Tag Archives: seasonal

5 Autumn Super Foods

As the leaves begin to turn and fall off the trees, the autumnal season is starting to really shows it’s true colours. A change in landscape means that there’s new autumnal fare available on the grocery store shelves.

For maximum health boost, it’s important to buy whatever fruits or vegetables are in season. Ripe fruit always tastes better too! The following short-list are some of the best super foods autumn has to offer:

1. Pumpkins – They’re not just for carving you know – In fact the pumpkins is one of the most beneficial vegetables available for you this season. The pumpkin is naturally low in calories, containing high levels of fibre, vitamin A and water. Pumpkins are also packed with useful minerals such as potassium and calcium whilst being naturally low in fat. Try grilling or roasting  pumpkin for a delicious treat.

2. Autumnal Lamb –  With approximately 250 calories per 100grams of cooked meat, lamb isn’t considered one of the healthiest foods available. However, lamb is also a great source of protein, vitamin B12 and zinc, which are good for strong bones and the blood. Vitamin B9 and Niacin are also known for helping against the ageing process. For a tasty roast dinner treat, roast your lamb with honey mustard parsnips and pumpkin wedges – delightful.

3. Pomegranates – This tropical fruit which is at it’s best between September through to January is native to the Middle East and the Mediterranean. Many professional nutritionists recommend pomegranates as they contain high levels of antioxidants, whilst offering a rich source of vitamin C, B6, A and E. The juicy seeds found in the fruit, known as arils, are delicious over salads or deserts.

4. Plums – Plums are a great natural source of calcium, magnesium and potassium whilst the purple variety is also rich in iron. Plums are also packed with fibre, and although they don’t contain too much vitamin C, you’ll find a great deal of vitamin E instead – a powerful antioxidant. Not many people know this, but plums are a natural laxative, so be careful not to overdo it!

5. Cranberries – Cranberries become ripe during the autumn season so it’s worth keeping your eyes peeled. As a naturally healthy, low calorie fruit, cranberries have been known to help against various diseases including heart disease and cancer. Cranberry juice is a great way of taking the fruit on board, as the berries themselves can be a little tart for eating. If you have the berries ready to use, try pairing them with apples and pears.

5 Top Ways to beat SAD

With winter quickly on the approach and evenings getting darker, some of us will begin to feel the winter blues. Officially branded as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), it seems none of us enjoy waking up in the dark for a day in the office or heading home whilst driving in the pitch black.

Here are the Healthy Hideout’s top 5 ways to beat the affects of SAD:

  1. Sleeping patterns – It’s important to try and get your body into a consistent sleeping pattern throughout the week including the weekends. Although it’s nice to have a lie in, repeatedly hitting the “snooze” button on Saturday morning may leave you feeling lethargic and more tired when the next working week arrives.
  2. Light therapy – Reduced exposure to natural light has been known to cause a chemical imbalance inside the brain which can leave us in a depressed mood along with a sense of fatigue and irratability. One unique suggestion is to invest in a “seasonal light box” for the side of your bed, which mimics the suns rise a little earlier, in the comfort of your own bed. There are many sizes and options available so you’re bound to find one that will suit your needs best.
  3. Food – The summer leaves many of us encouraged by the flurry of fresh fruit and veg available at that time of year. Try and keep your intake of fruit and veg up throughout the winter period, and maintain a healthy intake of complex carbs such as wholegrain rice, pasta and bread. The added sustenance will keep your energy levels high throughout the day.
  4. Exercise – Regular exercise produces endorphins – we all know this. Many of us will start to sway away from our regular exercise routines as the temperature begins to drop, but try to maintain them and your body will thank you for it. Many studies have shown how physical workouts can help improve sleep and muscle tension. If it helps, try moving your workout so that it takes place during the few daylight hours that we have – It’ll help lift your mood!
  5. Laugh it up! – Socialising is easily one of the best ways to help beat SAD. Meet up with friends on a regular basis, and don’t sit at home being a couch potato under a blanket. Laughter has been known to produce many psychological benefits, boosting your immune system and lowering the effects of stress. Coupled quite perfectly from the phrase “a happy worker is a productive worker,” you may find yourself quickly changing your attitude to winter.

Let’s end with a favourite to get us all smiling:

This is a Stick up!

This is a Stick up!

For more information on SAD, here’s a great book to get your hands on: