Get More out of party season with our tried and tested hangover tips
With party season officially upon us, if there’s ever a time you need to Get More Vitamins it’s now! Obviously we would always encourage sensible drinking, and you if can manage it, try to alternate each alcoholic beverage with water to help keep you hydrated throughout the night, but realistically we know that even with the best intentions you can’t always avoid a hangover. So with that in mind here are our top tips to help you combat the morning after.
Eat eggs – Steer clear of a greasy fry up as tempting as it may be, fatty foods can be tricky for the body to digest while it’s dealing with all the alcohol and will probably leave you feeling worse. Instead try poached or scrambled eggs on wholegrain toast. Eggs are a source of choline which is a water-soluble vitamin and important for normal liver function. Eggs also contain the amino acid cysteine, which is a small protein that helps to support liver repair and encourage the production of an antioxidant called glutathione – crucial for helping your to break down acetaldehyde (a by-product of alcohol more toxic than alcohol itself). You can also find cysteine is in oats, dairy, garlic, onions and Brussels sprouts – hello Xmas leftovers.
Bitter greens – If you can face it, try adding bitter fibrous greens to your breakfast like kale or a handful of rocket which can help to stimulate bile flow from the liver and encourage detoxification, helping to your symptoms. Even better? Add artichoke, even if that means an extra topping on your pizza!
Magnesium – Many of us are low in this all essential mineral, involved in over 300 biochemical reactions in the body, it is quickly depleted by alcohol. Magnesium has anti-inflammatory powers and as ‘nature’s relaxant’ may help to soothe headaches and calm anxiety. It can be helpful to top up with magnesium both pre and post party to ease your suffering. Have a bath in magnesium salts or a few squares of dark chocolate to help melt your troubles away.
Vitamin C – is an important antioxidant that is also rapidly used up in protecting your liver from ‘oxidative stress’ caused by alcohol. During the winter months it’s also vital to keep topped up with vitamin C for a healthy immune response and protection against colds and flu. Load up on fruit and veg, or on the go our orange flavoured Get More Vitamin C.
Antioxidants – generally speaking, the more brightly coloured your fruit and veg the higher the concentration of natural antioxidants for combatting excess toxins like alcohol. Try sipping on a smoothie of mixed berries with spinach and add fresh ginger, for its anti-nausea effects.
B vitamins – are crucial for clearing alcohol from the body, yet again are swiftly used up by alcohol so make sure you’re getting enough B vits either from foods such as meat, fish and wholegrains or you might like to add extra B Vits with a supplement or try our apple and raspberry Get More B Vitamins. Vitamin B1 is thought to enhance the effects of cysteine assisting the body with the break down of alcohol and B6 may also help to reduce hangover symptoms.
Order a curry! That’s good news right? Packed with curcumin – the compound responsible for the bright yellow colour of turmeric is a well-known anti-inflammatory with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
And last but not least… just in time for Christmas and New Year… We’ve launched our brand new Get More Recovery Range. Powered with a blend of magnesium, and electrolytes sodium and potassium that are typically disrupted by alcohol (causing dehydration) and boosted with B vits. Originally formulated to replace fluids lost during exercise… they also come in handy after a few festive tipples – trust us we’ve tried it. Available in Orange, Citrus and Cranberry at Tesco and Amazon.
Get your summer glow on!
Warmer weather means time for the big reveal, but if you suffer with skin issues like acne, eczema, psoriasis or are worried about the sun’s aging effects, read on for some simple tips to help protect your skin from the inside out.
One of the main drivers for skin flare ups and skin aging is inflammation. This may sound abstract but in actual fact and regardless of skin health, if you experience allergies, aches and pains, digestive discomfort, difficulty losing weight or struggle with low mood, it’s highlylikely that inflammation is playing a role.
What is inflammation and how can food help?
Think of when you fall over and cut your knee, as immune system messengers flood to the site of injury you experience pain, swelling and redness – this is inflammation, and a completely normal reaction. This essential acute response helps us heal from injury and protect against infection. The problem is when inflammation becomes chronic, driven by a poor diet, stress, a lack of exercise, excess weight, smoking, alcohol and our environment.
An ‘anti-inflammatory’ style diet can help to keep inflammation in check. This way of eating is a key ingredient in my skin health toolkit and one with which I have seen great results.
Nourish skin from within in 5 easy steps:
Load up with healthy fats
Number 1 are omega 3 rich foods which have been shown to reduce inflammatory hormones in a similar way to anti-inflammatory drugs. Monounsaturated fats like olive oil, nuts, seeds, avocado also provide skin soothing benefits
Eat 2-4 portions of oily fish per week -salmon, sardines, mackerel.
Drizzle salads with extra virgin olive oil or omega 3 rich flax or walnut oil.
Snack on nuts and seeds - walnuts, chia and flaxseed are particularly high inomega 3.
