Are you eager to prolong the strength and flexibility of your body and live your best life for many years to come… Yes? Well Pilates is for you and in this article with Romanas Pilates Expert, Kirstin Ferrie we’re going to share why everyone over 40 should do pilates and how to start.
If you have never had an introduction to Pilates, it’s never too late to start! With an increasingly ageing population and so many of us determined to live longer and stronger than ever before, strength and conditioning habits like Pilates, are high on our daily agendas and are a big reason why everyone over 40 should do pilated. With the additional holistic benefits of breath work and mindfulness, Pilates is a fabulous way to increase fitness, protect ourselves from injury, maintain flexibility and prolong the lifetime of the things we enjoy most; whether that’s intense sport, staying active with the family or simply enjoying optimum core strength and good posture.
As our bodies age, we’re more prone to; weight gain, muscle loss, and stiffening up in our joints. Pilates is a fabulous way to combat all of these. With the use of the springs and our own body it is the perfect form of exercise to do after 40. For women as our oestrogen levels decrease we need to this type of exercise to keep our joints and bone density healthy. Pilates makes everything else we do easier so for those still wanting to continue contact or impact sports this method is a must after 40.
Romanas Pilates is the classical method of Pilates, named after Romana Kryranoskwa, who took over running the original studio after Joseph Pilates’ death. The Pilates method is based around reshaping and strengthening the body, strengthening the core, realigning the body and posture and improving flexibility, without stressing the joints. It’s all about strength, stretch and control.
If you’re just starting out on your Pilates journey there are some great habits to consider and get you started:
Fresh air and breath work
If I had to pick one exercise from Pilates mat work, one that ticks all the boxes is ‘Hundreds’ – this exercise focuses on breath, strength and gets circulation pumping. Joe (Pilates) always said to get out and get some fresh air.
Listen to your body
You know your body better than anyone, listen to it. More often than not you’re right. If you are tired, rest. If you know you’re just feeling lazy, a short walk in the fresh air will get all your endorphins going and you’ll probably find yourself more motivated as a result. Allowing yourself to feel is really important and we encourage that within Pilates. We cannot separate ourselves out, so whilst we might think the main aim of our work is physical, the emotional and mental benefits will be evident too. If it feels good and right it will always be beautiful.
Find a recommended instructor
One of my personal aims is to establish a centre of excellence in the North, because when Pilates is taught properly, it can be life changing. I want to invest in instructors so that many more people can access Pilates in its purest form. You should have complete confidence in your instructor! Romana’s Pilates has a network of teachers around the globe, as do other classical schools. When searching for teachers and studios in your area, the main things to look out for are class sizes; they should always be small. Ask where the teachers are trained and how long this took them. On average a fully qualified teacher will have been actively in a program for at least 18months, but most are over 2 years. If you are going for an injury, make sure the teacher has experience with this and you are confident. Pilates should always be safe, other than normal muscle working feeling you should never ever feel pain. A matwork class is not suitable for most injuries, you need to be seen privately first before joining a class. Any good teacher will welcome your questions, I am always happy to answer or help someone and quite often get DM’s to our Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/purepilatesilkley ) asking for advice both from clients looking for a teacher or from people starting their journey to become a teacher.
You just can’t beat really simple Pilates mat work done well – if you just did the basic seven exercises, you are definitely going to release endorphins, work out and stand up off that mat with beautiful posture, standing tall and feeling confident.
Be prepared to throw yourself in
Pilates classes can become your community. It’s not surprising to find yourself laughing and crying in a class, because Pilates is a deep and meaningful exercise, connecting your heart, mind and body; therefore strong bonds are developed and friendships formed. The more you are prepared to invest in yourself and your journey, the more you’ll benefit from a healthy body, a happy heart, and a mind at peace,
Consider food and nutrition
If I eat well and fuel my body properly, I feel better. Putting the good stuff in means feeling better in every sense. Taking the time to cook and enjoy food, rather than it being a purely functional exercise or eating ‘on the go’ benefits my overall wellbeing too, so that the hard work I’m putting into Pilates is reflected in every part of my life.
Pilates has the power to restore us to ourselves. Pilates can provide us with an holistic rhythm for life, positively impacting every part of our lives; emotionally, physically, mentally and even socially as our body confidence soars.
Pilates has taught me that the best way of living is holistic living and I like to think that, when we look after ourselves and one another we all stand to gain.
Romanas Pilates Expert, Kirstin Ferrie, 42 is a passionate Pilates Instructor and the Founder of Pure Pilates, having herself followed a robust journey of training and development having travelled worldwide to learn from the very best; Kirstin is Romanas Pilates trained, following in the footsteps of the creator of Pilates, Joseph Pilates. With over 20 years experience, having taught Pilates around the world she has a long list of impressive clients including well-known names from the worlds of sports and dance, celebrities and royalty. Kirstin is passionate about highlighting the true power of strength-based Pilates for mind, body and soul, working with strength, control and stretch techniques, which ultimately give her clients renewed confidence and agility. To find out more about Kirstin please visit her website or connect with her on Instagram.
PMS is often an unwelcome but inevitable accompaniment to periods. However, some people experience particularly bad symptoms that can thoroughly disrupt day-to-day life. Painkillers are the most common go-to treatment for PMS symptoms, however there are some powerful natural remedies for PMS including natural botanicals that can ease PMS just as well, if not better, than manufactured chemicals and consequently are better for your body overall. This article explores the four best natural remedies for PMS and ingredients you can use to combat PMS and how to use them effectively so that you can stop dreading ‘that time of the month’.
4 key natural ingredients
Chaste tree berries, evening primrose, red clover and Dong Quai are four natural ingredients and powerful naturl remedies for PMS which can be used individually or combined in a tea or tonic to help with pain, mood swings and headaches. Although you can buy over the counter medication, these botanicals contain an active natural ingredient which can be purchased and can be used as a natural product by itself.
