Makeup Tips For Spectacle Wearers

 

We love our specs, but we want to wear them – not the other way round.  How does one enhance one’s eyes behind glasses, avoid makeup mistakes caused by specs and choose frames to complement your colourings? These few tips will make those eyes pop and get the attention they deserve…

  1. Eye makeup tips for long and short-sighted prescriptions

Eye makeup application techniques depend on what your prescription is. If you’re short-sighted your lenses will make your eyes look smaller so use a light coloured liner on the inside of the eye to make the eyes look bigger. Try Avon Glimmerstick which is a pinky nude with great staying power. You can still create a smoky effect by applying a long-lasting shadow in a dark shade under the lower lashes with a flat-angled brush. Use a liquid liner like Urban Decay 24/7 Perversion along the upper lashes to create a soft flick at the end to make your eyes look larger. Using eyelash curlers can help to open the eyes more, and then follow with dramatic mascara like Givenchy Phenomen’eyes or Benefit They’re Real. For those of you who are longsighted, lenses will magnify your eyes so use a dark liner on the inside of the eye like Bobbi Brown Longwear liner in Jet or MAC Feline pencil. Switch to a more subtle yet buildable mascara like Code Beautiful VLM.

  1. How to avoid getting red marks where glasses sit on your nose

The lighter the weight of the frame, the less likely you are to get marks so try rimless or Ultralight. Avoid using anything that generates more oil, like eye creams (substitute for eye gel in the daytime) and foundations around the eye (always use an eye concealer for the delicate eye area). Try MAC Pro Longwear concealer around the eyes and on the bridge of the nose and blend quickly. Fix in place with MAC Blot Powder.

  1. How to choose a frame to complement your skin tone

Personally I think that it’s not what you wear; it’s how you wear it so you can really have fun with colours. However if you have got very red skin then avoid red frames and perhaps try green as this colour helps to neutralise red. If your skin has very sallow/yellow undertones try pink or red frames.

  1. How to avoid looking OTT with smoky eyes under glasses

Switch to shades of grey rather than black especially. Use a primer like Urban Decay Eye Potion prior to shadows to keep them in place and avoid mistakes.

  1. What frames would work well with bright makeup

A 50’s style tortoise shell frame looks fantastic with a matte red lipstick. Try either Sisley Ruby liner all over the lip for a slight orange undertone lip or MAC Redd liner for more of a blue undertone. Tom Ford lipstick is the ultimate pamper for your lips and they do a great red! YSL have a stunning fuschia pink lipstick that’s long-lasting and would look great with some blue frames. Personally I love to colour clash when I’m doing makeup on a model so vivid eyeshadow shades like orange and purples with green frames and either a nude lip or a deep plum lippy.

Balancing makeup to glasses and finding well-suited frames shades and shapes can require careful consideration, but if done right, can tremendously improve your look. Armed with these advice, you’ll be ready to see better as well as be seen better!

Foods That Give You Healthy Skin

Healthy Food

The skin is the window to the entire body and a part of choosing a diet for good looking skin is just eating to keep yourself healthy because your health is reflected through your skin. Here are some intakes that are essential for your well-being:

  1. Blueberries Fight Aging Skin

Antioxidants help fight the signs of aging skin, and blueberries are a great source. Rich in vitamin C, blueberries can play a healthy role in an otherwise decadent dessert and taste great as a cereal topping and tossed into salads. Other sources of antioxidants that you can include in your healthy diet are red wine and dark chocolate. Eating fruits and veggies in their fresh, raw form provides more antioxidants than when cooked.

  1. Fish Provide Healthy Oils

Fish that is rich in omega-3 fatty acids should be part of a healthy skin diet. Omega-3s are a great source of oil for the skin without clogging the pores, clarifying that omega-3s must be eaten or taken as supplements. Many people try to cut all fats from their diet, but without some fat, your skin may suffer. Omega-3 fatty acids are considered healthy fats, and a diet that is too low in healthy fats can lead to dull, dry skin.

  1. Whole Wheat Promotes Digestion

Think of whole-wheat bread and other whole-grain products as smart food for your skin — they’re a healthy alternative to refined white bread or pasta. The white bread and white pasta create a spike in insulin, which isn’t good for your skin. Whole grains are also packed with fiber, which promotes healthy digestion when digestive problems are often reflected in unhealthy skin.

