Weekly Wellness

Welcome to our weekly round-up of the interesting things from the wellbeing sphere that caught our eye this week! Enjoy, and as ever, we'd love to hear your feedback below!


1.     REVITALISE 2014 BY MIND BODY GREEN

Image: Mindbodygreen.com

Image: Mindbodygreen.com

Wellness site Mind Body Green recently held its first “Revitalise” health summit – if you follow many health and wellbeing ‘celebs’ on  Instagram you’ll probably already know all about the summit which was held at swanky US health retreat, Miraval in Arizona. The event hosted a range of leading health and wellbeing authorities speaking and providing their insights on a whole spectrum of health and wellbeing topics and trends, from relationships, to nutrition, to exercise.

Luckily for all of us normal folk unable to attend,  the kind folks over at MBG have made some of the content on their website! Featuring speakers such as Mark Hyman, Dr. Frank Lipman, Joe Cross (From “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead) and Dr. Terry Wahls to name but a few. Forget the Game of Thrones finale, this is a must watch for this week! Find all the videos etc. over at MindBodyGreen here.


2. WHY NUTRITIONAL SCIENCE DOES OUR HEAD IN!

Image: Iquitsugar.com

Image: Iquitsugar.com

As we’ve mentioned before, one of our main drivers behind The Holist is the daily frustration we experience when trying to devote ourselves to a healthy and nutritionally sound lifestyle but constantly being bombarded with contradictory mixed messages from the media. We want The Holist to be a place that does that hard work for you, digests all the contradictory health advice and scientific studies and spits out easy to understand up-to-date recommendations on who and what to trust when it comes to health advice for you. We could therefore totally relate to this article by the I Quit Sugar team on why nutritional science is such a confusing and murky arena!


3. DR. LIBBY'S A TO Z OF WELLBEING 

Image: By Dwight Sipler [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Image: By Dwight Sipler [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

We’ve made no secret of our love for the amazing New Zealand based Dr. Libby. She’s currently in the middle of doing an A-Z of Winter Wellness, where each day she gives us the inside scoop on a health topic or ingredient! Despite the fact we are currently meant to be in the middle of summer (*ahem*) it’s still jam packed with useful advice! We are currently up to M for Movement, follow the rest of the series here!


4. ARE YOU AFRAID OF THE DARK?

Image: Sasha Kargaltsev [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Image: Sasha Kargaltsev [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

We’d be lying if we didn’t view the claims of “power women" Margret Thatcher, Marissa Meyer and Madonna who claim to only need four hours sleep a night with a tinge of jealousy! But the older we get, the more we realise that sleep is so important! While everyone is different, for us personally at least eight hours is optimum and there is a wealth of evidence to show that for 99% of the population, anything less than seven hours can have devastating health effects. Yet our “always-on” society portrays a normal sleep schedule as a luxury only available if you’re lazy and don’t care about your career. As per our previous posts, we are so glad that the macho culture around lack of sleep is slowly changing, with vocal proponents such as Arianna Huffington and even Harvard Business Review. It seems that every week another new study is published affirming what we already knew – that sleep is vital for our health and wellbeing.

Recent research covered by the BBC (see here and here) has also highlighted the importance of your environment in affecting the quality of your sleep, with light being a major offender.

Personally, we require total darkness to sleep so have spent years perfecting the art of a black out! If you can’t create real darkness with curtains or blinds then our personal favourite eye mask is the Tempur eye mask. Yes, it is pricey and it looks a little industrial and perhaps isn’t the sexiest bedtime wear, but it is a real life saver and we don’t travel anywhere without it! Research has also shown that the blue light emitted from our multitude of electronic devices (TV, laptops, phones, tablets) can severely affect the quality of our sleep. Try and get into the habit of developing healthy sleep rituals, like instituting an ‘electronic shutdown’ for half an hour (or ideally an hour) before you go to sleep. You can even use that time to work on developing a healthy new habit like meditation or strengthening your yoga practice. 

But do you know how much you really sleep? Despite our self-awareness of our need for sleep we’ve realized we chronically underestimate how much sleep we are actually getting here at The Holist HQ. We recently tried out a few sleep cycle apps which not only wake you up at the optimum time within your sleep cycle but also track your sleep patterns and sleep cycles showing you a breakdown of your total sleep hours, your light sleep, DEEP + REM sleep and your sleep efficiency! We were surprised to find that despite our best efforts we are barely clocking in the bare minimum of seven hours a night! Given that the app is motion activated the figures are never going to be 100% accurate but they are still a really interesting insight in to your sleep patterns nonetheless. Having tried out a few apps, our favourite so far is Sleep Time but there are tons out there and devices such as Jawbone and Up also offer similar functions.


 5. HOW TO STOP CARING ABOUT WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK

Image: Waitbutwhy.com

Image: Waitbutwhy.com

Here at The Holist we are all about health in the holistic sense and mental and emotional wellbeing is just as vital to that as eating well or exercising regularly. Wait But Why is a hilarious, totally not health related blog but amazing nonetheless. You may have seen some of their viral posts on your Facebook – “Why Generation Y Yuppies are Unhappy?” and “How to be Insufferable On Facebook”. It’s a highlight of our week when a new post pops into our inbox. We love the way they marry spot-on, insightful social commentary with fall off your chair humour. This week’s post “Taming the Mammoth: Why You Should Stop Caring What Other People Think” was one of their best yet in our opinion. We are all guilty of letting self-doubt get the better of us sometimes, some of us worse than others! This two part blog post series is a must read for anyone trying to look inwards to understand their drivers and psyche while also reminding us how important it is to be mindful of your feelings and experiences as well as those of people around you.


6. THE IMPORTANCE OF VITAMIN B12

Image: آرمین at Wikimedia Commons.

Image: آرمین at Wikimedia Commons.


Vitamin B12, you know that stuff that all the celebs get injected into their perky bottoms to help them with their "exhaustion"?  Well, it's actually really important and is required by the body to ensure the brain, blood and nervous system all function properly. We’ve read a lot of contradictory information about this vital little vit, with the majority of sources claiming it’s only truly digestible  by the human body when taken from animal sources obviously raising cause for concern for vegans and those following primarily plant based diets. We’ll be covering this topic in depth in one of our upcoming dossiers but in the meantime, we thought this guest post over at This Rawsome Vegan Life was an interesting insight on the subject and an important reminder to ensure you're getting enough!