How to make
To use these natural remedies for PMS, firstly, to make a tea which combines all 4 of the above ingredients you will need; 2 cups of organic peppermint tea, 2 tablespoons of organic chaste tree berries, 2 tablespoons of dong quai and 2 tablespoons of black haw. Now for the easy bit; all you need to do is blend the ingredients together and store in an airtight container and your prep is done! When it comes to using the tea, what you need to do is use 2 tablespoons for a pot and one teaspoon for a cup and drink it hot as a tea. Pour boiling water into the pot or cup and let it brew for 2-4 minutes then drink once cool enough to do so. Do this every morning and night a few days before your period is due and during to ensure you get the best benefits. Alternatively, you can store it in the fridge and have it as a shot, again every morning and night before and during your period. This method is perfect for when you’re on the go and don’t have time to sit down and enjoy a cup of tea.
The power of evening primrose
As aforementioned, these natural remedies for PMS can also be used individually to treat isolated symptoms of PMS. For example, evening primrose oil can be purchased in easy to swallow vitamin form which you can take orally. This can be incorporated into your daily vitamin intake, and you can take in the morning or evening with food for the best results. Alternatively, evening primrose oil can also be purchased as an oil, 15 drops of which (1ml) can be taken daily with food. Evening primrose oil is specifically good for treating mood swings which is a common symptom of PMS, furthermore this natural ingredient can also be highly beneficial for those going through menopause, as mood swings can also be a severe symptom here too.
Spotlight on red clover and dong quai
In addition, red clover and dong quai can also be made into individual teas. Red clover is highly beneficial in maintaining estrogen levels which can be disrupted during PMS and your period. The same method can be applied here, simply fill a jar with red clover blossoms and fill to the top with boiling water. Let this brew for 4-10 hours then strain and enjoy 2-4 cups a day. Dong quai is excellent when dealing with cramps and bloating, arguably two of the worst symptoms of PMS. Dong quai is alternatively known as female ginseng as it is widely used to treat female reproductive health problems including PMS as well as the menopause. Dong quai can be found in supplement form which can be taken orally, however if you are looking for a homemade remedy, you can also make Dong quai tea. Dried Dong quai root can be purchased from a wide range of health stores and herbalists and you can boil the root for 2 to 4 minutes then strain to make your own homemade Dong quai tea.
A great tip which can be applied to all of the above remedies for PMS is to spice up your tea and add other flavours to make the tea more to your taste. Some other naturally sweet ingredients include liquorice, cinnamon, ginger, verbena and lemon.
In conclusion, there are many natural remedies for PMS and alternatives which you can use to help alleviate symptoms of PMS as well as the menopause. They are easy to use and have the same if not stronger effects on your symptoms. It’s called mother nature for a reason!
When you experience career setbacks and things are not going the way you hoped in your career – perhaps you are being blocked for a promotion or restructuring has affected your career path; you need a way forward. So what can you do to handle career setbacks like these?
Be realistic, be ready to adapt, be versatile. Don’t let perfection be the enemy of ‘good enough’; play the cards you are dealt and find the advantage in your current career situation, because there is always some way to turn career setbacks to your advantage if you have the right mindset.
Failure is part of life, and something we should embrace as part of the learning experience. The starting point for development is the adoption of an attitude whereby you seek to stretch yourself and persevere even; especially when things are not going well, this is the hallmark of the growth mindset.
Your career is your responsibility and it’s smart to have a plan for the near future, but you may need a re-think if:
You are bored and feel your job lacks challenge, appeal and fun
Promotion and/or development opportunities are limited
You don’t feel you are learning anything new, it’s all routine
Your talent and skill seem to be going to waste
You are stressed or feel unappreciated, unengaged, disconnected
Successful career management is built on identification of your values, interests and skills and then developing those and investing time and effort in a chosen career path. Aim to build and grow, don’t fall into the trap of thinking that years of experience are what counts. If you are not fully invested in career development, there’s danger of ending up with 10 years of experience that is, effectively, one year of experience replicated 10 times.
So when facing career setbacks, be honest with yourself, call on your resilience and apply some self-awareness to navigating the challenges and setbacks you face.
Bounce back from career setbacks with a growth mindset
People with a “growth mindset” relish challenge, strive to learn, and consistently see the potential to develop new skills and uncover new opportunities. I suggest a threefold approach:
Check your assumptions – challenge the standard perspective, keep an open mind and resist the temptation to blindly accept the status quo; instead, be willing to consider the options and embrace the possibilities.
Value diversity – a broad range of perspectives and backgrounds can facilitate creative and innovative approaches and reactions to barriers and challenges.
Seek out training, development and networking opportunities – aim for wide-ranging interaction throughout and beyond your organisation, seek out work assignments that take you out of your usual work environment, learn from colleagues and embrace knowledge-sharing as these are all ways to broaden your horizons and spark new ideas.
Increased motivation when goals are realistic and attainable.
Provides a performance focus.
Bolsters the work ethic and fosters perseverance with a goal in sight.
Facilitates feedback and benchmarking.
Settle on some realistic targets where you can measure progress; if you have a clear view of where you want to be, it is easier to evaluate forward momentum. By setting and taking action towards your goals, you will bolster your self-confidence. If you need to make changes, then bite the bullet and take control – a healthier work-life balance will result in greater productivity and motivation.
Design a clear plan of action, chunk big goals into the milestones needed to achieve your overall goal. Plan smaller objectives into your daily to-do list and create momentum with regular work towards your goal. Each small change paves the way for bigger changes; so, every day ask yourself what can I do today that helps me reach my goal?
Make a change
Learning agility helps us find new ways to tackle setbacks and challenges. When it is no longer a question of doing better what you did before – when running harder and faster doesn’t help – what you need are new behaviours and innovative solutions. Reframe your reference points in order to develop radical and creative responses is crucial.
To grow professionally, you need to challenge your perspectives, biases and opinions. The greater the diversity of your experience and the wider the range of your network, the better the career opportunities you are likely to encounter. Look for opportunities that will enable your development; don’t be afraid to ask for help and advice, ask to work on projects that interest you or with people who inspire you.
The stronger your professional network, the more likely you are to meet people who will help your career growth. Aim to make new contacts and build a robust professional; don’t lose contact with former co-workers or bosses. Attend events, trade shows, and conferences that will help you meet and exchange contacts with other professionals.
