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Is Sugar the Real Enemy?

 

New Year is typically the time that we make all sorts of resolutions for the coming year relating to our physical and emotional well-being. We take out expensive gym memberships and promise ourselves we will attend no less than three times a week. We decide to lose weight by joining one of the weight loss classes in our area and clearing our cupboards of all junk food and alcohol and generally start the month full of good intentions. Its all good…  

But fast forward a fortnight or so and the majority of us have fallen off the wagon all together and the gym membership is being used more for the spa facilities than the treadmill if it’s being used at all. The realities of life have settled back in and our day to day lives often don’t hold the time needed to make these resolutions work. So what can we do then to encourage a healthier lifestyle?

Something we have all been talking about a lot recently at the Eloise office is sugar. Media headlines like the one below from the Daily Mail have really caught the attention of many of us who are concerned about healthy eating and lifestyles. The headline “Sugar in fizzy drinks and junk food increases chances of breast cancer and its spread to other organs, scientists claim.” was based on studies performed over six months on the effects of sugar fed to mice measured against a non-sugar and higher starch diet fed to another group over the same period. US academics fed mice a sugar-rich Western diet and claim they found increased levels of tumour growth in the breast and more potential for that cancer to spread to the lungs. You can read the story here  http://dailym.ai/1JudPk1

The headline is not the only one in recent months to have identified sugar as the real baddie in the cupboard. Many nutritionists such as Zoe Harcombe (http://www.zoeharcombe.com/  have spoken extensively about the need to reduce our sugar intake and also about the hidden sugars in our food that we are probably not even aware of.

A quick check through the store cupboard reveals sugar included the list of ingredients in just about everything we buy from the supermarket in a box, tin or packet. If you check your cupboards you will be shocked to discover that there is sugar in breakfast cereals (even the so called healthy ones), bread, tinned foods, packet ham and cooked meats (could be listed as dextrose, fructose etc…), tomato sauce, soups, pickled onions as well as the obvious culprits  like fruit juices, biscuits cakes etc.

Sugar is a relatively new ingredient for human consumption as Zoe Harcombe quite succinctly puts here If we have been eating food in the form that nature intended for 24 hours, agriculture (large scale access to carbohydrates) developed four minutes ago and sugar consumption has increased twenty fold in the last five seconds. I wonder which food is more likely to be responsible for obesity, diabetes, or indeed any modern disease…”

With scientific research increasingly linking sugar consumption to cancer perhaps a better and more realistic New Year’s resolution for us all should be to reduce our ‘hidden sugar’ intake. This can be easily achieved by checking in the ingredients list of everything we buy, take an extra hour as you go round the supermarket to check the labels on everything, and be very wary of any processed food. Even stock cubes can contain sugar!!!!

Let us know how you get on.

Image courtesy of rakratchada torsap at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

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The British Love of Tea

 

We’ve had a lot to celebrate in 2016. We’ve had the Queens 90th, and Prince Phillips 95th birthdays and the humble bikini turned 70 on the 5th July. But that’s not all we Brit’s have to celebrate. This year our favourite drink will be 385 years old.  Yes TEA!

 

 It is still Britain’s favourite drink, even with all those coffee shops sprouting up everywhere.  According to the UKs Tea & Infusions Association we drink “165 million cups daily.” They say “thenumber of cups of coffee drunk each day is estimated at 70 million.” Their website has some fascinating facts about tea for example we’ve all been told that tea and green tea contain antioxidants but: –

 

 Does tea contain antioxidants?

 

Tea like fruit and vegetables is a natural source of polyphenols and flavonoids which have antioxidant activity?”

 

 So “What is an antioxidant?

 

 An antioxidant is a compound, which retards oxidation. In the body antioxidants can soak up free radicals.”

 Next question “What is a free radical?

 

Free radicals are unstable substances which can disrupt biochemical processes in the body and have been implicated in cancer and heart disease” 

https://www.tea.co.uk/tea-faqs

 

 They also have a counter which tell you how many cups of tea have been drunk so far that day in the UK (not sure we want to know how they know we have had a cup of tea?). 

So what is it that we Brit’s love about tea? We couldn’t put it any better than William Ewart Gladstone who penned this poem about tea.

