Exercise Archives - Health Tea Box

March 31, 2020


Immune System, We’re Coming for You!

The time seems more important than ever now to focus in on maximizing immune health. To be sure, there is no magic fix or quick acting ingredient that will make you instantly safe from any immune invading viruses (we’re looking at you Mr. COVID!). But there are some smart things you can do that will help your body be better at what it is already meant to do: activate your immune cells to be able to fight off invaders to keep you healthy.


Eat Whole Foods
Eat Whole Foods

One of the best ways to encourage optimal immune functioning is to make sure your body has everything it needs to support ant reproduce healthy immune cells. When our body is stocked up on nutrients and phytonutrients – like Vitamin C, B vitamins, antioxidants, and magnesium – these are available in supply for the cells to call on when they need them.

  • Consume vegetables and fruit that are bright in colour and in their natural form
  • Choose whole grain sources of carbohydrates to increase fibre intake and maximize B vitamin intake
  • Eat a variety of foods to maintain an efficient level of fat, protein and carbohydrates. All of these macronutrients are important in body functioning.
  • Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant, a compound which helps remove free radicals in the body. This is why it is important in immunity, and can be found in red capsicum, citrus fruit, Kakadu Plum and many other fruits and vegetables.

Hydration Nation!
Hydration Nation

While you cannot “wash away” a virus, there are many reasons why it is important to consume adequate water or hydrating beverages like herbal teas:

  • Water is required to maintain blood volume, and adequate blood volume ensures consistent blood circulation of immune cells.
  • Hydrated cells are healthier cells! Think about how you feel when you are dehydrated – tired, low-energy, fatigued – and the same thing happens to your cells! Lack of water means they might not have the functional capacity to do their job

Plain water is the most accessible source of hydration for your cells. Other options however, like herbal tea, sparkling water and coconut water all present hydration alternatives. Mix it up in your daily routine to make sure you get enough and aren’t bored by just plain water!



Keep Moving
Keep Moving

If you have always thought about committing to at-home workouts, or want to make use of the set of dumbbells you have in your garage, now is a great time to do so. You can do your own at-home workout with bodyweight or hand weights if you have them, and integrate high intensity cardio activities, like jumping Jacks, running, high knees, jump squats or Burpees. In these times movement is good for many reasons:

  • Helps the movement of lymph which contains waste that your body is trying to get rid of.
  • Encourages the intake of increased oxygen and helps with blood circulation. some immune cells travel through the blood and need to get to their destination!
  • Improves your state of mind, helping reduce stress and anxiety and make you feel happier and more in control
  • Move outside! Doing it outdoors gives you the added bonus of a Vitamin D hit from the sunshine. Vitamin D is important for immune cell function.

Boost Your Body
Herbal Tea

Eating whole foods and drinking adequate water goes a long way in making sure you maintain a heathy body and a fully functioning immune system. However, there are some ingredients or foods that are particularly high on the immunity friendly list.

  • Turmeric – an anti-inflammatory that helps reduce unnecessary inflammation in the body so immune resources can be more efficiently used.
  • Vitamin D rich foods – Mushrooms, eggs and fatty fish contain this vitamin that is essential for immune function. Added bonus if you head out into the sunshine and get a double dose!
  • Peppermint – Great for fighting congestion or helping reduce symptoms in the early stages of illness.
  • Probiotic foods – These help maintain a healthy gut biome and ensure a proper balance of bacteria in your gut. The bacteria function in manufacturing some of the immune cells, so it is imperative that they are able to do this.

There is no one food, one thing or one ingredients that is going to protect you from contracting a virus or instantly give your immune system a boost. But when you stack together lots of healthy habits and stay consistent, there is a great chance that your immune system will be armed and ready in case anything decides to make an entrance!



Laura Peill
Registered Holistic Nutritionist







We’d love to help you become healthier and be the best version of yourself!

Got a question? Send us an email:
info@healthculturesystems.com.au



November 26, 2019


This January, We’re Giving you Permission to Ditch the Resolutions

Tired of the January 1st new year’s resolution that ends before it even starts? Embrace the new decade with something different: this year, ditch the resolution and try a lifestyle change instead. We’ll tell you how!

The holiday season is upon us and amidst all the Christmas songs, shopping lists and card signing, you’re starting to hear the voice in your head that says: don’t forget about your new year’s resolution! If you set a resolution every year, only to find it takes you nowhere or ends badly, it’s time to make a change.



What’s wrong with resolutions?