Liz Sebag-Montefiore is the Co-founder and Director of 10Eighty, helping individuals and organisations to maximise their potential. To excel your career., improve performance and give a sense of focus in terms of career direction why not get a coach? Find one here.
It’s no big secret that sleep is a crucial part of our health and wellbeing. It’s a key component of human life that we need to survive – like food and water. But in a world of digital distraction, rising mental health issues and an increase in working from home. In our 40s, many of us struggle with disturbed sleep, with sleep often the first element of our daily life to get neglected and to suffer.
If you are suffering from disturbed sleep, whether ongoing or for a short period of time, it’s important to remember that things can change and that it is possible to get the rest your mind and body needs to thrive.
Wh sleep so important for your health
Sleep helps the mind and body repair, regenerate and recover. It allows us to wake up feeling refreshed, re-energised and ready to take on the day ahead. And not only does a good night’s rest add a positive spring to our step – it has many other benefits too.
Sleep is essential for various aspects of brain function. Cognition, concentration, productivity, and performance are all negatively affected by sleep deprivation. In turn, this affects our decision-making and problem-solving skills, ability to focus, memory and general day-to-day motivation.
And on the physical side?
Your immune system relies on sleep to stay healthy, and a lack of it can result in you struggling to fight off common infections. Sleep also supports the healing of your heart and blood vessels, the repairing of cells and tissues, whilst maintaining a healthy balance of hormones.
We know that sleep helps the body in many ways and is critical for our overall health. And we also know the damage that sleep deficiency can have on our health and wellbeing instantly and over time.
As individuals, we all have a unique pattern and requirements when it comes to sleep. And it’s all about finding what works for you! But the general recommendation for adults is between 7-9 hours a day.
5 top tips for a better night’s sleep
1) Limit caffeine and alcohol
Enjoy a coffee or two in the morning? Go for it! But try to avoid drinking much past lunchtime, as caffeine stimulates your nervous system and may stop your body from naturally relaxing at night. If you do crave an afternoon coffee, try decaf as an alternative.
Alcohol is also one to be avoided or limited before bed to reduce the chance of disturbed sleep. It may assist with feeling sleepy at first, but is known to disrupt sleep patterns, increase snoring and reduce night time melatonin production. And we already know that’s vital for a good night’s sleep!
2) Add exercise into your daily routine
We all know the positive effect exercising can have on our mind and body. But did you know it can improve our sleep too? Not only does it increase sleep quality but it decreases the risk of excessive weight gain, which can be a cause for sleep deprivation in itself. Whether it’s going for a walk, jog, swim or doing yoga – make sure it’s something you enjoy!
3) Reduce screen time before bed
With most of us keeping our phones by our bed, it’s tempting to indulge in screentime until we choose to close our eyes. But blue light emitted by our phones and laptops trick our body into thinking it’s daytime – reducing hormones like melatonin, which help us relax and get into a deep sleep and and can result in disturbed sleep. Try to eliminate any screentime in the hour before bed. Use this hour as an opportunity to read, relax and indulge in some self-care. You deserve it!
4) Get comfortable in bed
This may seem like an obvious one to some, but our bed and environment must support us in our mission to sleep. If you wake up feeling uncomfortable, you may need a new mattress and/or pillows. Always invest in a good quality mattress and bedding – we spend a third of our life in our bed!
5) Take high-quality natural supplements
The Herbtender’s Doze & Dream (The Sleep Mix), is our tranquil adaptogen blend that promotes uninterrupted rest when you need to switch off and recharge. Designed to gently ease you into sleep, our bedtime supplement sees Ashwagandha, one of the few non-stimulating adaptogens, join forces with calming Reishi, as well as Lavender and Chamomile. Better nights lead to better days!
Our 40s are a period of reflection. As we come up for air from the first half of our life, we then begin to wonder what we should do with our lives in the next half? There are lessons to be learned, changes to be made, and a whole bunch of potential awaits, for both late-bloomers and people who have been living it large already. So what’s the life advice for your 40s you need to know? We spoke to, Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse, master storyteller, who has devoted her life to helping others rewrite their stories whose latest book Storytelling Legacy: Everyone Has Stories—What are Yours? to get her essential life advice for your 40s, as well as her perspective on what being a woman in her 40s in today’s world looks like with the benefits of hindsight.
What are some things you would go back and tell your 40-something year own self?
At 40, be very good to yourself. Self-care (sleep, regular eating, lots of exercise and healthy connections) will determine how the rest of your life will go. 40’s and 50’s are “turning point” ages.
What are some of the biggest issues women in their 40s are facing today?
Overwhelm, not enough time, clock ticking in relationships, life is operating “at its peak”.
What can we do about them?
Remembering that overwhelm is simply a sign of “not” making enough choices, clutter is about “not making choices” and not enough hours in the days is about “not making enough choices”. Theme here, “go forward and choose along the way”. It means getting comfortable with “letting go “ of people, activities and things.
What are some life lessons you’d like to impart on women turning or progressing into their 40s?
Simplify. In order to find all the good things and the things that make you happy, your job is to “make room” by living more simply.
What is the best way to conquer your 40s?
Don’t see them as “something to conquer”. I see the forties as rich time to change direction and look forward to each decade as it comes along. Sometimes the best focus for the 40’s is to turn the sail of your private ship and decide which directions (s) you want to go.
What are some of the things we should do before turning 50?
The best tools are daily exercise goals, getting one’s body ready for the next few decades, let go of worn out relationships and make plans for the next chapter in life. The 40’s are the perfect evaluation, choices and directions you want for yourself as the ships starts sailing in a new direction.
What should we stop doing in our 40s?
Hanging on to old relationships from which one has grown, hanging on to lifestyles that aren’t preparing for a healthy future. Buying things that one will need to downsize from in the 40’s and 50’s. This is not a good time to accumulate. It is a time to evaluate.
Any advice for women wanting to totally rewrite their own story in their 40s?
