Body Of Ev­i­dence

Plan­ning a new, im­proved you can start with just a few ev­i­dence-based well­ness hacks, writes Paula Goodyer.

Australian House & Garden - - CONTENTS -

Sim­ple but ef­fec­tive ways to boost well­ness.

Spring is the time for new begin­nings, so here are a few sim­ple ways to im­prove your health and feel your best:

Eat more plant pro­teins Keen to eat less meat for your health and the planet’s sake, but not ready to be a full-time veg­e­tar­ian?

The ‘re­duc­etar­ian’ move­ment unites ev­ery­one who has made a con­scious de­ci­sion to eat less meat. A re­duc­etar­ian might choose to go meat­less one night a week or ev­ery sin­gle day, ex­plains Brian Kate­man, ed­i­tor of The Re­duc­etar­ian Cook­book ($29.99, Hachette). The pro­tein gap left by skip­ping meat can be eas­ily filled by lentils, beans and peas, he ad­vises. More pro­tein from plants is a smart move for your health. A 2016 study of more than 130,000 peo­ple look­ing at the ef­fects of eat­ing dif­fer­ent kinds of pro­tein linked a high in­take of plant pro­tein to a lower risk of death.

For­get magic bul­lets As much as we all love the idea that a ‘su­per­food’ such as turmeric could defy can­cer, it’s un­likely that a sin­gle food or nu­tri­ent can pro­tect against the dis­ease, says a re­cent global re­port from the World Can­cer Re­search Fund. A bet­ter bet is a diet high in

whole­grains, beans, veg­eta­bles and fruit, which is con­sis­tently linked to a lower risk of can­cer, ad­vises the WCRF.

Take short­cuts to ex­er­cise No time for a work­out or long walk? Squeeze in bursts of ex­er­cise, five to 10 min­utes each, through­out the day. Re­search pub­lished in the Jour­nal of the Amer­i­can Heart As­so­ci­a­tion this year linked clock­ing up 40 min­utes of ex­er­cise a day, even in short bursts, to a re­duced risk of death com­pared to peo­ple who ex­er­cised less, re­gard­less of how the ac­tiv­ity was ac­cu­mu­lated.

Go for a walk in the bush

Shin­rin-yoku (‘for­est bathing’) is a Ja­panese form of na­ture ther­apy that mixes mind­ful­ness with be­ing in a wooded en­vi­ron­ment, a com­bi­na­tion that can lower blood pres­sure and re­duce stress. Rather than a brisk hike through the bush, the SA De­part­ment For En­vi­ron­ment and Water’s Good Liv­ing blog (en­vi­ron­ment.sa.gov.au/ goodliv­ing) sug­gests a slower walk that lets you pay close at­ten­tion to your sur­round­ings – the chat­ter of birds, the breeze, the shape of a rock or flower – and reap the calm­ing ben­e­fit of be­ing in the mo­ment.

‘Be­ing phys­i­cally ac­tive can pro­tect you di­rectly against three can­cers – colon, breast, en­dome­trial – and helps main­tain a healthy weight, re­duc­ing your risk of an­other nine can­cers.’

Louise Meincke, World Can­cer Re­search Fund

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