Category: Health

How Fitness Can Help You Overcome an Addiction

The benefits of exercise for both body and mind are well-documented. 

But did you know that exercise can also help people struggling with addiction? 

While many treatment strategies focus on the mental aspects of addiction, addicts often find that the physical component of exercise has therapeutic benefits, as well. 

Let’s take a closer look at how fitness is an excellent ally in the struggle against addiction. 

1. Fitness helps with withdrawal symptoms

Symptoms such as anxiety, depression, and insomnia are often most intense during the withdrawal period, including detox. A gentle exercise regimen can help lessen those symptoms, as well as ease physical symptoms such as muscle aches and joint pain. 

2. Exercise provides needed structure

Regular exercise helps to create a routine and provide structure to the day. It offers a healthy distraction from addictive craving that may lead to relapse, and also helps take the mind off of stress, anxiety, and feelings of depression. 

3. Improved mood

Consistent exercise releases endorphins in the brain that help to moderate its chemistry. In turn, they’ll help to improve mood, lessen cravings and stress, while also improving sleep quality. 

Some studies show that exercise helps create new nerve connections in the brain that help heal your brain from the damage caused by addiction. 

4. Improved physical health

Addiction can take its toll on your body and may lead to serious health issues. The good news is that exercise improves cardiovascular health while lowering the risk of diabetes and some types of cancer. It also strengthens the immune system. 

Moreover, another benefit of exercise is that it helps many people in recovery to resume a normal sleep schedule. 

5. Exercise helps prevent relapse

Exercise not only helps reduce addictive cravings but also can improve treatment outcomes. Studies show that people who regularly exercise are less likely to suffer relapses in their recovery from addictive substances and behavior. 

6. Exercise helps balance brain chemistry

We’ve briefly touched on exercise’s positive effects on the brain, including an improved overall mood, but it also helps to balance brain chemistry – which is an important part of rehabilitation and recovery. 

Habitual use of drugs and alcohol changes brain chemistry and alters the addict’s mood, stress, and physical energy. In time, the brain cannot produce the proper number of neurotransmitters needed to reach chemical equilibrium, which then leads to withdrawal symptoms. Because it releases endorphins, regular exercise can moderate brain chemistry to help it regain its natural chemical balance. 

7. Exercise is a healthy distraction

Exercise, like mindfulness practices and meditation, not only reduces stress and improves mood but also serves as a healthy distraction to the cravings that may lead to relapse. It helps to take the mind off of stress, low moods, and anxiety that often intensify cravings. 

8. An exercise program helps take up time

Keeping busy through healthy activities such as exercise helps take up time that was once spent engaging in addictive behaviors. The amount of time that people waste on their addiction is often staggering but suddenly having all that extra time on their hands can be a struggle, especially in the early stages of recovery. A regular, structured fitness routine helps to fill those hours with something that’s good for both mind and body. 

Even getting ready to work out, and cooling down and cleaning up afterward, takes up time that might otherwise be spent on addiction. 

The bottom line is that fitness is a useful tool to have when recovering from addiction. From improving a person’s physical and mental health to changing brain chemistry, exercise is helpful in many ways.

If you need more information about drug addiction and treatment options, please visit The Recovery Village website.

A herb for all occasions

Herbs are a steady constant in our kitchens. Where would our sage and onion stuffing recipe be without, well, sage? And a good tomato pasta sauce just wouldn’t be the same without basil. Yes, it’s good to have your kitchens well-stocked with an array of herbs, but their uses extend beyond cooking.

Traditionally, herbs have been used as medicinal sources and for many pleasing scents. With the expertise of plant supports supplier Suttons Seeds, we’ll be exploring eight of the best examples of multi-functional herbs.  


Ginseng for the mind

A common herb along thousands of years of Chinese medicine, ginseng has been attributed as a cure for many ailments. With Panax ginseng the most widely studied of this species, it has been found to boost our mood, enhance our memory and increase concentration. As a natural detoxifier, it’s also said to boost our immune system and treat imbalances in our body, including blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol levels and hormones. However, it has been claimed that anyone with heart disease should avoid this herb or consult with your cardiologist due to the reported side effects, such as heart palpitations and insomnia.