 

If you are cold, tea will warm you

 

If you are heated, it will cool you

 

If you are depressed, it will cheer you

 

If you are excited, it will calm you. 

 

Yep whatever the problem it can be solved with or over a cup of tea. Here are some interesting facts for you, tea bags were invented by accident:

 

“In around 1908, Thomas Sullivan, a New York tea merchant, started to send samples of tea to his customers in small silken bags. Some assumed that these were supposed to be used in the same way as the metal infusers, by putting the entire bag into the pot, rather than emptying out the contents.”

 

Black and green tea comes from the same plant,it’s known by its botanical name Camellia sinensis”

 

Tea is also a very sociable drink we love to sit around the table having a good gossip around the table with family. We still have tea breaks at work and who of us wouldn’t want to have afternoon tea at the Ritz or Betty’s tearoom Harrogate.  

 

Why don’t you stop what you’re doing and put the kettle on, it’s time for a Tea break… That’s what we’re going to do 🙂

 

 

 

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Crystal Palace – Race for Life 2012

At 10am on the cloudy morning of the 10th of June, Team Eloise joined 2,500 other ladies at the Crystal Palace Stadium to run the Race for Life. Even the threat of rain and wet weather did not dampen the spirits of the participants and everyone joined in the warm-ups enthusiastically, with lots of lovely ladies dressed to the nines in pink paraphernalia. 

The Race began at 11am and was around the gorgeous surroundings of the Crystal Palace Park. Luckily the rain stayed away and after just under an hour Team Eloise crossed the finish line to the cheers of friends and family. It was a wonderful atmosphere with numerous spectators lined up around the course cheering the racers on.

Thanks to everyone who donated we have so far raised a total of £395 and counting. There is still time to make a donation in support of Cancer Research UK.

Their aim is to save lives from cancer and they are the largest single funder of breast cancer research in the UK. Cancer Research UK do this through funding world-class research, providing information for patients, health professionals and the public, and influencing public policy to keep cancer at the top of the health agenda. More people are beating cancer than ever before thanks to their work and public support. For more information on their life-saving work please visit http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/.

If you would like to make a donation please go to https://www.raceforlifesponsorme.org/team-eloise. Or alternatively if you are coming in for a fitting, our fitters are collecting cash donations. We have set ourselves a target of £500 and we hope to exceed that figure. We hope you will join us in the biggest fight against cancer by making a donation, however small.

 

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What to Wear to the Beach this Summer?

 

Holiday season is well and truly underway. All the travel agents have their ‘dream holiday destinations’ and ‘last chance to book for summer discounts’ on display and we can enjoy a leisurely afternoon browsing through them… all the while worrying about finding that all important swimsuit or bikini that we would wear if we travelled.  It can be daunting for those who have had a mastectomy, especially if it’s your first holiday since your op.

That’s why were so happy to see Carol McGiffins post a few weeks back.  

The former loose women presenter is a real inspiration, the 55-year-old looked happy and healthy posing in a bikini earlier this year on a well-deserved holiday. After being diagnosed with cancer in June 2014 Carol had a mastectomy, underwent chemotherapy and radiotherapy.  She didn’t consider her illness a battle though. She told Closer magazine in September 2015 \”It can become a fight if you think you might lose it but, for me, it was always just about getting better.\”

Carol was on holiday in Phuket, Thailand with her fiancé Mark Cassidy. She wore a little black bikini and sunglasses. With a glass of champagne in hand she tweeted. “Look at me getting on the Champers @DreamHKT Beach Club! See, us mastectomy girls can still do bikinis! @cassola21,” We think she look’s amazing.                                                                                    

And she’s right there is no reason why you shouldn’t feel confident and look amazing on the beach. The Spring Summer 2016 Post surgery swimwear collection from Anita care has some beautiful swimsuits bikinis and tankinis which have pockets for prosthesis.  The new lines will be up on the site shortly so check back for pics of what’s available.

 

 

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How to keep your new year’s resolutions

 

It’s that time of year again. Whether it’s losing weight, eating healthier, getting a grip on your finances, or just sorting out the house we’re all doing it, making New Year resolutions.  

