Thursday, December 29, 2011

Eight tips for healthy eating

Eating a healthy, balanced diet is an important part of maintaining good health, and can help you feel your best. It can be simple, too. Just follow these eight tips to get started.
The two keys to a healthy diet are:
  • Eat the right number of calories for how active you are, so that you balance the energy you consume with the energy you use. If you eat or drink too much, you’ll put on weight. If you eat too little you’ll lose weight. The average man needs around 2,500 calories a day. The average woman needs 2,000 calories. Most adults are eating more calories than they need, and should eat fewer calories.
  • Eat a wide range of foods to ensure that you’re getting a balanced diet and that your body is receiving all the nutrients it needs.

These practical tips cover the basics of healthy eating, and can help you make healthier choices:
  1. Base your meals on starchy foods
    Starchy foods include potatoes, cereals, pasta, rice and bread. Choose wholegrain varieties when you can: they contain more fibre, and can make you feel full for longer. Starchy foods should make up around one third of the foods you eat.
    Most of us should eat more starchy foods: try to include at least one starchy food with each main meal. Some people think starchy foods are fattening, but gram for gram they contain fewer than half the calories of fat. Learn more in Starchy foods.
  2. Eat lots of fruit and vegIt’s recommended that we eat at least five portions of different types of fruit and veg a day. It’s easier than it sounds. A glass of 100% unsweetened fruit juice can count as one portion, and vegetables cooked into dishes also count. Why not chop a banana over your breakfast cereal, or swap your usual mid-morning snack for some dried fruit? 
  3. Eat more fishFish is a good source of protein and contains many vitamins and minerals. Aim for at least two portions a week, including at least one portion of oily fish. Oily fish is high in omega-3 fats, which may help to prevent heart disease. You can choose from fresh, frozen and canned; but remember that canned and smoked fish can be high in salt. Oily fish include salmon, mackerel, trout, herring, fresh tuna, sardines and pilchards. Non-oily fish include haddock, plaice, coley, cod, tinned tuna, skate and hake. Anyone who regularly eats a lot of fish should try to choose as wide a variety as possible.
  4. Cut down on saturated fat and sugarWe all need some fat in our diet. But it’s important to pay attention to the amount and type of fat we’re eating. There are two main types of fat: saturated and unsaturated. Too much saturated fat can increase the amount of cholesterol in the blood, which increases your risk of developing heart disease. Saturated fat is found in many foods, such as hard cheese, cakes, biscuits, sausages, cream, butter, lard and pies. Try to cut down, and choose foods that contain unsaturated rather than saturated fats, such as vegetable oils, oily fish and avocados. For a healthier choice, use a just a small amount of vegetable oil or reduced fat spread instead of butter, lard or ghee. When you're having meat, choose lean cuts and cut off any visible fat. Learn more, and get tips on cutting down, in Eat less saturated fat.

    Most people in the UK eat and drink too much sugar. Sugary foods and drinks, including alcoholic drinks, are often high in calories, and could contribute to weight gain. They can also cause tooth decay, especially if eaten between meals. Cut down on sugary fizzy drinks, alcoholic drinks, cakes, biscuits and pastries, which contain added sugars: this is the kind of sugar we should be cutting down on rather than sugars that are found naturally in foods such as fruit and milk. Food labels can help: use them to check how much sugar foods contain. More than 15g of sugar per 100g means that the food is high in sugar. Learn more in Sugars.
  5. Eat less salt
    Even if you don’t add salt to your food, you may still be eating too much. About three-quarters of the salt we eat is already in the food we buy, such as breakfast cereals, soups, breads and sauces. Eating too much salt can raise your blood pressure. People with high blood pressure are more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke. Use food labels to help you cut down. More than 1.5g of salt per 100g means the food is high in salt. Adults and children over 11 should eat no more than 6g of salt a day. Younger children should have even less. Learn more in Salt: the facts.
  6. Get active and be a healthy weightEating a healthy, balanced diet plays an important part in maintaining a healthy weight, which is an important part of overall good health. Being overweight or obese can led to health conditions such as type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, heart disease and stroke. Being underweight could also affect your health. Check whether you’re a healthy weight by using the Healthy weight calculator. Most adults need to lose weight, and need to eat fewer calories in order to do this. If you're trying to lose weight, aim to eat less and be more active. Eating a healthy, balanced diet will help: aim to cut down on foods that are high in fat and sugar, and eat plenty of fruit and vegetables. Don't forget that alcohol is also high in calories, so cutting down can help you to control your weight. If you're worried about your weight, ask your GP or a dietitian for advice.

    Physical activity can help you to maintain weight loss or be a healthy weight. Being active doesn’t have to mean hours at the gym: you can find ways to fit more activity into your daily life. For example, try getting off the bus one stop early on the way home from work, and walking. Being physically active may help reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes. For more ideas, see Get active your way. After getting active, remember not to reward yourself with a treat that is high in calories. If you feel hungry after activity choose foods or drinks that are lower in calories but still filling.
  7. Don't get thirstyWe need to drink about 1.2 litres of fluid every day to stop us getting dehydrated. This is in addition to the fluid we get from the food we eat. All non-alcoholic drinks count, but water, milk and fruit juices are the most healthy. Try to avoid sugary soft and fizzy drinks that are high in added sugars and can be high in calories and bad for teeth. When the weather is warm, or when we get active, we may need more.  
  8. Don’t skip breakfast
    Some people skip breakfast because they think it will help them lose weight. In fact, research shows that eating breakfast can help people control their weight. A healthy breakfast is an important part of a balanced diet, and provides some of the vitamins and minerals we need for good health. Wholemeal cereal, with fruit sliced over the top is a tasty and nutritious breakfast.
For more information please visit:

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Spirulina: the latest and greatest superfood yet?

Spirulina: the latest and greatest superfood yet? spirulina tablets: the most nutritious natural wholefood gram per gram in the world.

Spirulina is a microalga native to alkaline lakes in hot climates. Spirulina is the most nutritious wholefood rich in natural vitamins (not synthetic), minerals and antioxidants and contains no sugars, and is low in fat, saturates and calories. 

Spirulina has large amounts of pro-Vitamin A necessary for good skin, eyes and the immune system. Spirulina contains Vitamin B12 necessary for the normal structure and function of the brain and neurological system.

Spiralyne spirulina has many phytonutrients; it is 31 times more powerful than blueberries and 60 times more powerful than spinach.

If you compare the nutrients in Spiralyne spirulina tablets to other foods you will find it has;

·         290% more calcium than whole milk
·         830% more protein than tofu
·         4500% more beta carotene than carrots
·         8000% more iron than spinach [1]
(Based on a typical analysis of Spiralyne spirulina and the above foods).

Furthermore, there is more antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity in 3 grams of spirulina than in five servings of fruits and vegetables [2]. It is for these reasons and others that spirulina is called a superfood and is said to be ‘the most nutritious natural wholefood known to man’.

Spirulina can prevent malnutrition; an issue that doesn’t only affects poorer countries. Healthy eating is an issue that affects many of people in the U.K. The British Association for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition estimate that at least 3 million people in the UK alone are suffering or at risk of malnutrition. Spirulina can help many people by ensuring their intake of many of the nutrients required.

In fact, spirulina’s remarkable nutritional properties have attracted interest from space agencies like NASA and the European Space Agency that have been researching spirulina to feed to their astronauts in space.

Spirulina has other properties that are even more special; it contains a variety of antioxidants such as beta-carotene and C-Phycocyanin that inhibit the damage caused to the body (DNA, RNA and cell structures) by free radicals. A Japanese study on spirulina isolated a ‘new’ compound named ‘calcium spirulan’ that is highly effective fighting infectious diseases supporting the immune system.

To find out more about the remarkable properties of spirulina, please visit:

[2] Moorhead K, Capelli B, Cysewski G (2005), Nature's Superfood: Spirulina ISBN #0-9637511-3-1

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Spirulina: what is it?

A brief guide on what is spirulina.
What is spirulina?

Arthrospira platensis (spirulina), is a pure, natural superfood; due to the diversity and concentration of nutrients it contains.
It is a nutritious uni-cellular blue-green microalga that contains many vitamins, minerals, all the essential amino acids and powerful antioxidants. Spirulina can help your body achieve and maintain optimum health and wellbeing.

Spirulina is extremely nutritious and is the most nutritious, concentrated natural wholefood (gram per gram).
Most spirulina has a constitution of over 50% protein, containing all essential amino acids.
Spirulina has no hard cell wall (no cellulose), which means it can be digested easily - it can nourish individual cells and is highly assimilated.
Spirulina 'superfood' has a very high phytonutrient content; it is 31 times more potent than blueberries in comparison and 60 times more potent than spinach.
Nutrient profile of Spiralyne spirulina tablets (known to have one the highest nutrients content) compared to other foods:
290% more calcium than whole milk
830% more protein than tofu
4500% more beta carotene than carrots
8000% more iron than spinach1
(Based on a typical analysis of Spiralyne arthrospira platensis and the above foods).
There is more antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity in 3 g of spirulina than in five servings of fruits and vegetables2

Spirulina is the best whole food source of Gamma linolenic acid (GLA) – an important fatty acid; it is rich in vitamins, minerals, trace elements, chlorophyll and enzymes; and it is abundant in other nutrients such as; carotenoids, sulfolipids, glycolipids, phycocyanin, superoxide dismutase, RNA and DNA.

2 Moorhead K, Capelli B, Cysewski G (2005), Nature's Superfood: Spirulina ISBN #0-9637511-3-1