Warmer, lighter evenings combined with exposure to increased amounts of vitamin D helps to increase our energy levels and lift mood. Here are some tips on how you can support your health through diet and lifestyle
1. Start the day with a protein rich breakfast – combining protein with some fibre rich carbohydrate helps to keep you fuller for longer and sustain you until lunchtime. Good examples are porridge oats and berries topped with mixed seeds or scrambled eggs with chopped avocado and tomatoes.
2. Drink plenty of water at least 1 ½ litres a day. When you are dehydrated this can make you feel tired and cause headaches. Water helps to flush toxins out of the body too!
3. Avoid too much caffeine. This can affect your sleep and disrupt blood sugar balance.Better to drink herbal teas especially green tea which high in antioxidants.
4. Avoid refined carbohydrates and sugars! Stick to complex carbs for example brown rice and whole grains. These are higher in fibre and better for the digestion. They also help to maintain blood sugar since they take longer to digest.
5. Include plenty of vegetables in your diet and think about eating a rainbow. Different colours stand for different vitamins and minerals. Stick to at least 3 portions a day and 2 portions of fruit.
6. Include plenty of good fats – these are essential for keeping the cells in your body healthy as well as for brain and hormone health. Best sources are oily fish, nuts, seeds, olives and avocado.
7. Eat slowly and chew your food well! This is important for the digestion. Eating slowly also helps you to know when you are full.
8. Avoid processed and takeaway foods – better to cook your own meals this way you know what you are eating.
9. Stress management – stress can have a negative impact on your health especially if you are stressed for long periods. Practising meditation or yoga can really help to alleviate stress as well as spending time outside close to nature.There are also range of APPs which are designed to help with stress for example "Headspace". If you struggle with stress talk to a health professional to get some guidance on how to manage this.
10. Finally exercise!– exercise increase the oxygen that goes around your body and helps to increase energy levels. Aim to do at least 30 minutes cardiovascular exercise three times a week. There are many ways to exercise that does not necessarily mean going tot he gym. Why not pair up with a friend and exercise together. This may help with motivation and make it more fun.