  1. Water Hydrates Your Skin

There are molecules in the skin that actually bind water. Your skin will not be as plump if you are dehydrated. Skin also becomes dry when it loses too much water, so you need to drink plenty of liquids to replace daily water loss. Water is also a good alternative to sugary beverages that could negatively affect your skin by causing insulin levels to rise and fall dramatically.

  1. Green Tea Helps Skin and Overall Health

Green tea has two benefits for your skin: It contains antioxidants, which may fight the effects of aging, and drinking it is a good way to stay hydrated. When given the option, choose green tea over beverages that don’t promote skin health. If you can substitute a good choice at every single meal for a bad choice, you’ll start to look and feel healthier.

  1. Sweet Potatoes Help Reduce Wrinkles

Sweet potatoes give you a healthy dose of vitamin A, which has been found to help reduce wrinkles and other signs of aging. There are several topical creams on the market that contain vitamin A, using too many of these skin products can be drying and irritating. It’s better to include sweet potatoes and other foods rich in vitamin A as part of a healthy diet.

  1. Broccoli Helps Fight Fine Lines

Broccoli and other green vegetables are great for the skin. The richer the color of veggies and fruits, the more likely they are to contain the nutrients you need for a healthy diet. Darker broccoli florets provide more vitamins A and C, and both of these vitamins help fight fine lines and wrinkles.

Many of the nutrients and “good” fats we eat as part of a healthy diet enhance the skin’s elasticity and help create the appealing glow of healthy skin. Eat well and avoid foods high in saturated fat and you’ll see how it can result in good skin.

Daily Beauty Rituals to Follow

Beautiful skin is one of the most attractive indicators of beauty and youth. Good sleep, plenty of water and stress free life are some of the most basic and important ingredients of youthful and beautiful appearance. And yes, healthy eating of course! We did a listing below of some basic beauty routines that need to be religiously followed:

  1. Cleanse Your Face:

The glowing skin you will get rapidly if you cleanse, tone and moisturize your face regularly and timely. You should cleanse your face before makeup at morning. After coming back home, again, you have to cleanse your skin at night. It will keep your skin fresh and dirt free all day long. The night skin care offers you a deep treatment. Your skin gets a chance to absorb the necessary elements that make your skin healthy and plump. If you cleanse your face during the shower, it is easy. Wash your hands first, so that no poisons can be transferred into the skin. Open the pores by making your skin wet with lukewarm water. Massage your face gently with a cleanser in a circular and upward motion. You can let your cleanser stay a while if the product has this feature. It will cleanse and remove the dirt, oil, or blemishes from the pores rightly. Wash your face with some splashes of cold water. It closes the pores so that no impurities can go into the pores. Washing your face with cold water also makes your skin look fresher.

  1. Apply Toner on Your Skin:

Toner is a must for skin care routine because it serves 3 big benefits for your skin. One- it helps to retain your pH level that is removed after cleansing, second- it eliminates wrinkles/fine lines or spots. And finally, it prevents the growth of bacteria or poison into the skin. Toner is especially essential for oily skin. You may get lots of good toners on the market, pick your best one according to your skin texture. Pour some toner on a cotton pad and rub it on the face politely. Don’t wash your face after applying the toner.

  1. Moisturize Your Face:

After cleansing and applying toner, now time to soften your skin with a good moisturizer as per your skin type. Even if, you have oily skin, you have to moisturize your skin. Moisturizer is a must for the dry or flaky skin. You will get different kinds of moisturizers in the shops, including serums (best for normal/oily skin), gels (best for oily/spot prone skin) and creams (best for dry/sensitive skin). Besides moisturizing the skin, it has 3 major benefits for the skin, like reducing wrinkles, blemishes and contains false tan. After drying the toner, just simply massage your skin with your moisturizer. If you have dry skin, you can apply a little bit more. If you notice really more, blot some with a tissue. Many girls apply different moisturizers for the eye areas. You can also do it.