Steer clear of sunflower oil, peanut oil, margarines and processed spreads high inomega 6 and hydrogenated fats which can upset the delicate balance with anti- inflammatory hero omega 3 and make inflammation worse.
It’s all about the antioxidants
Antioxidants work at a cellular level, helping to neutralise ‘free radicals’ and preventthem causing damage - minimising inflammation. Vitamin C and E are particularly powerful for healthy skin.
Eat the rainbow – the more richly pigmented your fruit and veg the better. Add blueberries at breakfast, choose dark green leaves for salads and switch carbs like rice or pasta for cauliflower or broccoli rice, courgetti or squash noodles. These days you’ll find them ready prepped in most supermarkets.
Enjoy a cuppa – regular tea, green tea and coffee all provide protective polyphenols.
Treat yourself to a glass of red wine, dark chocolate or a spoonful of peanut butter - they’re rich in resveratrol, shown to be a powerful force against oxidative stress and help slow the aging process.
Dark chocolate is also rich in flavanols that may protect against sun damage, so tuck in before your holidays!
Spice up your life!
Herbs and spices can be as potent as anti-inflammatory drugs at combatting inflammation
Curcumin, the active compound in turmeric packs a powerful punch and can alsohelp manage blood glucose balance, crucial for weight loss. Add liberally tohomemade curries, or try turmeric tea.
Combine with black pepper which has it’s own effect anti-inflammatory effects andincreases the absorption of curcumin.
Compounds in ginger can block the release of pro-inflammatory hormones and isalso rich in antioxidants
Cinnamon helps to maintain blood sugar balance, important for weight management and keeping inflammation in check.
Pay attention to your digestion
Your digestive system is home to around 100 trillion bacteria, outnumbering human cells by around 10-1, so it’s important you keep these little guys happy and healthy. In addition, between 70% and 80% of the immune system is based in the gut so for keeping skin healthy and inflammation under control, your gut could hold the key.
Include a daily helping of:
Probiotics - live beneficial bacteria created during fermentation in yoghurt,sauerkraut, miso, kefir, kombucha
Prebiotic fibre - feeds healthy microbes, found in leeks, onions, garlic, oats, barley, green bananas, asparagus and chicory
Common food sensitivities can often show up in the skin as your immune system respondsto ‘foreign’ proteins so try reducing or removing these foods and you may notice an improvement.
Dairy – also contains hormones that can encourage inflammation, people with acne and eczema usually see a dramatic difference by reducing dairy
Gluten – can cause digestive problems and impact skin health too
Sugar promotes the release of the hormone insulin, too much of which can lead toweight gain, but sugar can also bind to collagen causing skin to become rigid and prone to wrinkles.
Becky offers personal nutritional therapy consultations, online coaching, functional testing and health talks at www.healthyhedonist.co.uk
Or try her free 7 day clear skin plan delivered straight to your phone through Facebook Messenger.
Find out more at www.treatus.co
Struggling to shake off the lurgy? Unfortunately, by the end of January and into February, our summer stores of vitamin D have dwindled to a year-round low, negatively impacting our in-built immune defences and leaving us more prone to picking up bugs. With over 200 varieties of the common cold virus it is hardly surprising that the average adult typically suffers an average of 2-4 colds a year, and for children this can be as many as 12.
However, there are some tasty ways to protect yourself, here’s our Top 10 Immune Boosting Foods:
Mushrooms - shiitake in particular contain sugars called ‘polysaccharides’, which along with zinc can increase the production of white blood cells and help to prevent infection. Mushrooms are also a source of vitamin D, leave them outside or on a sunny windowsill for 30 mins to increase their natural vitamin D content. Sautee with garlic and parsley as a tasty side dish. Alternatively, top up levels on the go with our delicious Vitamin D Mango & Passionfruit.
Garlic is a well-known anti-viral, as we breathe the essential oils move through our respiratory tract helping to combat lurking bugs or viruses, if you can face it, raw is best!
Yoghurt – a healthy gut means a healthy immune system, choose probiotic live yoghurt containing strains of lactobacillus to support beneficial bacteria and promote antibody production.
Cruciferous veg like cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts are packed with nutrients and contain ‘choline’ which strengthens cells in our gut wall, helping to keep bugs out! Whip up a garlic yoghurt dip to have with cauliflower or broccoli crudités
Sweet potatoes, carrots, butternut squash and dark leafy greens contain beta-carotene which is converted into vitamin A and helps to protect the respiratory and intestinal tracts, you may also like our Vitamin A Blackcurrant & Blueberry.
Eggs are rich in protein and provide key fat-soluble vitamins: A, D, E and K for immune function. They also contain B vitamins for energy production, plus minerals zinc and selenium. If you’re feeling run down, enjoy a boost of energy with our Apple & Raspberry blend of B Vits.