I would suggest that the 40’s is a perfect time to rewrite one’s life. Take each of your past experiences. Choose to either celebrate it, document it (pictures, videos and stories) and hang on to them, and also know what, who and how to eliminate what you don’t want to repeat, take along or plan to enjoy. This is the evaluation decade.
Do you have any particular story you would like to share which you think would resonate with our readership?
My forties were the end and the beginning of many things. It was the end of accumulating things of no current value or sparks of joy. It is important to understand that I have kept many things and some are reaching vintage. However, I don’t keep anything that doesn’t invoke a “spark of joy”.
The forties were also the time that I cemented in my “need to exercise and move”. Whether I was in my neighborhood, along a country road, living in a city or sailing on a ship. walking each day became as regular as brushing my teeth. I still walk 2 miles a day and if all my miles were laid out in a row, maybe I’ve walked across the US. It is as familiar as breathing. It was the time that I decided to never work again. Mind you, there have been many 12 hour days of work, but I don’t consider it work IF I love what I am doing. That way my activities become my passion and I am very passionate about life.
One of my favourite stories is: Walking through an airport in Chicago, a little boy came running up to me and said, “you are the lady in the red dress”. I said “yes, I am”. At that time, I had made a movie and made a decision to always wear something bright and different in each major presentation I made publicly. I could repeat the outfits, but each was chosen for a reason. Never again, did I wear grey, brown or anything dull. Later in life, I kept the same plan for zoom calls, interviews, family movies etc. Women and children may not always hear or be interested in “what you said”, but they rarely forgot what you wore. I was also the lady with the striped green and white dress who wore glasses that also had green and white frames. The moral of this story is “stand out, own your space and enjoy it”. You matter!
Anything more life advice for your 40s to add?
Enjoy the 40’s and remember. “You are the captain of “your ship”. Sail away!
Sharon Wegscheider-Cruse has devoted her life to helping others rewrite their stories, and is a master storyteller. In her latest book, Storytelling Legacy: Everyone Has Stories—What are Yours?, Sharon finally shares her story, with tales of celebrity, culture, humor, spirituality, travels and much more. She is a nationally known consultant, family therapist and author of 23 books on everything from personal development to relationships to caregiving.
Hold the phone everybody! Our Tried and Tested feature is back by popular demand this summer. If you want to know what products have landed on our desk that are worth checking out then read on friends as we give our Tried and Tested stamp of approval to all things beauty, wellness and food that we have fallen in love with. This summer we’ve been….
Vibrant Skin Serums
Vibrant Skin is a natural skincare brand, founded by two lovely sisters – Sarah Owen & Kelly Owen – after a personal journey that took them on a quest to discover exceptional, active, and natural ingredients that would support and rebuild the skin. They are on a mission to show people how beautiful their skin can be, and their serums are science-driven, brilliant quality, evidence-based and unlock nature’s powerful healing properties providing intrinsic protection and deep hydration. We’ve tried all three serums – Energising Vitamin Serum, Time Repair Serum, and Hydra B5 & Hyaluronic Acid Serum – and can truly say that they have left our skin looking healthy and radiant, leaving us feeling fabulously empowered! The Vibrant Skin Serum range starts at £40, discover their products here.
Glo32 Teeth Whitening System with Coconut Oil
Over 40 years on the planet does not for white teeth maketh. Our previous experience with tooth whiteners has been HARSH which is why they have never previously made it into our Tried and Tested feature. But we have to say we love Glo 32’s Advance Teeth Whitening System with Coconut Oil. Formulated with Coconut Oil for a healthy and gentler way to achieve a whiter, brighter smile. We used these easy-to-apply strips every day for a month and our teeth were visibly whiter. No need to get your teeth done professionally. Just purchase one of their home whitening kits instead! Glo 32’s Advance Teeth Whitening System with Coconut Oil costs £20 and is available from Bootsand Amazon.
The DA Group’s Luxury Hair Oil
Hair can dry out in extreme temperatures and with increased UV exposure in the summer months or while you’re on holiday. If your locks are looking anything but luscious it’s time to give them some extra TLC. The DA Group’s Luxury Hair Oil is perfect for doing just that. Made from ethically sourced, organic ingredients, we’ve been using their pre-wash treatment once a week resulting in noticeably smooth and softened hair. Their luxurious blend of oils nourishes, treats, and repairs your hair from root to tip and is perfect for taking care of dry hair during the summer months. The DA Group’s Luxury Hair Oil costs £19.99 and is available to buy from thedagroup.com.
Lola’s Lashes Rose Quartz Magnetic Lashes
Because you’re never too old to wear lashes. If you are no idea how to wear lashes (much like us), then Lola’s lashes are a good place to start. Their Rose Quartz Magnetic Lashes will have you cheating on your mascara. Ridiculously easy to apply without any faff, they are the perfect style to complement an everyday or going out-out makeup with just enough subtle lift, length and volume to enhance your eyes. They’re so quick and easy to apply that you can even wear them daily – even if you are completely cack-handed like us! Lola’s Lashes Rose Quartz Magnetic Lashes cost £20 and are available from lolaslashes.co.uk.
Dr Paw Paw Tinted True Coral Balm
Remember when Dr Paw Paw first entered our lives and we went absolutely mad for it? Well, they’re making waves again – this time with their Tinted True Coral Balm. The perfect summer do-it-all. This small but mighty baby can be used to as a lip balm, lip tint, cheek tint, highlighter and eyeshadow. Full of pawpaw (papaya) fruit, aloe vera and olive oil, it’s suitable for all skin types and skin tones including sensitive skin, and subtle peach pink colour. It hydrates and nourishes and is the perfect way to either enhance your natural lip colour or build a bolder look. It’s become our summer go-to and there isn’t a day we haven’t been using this little multi-purpose hero balm. Dr Paw Paw Tinted True Coral Balmcosts £6 and is available to buy from Waitrose, Marks & Spencer from 4th August and www.drpawpaw.com.
skinChemists Youth Series & Hada Labo Tokyo Face Sun Creams
You know one thing that drives us mad in the summer months? Having to apply a sun cream over our moisturiser because our current one either doesn’t include an SPF or has one but it isn’t high enough. But hurrah that’s a thing of the past now thanks to two products we’ve recently discovered.
