Artery cleaning foods

With more and more research being carried out into how our lifestyle effects our health, it is becoming apparent that our food choices have a bigger part to play than we thought.

The rise of heart related diseases and other serious problems such as strokes and heart attacks means it is an important time to be looking at what we can do to ward off these conditions and stay in optimum health.

Why should we look after our arteries?

Arteries are the blood vessels that carry oxygen rich blood around the body. These can often get clogged up by a build-up of cholesterol and fatty deposits (called plaques) which lead to restricted blood flow to the heart and other major organs. By looking after our arteries and being mindful of the foods that we eat we can help prevent heart disease.

How does food affect the arteries?

Large quantities of food high in saturated fat and trans fats can be a factor in the clogging of arteries along with obesity. Foods such as meat, cakes and pastries, alcohol and other highly processed foods can cause the  build-up of plaque in the arteries.

There are also many foods that can help reduce cholesterol and keep your blood flowing freely. We have put together a list of foods which can easily be incorporated into your diet.

Avocado- this trendy food is a great healthy replacement to mayonnaise. Add it to sandwiches for a creamy texture or even add it into a breakfast smoothie.

Whole-grains– wholegrain foods such as brown rice, whole wheat and oatmeal are a great source of fibre that can easily be added to your diet. Try replacing your white rice and bread with the whole grain variety for an easy and healthy swap.

Broccoli- adding these mini trees to your diet 2-3 x a week can help reduce arteries clogging as they are filled with vitamin K and help prevent cholesterol oxidation. A very tasty and versatile vegetable that is a great side dish.

Nuts- nuts are great for lowering bad cholesterol with almonds and walnuts being some of the better choices. A handful a day make an ideal healthy snack and can be chopped and sprinkled on salads.

Green tea- Full of antioxidants and known for its health benefits green tea works by stopping the body absorbing bad cholesterol. Try replacing your regular tea with this a couple of times a day.  

How to slow down your weekend

We all look forward to the weekend and by Monday morning it may feel as if you never really had a weekend at all. Whilst others compare their plans or what they got up to, the weekend has whizzed by and you struggle to remember the finer details.

But these two days of relaxation and fun often feel like they were short and that the rest needed wasn’t available, crowded by plans, seeing too many people or an extra workload. It is important to be selfish sometimes, especially over a weekend as an evening in the week sometimes just isn’t enough. Completing errands, you were meant to tick off the list for a while or cleaning can be both satisfying and de-stressing, but physically it still keys up a lot of tension and strain. The anxiety of the week ahead feels like it flashes by the time it’s Sunday evening, after all, the last time you checked it was Friday afternoon.

Worry not- we have some tips that could help you savour your chill-out time.

Break up your time into stages

The weekend actually starts as soon as you finish work on a Friday evening, plan after work drinks or simply celebrate it’s the weekend by visiting a new restaurant, book a show, do anything that will occupy your mind from the previous working week. It will feel as if you have filled your weekend with plans before it has even started. If anything, making your weekend top heavy will leave time for organising and relaxing on Sunday. Fitting plans in from the word go means you won’t be exhausted come the early alarm on Monday.

Mix it up

Regardless of the budget or free time available, it’s easy to mix up your plans from the usual plans. By spending even 30 minutes visiting the local farmers market, eating at a new café or even schedule catching with old friends, the idea that you have done something different will anchor to your memories and feel like you have a story to tell come Monday morning chit chats.

Take Sunday to yourself

Before the week commences, get yourself in the right mind set. You will feel much more satisfied and as a result have a better night’s sleep. This can be done in whatever way works for you, sitting down with your diary or planner, eating dinner earlier in the evening and spending time to have a bath or shower with your favourite facemask. Don’t forget your other senses such as smell and touch, light a calming candle or open a window for fresh air in the warmer evenings.

Have you had your beauty sleep?

It may seem obvious to some but sleep is incredibly important for every aspect of your life. It can affect social lives, health, ability to concentrate or even focus on day to day tasks in the work place. However, sleep can also affect the way your body responds physically to skincare regimes, having a balanced diet or even the make-up you use. Sleep is there to support all structures of your body and mind, but being told you look “tired” is never usually a compliment.

The long list of short and long term size of sleep deprivation involves swollen or sunken eyes, dark circles, pale and dehydrated skin which are the most common. However, it also affects wound healing, the growth of collagen, skin texture as well as breakouts of skin problems. These skin problems include acne, eczema, psoriasis and allergies that the skin would not usually pick up.

Sleep is designed to recharge the body, restore the immune system and provide a re-boot of energy. Sleep deprivation has several causes which can also have negative effects on the skin. These include triggers of stress, being over-worked, artificial light before sleep times, eating rich foods late in the day, dehydration, social life issues and recurring dreams.

The best way to overcome sleep deprivation is to work out the trigger, why that trigger occurs and if it happens at the same time in a pattern. By locating the issue it’s much easier to begin to overcome by implementing solutions in preparation to ensure a better night’s sleep. Examples could include eating earlier in the evening, drinking more water, planning an earlier night’s sleep, reading a book as opposed to watching television and finally having a scented bath before sleeping times. Scents such as chamomile and lavender are often used to encourage the mind to relax.  

There is always a way to improve sleeping patterns.