 

We start with gusto and good intentions on January the 1st or 2nd as the 1st is a Bank Holiday ha ha… The first week goes amazingly the second goes well but by the third we’re waning and by the end of January we’ve all but forgotten what we started. Some of us manage get to the middle of February but then it all goes to pot as we’ve taken a well-deserved winter holiday because we need some sun and as we’re on holiday we should enjoy ourselves as it is all-inclusive.  

 

To help us all along and hopefully reach our goal here’s some tips on how to keep our New Year’s resolutions.

 

 Be realistic with your goals 

The Independent newspaper says “You need to begin by making resolutions that you can keep and that are practical. If you want to reduce your alcohol intake because you tend to drink alcohol every day, don’t immediately go teetotal. Try to cut out alcohol every other day or have a drink once every three days. Also, breaking up the longer-term goal into more manageable short-term goals can be beneficial and more rewarding. The same principle can be applied to exercise or eating more healthily.” 

 

Most of us what to change more than one thing but that can cause us to panic and give up because it seems an impossible task. In the same article The Independent tells us to  

 

“Do one thing at a time. One of the easiest routes to failure is to have too many resolutions. If you want to be fitter and healthier, do just one thing at a time. Give up drinking. Give up smoking. Join a gym. Eat more healthily. But don’t do them all at once, just choose one and do your best to stick to it. Once you have got one thing under your control, you can begin a second resolution.” 

Many of us have the same resolutions every year, such as losing weight, and we fail every year. One of Verywell.com’s tips is to

 

Avoid Repeating Past Failures

 

Another strategy for keeping your New Year\’s Resolution is to not make the exact same resolution year after year. \”If people think they can do it they probably can, but if they\’ve already tried and failed, their self-belief will be low,\” explained Wiseman in an interview with The Guardian.

 

If you do choose to reach for the same goals you\’ve tried for in the past, spend some time evaluating your previous results. Which strategies were the most effective? Which were the least effective? What has prevented you from keeping your resolution in past years? By changing your approach, you will be more likely to see real results this year.” 

 

So, with a little planning and effort it is possible to stick with and succeed in our New Year’s resolutions.

 

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Exercise

Why is swimming such a great way to keep fit?

Swimming is often hailed as one of the best ways to exercise, allowing you to tone up and keep fit at the same time.

It’s a fantastic source of cardiovascular exercise and can be especially beneficial for your joints, working the whole body, and thus making it a great holistic activity.

After a mastectomy, you can help to regain your fitness and body confidence by gradually building up your strength and heading to your local pool a couple of times a week.

Many mastectomy swimsuits come with handy pockets, meaning you can slide in an Anita Active Ocean Swimform, which is a prostheses designed specifically for water based activities.

Made from a transparent silicone, it’s lightweight, fast-drying and resistant to salt water and chlorine.

Plus, it won’t drag down the front of your costume – even when wet – and gives a natural outline, even in larger sizes.

With your clothing sorted, you can then dive into the pool and begin having some fun!

But what are the top benefits of swimming?

Muscle strengthening

As well as being a great way to keep fit, swimming can help to strengthen your muscles, as working out in water provides a natural resistance.

Gaining more muscle can help make you feel notably stronger, on top of improving your overall sense of balance.

Low impact

Swimming is a brilliant low impact activity, meaning that even if you haven’t exercised in a while, perhaps due to illness, it is unlikely to cause you pain.

Being in water will lessen the effects of gravity too, so you can continue to move without putting pressure on your joints.

This is important if you want to gradually improve your fitness, as you can slowly build up your strength and the distance you’re swimming at your own pace.

Adaptable

Perhaps one of the best things about water-based activities is that they are adaptable.

You can put in as much energy as you want and should always feel the benefits afterwards.

Of course, you’ll need to make sure you stretch fully before just to ensure that your muscles are ready for a swimming session, as well as afterwards to reduce the chances of injury.

If you’re less confident in water then having a few lessons from an instructor could be a great way to find your perfect stroke and get into a good rhythm before attempting to swim alone.

Generally, backstroke and breast stroke are considered to be the least intense exercises, with butterfly stroke best left to only very competent swimmers!