Holiday season

First off, if resolutions work for you, and you set them every year and find success, maybe nothing is wrong with them. But if you set them every year and don’t see success, your mind is already in that place of “resolutions don’t work for me,” and you are setting yourself up for the opposite of success. And who wants to set themselves up for failure?

Often it’s not that the resolution itself is bad, it’s the conditions (or lack thereof!) surrounding them. For example, you might say “starting January 1st I am going on a diet!” Or, “on January 1st, I am going to start exercising!” Perhaps every year you say, “I am going to start the year off by eating healthy!”

These are all with the best of intentions, but they are broad, lack the ability to be accurately measured or tracked and are too easily manipulated to suit your life versus you having to make some hard changes and restructure your lifestyle.


What should I do instead?
Resolutions

This year, instead of pegging down a resolution, ditch that mindset and focus on a lifestyle change. Focus on making sustainable changes in your habits – forming them or breaking them – that you can measure, maintain and repeat. Here are some things to consider:

  • Set a goal or a plan to change that is specific
  • Make sure you have a way to measure your progress and a gauge for the final outcome. You need to know whether you are on track and whether you have or haven’t met your goal!
  • Set up a way to stay accountable. Perhaps you check in regularly with a friend or partner, or you keep track on a calendar.
  • Make it time-specific – set a deadline for when you want to reach your goal.
  • Break it down and change one thing at a time. If you are looking to “get healthier,” first set a goal surrounding exercise, then around food choices, then around a healthy mindset. Doing these all at once will likely make you discouraged.
  • Celebrate the small wins and give yourself positive feedback along the way.

Making small tweaks in the goals you set and the way you set them can lead to a make or break outcome. Be open to taking different approaches to change this year and you will be more likely to get a different (more desirable!) result!


How do I make sustainable changes?
Change

When it comes to making changes and adopting new habits, ask yourself: “is this something I could maintain for the rest of my life?” Drastic, large scale changes, like cutting out entire food groups or going from no exercise to an hour a day, are likely unreasonable and unsustainable. Consider some of the following sustainable changes to help you get started:

  • Make a swap – Change your daily consumption of soft drinks to tea instead, or swap to have one night meatless, and power up on veggies for a day.
  • Start small – Incorporate exercise in small amounts to begin, such as 15 minutes of walking three times per week.
  • Make it attractive – If you are trying to do more of something, make it an attractive thing to do! For example, if you want to drink more water, add lemon to it, or drink it in the form of iced tea. If you want to exercise more, choose an activity you enjoy or people you enjoy being with.
  • Don’t forget your brain – Diet and exercise are common targets for change, but it might start in your brain! Giving yourself a cognitive boostcan go a long way in helping you concentrate better, stay focused and ultimately, more effectively achieve your other goals
  • More sleep, less stress – Part of cognitive health is getting enough sleep and cutting down on stress. Start by taking your phone out of the bedroom at night and practicing some deep breathing exercises to destress your mind and body.

Sail into a new decade setting yourself up for success, not failure. Set aside the annual resolution tradition that you do because you “should,” and instead get really specific on some measurable, actionable goals you can tackle to create sustainable lifestyle change. Bring on 2020!


Laura Peill
Registered Holistic Nutritionist







We’d love to help you become healthier and be the best version of yourself!

Got a question? Send us an email:
info@healthculturesystems.com.au



October 1, 2019


Why it’s time to go outside!

If the winter weather had you stuck indoors, huddled under a blanket (with a cup of hot tea!), don’t worry – you weren’t alone. But with the warmer weather now peaking in, it’s time to take advantage of the sun, light and all the fresh air, as you reap the benefits of being outside!
Spring cup of tea

The warm days that have been teasing us off and on these past few weeks are the perfect glimpse into the new spring season that is upon us. More than that though, they are the ideal time to be outside. Winter doesn’t usually lend itself to being outdoors, and in the process of spending all that time inside, we lose the natural benefits of the sun, fresh air, interaction with plants and the natural endorphin release that comes from breathing it all in and being in nature. It’s time to put the winter blues aside and step outside into spring.



