Reading Time: 6 minutes
We begin every new year with good intentions, and some of us see them through and others waver as the year or even January kicks in. Well don’t beat yourselves up because we are human after all, and with the pressures of everyday life, other priorities take over.
The most common goal after Christmas in the Western World is to lose weight, and that has become a constant challenge with growing obesity and ill health as a result.
As someone who has tried most diets, both successfully and unsuccessfully, I feel qualified to give some sound advice based upon a great deal of experience.
Top of my list for instant weight loss is Slimming World www.slimmingworld.co.uk, which is definitely the diet I could maintain, as the portions are still substantial and ‘snacking’ is allowed, which we need to sustain our energy and sugar level, if our days are busy, either at work or at home with the family.
With this diet, you never go hungry and it is affordable at only £5 per week, with an introductory free offer online in January. It is based upon a low fat intake, and this does not mean you have to deprive yourself of the very basic foods that you love like fries and yoghurt, these can be modified and combined with other foods which can also include a variety of carbs like pasta and potatoes. So a win win for every palate, and comes with some great recipes.
If you want to dig a bit deeper, you could look at a nutritionist, and I know I have spoken about her before, but Gudrun Jonsson www.gudrunjonsson.com is definitely life changing in her approach, and has saved my life on many occasions.
Gudrun believes that a ‘healthy gut equals a happy healthy life’, and since I was introduced to her by a friend, I have lost two stone in weight in just over 14 months, and look ten years younger.
Gudrun is also nutritionist to the stars and the rich and famous, although it took me a while to fathom that, as she is extremely confidential and compassionate. She is also very reasonable and will not cost you an arm and a leg, although you will see improvement in both areas almost immediately, as well as the rest of the body!
Here is a little more about Gudrun and her treatments taken from her website:
Gudrun Jonsson believes that if you can understand your digestive system, you can and will leap towards health. In fact, she believes everything changes and moves, and therefore we can reverse symptomatic issues. Her unique philosophy focuses on a combination of the traditional healing arts from the subcontinent, biopathic treatments, and the latest advances in scientific health, ageing and wellness.
Based in London and Morroco, Gudrun visits and receives clients worldwide and enjoys both learning and teaching. Before establishing her practice in London, Swedish-born Gudrun trained and qualified as a biopath at the Institut for Biologisk Medicin in Copenhagen. Gudrun has written two bestselling books – ‘Gut Reaction’ and ‘The Gut Reaction Eating Plan’ – and has made numerous television appearances. Her success has earned her the respect of complementary and medical practitioners alike, and a devoted following among her many clients.
Drawing upon her extensive knowledge of the healing properties of plants and foods, Gudrun’s treatments lead her clients to have a more alkaline and balanced digestive function that impacts on their overall health and wellbeing. Her treatment also includes plant-based serums, oils and balms that can heal skin conditions ranging from acne to psoriasis and can balance acidic constitutions and heal inflammation.
The one thing I would say about Gudrun is, she does not take any prisoners, and you have to be ready to take on her remedies and advice, but if you are serious about a life change, then just feel the fear and do it anyway.
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Reading Time: 4 minutes
As we enjoy copious amounts of food and wine over the festive season, and generally push the boat out and abandon ship where our diets are concerned, let us spare a moment to think about those less fortunate, whose only hope of a Happy Christmas is the generosity of a friend, neighbour or complete stranger.
Friends of mine who are very well off spent half of last Christmas day serving food to the homeless at their local Shelter, and said it was one of the best festive holidays they could remember. You don’t have to turn up in person to help, just donate what you can to the Charity as the money will go straight to a counsellor or family and could turn around a life in a heartbeat. If you go onto the Shelter website, there are numerous cases of how lives have been destroyed, often by unseen circumstances, but can be turned around by our own contributions and good will.
I have recently been aware of the food banks in my local supermarkets and am pleasantly surprised at the amount of food and gifts that generous shoppers have donated, but it isn’t enough – we could all be doing more. Perhaps like me in recent years, you have been so hell bent on a perfect family Christmas, you have forgotten to consider how others are suffering with little or no hope of any sort of celebration at all. Guilty as charged, but it is not too late to change.
I am not saying we should all take ourselves down to the local food bank, but remember what Meghan Markle used to do in LA with the leftover food from a film shoot – which was quite a pioneering gesture at the time. She has now extended it to helping to support victims of the Grenfell Tower tragedy by cooking with its charity members in their multi-cultural kitchen.
We all know that Princes William and Harry have carried on Princess Diana, their mother’s legacy, of supporting the homeless, and are regular visitors at Centrepoint in London.
It doesn’t even have to be someone who has lost their home, It could be an elderly neighbour who is too proud to tell you they will be lonely, or someone suffering from depression who could benefit from even a phone call, let us all give one minute of our time. So never mind Brexit or our own economy, the world would be richer and a far better place if we just paused for a moment amidst all the mayhem, and considered how we could help improve someone’s life this festive season and extend it well into 2019.
Reading Time: 4 minutes
It is a great time of year to meet up with old friends and family, going to School Nativity plays, Church choirs and Christmas Shopping, but the down side is, it can be pretty exhausting too, and this is the time when our immune system can be low and we are prone to picking up bugs.
I attended a brilliant concert put on by the Nottinghill Community Choir last weekend and had VIP status having known the Pastor from a ‘past life’ when he was still a performer, but not in a religious sense, and I found myself sitting next to one of the top voice coaches in London.
With our compatible interests, and before the singing began, he and I struck up a conversation, and as we spoke he tipped an aromatherapy oil on his hands, explaining that he carried a potion called Four Thieves around with him at all times, to ward off the inevitable viruses that were in abundance at this time of the year. He also went on to tell me that the source of this incredible remedy stemmed from as far back as the Bubonic Plague in France in the 17th century, when four thieves who lived underground, robbing graves and bodies of the afflicted, were completely immune to the disease through their discovery of this unique elixir.
On further investigation when I returned home, I discovered that these essential oils are a combination of clove, lemon, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus and rosemary, which smell divine as well as being an incredible preventative potion against ill health.
Fascinated by his story of its source I also investigated that this story, recorded in French folklore, goes on to say that these four reprobates were captured and put on trial and the inevitable sentence of the time, Death by Hanging was bestowed upon them.
However, using their wits, they promised to reveal their source of immunity to the plague and were subsequently pardoned. The rest is history, and the remedy remains in their name, although 20th century French herbalist Jean Vardet has since perfected it in his wisdom.
I am astounded that the Four Thieves remedy is not a household name and so have done some more digging and discovered that they are incredibly expensive on most health websites, but a major find is they can be purchased at a reasonable price from Anglesea Organics Ebay Store online.
As you can imagine, I could not wait to share the news with you all, and have already put in my order for myself and the whole family.
As some of you may know, I have a daughter and son-in-law and three young grandchildren, who will all benefit from this amazing remedy, especially before Christmas when taking part in so many activities and being exposed to the elements and as many of us are.
I believe in it, and at only a few pounds, it would be great for all of us to try it and see. If it works as my new ‘friend’ insists, he will definitely be on my Christmas card list now and for many years to come.
Reading Time: 2 minutes
On the 1st December 2018 family, friends, celebrities and sponsors came together at Pinewood Studios for the Silver Screen Ball incorporating the Sylvia Anderson Awards.
Here is just some of our favorite photos from the night.