten free and dairy free supplement. Suitable for vegetarians.

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