Sociable

The physical health benefits of swimming are pretty clear, but it can also be a top way to stay social.

Joining a swimming club or even an exercise class like aqua aerobics can be loads of fun, giving you the chance to meet other people and keep fit together.

This is a great option for those of you who find swimming laps a little bit dull and love the idea of doing a variety of water-based activities in time to music.

There are always plenty of beginners at these sessions and you can always have a word with the instructor beforehand if you’re worried about keeping up.

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Top Tips for Packing

 

We found these great packing tips on Trip Adviser * and wanted to share them with you straight away. These are especially handy if you are planning a short haul trip where the luggage allowances are so tight. Budget airlines are great for last minute getaways but the fees can be very expensive if you go slightly over the rather meagre weight allowance. The below tips will give some great ideas for ways to beat the fees.

Pack light to travel light. If you can manage with a carry-on, do it. Try taking half of the things you need and twice the money. You can make buying a few new items a fun part of the adventure.

We like this one… Pack a sleep mask and ear plugs. These can come in handy on a plane, train or in your hotel room. We use these a lot, especially the ear plugs!

Capitalise on empty suitcase space. Roll your clothes, instead of folding them. Stuff socks, underwear, and accessories inside of shoes. Leave no space unused.

Keep a sarong or pashmina in your carry-on. They can be used as a blanket on the plane, a scarf if it’s cold or a shawl on an evening out.

Bag it. Kitchen sandwich bags can be used to hold your accessories, vacuum pack bags can be space savers, and bin bags have multiple uses (laundry bag, shoe covers).

Skip airport snacks and bring your own. You can save yourself a bit of money and keep your hunger at bay in case you have a delayed flight.

Create compartments. Two words: packing cube. If you are visiting more than one city during your trip, packing cubes will keep your suitcase organised and save you from having to pack and unpack.

Share your packing space. Travelling as a couple? Split your clothes between two suitcases on the off chance one of them gets lost during the flight.

Bring a multi-socket extension cord. Although newer hotels have USB ports in rooms, it’s best to have an extra outlet to charge all of your electronics at once.

Make photocopies before leaving home. If you’re travelling out of the country, make two photocopies of your passport. Use your smartphone to take pictures of your car in the airport’s car park and do the same for your luggage and its contents in case it gets lost.

Wear as many of your outer clothes as you can comfortably manage to save on space in your case. Don’t forget that a jacket with deep pockets is also perfect for popping smaller items into like socks, books or phone chargers etc..

Once you are there, remember that if you have forgotten any travel essentials (like toothbrushes, toothpaste or razors) then many hotel receptions offer complimentary emergency toiletries if you ask.

Also don’t forget if you are swimming to rinse out your swimsuits before hanging up to dry as chlorine from the swimming pool and salt from the sea (if you are lucky enough to be swimming in the sea ) can damage the delicate lycra fabrics that costumes and bikinis are made from.  

So all that’s left to say now is “have a fantastic trip!!”

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/TripNews-a_ctr.traveltipsUK

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Getting back to Sport after Breast Surgery.

Breast Care Nurses are actively encouraging patients to return to the gym and the pool after surgery to boost recovery, improve general fitness and aid emotional healing. Chemotherapy can cause depression and feelings of lethargy which can be combatted very successfully by a suitable exercise programme. (www.macmillan.org.uk)

 

 However, this poses a problem for many mastectomy patients who are afraid of wearing swimming suits/ bikinis or sports gear after surgery, worrying that they no longer fit properly or worse, that their breast form may not stay securely in place.  Finding a decent stockist with a good selection of mastectomy lingerie can also be a challenge.

 

 Anita understands these very real concerns and has responded by creating Centres of Excellence within lingerie shops across the UK. Staff at these stores are trained to expertly fit lingerie, swimwear and specialist sports breast-forms that are designed specifically for swimming and for sports activity.  For example, the specialist swim breast-forms have grooves built into the back to allow the water to drain freely reducing movement and discomfort. Mastectomy Sports bras and swimwear like the Vivana sports bra or the Venedig swimsuit  from the Anita care collection, give breast cancer patients the freedom to get back to the gym with confidence that they look great and are fullysupported.