  1. Exfoliate Your Skin:

Exfoliation once a week is a good routine for skin care. Exfoliation also enhances the glowing appeal of your face. This skin care tip basically eradicates the unnecessary burdens, like dead or dry skin cells. So, your skin becomes fast and plain. Exfoliator should be gentle or pH-neutral, not be harsh or sandpaper. Wipe your makeups first. Then apply your favorite exfoliator on the skin. Rub for half a minute with your hands gently. You can use a washcloth to massage your face instead of hands. Soak your washcloth in warm water and then rub your skin with it. Be more careful on the corners of the nose because these parts contain more impurities or dead cells that can be seen as blackheads later. In excessive dry skin, you can scrub your skin 1-2 times a week. But, the exfoliator should be gentle, not be harsh. Two quality skin exfoliators are Era Organics and Cure Natural Aqua.

  1. Facial Mask

The application of a mask can be also an excellent skin care routine at home once or less a week. You can use a ready-made mask or you can prepare natural mask. The natural face mask is more effective and healthy for skin. In dry skin, you can use a rich mask formulated with moisturizer. In uneven or oily skin, better to apply peel-off mask. If you buy a mask, you should follow the instructions given on the packet. If you prepare yourself at home, you should not leave it on your skin more than 15 minutes.

Adopting a very simple, natural skincare routine can totally change one’s complexion. Don’t discontinue the above daily skin care routine at home. Just continue and hook up these tips and undoubtedly you’ll have beautiful skin- everybody’s desire!

Essential Herbs Vital For Liver Health And Longevity

To date, there is no cure for liver cancer. Specific herbs may not be able to cure someone who has liver cancer, but they may help those individuals suffering from either cancer or liver disease.  

Helping to flush the body of toxins, and to increase the immune response, specific herbs may be the key to helping bodily functions work more efficiently when the liver is unable to filter properly. Astragalus may be the key to helping liver patients cope with the consequences of liver disease and the effects of it to their overall health.

Astragalus is a herb that is showing great promise to aid those who are dealing with both, liver diseases and those who are taking chemotherapy for liver cancer. When used in conjunction with chemotherapy drugs, patients are showing an increase in production of healthy blood cell counts.

That not only makes it unlikely that chemo will have to be halted due to low immunity or other side effects of chemotherapy, but it can also help to decrease the negative side effects of radiation and surgery for metastasized liver diseases and cancers. Taking the astragalus herb may also aid in the increase of energy and help to fight against the fatigue that plague many chemotherapy patients.

Many patients who have poor liver function also have problems with fluid retention. Liver diseases often coincide with poor heart function that can lead to congestive heart failure and endemic conditions. Astragalus has been shown to decrease edema in the body and help with overall heart and cardiac processes.

The Astragalus root has long been linked to positive heart benefits. Also known as Milk Vetch or Huang Qi, it is the product of a legume or bean type plant. There are a vast number of different astragalus species. They all work by stimulating the immune response in the individual.

They also have an antioxidant effect that helps to halt the progression of free radical damage. Free radicals are those things that break down the cell and speed up the aging process. Astragalus root works in the body by reducing the production of these free radicals within the cell.

A dietary supplement, Astragalus has been traditionally indicated for help with the immune system response. It is also used to help with respiratory conditions, diabetes, and fibromyalgia. Thought to protect the cardiovascular system and heart from free radical damage, it has also been useful for nervous conditions, low blood sugar and blood pressure conditions.

Those who believe in the benefit of the root insist it has potential benefits for those suffering with conditions of the lungs, spleen, urinary tract system and circulatory system. The evidence is still not conclusive to the safety or effectiveness of taking the Astragalus root in high doses.

One of the limitations to the Astragalus root is that there is no standard for administration. Without specific guidelines about how to administer, there is the potential for overdosing as well as underusing.

New findings from eye glasses Winnipeg, suggest that due to the way that the root works, it may be an excellent way to overcome not only liver disease and the consequence of it but other diseases as well. Working in much the same way as it does in liver cancer patients, anyone who is receiving chemotherapy may benefit from its use.

There are studies that show that too much of a good thing may be harmful to your health. High doses of Astragalus may lead to exactly the opposite of what you expect. Too much Astragalus root supplementation may lead to suppression of the immune system leaving the body vulnerable to disease.

It is possible that if a patient is already taking drugs for a compromised immune system, Astragalus may potentially interact with the drugs ability to work effectively.

