Our bodies have to maintain a fine PH (acid/alkaline) balance in order to keep us alive and healthy, if we are constantly consuming acidic forming foods and beverages (meat, sugar,alcohol,caffeine etc) than they will take nutrients from our organs and bones to neutralise the acids leaving us weakened and prone to disease. Our bodies will also store fat in order to disperse acid, making weight lose even harder to achieve. Some fruits are actually alkalising once metabolised, a juiced fresh lemon in some warm water 10 mins before breakfast is a great way to start your day, alternatively a teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar in warm water or Himalayan Rock Salt Sole ( has to be prepared in advance).
When we are under stress we tend to take short shallow breaths which leads to a build up of carbon dioxide making our blood acidic. After your morning hot water and lemon try sitting upright comfortably and take long slow deep breaths for 5-10 mins, not only will this alkalise your body but set you up to face your day in a relaxed positive manner.
Below is a list of Alkaline and Acid forming foods and beverages, to alkalise the body aim for 80/20 alkaline/acidic until the end of January and then 60/40 to maintain through the year.
This list is not exhaustive
Grases (wheat, straw, barley, dog, kamut, etc.) Cucumber
Other Seafood (apart from occasional oily fish such as salmon)
|DRINKSGreen DrinksFresh Vegetable JuicePure Water (distilled, reverse osmosis, ionized)Lemon Water (pure water + fresh lemon or lime)
Non-sweetened Soy Milk
|OTHERSVinegarWhite PastaWhite BreadWholemeal Bread
Condiments (Tomato Sauce, Mayonnaise etc.)
|SEEDS, NUTS & GRAINSAlmondsPumpkinSunflowerSesame
Any Sprouted Seed
|CONVENIENCE FOODSSweetsChocolateMicrowave MealsTinned Foods
|FATS & OILSSaturated FatsHydrogenated OilsMargarine (worse than butter)Corn Oil
|FATS & OILSFlaxHempAvocadoOlive
|OTHERSSprouts (soy, alfalfa, mung bean, wheat, little radish, chickpea, broccoli, etc.)HummusTahini||FRUITSAll fruits, aside from those listed in the alkaline column.||SEEDS & NUTSPeanutsCashew NutsPistachio Nuts|
|General Guidance:Stick to salads, fresh vegetables and healthy nuts and oils. Try to consume plenty of raw foods and at least 2-3 liters of clean, pure water daily.||General Guidance:Steer clear of fatty meats, dairy, cheese, sweets, chocolates, alcohol and tobacco. Packaged foods are often full of hidden offenders and microwaved meals are full of sugars and salts. Over cooking also removes all of the nutrition from a meal.|
As soon as the dark nights and cold weather arrives it is very tempting to knock the exercising on the head and curl up on the sofa for the winter. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
There are plenty of opportunities to maintain some level of fitness during the winter months and to ensure that you don’t pile on the pounds after all the hard work you have done to stay in shape during the summer.
So instead of hibernating for the winter and storing away your exercise equipment, try and keep active.
Ideally, adults should aim to do a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity at least five times a week, with children recommended to do an hour each day.
Regular exercise will tend to give you more energy, which will encourage you to get out of your warm bed on those cold, dark mornings.
Exercise also helps to improve your blood circulation and generate heat, so a short period of activity will help you keep warm even when it’s chilly. And your body’s defences will also benefit as regular exercise boosts your immune system, helping to kill off germs and viruses that are around in the winter. So what exercise can you do in the winter months?
When the weather is sunny outside, it is ideal for jogging, or simply walking. The cold weather means your body burns more calories just to keep warm, but ensure that you wear plenty of warm layers. And if it’s very cold, make sure you wear a hat and scarf as more than 30% of body heat can be lost from your head and neck.
Even activities such as raking up the leaves in the garden are beneficial, as long as they leave you feeling warm and slightly out of breath.
But there are plenty of other activities that you can take up in the winter months, particularly if the weather outside becomes dreadful. These range from indoor sports such as squash, badminton or five-a-side football to dancing, swimming or fitness classes.
Gyms are also great for maintaining fitness in the winter months, whether at a members-only club or your local leisure centre.
But even if the weather outside is so bad that you don’t want to venture beyond the front door, there is still some exercise you can do. If you have the space why not buy yourself a treadmill, exercise bike or X-trainer
Just remember that extra precautions are needed when looking to exercise during the winter months.
Cold weather is bad for the circulation and can trigger asthma attacks and chest pains (angina), so people with these conditions should stick to indoor activities.
Your muscles will also be colder, and therefore tighter than in the summer months, so take time to warm up and avoid injury by walking at a brisk pace or gently jogging in order to warm your muscles. And don’t go out if it’s icy underfoot as you risk injury.
Just as important is to make sure you stay safe if you exercise after dark. Make sure you keep to well-lit areas and wear bright and reflective clothing.
Ideally, exercise with a jogging buddy, either a friend or someone from your local gym or fitness club, but always tell someone where you’re going.
Here’s how to indulge without the bulge
An easy way to remember portion sizes is as follows: -
For carbohydrates, have an amount the size of your fist.
For protein, have a palm-sized portion (not including your fingers!). -
For high-fat foods such as cheese, stick to a thumb-sized amount. -
As for vegetables? You can have as many as you like. Except for potatoes – stick to one regular-sized spud. If you’re having mashed, follow the guide for carbs.
TRICKS TO HELP YOU EAT LESS:
Hide the treats! Keeping snacks covered or even out of reach will encourage you to eat less.
Don’t snack in front of the TV. We can easily eat an extra 300 calories or more when we’re sat watching TV.
“Keep your fork in your ‘wrong’ hand at a buffet,” advises nutritionist Amanda Ursell. “It’ll slow down your ability to load your plate.”
Blow out your candles. Researchers in California found that we eat more in dimly lit rooms.
Beware huge wine glasses: Drinking out of a smaller wine glass will reduce your intake of calories.