6 tips to help you stay active- even when it’s cold outside!

1. Do a 15 minute workout at home! Youtube has any hundreds of workouts that can be done at home. Choose one which you know you will enjoy whether that be yoga, resistance exercises or dancing. Set aside 15 minutes of your day to get a quick workout in – you’ll feel a whole lot better!

2. Try an indoor activity class. Many local community centres or gyms have a number of activities running throughout the day which can fit into any schedule and which suit all ability levels. Signing up for a few weeks usually also brings down the price. Bonus!

3. Go walking or running with a group. It is much easier to motivate yourself to do something with other people rather than heading out in the cold on your own. Even going with one other person can help us stay motivated.

4. Try exercising in the morning if you can. This will help to wake you up and will help you feel you have accomplished something before the day has even begun. Exercising in the morning also frees up your time in the evening and means you don’t feel you have to push yourself to head outside if you don’t want to.

5. Go ice skating! Many towns have ice rinks set up this time of year and this can be a great way of getting some movement into your day and having a laugh! Just please be careful!

6. Layer up! It sounds simple but ensuring your body is insulated well will help you feel more comfortable when you are and about and it won’t be so daunting the next time you venture out. You can always take the top layer if you get too warm. No excuses!!

Keeping active throughout the year has amazing benefits for out physical and mental health so although it may be FREEZING, try and keep active in whatever way you can!

Meal Planning

It seems that on social media we are bombarded with images of people meal prepping. It’s all about bulk cooking and being aware of what we are eating and what we are planning to eat in the week or two ahead. Which is great! It’s cost effective and helps us to ensure we get a balanced home cooked meal at least once a day.

Do you meal prep? If so, do you prep your snacking options too or do you find it difficult to add some variety and find a functional snack? I know personally that if I’m out and about or driving it is so great to have a healthy snack on hand to grab, feel full and satisfied.

This is one of the reasons Good4U are now offering a range of our snacks in multipacks. Snack prep for the week is sorted! We now offer our delicious Veggie Protein range, NEW plant-based Protein Balls (in yummy Orange Crisp and Vanilla Crisp flavours) and NEW Nutriballs (in Strawberry and Apple and Blackcurrant flavours) for kids in multipacks.

Our Veggie protein range and Protein Balls are high in plant-based protein, low in calories and high in fibre so you can be reassured your snack will be filling, nutritious and affordable. Available in a pack of 5 – one of each day of the week!

Our NEW Nutriballs are soft, chewy balls made from milled seed and fruit. They contain 21% of a child’s RDA for calcium and are nut, gluten and dairy free. Say goodbye to lunchbox arguments! These are also available as a pack of 5 and have been taste-tested and approved by kiddies and parents.

So, meal planning just got a whole lot easier! Thank us later.

5 Reasons To Love Nutri Balls

Ever stuck for something tasty, nutritious and lunch-box friendly?! Fear not friends, Good4U has gotcha covered. We have done extensive research to identify what kids (and parents) want from a healthy snack and we reckon we have cracked it. Introducing BRAND NEW ‘Nutri Balls’!! These portion controlled snacks are made from milled seeds and freeze-dried fruit and come in two delicious flavours.

Here is 5 reasons why kids and parents are going to LOVE these brand new healthy snacks:

1)  These Nutri Balls are portion-controlled for children! All Good4U products are made developed by our Dietitian Shelley and our fabulous, innovative Product Development Team and Nutrition Team. It takes time, research and lots of trial to create the perfect, nutritious snack but it’s worth it in the end!

2)  They are lunch-box friendly! Good4u products are all nut and gluten free so they are perfect for adding to those lunchboxes. Plus, they are available in multipacks of 5 – one for every day of the week!

3) They really are healthy. No.. really. We only use natural ingredients and absolutely no added sugar. They are naturally sweet from the fruit inside and are high in fibre to help keep our digestive systems healthy. They also contain 21% of a childs RDA for calcium. So yes, they really are healthy!

4) They taste AMAZING! See, we let the kids decide and we had our own panel of expert tiny tasters to determine which flavours were out and which were in. Our expert tiny tasters decided that Apple & Blackcurrant flavour and Strawberry flavour were the way to go so that is exactly what we have created.

5) We provide a lot more than just the snack. Good4U are proud to provide nutritional information to kids and to parents through our BRAND NEW website, social media channels and through our nutrition service offered to schools and businesses across Ireland.