Astragalus is also counterintuitive to those who are pregnant, or if an individual has been diagnosed with any autoimmune underlying condition. Patients with immune system diseases such as Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, Rheumatoid arthritis, or SLE are encouraged not to supplement with the Astragalus root for fear that it may interact with medications they are already receiving.

As with the use of any supplementation, if you have any underlying condition, it is important to ensure that you are not impinging the effectiveness of other medications that you may be taking. Always discuss the benefits and risks to any herb supplementation with a physician, especially if you are under the supervision of a medical professional or undergoing any therapy for a specific medical condition.

Could His Smartphone Be To Blamed For Your Infertility?

PHOTO-SMARTPHONE-960x540
Look around any subway train and what you will see is a population immersed in their smartphone. There are very few people that leave home without it. Rumours about the harmful nature of the radiation our cell phones emit have been floating around medical circles for decades, but it is hard to decipher what is real and what is paranoia.

From brain cancer to dementia, the new suspicion linked to cell phones, and the radiation it gives off, may be your inability to conceive. Could your partner’s habit of keeping his phone in his pocket be the reason for your conception problems? New studies are indicating yes.

Fertility experts are now counselling their male patients that it only takes about an hour a day to literally “cook” sperm. Studies are revealing that holding your cell phone next to your testicles can significantly lower your sperm cell count. By placing your cell phone within just a foot from your penile area can reduce your sperm production so low that it can be a major disruption to your fertility and conception probability.

A new study released this month done by assisted living Winnipeg officials, found that men who kept their cell phone in their pocket throughout the day had a 47 percent likelihood of decreased fertility as opposed to just 11 percent in the regular population. Significant findings, doctors are now making recommendations about where to house your cell phone, which is far away from the testicular region.

The results of studies show that when they compared men who kept their cell phone in their pocket, what they found was that not only was the quantity of the sperm reduced but so too was the quality. That makes it less likely that it will lead to a fertilized egg or a healthy pregnancy.

Suspect is the electromagnetic activity of the phone, which works by heating up the sperm in the same manner that wearing tight underwear does when keeping the testicles too close to the body. The only difference is that the cell phone is literally microwaving the sperm. The study consisted of over 100 men over the course of a year who were experiencing fertility problems in one clinic.

In addition, they found that many men who had a reduction in sperm cells also talked on the phone when it was on the charger and slept with the phone close to their bedside at night time. Not only keeping it close to the testicles, there was evidence to suggest that keeping it on the nightstand was harmful as well.

The cell phone may be the missing link to discovering why men in Western countries are finding their sperm production increasingly decreased. There are estimates that over 40% of the causes of infertility stem from a low sperm cell count. Could it be that the cell phone may ultimately lead to a drop off in our population?

Many scientists are adding this to the list of why men should deal with, and overcome, their cellular phone addiction. Needing to have it near them or on them every minute of the day, is not only a risk to their procreation, but there has also got to be other health concerns from the radiation that the device gives off. Many doctors are beginning to call men out and ask the question whether being so attached to their phone is really healthy at all.

The theory is that men carry their cell phone in their pocket more regularly than women, and it is giving those having trouble conceiving pause. Women, however, are not immune to cell phone addiction, and although not carrying it in their pocket as frequently as men, there has to be some effect of having it on them throughout the day or when they sleep.

Since we now know that cell phone usage, and carrying it with you all day, may be responsible for a man’s fertility, more research should probably be focused on exactly how it is affecting a woman’s ability to conceive. Unlike men, if a woman’s eggs are damaged, they aren’t replenished. It may be just as critical, if not more so, for women to be conscious about their own cell phone use and where they choose to house it.

It is always best to err on the side of caution. If you are a couple trying to conceive, the best advice would be to carry your cell phone away from your body and leave your cell phone downstairs when you go to bed at night. You should be engaging in other activities instead of answering your text messages if you are trying to have a baby anyway.

6 Tips to Stay Healthy and Fit in the summer

summer

The days of summer can get long, unending and frequently unbearable. It’s very easy to just give up and laze around on such days rather than battle all the sweat and the heat. This tendency to ditch all work and lay back can be pretty harmful to our health if we’re not careful. Lethargy leads to weight gain, and rapid weight gain is the breeding ground for several diseases. And as it is, it’s not possible for all of us adopt a laid back attitude during the whole of the season because our work makes it difficult for us to do that. Apart from the obvious physical effects of the scorching heat of the summer days, it can have dire consequences for our mental health too. There’s such a thing as summer seasonal affective disorder which can spell disasters for the well being of those affected by it.

