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Tea on the green...

Good morning and Happy Wednesday!

I hope you are having a great week so far. Did you watch the US Presidential Debate? What did you think? Staying up until 3am watching it was certainly different to my usual choice of television (Grey's Anatomy, Home and Away, Location Location Location). Yes guilty of watching rubbish so thought I'd try to understand more about the Presidential race. I still don't understand it! Seems to have become a media race to see who has more 'pizazz' more than anything. Let me know if you predict Trump to win and what you predict will happen if he does! To use some of Trump's fabulous words - I'm not trying to be Bragalicious but I'm getting really busy! Do speak to me if you'd like some extra support with your exercise or nutrition. I'd love to help you in a Bigly way. Isn't he just great for entertainment value?!

This week's I am talking all about green tea and it's benefits. I've also put in a great exercise for your arms and of course the Heart Fact of the Week.

Have a fab week and keep sending me your ideas please!


Food of the week

Green tea

This week's 'Food of the Week' is actually a drink – Green Tea.

All types of tea come from the camellia sinensis plant.  The differences stem from the way the leaves are dried and processed.  The key active ingredients in green tea leaves are called flavonoids; they belong to the catechin family, which is a powerful antioxidant.     

In some tests, catechins were found to be more powerful than vitamins C and E in halting oxidative damage to cells and appear to have other disease-fighting properties.  

Additional benefits include:

  1. May bring down your heart disease and cancer risk: Green tea’s powerful antioxidants have been found to reduce some types of lung cancer, prostate cancer, skin cancer, stroke and heart attack risks. To add an extra boost, squeeze in a lemon — the vitamin C helps your body absorb more of the antioxidants.
  2. Lower your cholesterol and blood pressure: Three cups a day has been shown to help bring down blood pressure and cholesterol when used in combination with a healthy diet.
  3. Help you lose weight faster. Drink a cup before your workout and you might boost your fat burn. Studies suggest that the caffeine frees fatty acids so you can burn fat more easily. The tea’s antioxidants might also work together with the caffeine to help you burn more calories.
  4. Prevent arthritis. Imbibing green tea daily might help keep your joints healthy, preliminary research suggests.
  5. Keep allergies at bay. Japanese researchers found that the compound EGCG (the same one that might fight hepatitis C) found in green tea may help stop your body from reacting to allergens like pollen, pet dander and dust.
  6. Less caffeine than coffee:  One cup of green tea contains around 25mg of caffeine compared to 100-150mg per cup of coffee.

In all of the studies on green tea, the tea-drinking group were consuming 3-5 cups per day.  This may be difficult to achieve, so start with one cup per day and work up to replacing a few teas or coffees with green tea throughout the week.  If you aren't sure about the taste, try adding a squeeze of lemon.

A note about medications:

Blood Thinning Medications (Including Aspirin) -- People who take warfarin, a blood thinning medication, should not drink green tea. Since green tea contains vitamin K, it can make warfarin less effective. Meanwhile, you should not mix green tea and aspirin because they both prevent platelets from clotting. Using the two together may increase your risk of bleeding.


Exercise of the Week

Seated Row

The seated row is one of the most effective exercises for targeting your back muscles.  Because this exercise is a compound exercise, involving more than one joint, it also activates several other muscles as well.  The main muscles you will activate include your erector spinae in your lower back, your middle and lower trapezius in your upper back, your rhomboids and latissimus dorsi in your middle back and your teres major in your outer back. You will also strengthen your shoulder muscles, your biceps and your chest.

How to perform:

  1. Sit on a chair or bench with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground.  Use either a resistance band around a pole (or have someone hold the middle of the band for you) or a cable machine if you have access to a gym.
  2. Keep your back straight and hold one handle in each hand with your palms facing each other and thumbs wrapped around the handles. Your armsshould be straight and your shoulders pulled back and down.
  3. Engage your core and abdominal muscles. Keep the spine as tall and straight as possible.
  4. Pull the handles towards you, bending at the elbows until the handles reach your sides. Keep your elbows close to your body. Do not lean back from the hips, arch your back or shrug your shoulders during your pull.
  5. Squeeze the shoulder blades together at the end of the movement.
  6. Slowly straighten your elbows to return to starting position. Do not allow your torso to round or your shoulders to shift forward.
  7. Repeat 10-12 times and perform 3 sets.

et me know if you have any questions at all.

Have a great week!