What was rosemary for again?

Rosemary’s scent comes from an essential oil that has also been accredited to improved accuracy and speed when it comes to mental tasks, says Northumbria University. The main chemical constituent in the herb is 8-cineole and by simply smelling rosemary, we are said to be able to score higher on tests and function better on a daily basis.  

Shakespeare was ahead of science when he penned “rosemary is for remembrance”, it seems!


Echinacea: supporting your immune system

This herb has mild anti-inflammatory properties, thanks to a high level of flavonoids. It is said to hold immune-boosting qualities that promotes the activity of the lymphocyte cells that help eliminate viruses from the body. Promoters of the herb use it to combat an array of ailments, including:

  • Dizziness
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Acid indigestion
  • Gum disease
  • Migraines
  • Diphtheria
  • Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Flu
  • Tonsillitis

In the late 1920s and early 1930s, echinacea was very popular in Europe and North America. It first was used as a treatment for the common cold, after a supplement maker from Switzerland believed it could prevent common colds after finding out Native American tribes in South Dakota used it for this reason.


The roots of sage

Sage has roots in the Latin word ‘salvere’, meaning ‘to save’. And it certainly had a life-saving reputation in the Middle Ages, with many using it as a way to try to prevent the plague. However, recent research found that the herb may be able to improve our brain’s functionality and memories, especially in people who have Alzheimer’s disease as sage inhibits the breakdown of acetylcholine — something which drops in sufferers of the disease.


Basil: more than just for cooks

Basil has pride of place among many a chef’s cupboard. However, the plant also has anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties that can halt osteoarthritis. Currently, it’s being used to combat digestive disorders and is the subject of studies looking into its anti-cancer properties. The essential oils found in basil are a good source of vitamin A, potassium, calcium, iron and magnesium. It’s also said that the oil can enhance dull-looking skin and hair when massaged into the skin, provide relief from the common cold and improve digestion.


Holy basil: more than just basil!

This one’s a step up from regular old basil. Holy basil is considered to be a sacred herb in India and has been linked with reducing blood sugar levels. It has also been used to combat anxiety and any anxiety-related depression, with one study finding it increases certain immune cells which are found in our blood. However, as these studies have been relatively small, it’s anticipated that more research will be carried out to discover the herb’s true ‘powers’.


Stomach-soothing spearmint

This Mediterranean herb isn’t as strong as other herbs in the mint family. Its leaves carry menthol and is rich in many antioxidant vitamins, such as vitamin A and vitamin C. It can help battle flatulence and hiccups, due to it relaxing your stomach muscles. Other benefits spearmint is used for includes relieving itching, dermatitis and hives when it’s used as a cream or lotion. It can also be used in aromatic therapy to help reduce head pains, fatigue and stress.



Tarragon helps to stimulate an appetite, thanks to its healthy dose of phyto-nutrients. In its fresh form, it is one of the highest antioxidant value food sources in common herbs. Studies have found that it helps to lower blood sugar levels and compounds found in the herb can inhibit platelet activation and prevent adhesion to the blood vessel wall. This can help prevent clot formation inside blood vessels in your heart and brain, which can protect from heart attacks and strokes. In dentistry, tarragon has been used as an antiseptic for toothache complaints, while tarragon tea is thought to help cure insomnia.

As you can see from this small selection, herbs have numerous health benefits to be aware of. Studies will continue to be carried out to firmly understand all the positive aspects of the herbs available to us. So, now is as good a time as any to head to your local supermarkets and stock up on those all-important herbs!




The 7 best foods for people with kidney problems.

A healthy diet is incredibly important for people with kidney problems. It can prevent and even help relieve symptoms of kidney disease. While a dietician can create a meal plan that suits your needs, there are certain foods that can help you manage your kidney disease.