The first is skinChemists Youth Series Wrinkle Killer, an SPF 50 Sun Protection Day Cream that goes beyond being a typical moisturiser with added SPF 50 (also available with SPF 30). The new range offers intense hydration, as well as protection from the sun, helping you beat wrinkles and enjoy summertime. Years in the making, skinChemist’s SPFs are unscented and won’t leave white residue, making it perfect for all skin tones and no weird white face afterwards!
The second is Hada Labo’s Face Sun Cream, a water-resistant moisturising sunscreen lotion SPF50 specifically for the face. We love how light this lotion is – it’s non-greasy, quickly-absorbed and has a dry-touch consistency that can be used even on wet skin. Youth Series Wrinkle Killer, SPF 50 and SPF 30 Sun Protection Day Cream RRP £34.99 is available at www.skinchemists.com or www.feelunique.com ; Hada Labo Tokyo Face Sun Cream SPF50 now £11.29 at Superdrug.
Eating and drinking…
Good4U Salad Topper
Summer is all about salads, but what if we told you there was away to elevate your salads to seriously satisfying levels? We recently discovered the Good4U Salad Topper range and are firm Tried and Tested fans. Their range of salad toppers are not only designed to power up the nutritional value of your salad, but they also level it up both in terms of flavour and texture. With Garlic & Chilli, Super Seeds, Garlic & Herb and Caesar Crumbles, there’s pretty much not a day that goes by where we don’t use these on our meals. And yes, they can be used on so much more than just salads too! Good4U Salad Toppers cost £2 for a packet and are available from leading supermarkets and direct via their online store.
OHMG Magnesium Water
Looking for that perfect summer drink to take the edge off? No we don’t mean a G&T. We’re talking about OHMG Magnesiums Water! OHMG Magnesium Water is a delicious range of still and sparkling water infused with Magnesium, fruit extracts and botanicals. 100% natural, containing no sugars, no sweeteners and no calories. Magnesium is known as the relaxation mineral and an essential nutrient responsible for more than 300+ functions inside our body. Studies have shown that up to 75% of us are depleted in Magnesium. Meanwhile, every can of OHMG Magnesium Water contains 56mg. So guess what we have been reaching for some Tried and Tested relaxation canned daily….A 12 can variety pack of OHMG Magnesium Water costs £23.99 and is available from ohmgwater.com.
Sheese Cheese Alternative
Our experience of cheese alternatives has so far left us yearning for the real stuff. That is until we locked our chops around Sheese’s dairy free cheeses! Somehow they have absolutely nailed it in terms of taste and texture – so it’s no wonder they are award-winning. But what we love about these guys is that they go so much beyond the traditional cheese slice or grated packs. While these are great, for us the real stars of the show are their Blue Cheese and Wenselydale editions which are just so ridiculously moreish. We are not sure how they achieved such wizadry with a base of coconut oil but at this point in time we don’t even care! If you are looking to cut back on or replace dairy in your diet then it’s Sheese for the win. Sheese is available at all good supermarkets. Prices typically start at £2.50 for a pack. Check out their range here.
We all love a good snack, but we also know that finding snacks that are healthy, yummy and won’t leave you feeling hateful thereafter are hard to come by. That is unless you know about Nick’s who have quite simply made snacking better. Their range of chocolate bars are sugar free, gluten free, palm oil free and pretty much guilt free. We countdown the hours to our 3pm rendez-vous with our stash of Nick’s Bars and currently crushing on their Peanuts N Fudge Bar and protein bar range big time. Currently with 20% off site wide check out the Nick’s range. here.
Eat Well for Less: Happy & Healthy
Food is getting expensive, but that doesn’t mean you have to skip on eating well. Despite the ever-increased basket pricing of our weekly shops, there is still a way to eat well on a budget. Including simple, common sense advice which many have come to expect from the BBC Series Eat Well For Less this book is packed full of light lunches, simple suppers and weekend nosh that are quick, easy and won’t break the bank. It has helped us revisit some old classics over at Tried and Tested but also try out new spins and takes also with ingredients we already have knocking around in our fridge or kitchen. Perfect for knocking up something without having to spend money on extra ingredients you will only use once which is the problem with so many other recipes we find! Eat Well for Less: Happy & Healthy is currently available from Amazon for £8 (RRP £14.99)
Aktar at Home
Let’s face it – eating out has become astronomically expensive and takeaways are not exactly cheap these days. That said, we love a good curry and have found the perfect solution from Aktar At Home, freezable curry boxes by Aktar Islam, Michelin star chef which makes for a generous and delicious feast. All Meals are freezable so you can have your fill one day and more another, and another after that. A Mixed Box includes a whole variety of mouth-watering curries including two chicken, one mutton, one vegetarian/vegan, and an abundance of pilau rice and the most epic naans we’ve ever seen! We loved every mouthful and will be coming back for more. A Mixed Box Deal costs £70 and is available from aktarathome.co.uk.
VAHDAM® Tumeric Teas
The health benefits of tumeric tea are seemingly endless, which is why we are big Tried and Tested fans. But then add in the mix a climate and plastic-neutral element and premium-quality Indian turmeric with superfoods like Ginger, Ashwagandha, Moringa, and an array of spices which are 100% natural, pure and caffeine free that you get with VAHDAM and now you’re really talking. Stemming from Ayurveda, turmeric has been known for its powerful healing properties for over 5,000 years. From being a fix for seasonal colds to healing wounds, providing anti-inflammatory benefits and boosting immunity, turmeric has a myriad of health-promoting benefits. We are especially in love with VAHDAM’s Ashwagandha Herbal Tea Bags – which includes the ancient herb renowned for helping the body manage stress, perfect for unwinding with before sleep and their Tumeric Spiced Tea Bags which are like a hug in a mug. The full range of VAHDAM Teas is available at hollandandbarrett.com, Amazon and other online retailers from £4.99.