What are you waiting for? Grab them now in Tesco stores nationwide!!

Fitness for Beginners

Exercise: you can love it or hate it but you cannot deny it has endless health benefits, both physically and mentally. Regular exercise has been link to a reduced risk of disease, better mood and overall body composition. The one thing we all must try and do when it comes to exercise is to find something we enjoy and can keep up for a long period of time. Just because your colleague runs 5km every morning does not mean it’s something you will enjoy and be able to keep doing. Walking, dancing, cleaning, skipping, playing sports, lifting weights.. the list of possible exercises is endless. Maybe you’re a water baby and love swimming or water aerobics! Go for it. Find what you and make it a habit.

Setting goals is important when it comes to fitness as it can help to motivate and reward you. Make sure your goals are measurable and relative to you and your fitness level. For example, if your aim was to run 5km by Christmas you wouldn’t go out right away and pound the pavement. Break it down into achievable steps each week. A journal  is a great way to do this and make sure you acknowledge your achievements. Even if you went a quick 5 minute walk at lunchtime or walked to another bus stop to make your commute a bit longer make sure you say ‘well done me!’

Exercise with a friend or family member. When someone else is involved it can make things much less daunting, make time go faster and can motivate you greatly. Pick one or days per week and book a ‘fitness date’ with a friend. Promise each other not to bail and you’ll be much more likely to keep it up for longer.

Don’t put pressure on yourself! Simply moving more is an amazing way to boost your physical and mental health. Try not to compare yourself to others online, it’s not helpful! They are not the same person as you and do not have the same goals or lifestyle.

Simple tips to move more during the day:

Go for a walk at lunch – even for 5 minutes!

Get off one or two stops earlier if you take public transport to work.

Walk to work if possible or walk part of the way.

Integrate walking meetings into your work schedule. You’ll find you and your team are more creative with this too!

Get up 10 minutes earlier and do some stretching, yoga or a short walk in the morning. It will help to wake you up and you’ll feel better before seizing the day!

Turn coffee and lunch dates into coffee/lunch & exercise dates. Or take that coffee to go and chat and walk instead of sitting down.

Bottom line: move a little more and find what works for YOU!!

8 Top Tips For Eating Well In College

Energy Balls Work

Going to College changes your normal routine and eating habits. This combined with a million choices surrounding the campus and occasionally few too many drinks the night before can lead to some poor food decisions.

Use these tips to help you make good choices and stay healthy.

1.Eat a good breakfast. It is the most important meal after all. When there isn’t time to sit down and enjoy your morning meal, grab some toast with a piece of fruit. Most of these items can be easily stored in your residence hall room.

2.If you eat junk food, choose wisely. Choose pizza with a thinner base or half the cheese or a baked potato or green salad with reduced calorie dressing. Limit the really high fat options like French chips or fried chicken.

3.Keep healthy snacks on hand. This way, if hunger strikes during a late night study session, you won’t be tempted high sugar alternatives. Fresh or dried fruit, pretzels, popcorn, rice cakes or whole wheat crackers are all great snacks that you can keep in your bag until you need them.

4.Eat plenty of foods rich in calcium. Your twenties are the ideal time for building up stores of calcium to prevent osteoporosis later in life.

5.If you are trying to lose weight, be careful. Starvation and/or diets that offer a quick fix are usually unrealistic and can be harmful. Follow a well-balanced diet and exercise- you will see results!

6.Limit your sugar intake – Sugar provides calories in your diet but has little nutritional value otherwise. Try sweeteners in tea/coffee instead and opt for snacks with no added sugar content.

7.Limit your alcohol intake. We’re not saying all alcohol is bad but it is very important to be mindful about what you drink. Alcohol, like sugar, supplies calories but no nutritional value. A light beer, a glass of wine or an ounce of liquor each has about 100 calories. There may also be health problems associated with drinking alcohol.

8.Drink lots of water. Your body requires roughly 2 litres a day, and, if you exercise a lot you may need more. Carry a water bottle along to class and keep it handy during late night study sessions.

 

P.S. Don’t forget to have FUN 🙂

 

5 ways to make lunch fun for kids

Getting a nutritious lunch in school is not only important for your child’s physical development, but it can help them to stay focused throughout the school day.

That being said it isn’t always easy convincing them to finish their meal when you aren’t around. Research shows that children are more likely to eat something if it has a fun element to it.