That’s why it’s of great significance that you take special care to look after your health in the summer.

  • #1 rule of summer: stay hydrated 24×7. Due to excessive sweating and exposure to the sun, your body is bound to lose a lot of essential fluids in a very short span of time in the heat of the summer. It’s essential to drink two to three liters of water every day to keep up the energy and allow the body to stay in working order. Your body is prone to dehydration in the summer and that can have many ill effects starting from headaches to exhaustion. To avoid things like that, make sure to stay hydrated at all times.
  • Work out. If you’re already on a routine, don’t stop now. If you’re not, now would be a good time to start. It’s easy to veg out on the couch in these long, hot days but ultimately it’s bad for your health. You might gain weight from lying around all day and that will open the door to all kinds of diseases. Physical exercises like running, walking, biking can be great for your body to stay fit in the summer.
  • Stay off the junk food. Don’t try to satiate your hunger by consuming lots of junk food. Junk food has high levels of cholesterol and trans fat, and are generally cooked in grease that can be detrimental to your health. It will make you sweat profusely and will certainly not help with staying in shape.
  • Watch what you drink. It’s a good idea to stay off sodas, carbonated drinks, smoothies will lots of added preservatives, coffee and alcohol in the summer. While these may help quench your thirst for a period of time, they’re not substitute for healthy drinks as they can harm your body in several ways.
  • Fresh fruits are your friends. Eating lots of juicy fruits is a great way to battle the heat in the summer. Watermelons, apples, bananas, oranges, lemons etc. boost your energy and replenish essential fluids in your body. By eating fresh fruits you can fill your appetite in a way that lets you be full of energy and vigor. Eating healthy can be a very useful way to stay healthy in summer.

 

Essentials of a Healthy Lifestyle

healthy lifestyle

There’s a popular misconception that a healthy lifestyle only involves working out. For some people that idea stretches to eating well but that’s pretty much all it encompasses. This is, however, far from the actual truth. A healthy life style is about much more than shedding weight or exercise. On the contrary it’s about giving your body enough of all the things it needs to remain in good working order. If studied like a machine, a human body like any other mechanical form needs several things like essential minerals, vitamins, protein for the organs to work. It also needs the right amount of rest and stimulation for its well being.

Thus while working out makes for an essential part of living healthy, it does not assure all the aspects of good health.

  • Always keep yourself fit and in shape.

While we keep stressing that this is not the only aspect of a healthy lifestyle, it’s very important to note that is a significantly necessary aspect of it all the same. Whether you’re overweight, obese or none of those things, everyone benefits greatly from physical workouts done on a regular basis. Due to work or school, lots of people are unable to work out every day and that’s fine. You need to make sure you move at least three to four days a week – be it through gymming, walking, biking, swimming, running or dancing. Human bodies are not meant to stew at a desk or in front of a TV or computer screen. Apart from keeping you in shape, working out will also release many useful, essential chemicals that would ensure a long and happy life for you.

  • Eating and drinking healthy is of utmost importance.

It’s imperative that you are careful about what you put in your body at all times. Food that’s rich in trans fat and cholesterol can cause massive amounts of damage to your heart and many other internal organs. Drinking copious amounts of unhealthy drinks like alcohol can hurt your liver, kidneys and other parts. Over-consumption of caffeine harms the brain in many ways. There are lots of different kinds of food that will readily lead you down a path of self destruction by cause irreparable damage to your body and brain. That’s why it’s so important to take care of what you eat and regulate the portions of the food you consume. Make sure to include vegetables, fruits and milk in your meals as they have most of the elements your body needs to function well.

  • All work and no play…

Not only does overworking make you dull, it also leads to fatigue, stress, anxiety, depression, sleep deprivation, obesity and many other problems which can prove to be fatal. It’s important to strike a balance between work and recreation to be able to live a healthy, fulfilling life. The brain, especially, sustains a lot of damage from working too much as it doesn’t get the rest it needs. This might lead to many mental disorders and ailments, many of which have no known cure yet. Watch a movie or read a book, spend some time off with your family and friends, host a party or do karaoke. Always make sure to set aside some time every day to do things you love.