Here are 7 of the best foods for people with kidney problems:

1. Cauliflower

Cauliflower is one of the best foods for people living with kidney disease. It is packed with nutrients including vitamin B, vitamin C, and vitamin K and is a good source of folate and dietary fibre. This cruciferous vegetable is also rich in indoles, thiocyanates, and nitriles – compounds that help the liver neutralize poisonous substances that may damage cell membranes. These compounds also reduce inflammation which is essential in promoting healthy functioning of the kidneys.


2. Blueberries

A diet that is rich in blueberries is essential for people with kidney problems or receiving dialysis. This type of berry is high in folate, fibre, manganese, and vitamin C. It also contains anthocyanidins, an antioxidant that helps to reduce inflammation.

You can eat them fresh, frozen or dried or add them to your fruit smoothie, cereals or salad dressing.


3. Red Grapes

These types of grapes are not just meant for making the finest wine in the world. They are a great choice for people who are battling kidney disease. Red grapes are packed with vitamin C and contain flavonoids – antioxidants that reduce inflammation. Additionally, they can help cleanse and detox the kidneys.

The National Kidney Foundation recommends eating 15 grapes daily to maintain good kidney health. It important to note that grapefruit affects the way many medicines work. So be sure to ask your pharmacist or physician if grapefruit is safe for you.


4. Egg Whites

Egg whites are pure protein and contain less phosphorous compared to dairy, meat, and chicken. The low levels of phosphorus help prevent mineral build-up in the system making egg whites a great option for people following a renal diet.

They are also a good choice for patients on dialysis as they have higher protein needs but need to limit their phosphorus intake.


5. Garlic

Kidney disease patients are advised to reduce or avoid sodium intake, including table salt. Garlic can be used as a substitute for salt to flavor your cooking. Additionally, it has diuretic properties which help promote kidney health.

The herb is also packed with vitamin C, vitamin B6, manganese and sulphur compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties.

If you do not eat garlic, be sure to completely cut out salt from your diet. However, if you insist on consuming salt, consider visiting an advanced urology specialist regularly to help manage your condition.


6. Olive Oil

Olive oil is a great source of unsaturated fats. Eating foods high in unsaturated fats can help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol, decrease the risk of heart disease and reduce inflammation.

You can use olive oil for salad dressing as well as a substitute for cream and butter.


7. Skinless Chicken

Saturated fats can raise your blood cholesterol level and increase your risk for heart disease, which can cause further kidney damage. To help keep fat from building in your heart and blood vessels, remove the skin from poultry before cooking.

Eating kidney-friendly foods will help protect your kidney from further damage. It will limit the build-up of certain minerals in your body while ensuring you get the right balance of vitamins, calories, minerals, and proteins.


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Is social smoking dangerous?

Summer is here and you’re probably venturing out and about with your friends. However, how many of you will be considering having a cigarette once you’re out socialising — even if you don’t smoke regularly?

What type of smoker are you?

With stop smoking chewing gum suppliers, Nicotinell — we find out which type of smoker you’re classed as. There are three main groups to be aware of:

  1. The binge smoker — this is someone who will smoke a lot but only at certain times of the week, such as throughout the weekend.
  2. The low-level smoker — this is someone who will either smoke a small number of cigarettes on a daily basis, or choose to only smoke occasionally.
  3. The social smoker — this is someone who will likely smoke only when in social settings, such as at a pub or when hanging out with friends.

Do you smoke socially?

Whether you’re classed as low-level or an occasional smoker, it’s crucial for us to reiterate that there’s no safe level of smoking and it will ultimately cause harm to the body. This statement has been underlined by online resource iCanQuit, which has been developed by the Cancer Institute NSW, when looking into the health effects of irregular smoking.

Studies have proven that those who smoke between one and four cigarettes a day will triple their chances of heart disease and lung cancer. Both light and intermittent smokers were also found to be at nearly the same risk of suffering from cardiovascular disease as those who smoked every day.

Social smoking and health risks were also outlined by the American Journal of Health Promotion; questioning 39,000 people.

According to the group questioned, over ten per cent identified as social smokers and 17 per cent were current smokers. Regardless of the type of smoker though, around 75 per cent of the current and social smokers were found to have had high blood pressure and an estimated 54 per cent had high cholesterol. This is after the research team had adjusted for differences in factors which included demographics and obesity.