 

There is absolutely no reason why a lady with a breast form (prosthesis) cannot swim, horse ride, run or exercise in any way she chooses. Why not browse our selection of swimwear today…

 

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Breast Cancer Care Fashion Show

Model hunt for Breast Cancer Care fashion show

Have you ever considered yourself as model material? Can you command the catwalk and wow with your winning smile?

If this sounds like you then perhaps you should step up and enter The Show Scotland 2013 and take part in a Breast Cancer Care fashion event.

The charity is looking for inspirational women to represent it at its flagship showcase in Glasgow.

It is searching for 20 people who have had a diagnosis of breast cancer and would like the opportunity to raise support for this worthwhile cause, while also being transformed into a model for the day.

Each lucky participant will receive styling from a professional team and then be able to rub shoulders with Breast Cancer Care’s top celebrity supporters.

There will also be the chance to take part in press appearances, raising further awareness about breast cancer in your local area and vital funds.

The closing date for applications is March 31st, so you’re urged to start thinking now about how you could make a wonderful ambassador for the charity.

Applicants will then be contacted in April, ahead of the show at the Radisson Blu in Glasgow on September 26th.

Last year’s inspirational event saw 19 women and one man present some top trends on the catwalk, each demonstrating that, regardless of the impacts of breast cancer diagnosis, you can still look and feel sensational.

All in all the event raised £130,000 for Breast Cancer Care Scotland, making it a huge success for all involved.

If your body has been through the trauma of a mastectomy, why not brave the stage and tell your story?

This could be a great milestone for you to aim for in your recovery process, helping prove to yourself just how far you have come and exactly what you’re capable of.

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Don\’t Wait Until You are 100 Years Old

 

May 2016 was Vogue UK magazine’s 100th birthday and to mark the occasion Harvey Nichols’ campaign featured Bo Gilbert, Vogue’s first 100-year-old model.  Bo was Photographed by Phil Poynter wearing bespoke Valentino glasses, a Dries Van Noten coat, Victoria Beckham top, The Row trousers and a Lavin necklace. She looks stunning and proves you can look elegant and stylish at any age. In the video about the photo shoot on Vogue’s website Bo tells us about her love of clothes, how fashion has changed over the years, and she bemoans the fact that people don’t wear hats anymore!  

 The article got us thinking about other centurions who haven’t let age get in the way of enjoying life to the full. For example, Eleanor Cunningham from Howes Cave, New York, celebrated her 100th Birthday with a sky dive and this wasn’t her first! She took up sky diving at age 90!

Fauja Singh from Ilford East London became the world’s oldest marathon runner when he completed the Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 2011 when he was 100 years old. He completed it in 8 hours 25 Minutes & 16 seconds. Like Eleanor he took up his new activity around 90.

 Georgina Harwood from South Africa celebrated her 100th birthday with a sky dive and cage dive, (swimming with sharks). If Sky diving, running a marathon or swimming with sharks seems a bit too much for you why not try writing your first novel?  Lorna Page become one of the oldest debut writers on record when she published her novel A Dangerous Weakness at the age of 93.

Why is it that we wait for a special birthday/occasion or retirement to do something wild & unusual? Isn’t it usually because life is so busy with work, family, housework and the school run. When we sit or fall down at the end of the day we find we fall asleep in front of the telly. We can’t be bothered to, or think we have no time to, fit anything interesting in. But it’s important we do. When you look at Bo, Eleanor, Fauja, Georgina & Lorna not only are they are still active mentally and physically they are happy enjoying life.

Doing something different is great for the mind, it keeps you alert & helps to keep your stress levels down. Number three in www.thementalfitnesscentre.com list of 10 benefits of keeping stress levels down is “Cancer Protection.Stress interferes with our immune system and is often blamed in the medical community for everything from colds to cancer. The sooner a person gets it under control, the sooner their immune system can get back on the job, protecting them from monsters they want no part of.”

So why wait until you are 100 to do that sky dive or write that book. Make time to do something you enjoy whether it’s preparing to run a marathon or just a leisurely walk around your local area. You will be surprised at the health benefits both mentally & physically. And you may well be Vogues next 100-year-old model.