  • Ditch all your bad habits.

Bad habits like smoking, binge-drinking, abuse of addictive substances, etc. make for extremely unhealthy lives. These bad habits often have fatal consequences as most of them can be directly linked to failing of several organs, cancer and even death from overdosing. From a young age it’s important to stay clean of any such habits. If you’re someone who wants to ditch any of these habits or are recovering from them, there are experts, support groups and online communities to help you live a healthy life.

  • Remember to get regular check-ups.

It’s necessary that you’re always aware of what’s happening to your body and your mind. Always make sure to schedule and follow through on doctor’s and dentist’s appointment. If you’ve ever struggled with, are currently battling or fear you might face mental illnesses, don’t hesitate to talk to professional psychiatric doctors about what you’re feeling. Ignoring health problems never makes them go away.

Obese or Not, Here’s 6 Reasons Why You Need to Stay Fit

Fitness

With the help of technology in this day and age, our lives have come to such a place where we can get by with little movements every single day. Even the idea of hard work today doesn’t have to include any form of physical labor. Almost everything is remote controlled and nearly everyone has a taxing day job. Even the ones with the best intentions to look after their bodies find themselves unable to do so because of the pressures of their jobs which keep them busy for nearly the entirety of every day.

Many people mistakenly assume that because they are in good shape they don’t need to make any extra effort to maintain a healthy lifestyle. This can prove to be a big blunder. Staying healthy is not just about losing weight, it involves many more factors. Being physically inactive, while keeping a slim figure, may lead to many cardiovascular diseases, mental illnesses and risk of other ailments as well.

It doesn’t matter if you’re obese or not, daily physical workouts to stay fit can be very beneficial to your health in the long run. There are countless reasons to continue to stay fit no matter what shape your body is in.

  • To increase your life span.

Activities that let you stay fit like working out and eating healthy also slow down the aging process of your body. You should make the maximum effort to stay fit so you can live a long and healthy life.

  • To avoid incurring excess medical costs.

Lack of fitness leads to fostering poor health in a person. A person who stays in shape will be ill less often than someone who does not. Consequently they will not have to spend excess money on medication, treatment and hospital bills both in everyday life and in their future. Staying fit is a financially wise lifestyle choice.

  • To have a healthy brain.

The human brain is prone to mental illnesses like depression, bipolar disorder, anger and anxiety disorders as well as personality disorders. But indulging in physical exercises and following a healthy diet plans keeps the entire body, which includes the brain, in a great condition.

  • To perform better in all aspects of life.

If you live a healthy life, you will be able to get better at whatever you do – whether it is at work, school, art etc. Physical fitness fills us with lots of energy and mental clarity which ensures we are capable of performing all activities successfully.

  • To live an active, exciting life.

Staying fit is the only way of unlocking your full potential. It lets you feel more confident about yourself, have more energy and generally carry a positive outlook in your life by minimizing chances of mood swings. It’s the recipe for a perfect life.

  • For a healthy heart.

These activities are very good for the human heart as it improves blood circulation in the mood and makes sure that it is in perfect working order. For these reasons, staying fit dramatically reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases and heart attacks.

How Cutting down on your Food Intake can be more Harmful than Useful

diet

One of the most important aspects of getting in shape is eating healthy. It doesn’t matter how many hours every day you put into working out, if you don’t eat healthy, all the hard work will not bear fruit. Even if you do end up losing weight, it’s unlikely that you’ll lose as much as you want to. The reason for that is that mere physical exercise is not enough to shed the extra fat you’ve accumulated in your body over the years. Consuming the right amount of food is the key to losing weight and staying healthy.

Therefore, dieting is a must for good health.

However, it’s a little more complicated than most people believe it to be. It doesn’t involve eating less of the same food every day. A well balanced diet is a necessity for good health and you should not make compromises with it.

A lot of people think that dieting means eating less food. This could not be further from the truth. Cutting down on your food willy-nilly can not only be useless, but also counterproductive and downright dangerous. The food we consume on a daily basis is our only source of energy. The process of digestion happens so the food can be broken down and the energy within released to provide fuel for our body’s everyday functions. If this is deducted without proper examination, you’ll be putting your body in extreme danger. For starters, your body will not have enough energy to perform even the most ordinary activities. You’ll be prone to getting tired more easily and will need to sleep more often than what’s usual.