“Doctors and nurses need to educate patients that social smoking is still a major health risk and is not a long-term healthy choice” commented Kate Gawlik, The Ohio State University and the study’s lead author.

“Not smoking at all is the best way to go. Even smoking in a social situation is detrimental to your cardiovascular health.”

When looking at genders, iCanQuit found that occasional smokers who were men were 60 per cent more likely to die than non-smoking males. Meanwhile, females who were low-level smokers were found to typically lose between four and six years of their lives than non-smoking females.

“Even if you smoke occasionally or just on weekends, you are still a smoker – and the health dangers of low level smoking are serious and significant.” — iCanQuit.




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4 Steps to Avoid Dry Skin This Winter

For all of the joys that winter brings, with warm fires and delicious heart warming foods, there are a few downsides to the season which may require you to mix up your skincare routine. Read on for a few tips on how to avoid dry, cracking skin this winter.



Using moisturiser should be a part of your skincare regime all year round but particularly in winter. As the colder weather creeps in, the humidity drops, causing our skin to become dehydrated. When the air outside is cold and dry your skin loses its ability to retain hydration by 25%. Look for moisturising products containing glycerin which helps your skin to hold moisture. It is most effective to moisturise just after the shower, as your pores are open and it will help retain the moisture, and just before you go to bed, so that your skin doesn’t dry out in your sleep.

Do exercise caution not to over-moisturise. You will notice this if you are regularly moisturising and experiencing irregular dryness or impurities. You may just be using a moisturiser that’s too oily for your skin type. In this case, switch to one with a lower percentage of oils or moisturising ingredients, or switch to a serum for a drier moisturising effect. Try Eminence Organics for a more natural choice in skincare.


Shower Habits

showerThere is no better feeling then enjoying a nice long scorching hot shower in the middle of winter when you can’t feel your toes. But you may be doing a lot of damage to your skin including dehydrating it significantly and stripping your skin of its natural oils. The higher the temperature in a shower the higher the chance that your skin will become dehydrated. This will result in dry, cracked skin that could be difficult to repair. This winter, turn down the temperature, and avoid taking too long of a shower to ensure your skin can retain as much moisture and hydration as possible.

In winter we avoid moisturising to avoid being cold as we wait for the cream to settle in. A great winter investment is an in-shower moisturising lotion. These offer many benefits including keeping your skin hydrated and preventing dryness and cracking, and you can do it all in the comfort of your warm shower.


Use the Right Products

Combination and oily skin products often use astringents which work to dry out the oil in your skin. These work only if

Hand sanitisers, although convenient, can be extremely harsh on your hands, especially in winter when your hands are often exposed to the elements like freezing cold winds. Wash your hands with a moisturising soap cleanser and follow up with a rich hand cream, and avoid deodorising hand soap bars as they strip your hands of their natural oils.


Ditch the Makeup Wipes

There are moisturising makeup wipes on the market but there is no substitute for a deep, nourishing cleanser which will remove your makeup without the harmful effects of sulphates and alcohols. Beware of these ingredients as they will strip your skin of its natural oils and leave it feeling dry and dehydrated. Furthermore, using makeup wipes causes friction on your skin’s surface, causing low-grade inflammation and redness.

Although it requires additional effort, using a facial cleansers bequeaths many more benefits for your skin. Facial cleansers, especially those containing glycerin and natural oils are much kinder on your skin, reducing irritation and inflammation. Additionally, even the most mild of facial cleansers provide some sort of exfoliation for your army of dead skin cells, which is essential during the winter when you are experiencing dry skin.

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5 Most Common Travel Injuries

It’s great if travelling is your hobby and you can afford it as often as you want – you get a chance to have fun with your friends or family, to see different places, meet different people, learn about the numerous cultures, gain new experiences and have awesome, memorable adventures. There are different types of travelling : you can go and rest at some quiet and peaceful place or you can, if you’re more into adventures and adrenaline, search for places with various, sometimes dangerous, activities. However, no matter where and why you’re going, safety should always be a priority. And injuries can happen at any place and at any time. That is why it’s essential to protect yourself from huge medical bills caused by the possible injuries while you’re abroad. So, before travelling, find an insurance that suits you. It won’t be hard even if your budget is limited, because today you can easily find Webjet cheap travel insurance and get a guarantee that you will get the needed help if something bad happens during your trip. Here are the five most common travel injuries.