Benefits of Being Outdoors

Spring Outdoors Bike

Aside from the bright skies and pretty flowers, you’ll be happy to know there are a few additional reasons why the great outdoors is so great:

  • Japanese researchers have shown that “stressful states can be relieved by forest therapy.” The Japanese regularly walk forest trails and researchers are finding evidence to support that it offers decreases in cortisol, sympathetic nerve activity, and blood pressure.
  • Natural settings reduce directed-attention fatigue, an issue caused by the brain having to constantly manage competing stimuli
  • Recent research looked at the connection between soil and the gut microbiome, concluding that the soil biodiversity we are exposed to is decreasing and our rate of microbiome related lifestyle diseases is increasing
  • Natural light exposure is required for adequate vitamin D, and also helps regulate your sleep schedule. The brain is cued by light changes for when to produce melatonin and elicit sleep.

Camping herbal Tea

Outdoor Activities.

Here’s the good news: getting the benefits of going outside doesn’t require you to spend hours on a hike or commit to devoting Saturday to Mother Nature:  just 30 minutes of time outdoors can be enough to give you incredible physical and mental benefits. If you’re not sure what to do or where to start however, here are some outdoor activity ideas which are perfect for spring:

  • Go for a walk – down the street, on a local trail, around your backyard. It doesn’t have to be long or to a destination, just incorporating movement is enough!
  • Forage flowers – The next time you drive by a spot in nature that has nice flowers, stop and pick a few! Go for a walk around the area and see if you can forage a nature-made bouquet for your home. Not only will you get the benefits of being outdoors, but you will also be able to go home and bring the outdoors in!
  • Move the Meet – Whether it is a meeting with colleagues or a meet-up with friends, take it outside. For a work meeting, opt to sit outside for coffee instead of in, or suggest a walking meeting. If you are meeting up with friends, think of an outdoor activity, such as a walk along the beach, frisbee in the park, or a walk through the local gardens.
  • Choose Outside – Sometimes getting outside is as simple as choosing to do so. Choose to walk to places when you can; get up from your desk at work and go for a walk outdoors; shop at outdoor farmer’s markets instead of the store; exercise outside instead of at the gym or in your garage.

Use the change in season to change the way you think about the outdoors – a place to be in and visit, not a place to ignore or walk away from. Plus, there are so many great additional benefits to getting outside, that really, you have nothing to lose!


Health Tea Box - Herbs Planter Box

Plants for Purpose.

More than just soaking up the sunshine and getting a dose of those feel-good hormones though, being outside surrounded by plants lets you get an appreciation for the large diversity of plants found growing in abundance in our own backyard. Better yet, did you know that a lot of these plants are edible and have impressive health benefits? In fact, many of them could be considered nature’s superfoods given their nutrient profile. And this is a big reason behind why they are included in some of the teas we offer as part of the Health Tea Box:

  • Hibiscus – While beautiful in nature, hibiscus is that much better in the body: it helps reduce  blood pressure. Whether you suffer from hypertension or stress, the hypotensive properties of hibiscus are the perfect solution. Combined with its antioxidant benefits, it’s a clear winner and found in several of our teas.
  • Rose Petals – Not only are roses beautiful to look at in nature but the petals adds a refined sweetness to desserts and tea, while also providing anti-inflammatory benefits. The red blood-like colour of roses is also symbolic of their ability to act as a blood tonic.
  • Lemon Balm – An Australian native plant, lemon balm adds a subtle lemon flavour to teas and you can use it in your cooking in the same way. In addition, it is rich in antioxidants and can act as a sedative, aiding in sleep and de-stressing.
  • Fennel – A pleasant smell and a delicious flavour, this liquorice like plant has anti-inflammatory effects and is a great digestive aid. Drink the digestive tea after a meal or when you are feeling bloated, nauseas or suffering from unwanted gut distress.
  • Peppermint – Peppermint tea is soothing and comforting, and this is not an accident. Peppermint is great for helping elicit calmness and reduce tension, as well as is a beneficial digestive aid, helping in both chronic and acute gut symptoms.

There are lots of benefits from getting outside, but the only way to reap them is to try it yourself. What are you waiting for? Get outdoors!



Laura Peill
Registered Holistic Nutritionist







We’d love to help you become healthier and be the best version of yourself!

Got a question? Send us an email:
info@healthculturesystems.com.au



August 14, 2019
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We are super excited to be part of the Wests Biggest Bootcamp Event.

Take the challenge and get sweaty with your mates in a 45 minute bootcamp session.
All fitness, ability levels and ages are welcome. Westgate Gym trainers will help to power you through it. You will even be given a bag of goodies to take home.

Don’t forget to check out the health market and sample some of our Health Tea Box teas.

For tickets and more information visit https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/wests-biggest-bootcamp-tickets-65390848789