Heaven Collagen Drops
We wouldn’t be a day without collagen supplementation which in our view is an absolute must when you hit your 40s. Cue Heaven Collagen Drops, so intensely concentrated that you only need to add a few drops to your morning glass of water. Super easy to use, you can either ingest them or also mix in with your daily creams for healthy glowing skin as well as lustrous shiny hair. Founder of Heaven Skincare Deborah Mitchell has been creating and testing these potent skincare supplements since 2013 as part of her Inner Beauty collection. Thanks to a clever blend of high levels of marine collagen, glucosamine, vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and Biotin they leave you looking – and feeling – Tried and Tested fabulous! A two week supply of Heaven Collagen Drops costs £27.50 and is available to purchase from Heaven Skincare.
My Best Pharm supplements
Not all supplements are created equal – something we know only too well from first hand experience. But recently we discovered My Best Pharm – the result of a cooperation of doctors, pharmacists and dieticians for a more 360 degree approach to supplementation. Their products have an innovative, modern composition, combining the latest, advanced production technologies with many years of tradition and experience in the use of substances of natural origin using clinically proven, patent-protected ingredients from all over the world back up by strong medical evidence – unlike so many other ranges on the market! We have in particular really enjoyed their MyBestComplement supplement (£32.90) which is a powerful blend of 13 valuable ingredients including oils, plant extracts, antioxidants and vitamins with powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-aging effects to help bolster immunity, support brain function, achieve healthier looking skin as well as supporting the heart and circulatory system, liver and digestive function and improve cholesterol and blood sugar levels.The perfect Tried and Tested do-it-all! Find out more about My Best Pharm’s range of supplements at mybestpharm.uk.
Do Not Age supplements
We all want to live longer, feel more youthful, healthy and energised as we age but how do we go about doing that? Do Not Age is on a mission to extend healthy lifespan for as many people as possible through their range of supplements. Using the latest information from leading longevity researchers they develop both products and advice, then distribute them to all that want to live healthier for longer. Our Tried and Tested readers may not have heard of a lot of the names of the products developed by their research team, but having tried and tested some of them including NMN which helps to fight inflammation associated with aging and SIRT6 Activator® which promotes DNA repair and supports genomic stability we were hugely impressed by how quickly you feel your best self from taking them – the increased energy levels are palpable that we are pretty much betting on Do Not Age to secure our newfound longevity. Find out more about the Do Not Age range of supplements at donotage.org.
Exercise is an important form of self-care for us over at Tried and Tested, as is doing what you love! If like us you are missing your former dance floor glory days then this one’s for the raver lurking deep inside of you. Clubbercise is fitness meets clubbing where you’ll burn 600+ cals in ONE sweaty, euphoria-inducing Tried and Tested hour. It’s no wonder that Clubbercise is making waves in the fitness community, combining full body workouts with banging soundtracks had us bouncing around with our hands in the air complete with glow sticks. to become all the rage amongst fitness fans and ravers across the world. Combining toning, plyometric and combat moves that are easy-to-follow with high or low-impact options for all fitness levels we were in sweaty fitness heaven thanks to the soundtrack of club anthems including our favourite 90′s classics. Clubberciseoffer over 2,000 classes worldwide with options for kids, teens, and families starting at £5 per session. Find your nearest Clubbercise class here.
Let us know which of these Tried and Tested items you’d love to try too in a comment below!
A well thought out skincare routine is a good start but unfortunately not enough to get you that desirable, youthful, lit-from-within looking skin. One piece of the puzzle that can help you to get there is having the right diet which includes anti-ageing foods, among other things.
To find out more, Beauty Daily by Clarins consulted with two leading nutritionists on how to eat your way to healthy-looking skin and asked for their recommendations on the best anti-ageing foods to keep in mind, and tips and recipes for a more youthful diet.
So what food group qualify as anti-ageing?
Although there isn’t one ‘fix all’ food group that holds the secret to anti-ageing, The British Dietetic Association (BDA) says the best and most proven way to fight against skin ageing is by eating a well-balanced and nutritious diet.
“Unfortunately, whilst it isn’t possible to stop the ageing process in its tracks, we can be more aware of our diet to make sure we are doing what we can to help us age well,” says Jemma Joel, Registered Nutritionist and NHS Health Coach.
Joel suggests including a range of nutrients in the diet, not just those that are high in antioxidants. “Always choose whole foods where possible, as well as high sources of protein and healthy fats.”
She also advises: “Be mindful of your intake of processed and high sugar food, as sugar can impact breakouts because of the blood sugar spikes increasing inflammation and sebum production.”
Research has shown that one of the adverse effects of eating too much sugar is premature ageing. This is because sugar can damage your skin through a process called glycation, which damages collagen, and elastin (which are the proteins which are responsible for skin’s plumpness.)
There is good news though – to make these changes to your diet, it doesn’t have to be scary and it’s not necessary to make them all at once. You can begin by making better choices when loading your plate to ensure that you are swapping out more processed foods for healthier options where possible. Think about these changes as an investment in your health, rather than a restriction.
5 Anti-Ageing Foods That Are Approved By Nutritionists
Nishtha Patel a Clinical Nutritionist and Functional Medicine Practitioner shares her top 5 anti-ageing food recommendations.
“Eat the rainbow of different coloured plant-based foods daily and rotate your food. This creates diversity in your gut microbiome and a healthy gut is a key to good health. They are also loaded with different antioxidants and other compounds which are crucial for hair, skin, eyes, nails, brain, heart health and of course ageing,” Patel recommends.
Evidence shows that blueberries are great at supporting the skin’s ability to fight inflammation which related to skin conditions like acne, psoriasis, eczema, and premature ageing. When out shopping, try and but wild blueberries where possible as they contain approimately 33% more brain-healthy anthocyanins than ordinary blueberries.
“Although wild blueberries are harder to get your hands on, they are richer in anthocyanin (more so than ordinary blueberries) which are the chemicals which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Wild blueberries are fantastic for the brain, heart and skin, but if you’re unable to get the wild ones, try other organic berries as they help work towards the same results. Patel explains.
Avocados are a hugely rich source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds because they are packed with fibre, healthy fats, vitamin C, vitamin E, and folate, which all play a significant part in promoting healthy skin.