1.     Traffic Accidents

These can be very dangerous and they are not rare. If your driving skills aren’t the best, if there are different traffic laws or you’re in the area you don’t know very well, you can easily get injured. Also, pay special attention while you’re walking or riding a bike and always be careful so you don’t expose yourself to risks of getting hurt.

2.     Tripping Or Falling

Even though this can look funny sometimes, you can get serious injuries by tripping or falling. Especially if you’re going somewhere and you’re in a hurry. So, always pay attention to your walking and try to pick the right footwear that fits the terrain you’re walking on.

3.     Mugging

Being a victim of mugging does not only leave the physical consequences but mental as well. This is a terrible experience that all the tourists, no matter where they are, should be aware of. Try to not go alone in the isolated places or during the night and you will have much higher chances to avoid being mugged.

4.     Dehydration

Dehydration can have big consequences. To avoid this, especially during the hot summer days, drink enough water, take breaks during the walks and wear proper clothing that fit the temperature.

5.     Sports Injuries

These are also very dangerous and can easily change your life. Sports injuries include injuries during hiking, skiing, snowboarding, diving and so on. All these adventures can be great, but before trying them, have the proper equipment, be realistic about your skills and limits and if you’re not experienced, take lessons.


How to beat the Monday blues

Everyone has experienced those Monday morning ‘feels’, where the weekend seems like a lifetime away and the stress of the work week is imminent. Fitness, healthy living and mindfulness are all key concepts when it comes to beating the Monday morning blues, so we’ve teamed up with active-wear brand UP Clothing to bring you five tips to help start your week on the right foot.


Make the most of your weekend

Granted, sometimes you need a lazy weekend to recover from a hectic workweek, but there’s nothing worse than coming to Sunday evening and realising that you’ve wasted your well-earned day’s off. Whether it’s a family trip to the beach, a night out with the girls, or maybe just ticking some things off your to-do list, feeling as if you’ve made the most of the weekend is an essential part of feeling ready for Monday’s return to work.


Dress to Impress

Nothing lifts your spirits like feeling good about yourself. No matter how fed-up you feel, you should make an effort to dress nicely on Monday morning. When you look great on the outside, you’ll feel a hell of a lot better inside. Co-workers will bounce off your high-spirits, which will make for a more pleasant work environment.


Listen to an upbeat soundtrack

If you need a little extra motivation on Monday, playing some upbeat music will set the pace for your work and lift your spirits. Whether it’s vibrant dance tracks, or pop classics, music is the best way to transform your mood and beat the Monday blues.


Don’t just live for the weekend

 Activities and adventures shouldn’t be strictly reserved for the weekend. Making plans after work will break up the week and gives you something to look forwards to after a hard day’s graft. Whether it’s a date night with your other half, or a cinema trip with an old friend, making your evenings count means you don’t have to cram everything into Saturday and Sunday.


Keep up your exercise regime

A good work out is proven to help with stress and mental wellbeing as it releases endorphins (happy chemicals).  Hitting the gym on Monday will get your week off to a flying start – you’ll feel better about yourself for being productive, your body will thank you for it, and it will boost your mood.

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How to maintain see-saw balance between professional & personal life

The constant struggle to create a good work life balance is never ending. You’re expected to be productive at work moving forward to make the company money then you’re expected to go home and clean the house, take care of the kids and somewhere in the middle take care of yourself. Everything begins to spin out of control as you try to make it all work. We’ve got a few ways to help you see saw between the perfect work and life balance.

work life balance


One of the most important parts of creating a work life balance is to set boundaries. Leave work when you walk out the door. Don’t take your private life into work. Technology allows your e-mail to be easily accessible on the phone leading your boss to maybe think it’s okay to send you work related issues at 10 PM expecting you to answer. Set your boundaries that you only work a certain amount of time. When you’re off the clock, you’re totally off the lock. When you’re at work, it’s all about getting the business done. This means you aren’t scrolling through Facebook or texting your wife throughout the day. Don’t gossip about your home issues to co-workers during your coffee break. Enjoy your time while you’re at work and enjoy your time while you’re at home.


