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How to nourish not punish your New Year self

If your New Year is predicted to include a punishing exercise routine, diet and detox as you try to offset a series of seasonal over indulgences, you are not alone.

In 2016 only 26% of adults consumed the recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables a day. And 50% of people who said they were trying to lose weight reported they were not currently using any weight management aids.

However, we at Total Guide are welcoming nutritionist, Lola of The Health Box, advice to nourish and preserve energy in January opposed to dispensing with it.

Lola says: “Radically restricting your dietary intake combined with sudden intense exercise will almost always end in disaster.”

“January is not the time to ‘spring clean’ your body as you are still in hibernation mode. You should focus eating with nourishing soups and stews, vegetables and warming spices such as cinnamon, turmeric and nutmeg.”

She believes it is important not to fixate on calories and diets, but clean eating by reducing our intake of processed foods and increasing our eating of fruit and vegetables in their natural state, i.e. steamed.

According to the nutritionist, restricting our calorie intake below the recommended amount sends our body into starvation mode, resulting in sudden weight loss of fluid, but not body fat. Eventually, stagnating weight as your body responds to the calorie limitation through self-preservation.

It is thought by purchasing 80% of our food shop in the vegetable aisle and featuring protein rich foods such as sustainably sourced white fish, small amounts of organic meat, eggs, beans and pulses in our diet; you are guaranteed to sustain a nutritionally balanced, healthy diet which will aid weight loss.

Carbohydrates such as bread, pasta, rice and other grains should be reduced but not banned. Healthy fats and good proteins will stave off hunger pains and satisfy any carb cravings. Increase your intake of nuts, seeds, pulses and add fish, lentils, beans or small amounts of organic meat and eggs to your diet.

Clean eating is a positive approach and a long-term lifestyle change as opposed to a short-term diet fix, a step that will enhance overall health, reduce toxic load and help weight loss.

Whereas food has a significant influence on our weight what we drink is of equal importance. It is likely after a season of celebrations that some of you may have over indulged on alcohol. According to experts we can all benefit from a dry January and February to benefit both our liver and weight loss. Alcohol is an anti-nutrient meaning it takes more nutrients to process than it supplies- effectively leaving you in a nutritional minus. It also is turned directly into fat by the body when consumed.

By taking herbs like milk thistle, we can help restore liver function as it protects and repairs actual liver tissue. While active B Complex (Biocare's Methyl B Complex) can help support

energy production as well as liver function - gently, without overwhelming other systems. Most importantly, drink plenty of water – aim for the recommended amount which is four pints a day.

This new year be kind to yourself, with dietary resolutions. Nurture your nutrition with natural foods and a healthy balanced diet. And remember life is for living not for restriction.

We wish you a happy, healthy new year!

Written by Emma Smith

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