It’s no surprise that avocados are such a popular ingredient in diets as not only do they present a myriad of health benefits but they are delicious for both sweet and savoury recipes, so there are plenty of dishes for you to get your teeth into.
3. Oily fish
Fish is anti-inflammatory which is an excellent source of essential fatty acids and omega 3, both of which are vital for healthy skin and hair, as well as your heart and brain.
Patel says: “Wild Alaskan salmon is considered the best but you can of course eat any oily fish in order for your skin to benefit. An easy to remember acronym is S.M.A.S.H.: Salmon, Mackerel, Anchovies, Sandine, Herring. This can remind you of the best choices to make when it comes to oily fish.”
4. Sweet Potato
When you are looking to reduce signs of ageing on your skin, sweet potato is one of the best foods to start with as it’s full of beta-carotene, which helps to prevent early ageing.
A study published by the American Journal of Public Health found that people who eat more fruit and vegetables have healthier, glowing skin and that is due to carotenoids, which are the orange/red pigments found in certain fruits and vegetables.
Carotenoids are pigments responsible for bright red, yellow and orange colours in many fruits and vegetables so load up on them if you want radiant skin.
“The orange colour comes from beta-carotene which is converted to Vitamin A and is important for healthy elasticity for the skin and for cell turnover, as that is what helps to keep you looking young,” says Patel.
Many studies report that beetroot, especially when in the form of a juice supplement, protects against oxidative damage to DNA, lipid and protein structures. It is great for the blood, heart, and brain too.
Pro tip: “Whenever I cook, I try to add as many vegetables and spices into my meals as possible,” Patel says.
She adds: “Herbs and spices account for plant-based ingredients in your diet. The more plants and plant-based food you eat, the more you feed your gut microbes.
These are the tiny bacteria in the gut that produce prebiotics which are fuel for the healthy bacteria (probiotics) living in the digestive tract. Furthermore, vegetables are high in fibre, so they also act as a giant brush gently sweeping out the colon.”
Nutrition coach Joel says her favourite nutrient-dense, delicious recipe recommendation would be “a balanced colourful bowl of goodness.”
“When making one of my bowls I like to add avocado, diced sweet potato, edamame beans, shredded radish, and a couple of tablespoons of plain hummus. The beauty of making these bowls is that they are so versatile, and you can amend them to fit in with your preferences.”
Once you reach your 40s, it is safe to say there are no short cuts when it comes to skincare. The sad fact is, time is no longer on our side, our skin is losing elasticity and collagen at what feels like a rate of knots, and our past misdemeanours are starting to creep up on us. So when it comes to skincare advice for your 40s, what should we being following religiously, and what should we be turning our noses up at? Here, Louise Thomas-Minns, celebrity skin therapist, expert, educator and product formulator, seperates fact from fiction.
Skincare advice for your 40s
Myth 1: The SPF in my moisturiser will be enough to protect my skin
Fact: It’s not enough to rely on the SPF in your moisturiser or make up as we come into the height of Summer. Don’t be lulled into a false sense of security & think you can get away with just one application a day. You need to opt for a separate product and re-apply regularly.
Myth 2: I can use the same skincare products all year round
Your skin doesn’t necessarily ‘get used’ to products per se. However, it may become accustomed to them as I believe your skin changes every minute of every day so its always good to review your routine. Seasonally is a good marker for change.
Myth 3: I can fix enlarged skin pores
Pores do not open and close. They are not doors so don’t ne fooled into thinking that products can shrink them or eradicate them. Embrace them, deep clean them, which can make them look less prominent.
Myth 4: Drinking water is the key to hydrated skin
I often have clients say to me that they feel bad as they don’t drink enough water so their skin isn’t very hydrated. But, water will not hydrate the skin. You need to rely on good fats through your diet and skin care to do that.
Myth 5: Middle aged acne is caused by dirty skin
Some people perceive that if they have Acne then their skin is dirty so this is the cause and they need to clean it even more. If only it were that simple! Acne is a very complex issue and should be treated individually. It certainly doesn’t come from being dirty. Whilst it’s important to keep the skin clean you can actually make things a whole lots worse by over cleansing or cleansing with products that are too harsh.
Myth 6: Natural skincare is better for my skin
Whilst some may prefer or enjoy so-deemed ‘Natural, botanical skin care’ they are not necessarily any better than other ranges. Be aware that the term ‘natural’ isn’t regulated so could be being used as a marketing term. Aways seek advice around what skin care is right for you whether that be ‘natural’ or otherwise.
Myth 7: Retinol is only for the over 50s
Don’t think you have to be in your 50’s to benefit from Retinol. Starting a couple of times a week early, even as early as in your twenties can be beneficial in helping to assist the skins ability to repair, regenerate and rejuvenate.
Skincare advice for your 40s: The non-negotiables
So what are the non-negotiable things women in their 40s should be doing for their skin to keep it in tip top condition? According to Louise these are:
Apply sunscreen daily – using sunscreen each day, even when it is cloudy, is one of the best ways to prevent skin cancer.
Drink green tea – green tea‘s anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce skin irritation, skin redness, and swelling
Eat dark chocolate – the flavanols in dark chocolate can stimulate the endothelium, the lining of arteries, to produce nitric oxide
Get advice around HRT – several studies suggest there are benefits from using bioidentical hormones to alleviate symptoms from dry, itchy, thin and fragile skin
Have the thoughts “I hate my job” crossed your mind recently? If our jobs are great and we love them (no matter how banal they might seem to others), then we feel good about ourselves. There will probably come a point where we look at what we have achieved so far and reckon up accomplishments and setbacks, and consider planning the next stage of working life – stick or change.
If we feel that progress has stalled, whether disenchanted, frustrated or just bored, there are remedies; a mid-career crisis is a chance to reflect and review what has gone well and what can be done to build for the future.
It is not the responsibility of the organisation to manage the careers of employees, though good employers have career and talent management policies and programmes. They may be good at engaging and developing employees, but career planning is a personal responsibility. It is probably time for a re-think if:
Your job lacks challenge, appeal and fun
Promotion or development opportunities are limited
You’re not learning anything new, it’s all routine
Reaching a career ceiling doesn’t mean a lack of drive and tenacity to rise further. But there may come a point where fresh challenges appeal. Keeping a career afloat may feel like navigating hazardous and murky waters, especially during mergers and acquisitions, downsizing, ‘right sizing,’ and ‘offshoring’.