Take Time for Yourself

You have to take care of number one. Co-workers may pull at your sleeves all day asking you to do things they need or sending you new projects. Family members insist you need to mow the lawn or clean the dishes at this very moment. Take time to breathe and step away from it all. You need time to heal and just be with yourself. This doesn’t mean taking days at a time to ignore the world, but taking a few moments each day or a few hours each week to just reflect and pamper yourself. it’s important to remember to love and nurture yourself. This gives you a moment of rejuvenation, a time to think about your life and a minute to really appreciate that you have a work life balance. Play a round of golf, go watch a movie or roam through the aisles of your favorite superstore shopping. Simply take the time to do for yourself what never gets done. Forgetting to take care of yourself could lead to a breakdown in all aspects of life later so take the time now.


Cure That Hangover After a Crazy Night

Having fun with friends is important in every part of your life. The only tough part about going out for a fun night to let off steam is if you have to get to work the next day. Curing your hangover after a crazy night is imperative to your work life balance. Start by drinking lots of water and indulging in a big, healthy breakfast. You’ll need lots of energy and hydration to hit the day with a hangover. Pop a few ibuprofens and hit the office with a positive attitude. After a crazy night, you don’t need to dive into any huge tasks. Try to work on projects that don’t involve making big decisions that day. Take it easy, but keep your head in your work. Take breaks and get as much fresh air as possible. Don’t brag to everyone that you had too much to drink the night before, yet keep your head in the game and smile throughout the pain. It’ll be gone soon and tomorrow will be a brighter day when you can dive into those tough projects.


Say No

Trying to make everyone happy is tough so saying “no” doesn’t come easily. It’s actually an art to get to where you can just say “no” and walk away from something. We want to please everyone around us by doing anything they ask, but in return we often get overwhelmed with a long to do list that only stresses us out in the end. This list means we don’t get to attack our own priorities or have any fun. Tell your co-worker you simply can’t do this extra project. Tell your buddy you just can’t help him build a shed this weekend. You can also delegate tasks to other employees at work to help your work life. Remember it isn’t your responsibility to do all of the work. You do want to show off by going above and beyond, but stop when the beyond leaves you cowering in a corner overwhelmed with too many things to do.


The see saw between your professional and personal life can get complicated. Take it one step at a time and try to enjoy both parts of your life. Always stop to ask yourself if you are happy and you are fulfilled with your life. If you aren’t smiling at work and smiling at home, it’s time to make adjustments that lead to a happier lifestyle where you balance both work and home life.

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5 Ways To Have Healthier Lifestyle

Having a healthy lifestyle is beneficial to us for many reasons. Our mind and body are in better shape, we feel stronger, more energetic, our mental state is healthier, we are more productive and, the most important, happier in general. Having bad health can lead to dangerous diseases and, beside weaking us, it can cause bad mood, depression and the lives of our friends or families can be influenced by us becoming their burden. Good thing is that today a lot of companies in health bussines support and inspire sport and healhy lifestyle, such as Scitec Nutrition, which is, for example, an official supplier of the Hungarian Olympic Team.  The newest line from Scitec Nutrition has been designed exclusively for athletes who want to improve their performance and endurance. Scitec Nutrition’s Athletic Line is a comprehensive range which features advanced multi mineral formulas and vitamin complexes available to enhance your aerobic workouts. There are many ways to change our life habbits and a lot of them are easy.


scitec nutrition

1.    Exercise

Exercising feeds both the body and the mind. Making it a daily habbit, especially in the morning, will improve our energy and focus and prepare us for the day. This is one of the best way to feel more confident. Also, you can use it to socialize and get inspired for more healthy habbits. Combining exercising with nutrition supplements will give you the best results.