Here are a few easy tricks to try to make your child’s school lunch that little bit more tempting:

1. Cut sandwiches into shapes! This can be done so easily with a few cookie cutters. Let the kids help and allow them to enjoy making their own lunch. This way they will be more likely to eat it all up!

2. Pop some fruit, veg or cheese cubes onto skewers. Making skewers with yummy colourful ingredients can make lunches seem fun for kids.. and adults too!

3. Let the children pick their own lunch. If you lay out all of the lunchbox components and the child to pick one carbohydrate source, one protein source, some fruit & veg and some dairy it will allow them to be more comfortable with what they are eating and can help reduce leftovers.

4. Put smiley faces on things! Be creative and have some fun with lunchbox foods.

5. Bake some healthy homemade muffins at home and use decorative muffin cases. These can be made with kids and they can bring them along for lunch in school.

 

Good Luck 🙂

Top 5 key nutrients for growing kids

From around the age of 5 children head off to school and often start making their own choices about food and meal times can become that bit more difficult!

I’ve put together 5 key nutrients to be mindful of at this age. It’s important to remember that these can be obtained from a well balanced and varied healthy diet without causing too many arguments at meal times!

Carbohydrate: Starchy carbohydrates such as bread, rice, oats, pasta and cereals are required for energy for busy little ones. Where possible, aim to choose wholegrain varieties of carbohydrates for a slower release of energy. Fibre in the diet is especially important to maintain healthy digestion and it also helps to keep us fuller for longer. Ensure kids are well hydrated particularly when consuming fibre. Water and milk are the preferred fluid sources for kiddies.

Protein: Protein is needed for growth and repair of body cells and is particularly important for growth and development in this age group. Protein should come mainly from lean sources of poultry, meat, fish, eggs, pulses, nuts and seeds. Children should be encouraged to consume two portions of fish per week and one of these portions should come from oily fish like salmon, tuna and mackerel. Oily fish contains omega 3 fatty acids which are important for brain development. If children are not too fond of oily fish it may be worth considering an Omega 3 supplement. Ensure to contact your GP to assess individual needs.

Fat: Fat is needed for everyone for energy levels, to maintain body temperature and to make hormones. It is important that children aim to get fat from unsaturated sources of fat rather than saturated sources. Unsaturated fat is in foods like oily fish, nuts, seeds, olive oil and rapeseed oil. Too much saturated fat in foods such as butter, biscuits, cakes, lard and fatty meets can lead to health issues and should be limited. Of course, a little bit every now and then is fine.

Calcium: Calcium works with vitamin D in the body to maintain healthy bones and teeth. Some children may not enjoy eating dairy so it is worth noting alternative sources such as leafy green veg, nuts, seeds and fortified foods. Vitamin D can be obtained from cheese, egg yolk and oily fish in the diet and from sunlight.

Iron: Iron is important as it is needed to make haemoglobin which transports oxygen around the body. Iron can be obtained from green vegetables, red meat, eggs, nuts and seeds and dried fruit. Ensure you have enough Vitamin C in the diet also as this helps with absorption of iron in the body. Vitamin C can be readily found in fruit and vegetables.

All of these nutrients can be obtained by providing children with a varied diet. Explore different food sources and meals to find out what they enjoy. Leading by example and allowing children to participate in cooking can be great ways to boost their intake of different foods.

Have a look at our other blogs and recipe page for wonderful family-friendly healthy recipes! Be sure to drop us a message if you have more questions around children’s health.

Running for Health

Running-you may love it, you may hate it. Like me, you may find it difficult to motivate yourself to get up and just go for a run but afterwards you feel amazing! It doesn’t matter if you are a first time runner or running your 56th marathon, I applaud you. Running is such a great way to improve Continue reading “Running for Health”

The Health Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds

Health benefits of pumpkin seeds

Health benefits of pumpkin seeds

Pumpkins are just for Halloween right? Wrong! Pumpkin seeds have an array of health benefits and are the perfect snack to have on their own or add to yoghurts, salads or soups! Continue reading “The Health Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds”

The Ketogenic Diet

Ketogenic Diet

Ketogenic Diet

Confused about keto? The ketogenic is not just another low-carb diet, the ketogenic diet is extremely controlled and requires attention to each food consumed. It involves a high fat, moderate protein and very low carbohydrate diet. Approximately 70% of total energy per day would come from fat, 25% from protein and 5% from carbohydrate. Continue reading “The Ketogenic Diet”