That’s not all. If you cut down on your food intake suddenly, your body’s immunity will suffer greatly. The lack of necessary vitamins, proteins and other minerals will chip away at you until you’re in real danger of bad health. Our bodies require a certain amount of food to stay upright and remain functional. Without that amount of food, its chances of collapsing from various physical and even mental illnesses increase exponentially.

Lethargy and a failed immune system are just two of the most common effects of a badly planned “diet”.

That is why a balanced diet is recommended for anyone who is looking to get in shape or just maintain good health. Even if you think you’re capable of mapping out a diet plan for yourself, it’s always better to go to an expert for help. Experts know all about body mass index, necessary calorie intake and how different genetic factors work into ideal body weights. They can take all the important factors into account and come up with a unique diet that’s just right for you. Experimenting on your own with something as crucial to your life and good health must be avoided at all costs.

Enjoying the Green Gym

outdoor-gym

Fitness centres, such as swimming pools and health clubs are great for providing us with warm, comfortable environments to carry out our exercise programmes, especially during the dark winter months but, when the sun is shining and the weather is warm, it is worth considering what the great outdoors has to offer. In an earlier article, we spoke about finding alternatives to the gym, well here are some more ideas to help you benefit from natureís gym.

As spring and summer approaches, it is time to think about getting outside and enjoying all the benefits of exercising in the great outdoors. And it is also worth remembering that not only is exercise good for you physically, but there is a body of evidence that suggests that getting a regular dose of vitamin D from the sun’s rays will improve your mental health as well. The online health journal Environmental Health Perspectives, has linked higher vitamin D levels, from exposure to sunlight, with serotonin production ñ serotonin being a mood enhancer. While EHP warns of the dangers of excessive sunlight, it seems some daily sunlight can improve your mood. So, the message is: slip on your trainers but remember to slap on your sun-screen and have a go at some of these fun, energetic and exciting activities. And, of course, the beauty of many of these activities is that they are free or cheap to do.

Walking to fitness

The easiest and cheapest activity you can do is to get out and walk. A 20-minute walk every day could have a number of health benefits. It improves muscle endurance and strength in the lower body; it is good for the bones and improves the body’s cardiovascular system.

Besides the health benefits, walking can offer so much more. Walking allows you to explore your neighbourhood and see it through fresh eyes, you can organise to meet with friends and add a coffee break to your route, you can combine walking with your chores ñ walk to get a newspaper or post a letter. Getting off the bus or train one stop early could offer you the chance to get a walk in before work, meaning you arrive at your workplace with your heart rate pumping and the blood pumping around your body.

If you want to increase the challenge of your daily walk, consider joining a Nordic Walking group. This is a slightly more hard-core version of walking. Nordic Walking uses poles, so that walkers get an upper body work out as well. The poles, which are specially constructed for this activity, take the weight off your knees and lower body joints and make you walk with your shoulders and upper body well-balanced.

All the skill, all the thrill

For a step out of the ordinary, get your friends out for an impromptu game of frisbee. This a great way to get involved in competitive sport as well as enjoy socialising with friends. The constant catching, throwing, running and changing direction hits so many fitness buttons ñ co-ordination, balance, speed, endurance to name a few.

Getting creative with fitness

The obvious problem with any group activity, such as frisbee, is the need for a certain number of players. Usually, you will be alone or with just a couple of companions when you are getting your exercise. But that doesn’t mean your activity must stick to one routine or become boring. By thinking outside the box, you may discover all sorts of ways to stay active. One idea is to use your local environment to create your own outdoor gym. All you really need for an effective workout is a space in which to move. This might be a local park, a wooded area, a beach or even your own back garden.

You can design a circuit that you do regularly or you can devise some new activities every time you step outside your door. Here are a few ideas:

  • Jump repeatedly over a log or low fence – this will work your lower limbs and hip flexors.
  • Do pull-ups on an overhead branch or bar. This action will stretch your back mus cles and work your shoulder and arm muscles.
  • Do pace change activities between natural markers. You can use trees, bushes, rocks or or any definable object to do some change of pace work. Jog until you reach your first marker, run more briskly to the next object and then go as fast as you feel you can to the next marker. Repeat this for a set number of times.