2.    Start Your Diet

Healthy diet is even more important than regulary exercising. Today we are used to eating junk food and other unhealthy food because we have no time to pay attention to what we eat. Fruits and vegetables feed us with vitamins and make our bodies and our immune system stronger, more durable and healthier in general. Also, proteins play a big role as well.

3.    Keep Your Mind Healthy

Bad habbits destroy both the mind and the body. And if we choose to change, it always start from the head. This means that having more positive thoughts, reducing stress, understanding and expressing our emotions and developing our mental abbilities must be a first step toward the healthier life. Your emotions and thoughts also dictate productivity, choices in life and the behaviour to others, so improving it is truely a big deal.

4.    Improve Your Sleep

Sleeping is good for rest and it is important for the overall health to have well organized sleeping schedule. If you have trouble sleeping because of worrying or thinking too much, try to fix your thoughts first by yoga and meditation so you can sleep better and easier. It is suggested to sleep eight hours daily on average.

5.    Have A Healthy Company

You will not be healthy if you are constantly hanging out with people who cause you stress, negativity and problems. Try thinking about it and smarty select your company because you will be happier overall if you are enjoying your life with people that love you, support you and make you feel better.

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Why Olives are beneficial to your daily diet

The olive plant has many benefits and health properties, with its best being the fruit. Olives, particularly olive oil, is often regarded as a food to avoid because it is a source of fat, but what if I told you it is a healthy fat? Confusing but once we explain we’re sure you’ll be running to stock up on some olives and some oil to drizzle on your salads.

Black olives- the ripe olives- are rich in fatty acids, holding more antioxidants than green olives. Black olives are very high in iron, which of course improves the ability of red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. Having a lack of iron in your diet can make you feel cold or weak, as our tissues don’t get enough oxygen and our energy production can be lowered. The proper function of the immune system is dependent on having a sufficient amount of iron in the body.

Black olives also contain vitamin E, which has been shown to protect skin from UV radiation, guarding it from skin cancer and premature aging. By applying a few drops of olive oil to a freshly washed face you can use it to help gain a glowing complexion. Leaving it to work for 15 minutes before rinsing it off once a week should do the trick. You can even moisturize with olive oil before bathing or showering, and it works as a great conditioner for your hair when mixed with an egg yolk.

Monounsaturated fats, vitamin E and polyphenols found in black olives, have anti-inflammatory abilities, which can help dull the asperity of asthma, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis. Most suffering one of the three bone maladies had them brought about by high levels of free radicals. Researchers found that oleocanthal- a chemical found in olives- inhibits inflammation like a pain killer, acting like drugs such as ibuprofen.

The nutrients within the olives have also been known to neutralize free radicals. Free radicals are dangerous in our body as when oxidized cholesterol and blood vessels are damaged, while fat builds up in the arteries which can lead to a heart attack. The antioxidant nutrients in black olives obstruct this oxidation of cholesterol, helping to prevent heart disease and even colon cancer.

For those who don’t understand what monounsaturated fats are, they fat molecules that have one unsaturated carbon bond in the molecule. Unlike other fats when consumed in moderation they can be beneficial to our health, helping to reduce bad cholesterol levels in our blood lowering the risk of heart disease and stroke whilst providing nutrients to help develop and maintain our body’s cells.

One cup of black olives contains 17% of your daily fibre allowance and 10% of your daily recommended vitamin A allowance. The fibre is essential in helping to improve your digestive tract health by moving food through the system at a healthy pace by stopping any one part of the digestive tract from having to work harder than it should, whilst also supporting the ideal balance of chemicals and microorganism population required for a healthy digestive system.

The vitamin A is crucial for healthy eyes, as it improves night vision by helping the eye to better distinguish between light and dark. Vitamin A is also believed to be effective against age-related ocular diseases such as cataracts, macular degeneration, and glaucoma. Introducing olives into your daily diet or having at least 5 olives a week, can be enough.

If this information has made you want to go out and buy some olives- in particular the black ones- then why not try growing your own Standard Olive Tree? Then not only will you have a beautiful hardy long lasting tree to feature in your garden, but a direct olive source for you and your family.

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