Tea or coffee? Walking or running? We’re faced with so many lifestyle choices throughout the day, but how do you know you’re making the right ones? Here’s what the experts say…!!!
Tea or coffee?
“Black tea usually has far less caffeine than coffee, while green tea is packed with heart-healthy antioxidants,” says Kate Cook, nutrition coach. “Coffee acts a bit like rocket fuel, kick-starting the adrenal glands and triggering the release of the stress hormone, cortisol. Not the best start to the day.”
Mints or chewing gum?
“Mints can cause extensive decay,” warns cosmetic dentist Dr Teresa Day. If you want to
freshen your breath, use mouthwash or chew a sugar-free gum.
Answer: Sugar-free gum
Fruit juice or fruit?
“The fibre in fruits make it far more satisfying and filling with fewer calories,” says Kate. “Fruit juices tend to be loaded with sugar.”
Exercise in the morning or evening?
“Studies show that morning exercisers are likely to stick with it,” explains Janey Holliday, fitness instructor. “You’re likely to have a healthier day because of the endorphins flowing throughout your body. While exercise helps you sleep better, working out too late in the evening will actually disrupt your sleep.”
Walk or run?
“Power walking — not strolling — ticks all the boxes,” says Janey. “Running burns around 30 per cent more calories, most people can’t run as far as they can walk. Walking as fast as you can while pumping your arms is not only a great cardiovascular exercise, it doesn’t require as much energy as running either.
Hard or soft massage?
“The point of massage isn’t to stimulate the skin, but the muscles lying deep below the skin,” says physiotherapist Sammy Margo. “A professional massage should be effective in relieving tension, increasing circulation to the muscles, so it requires medium to firm pressure.”
Yell, or walk away and calm down?
“Count to 10,” advises Dr Cary Cooper, Professor of Health and Psychiatry. “It’s better to calm down. If you just blow your top, the person you’re angry at will become defensive and you won’t solve anything.”
Answer: Calm down
Floss or mouthwash?
“Cleaning between teeth with floss — or interdental brushes — removes the sticky plaque that tooth brushes cannot reach,” says Dr Henry Clover, dental advisor. “And while mouthwashes can be helpful to disguise breath odour.”
15 minutes without sun screen or two hours covered in factor 30?
“People need to be sun-aware and avoid sunburn at all costs,” advises dermatologist Paul Banwell. “It’s fine to be exposed to the sun for 15 minutes without sunscreen to reap Vitamin D benefits, but not in the midday sun.”
Fresh or frozen?
“Research shows that frozen vegetables are as good. So, they quickly retain all their nutrients,” says nutritionist Zoe Harcombe. “But when it comes to fruit, I’d advise fresh every time. As for meat and fish, there’s little difference.”
Heating pad or ice for minor injuries?
“The effective treatment for soft tissue injuries is the RICER regimen — Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation and Referral,” says Brad Walker, sports trainer. “Apply crushed ice within a plastic bag and a damp towel to avoid ice burns. Do this for 20 minutes every two hours.”
Early night or lie-in?
“Staying up late with the lights on keeps our stress hormone cortisol high and suppresses our sleep hormone melatonin when it should be rising,” explains sleep expert Sammy Margo. “This impacts our ability to deal with stress, lose weight, repair our tissues, and be ready for the new day. Try to sleep in a dark room by 10 pm.”
Answer: Early night
Fresh fruit or dried?
Fresh fruit has a higher water content (more than 80%), which means a larger volume, making the fruit more filling but with fewer calories, explains dietitian Ursula Arens. Dried fruit tends to stick to the teeth, increasing the risk of tooth decay.
Fizzy drinks or fruit juice/ smoothies?
Nutritionally, the latter are a better option, but they’re both bad for teeth, says Dr Henry Clover. “Fresh fruit juice is acidic and, in excess, contributes to erosion of tooth enamel.” Water is by far the best drink for your health — and teeth — but if you do drink either fizzy drinks or fruit juice, limit the damage by drinking through a straw which takes the fluid away from your teeth.