A career MOT will afford you some time for reflection before making an action plan. Focus and reflect, nothing is set in stone; the career plan envisaged when you were 23 may no longer be relevant now – that’s fine, just start over.
What if your career is broken? What if you are totally in the wrong space – is there anything you can do? Go back to fundamentals. What do you like doing? Think about your achievements to date and think big, don’t be modest. Life is full achievements – big and small, they all count.
Build and grow
Career management rests on identification of your values, interests and skills and then building on those and investing time and effort in a chosen career path. Aim to build and grow, don’t fall into the trap of thinking that years of experience are what counts. If you are not fully invested in career development, there’s danger of ending up with 10 years of experience that is, effectively, one year of experience replicated 10 times.
Survival is about ensuring you appeal to employers over the long run. Ensure you have portable skills that will carry you through your short-term career goals and enable momentum towards a long-term plan. Build a portfolio of roles and interests and commitments that will constitute a real investment in a career path that provides fulfilment.
It’s sensible to plan ahead, managing your career by choosing roles with a range of employers that will increase your employability and transferable skills that so when you are looking to make a move, you are able to make sustainable and fulfilling choices.
Making change happen
Whether it is a mid-career crisis or a nagging sense of disenchantment, you can make a change if you are no longer fulfilled in your job. Life is too short to stay in a job you dislike or that makes you unhappy.
Prepare – ask yourself some searching questions. Think about what you would really love to do, how you want to spend your life, what matters to you and ask yourself what your dream job would look like.
Research – spend time reading and study your area/(s) of interest. Seek mentors and those working in your profession or field of interest to advise you.
Plan – review and evaluate the realistic options, devise a plan whether that is for a new job, a promotion, a new direction or starting your own business. Portfolio workers and entrepreneurs sometimes began their new careers in their 60s or older.
Redesign your career – rather than a completely new career path, you may be able to make changes to your current role – look around to see where you might fit and achieve your objectives, at least in the short-term. Use your current job to accrue the necessary skills, contacts, leads and opportunities that will help you.
Be positive – it is never too late, you are never too stuck to make a change. Focus on your skills and experience and on making that move forward. Finally, success in any career requires one to be flexible, open-minded, versatile and resilient; and an inclination to engage in lifelong learning is increasingly important for the ambitious.
Have the thoughts I hate my job crossed your mind lately? If so, it might be time for a career change….
Liz Sebag-Montefiore is the Co-founder and Director of 10Eighty, helping individuals and organisations to maximise their potential. To excel your career., improve performance and give a sense of focus in terms of career direction why not get a coach? Find one here.
I didn’t expect to be diagnosed with terminal breast cancer at 47. Whilst I knew there was a small possibility, I didn’t really expect my cancer would return along with an incurable diagnosis. But here we are.
If we know anything, it’s that life often throws us curve balls, this one being the biggest, shittiest one you could ever imagine. Being diagnosed with terminal breast cancer is unimaginable and something I still struggle to believe, even though I know it’s very real. As I walked out the hospital I remember telling myself and those I loved that I would beat this, that if anyone can I would. That I would defy the odds and live with this for a long time. This became my mantra and one I still tell myself most days.
As hard as it is to imagine, life goes on. Living with cancer is far from easy, but this diagnosis has driven me to try and live more vividly and fully than I had before. I may be diagnosed with terminal breast cancer but right now I’m well and not ready to go anywhere.
It takes an army to live your best life when life gives you lemons. Here’s some of the ways I cope:
I got busy living. Embracing life, enjoying the little things. I love my adventures and intend to live big.
This work is never ending. I believe I can do anything I set my mind to. It applies more now than ever before. Facing my fears, choosing my beliefs and letting go of those that don’t serve me. All of this work is central to my determination and belief that I can thrive with stage 4 cancer.
Do your own research, read books. Make sense of your cancer and take control based on what works for you.
Focusing on all the reasons I want to keep living, rather than the fear of dying. Looking forward. To the experiences and adventures I’m yet to have. My husband. My family. My friends. My business. Early on, I was so terrified, I couldn’t imagine life six months out. Eventually once the dust settles I just started focusing on living instead.
They are indicators not inevitabilities. There are exceptions to every rule. All we can do is walk our own journey, and be grateful and determined to defy the odds
Understand my disease
I spent a long time reading and researching different protocols so I kew my options. I have tried to understand what my body is trying to tell me. How to nourish myself, to appreciate, to let go. I try and take it as an opportunity to change the way I treat my body and the environment around me.
Focus on healing
I have also learnt that maybe this journey isn’t about finding a cure. A magic bullet. It’s about healing. The type of healing that never stops. Everything I do is about trying to heal my mind and body. There are so many options. The important thing is to trust the decisions you make and believe in yourself. My life has taken on a new normal, and whilst it doesn’t fit my old view of what my life would look like, it brings different joys and appreciations every day.
I’m only a year into my stage 4 diagnosis. As you can imagine, it’s been A LOT. It’s a process of continuous learning, about myself, my disease, my healing. My focus is on filling my life with love and adventures and creating something amazing as a legacy.
So when life gives you lemons, shake yourself off, take a deep breath and make shit happen.
Sara Cohen is founder of luxe sustainable womenswear brand www.hakinakina.com. Having alreadyrecovered from breast cancer once, she was in remission for several years, until last April when she found her cancer had returned and was by definition terminal. 5 years ago, having recently recovered from cancer she was looking for swimwear that suited her active lifestyle and offered the high level of protection she needed to cover up her radiation burns. She was left with minimal options; so when she moved to New Zealand she decided to take matters into her own hands. Armed with a background in marketing and 5 years in women’s wear, she opened her own business and a line of swimwear to give women the freedom to play without compromising comfort, beauty or the environment. Find out more at hakinakina.com or connect on Instagram @hakinakina.active.