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Showing posts from tagged with: healthy tips

Hello Spring Well-being!

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29.03.16

HELLO Spring Well-being!

Following the coldest months of the year, what continuously felt like an endless slog of dark nights and difficult mornings, and Christmas festivities a mere memory, Spring appears to have popped out of nowhere and the inevitability of flip flops and kaftans creeping out of wardrobes is so strong you can almost smell it. New Years resolutions may have slightly been forgotten about, so what better way to start again with Spring a great time for new beginnings. Tying in with new beginnings is the birth of lambs and chicks and lovely tree blossom!

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GET OUTSIDE!

So now the weather is warming up, there really is NO excuses not to go get some fresh air, and light exercise outside. The evenings are now much lighter, and so after work why not get yourself your running gear on and go for a light jog or evening walk. You could try bringing a friend or family member with to keep you company. If you're more of a morning person, then setting your alarm an extra half an hour earlier could mean you fit in a little exercise before you head off to your daily jobs! Around this time of year also, outdoor bootcamps begin to fill up again, the runners come out again, and even walking seems the more popular mode of transport, so why not pop your best trainers on and be a part of it! (and an excuse to treat yourself to that pair of new trainers to show off!)

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LET GO

The beginning of Spring gives us the perfect excuse to simply let things go that were perhaps niggling away at us during the winter months. In the lighter months, people are generally much happier, this is often because the sun is out, lighter days and therefore meaning spending more time with loved ones and feeling warmer too! Jump on the same band wagon, and let go of things that were holding you back in the winer, and embrace the potential for new beginnings, relationships, work prospects, or improved health - letting things go will undoubtedly help you to embrace the spring as it should be.

GOALS

With new beginnings comes a wealth of inspiration from sometimes nowhere, or occasionally from something that has been a suppressed goal for a while but you haven’t given the time to it that you would want to. Spring provides the perfect opportunity for you to begin to achieve the goals you subconsciously set for yourself. The brighter mornings can change your perspective on how achievable something is, so make the most of them and run with your goals in these lovely Spring mornings - you never know, you might just have ticked a few things off the list by August, or be further on your way to achieving something you’ve always wanted to achieve.

Why not re-evaluate some of your daily choices? From diet to exercise, and work to leisure, there are many ways our immediate lifestyle choices can impact our overall happiness, long and short term. If you are thinking of cutting out refined sugar or chocolate, why not make that choice now but instead of depriving yourself, try making healthy swaps such as swapping a bag of crisps for Giving Tree fruit or veg crisps (packed full of fibre, nutrients and 1 of your 5 a day!)

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Healthy eating on a budget..it is possible, we promise!

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10.02.16

Healthy eating can often have a stigma attached to it, that you have to spend a fortune on exotic grains, superfoods and ingredients to prepare a healthy meal and it's too much out of the weekly budget for it to be truly affordable, especially for a family.

Whilst this might well be true for some people who really do live on very, very little money, most people would be surprised at how it doesn’t have to cost any more than buying junk food – it just takes a little bit of preparation, thought and some top Giving Tree tips!

Too often, people use their budget as an excuse not to buy healthy food. However, you will most likely spend less money now on food than buying ready made meals, takeaways and junk food.

Here are our top 20 guaranteed tips to help you maintain healthy goals without breaking the bank or without too much planning.

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1. Cook everything from scratch – Yes, it is going to take you a little longer, but you are trying to get healthy, right? Clever marketing and ease of buying ready made 'healthy diet meals' most likely end up costing you a small fortune. DIY cooking not only saves money, but makes it a lot healthier than a ready made meal as you control what goes into your meals - e.g. no added salt and sugar. You don’t have to cook from scratch every day, most people don’t have time for that, so do some food preparation once a week.

2. Buy meat from a local butcher – this normally works out cheaper as you can buy meat in bigger packs and then freeze what you don’t need right away.

3 .Buy a whole chicken and cut it up to keep in the fridge – this can then be added to a variety of meals throughout the week or even cooking a whole chicken and then using the different cuts in soups, casseroles and baked dishes. Don’t forget to use the carcass to make a chicken stock for soups too.

4 .Eat more vegetarian meals – meat is expensive, no matter where you buy it from, so try eating a few more vegetarian meals a week. Replace meat for beans and you will save quite a bit of money and you will definitely be getting enough protein.

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5. Buy fruit and vegetables from a local market, preferably a farmers market – not only is it great to buy locally as you are supporting your community and eating fresher food, it is usually much cheaper as well.

6.Save vegetable cuttings – put them in a bag in a freezer as and when you have them. Once the bag is full, you can make a vegetable stock with them!

7.Eggs are cheap, tasty and healthy – but always try to go for Free Range. You can also do so much with eggs - omelettes, frittatas, poached eggs, quiches..the list is endless!

8.Eat seasonally – eating out of season can really push your budget over the edge, so be aware of what is in season for where you live.

9.Have oats for breakfast –you'd be surprised at how much you can jazz up your porridge ,oats in bulk are cheap and they are healthy.

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10. Find out when your local supermarket reduces food – this is great for buying meat, which you can freeze in portions.

11. Know your herbs and spices – you can buy dried herbs and spices very cheaply in bulk, and they can really transform a dish on a budget and they are great for curries. Just read up on what ones work well with what foods.

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12. Drink only water, rather than sugary squash and fizzy drinks – I have the occasional tea or coffee, but generally it is just water. Water doesn’t have to be boring – try adding fresh lemon juice to jazz it up a bit. You’ll be surprised how much you save by cutting out drinks from your shopping list.

13.Make your own bread – flour is very cheap and with making your own bread, you can control what goes in it. When I make bread, I make 4 times as much dough and then portion it out and freeze the remaining dough in single loaf portions. Then, when I want bread, I defrost the dough and carry on from there. It’s all about planning ahead. I do this with tortillas and pizza dough too.

14. Portion control is key – most of us are eating way more than we should be, and that is where we could be saving money.

15 .Use a slow cooker – you can make so many cheap and healthy dishes in one of these, and all you have to do is throw it all in and leave it to cook. Cheaper cuts of meat are also perfect in these for delicious soft meat.

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16. Buy in bulk – Go to your local health store and stock up on huge bags of beans and grains.

17. Shop around – don’t buy all your food from one shop, buy different things from the places you know you can get the cheapest from.

18. Make meals in bulk and freeze, for example let soup cool and then put it in zip lock bags to go in the freezer, as it saves space.

19. Cut back on takeaways – you can make healthier alternatives yourself and eat out less often – make it a fortnightly or monthly treat for somewhere you can really look forward to going too.

20. Portion control is key – most of us are eating way more than we should be, and that is where we could be saving money.