Greens, like kale and spinach have high levels of vitamin C our number 1 healing nutrient, try to include at every meal by adding a handful to smoothies, soups and salads. As vitamin C is water soluble you need to keep levels topped up, our Vitamin C Sparkling Orange is a tasty solution.
Cinnamon has antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial properties as well as helping to support the metabolism. Combine with oats at breakfast, dust on fresh fruit or add a sprinkle to coffee or hot chocolate.
Ginger - when a cold sets in, an inflamed respiratory tract causes congestion. Ginger contains powerful anti-inflammatory compounds, try it fresh and steeped in hot water with lemon as a soothing drink or grate into curries and stir-fries for a fiery kick.
Tomatoes - lycopene gives their flesh it’s red colour and offers an array of health-building benefits, including reducing respiratory inflammation.
Fend off those spring sniffles' with some great advice from our resident nutritionist, The Healthy Hedonist, Becky Graham...
As winter turns into spring here in the UK, we can finally welcome lighter, longer days and warmer months. However, less welcome for many is the extra pollen in the air, so if you suffer with seasonal allergies it’s time to get ahead of the game and arm yourself against symptom flare ups with some nutritional know how.
Why do some of us suffer more than others?
Allergies occur for a variety of reasons, they can be inherited or linked to the way we were born, for example infants delivered by C-section are not exposed to the same antibodies from their mothers as those delivered naturally, and as a result the immune system can take longer to mature and defend itself appropriately.
We can also develop allergies in later life, this occurs when the immune system becomes hypersensitive to substances that are normally harmless like certain proteins in foods, pollen or dust mites. The onset of symptoms may be caused by compromised digestion, poor diet, climate or exposure to pollution. Unfortunately, if you are susceptible to one‘atopic’ condition like asthma, atopic dermatitis, allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis or hay fever,you are often sensitive to others.
Hay fever is one of the most common allergies, the NHS estimates around 10 million sufferers in the UK, and that figure is on the up - within the next 20 years it’s expected torise to 30 million. Symptoms are generally brought on by inhaling pollen, which encourages the white blood cells of our immune system to respond by producing antibodies. This triggers the release of a hormone called histamine causing inflammation and manifesting in the classic runny nose, itchy watery eyes, and sneezing.
There are a few ways you can help to reduce the impact of annoying allergies. Follow these 10 practical tips and tricks to support your health during allergy season:
Keep your digestive system happy and healthy. 70-80% of the immune system is located in our gut, so feed friendly bacteria with pre and probiotic-rich foods like onions and garlic, leeks, artichoke, yoghurt, sauerkraut, kefir, miso and kombucha.
Eat foods high in quercetin. This antioxidant that has an anti-histamine effect. Apples, peppers, berries, cruciferous veg like broccoli and cabbage, leafy greens and lemons are all good sources.
Juice a pineapple. The tough core contains an enzyme called bromelain which can be effective for respiratory irritation and inflammation associated with allergies.
Limit foods that are high in histamine. Some foods are naturally high in histamine, so it may help to limit them to lower the load on your immune system. These include alcohol (particularly wine and beer), cured meats, vinegars, aged cheese and smoked fish.
Increase vitamin C fruit and vegetables. Pack your plate with an abundance of brightly coloured foods like spinach, kale, broccoli and red peppers, as well as citrus fruits and kiwi. If you struggle to get your 5 (or 10!) per day you may like to consider supplementing or stock up on GetMore Vitamin C for an extra boost.
Eat a rainbow to help manage flare ups, colourful foods contain protective antioxidants. The compound anthocyanin found in berries can help to manage inflammation in the skin and support natural defences. Beta-carotene, the orange pigment in carrots, squash and sweet potato is converted into Vitamin A, another essential skin nutrient.
Up your omega 3 for it’s natural anti-inflammatory properties. Include oily fish like mackerel or salmon, walnuts, flaxseeds and chia seeds several times a week.
Spend less time in damp environments. If you generally feel better in hotter, dryer climates, damp may be the problem. Check your home doesn’t have any mouldissues - it has been linked to the worsening of respiratory conditions like asthma.
Limit exposure to pollen. Simple tips like staying inside on windy days, keeping windows closed, taking a shower after being outside and removing shoes when you enter the house can be helpful at reducing contact with these problematic pollens
Top up with immune essential Vitamin D. Low levels are linked to the onset of allergies, and by February we are very much depleted in the UK. However, if spending time outdoors worsens your symptoms, you may want to think about adding a supplement, or get sipping our refreshing mango and passionfruit.
Finally, if you’re still struggling allergy testing can be helpful to determine foods or environmental allergens that may be causing an immune reaction, making your symptoms worse. Speak to your GP or a Nutritionist about blood tests that can measure IgE allergic reactions, which once identified and removed can reduce the burden on your immune system both during allergy season and beyond.