Archive for the ‘Exercise’ Category

Quick Tip: Get moving to beat cancer

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Staying physically active could help cut your chances of developing cancer according to scientists from the National Cancer Centre in Japan. They looked at 80,000 men and women aged between 45 and 77 and found the most active women had a 16 percent lower risk of developing cancer than the least active, while the most active men had a 13 per cent lower risk. Physical activity was found to particularly cut the risk of stomach cancer in women and of colon, liver and pancreatic cancer in men.

In the News: Tennis can help beat the Menopause

Monday, June 1st, 2009

A new study (by Japanese scientists in the British Journal of Sports Medicine) suggests that playing ball games like tennis and netball in your teens can make women’s bones stronger forty years later. The scientists interviewed post menopausal women about the kind of exercise they took in their teens and it appears that the more weight bearing exercise a girl takes between the ages of 12 and 18 the more her bone density is likely to be protected after the menopause. High impact sports like sprinting can also be beneficial.

15 tips for perfect legs

Friday, May 1st, 2009

Legs are the focal point of your body. If your legs aren’t toned, shapely and healthy-looking, the chances are you’ll feel unhappy with them. Flattering shoes are, of course, important but – as you’ll see from the tips below – what you put in your mouth is just as important as what you put on your feet:


1) A diet loaded with saturated fat, salt, sugar, chemicals and preservatives is a recipe for flabby thighs, swollen ankles and cellulite. Female hormones tend to send excess fat straight to your stomach, buttock and thighs. So if you’ve got flabby legs make sure you ditch junk food, eat a healthy diet that is rich in nutrients and fibre and drink lots of water. Water keeps the metabolism flowing and prevents the collection of fat in the first place.


2) White fish (like cod, hake or coley) and oily fish (like mackerel and tuna) are great cellulite busters because they contain circulation-boosting essential fats. So to keep the dreaded dimply-orange-peel look at bay, try eating fish at least four times a week (preferably steamed or poached with green vegetables)


3) Reducing salt intake is a healthy move that will decrease fluid and toxin excesses in the body, problems which are associated with swollen ankles and cellulite.


4) Legs can look ugly if they are all blue and veiny, so make sure blood flow stays healthy by eating oily fish regularly – at least three or four times a week. Garlic is another important agent to improve blood flow. The flavonoids in dark red berries can help to strengthen blood vessels and Brussel sprouts also contain circulation-boosting nutrients – so put a few of those on your plate twice a week and you’ll notice the difference.


5) If your legs are skinny and bony, increasing your protein intake will help in muscle growth because amino acids, which link together to form proteins, provide the major substance for the building of new tissue. Common foods high in protein include fish, eggs, quinoa, soya, nuts and seeds. And eat plenty of fruits and vegetables too – they are packed with vitamins, which not only provide for the lovely shape on your legs by playing an important part in forming proteins that give structures to muscles, but are also necessary for healthy skin. What is the point of having lovely shaped legs if you have dry, scaly skin?


6) The skin around your ankles can have a tendency to look flaky and dry if you don’t take care of it – not a good look if you want to wear a short skirt and strappy heels to a party. Avoid this by rubbing olive oil on your ankles every morning and leaving it for ten minutes before you wash it off in the shower.


7) Put on your high heeled shoes. As long as they aren’t sky high and you don’t wear them all the time and alternate with flat shoes, high heels make your legs look longer and thinner.


8) In the summer, do expose your skin to the sun to get valuable vitamin D stores, but avoid excessive exposure as this can make the skin on your legs look dry, wrinkly and flaky. And if you do sunbathe be sure to pay as much attention to your legs as you do to your face.


9) Sometimes legs may not be flabby but look heavy due to poor circulation. Avoid standing or sitting for long periods of time and crossing your legs as this can lead to circulation problems. If circulation is a problem, try a supplement of Ginkgo Biloba as this can help with blood flow (I use Ginkgo Plus in the clinic see the Resources Page).


10) Smooth legs look more appealing than fuzzy legs. I would suggest you shave or wax rather than using the chemical based creams. After a shave or wax, make your skin feel good by moisturising it with vitamin E-enriched cream. (For natural creams and mosturisers go to Natural Living Products on


11) All the oils, waxes and massages cannot make stocky legs look slim. You have to exercise. Make sure you exercise your legs every day and keep them toned with lots of walking and stair climbing. Here are a few simple exercises to improve calves, and thighs:

  • To improve calves – stand absolutely straight with your hands on your hips and your legs together. Now keep your spine straight and bend only the knees until you assume a squatting position. Hold it there to the count of four and rise slowly, keeping your spine as straight as possible. Repeat this exercise at least ten times.
  • To slim your thighs – lie flat on the floor and then draw your knees up towards your chest. Now push your legs up in the air and keep them as straight as you can. Slowly start moving your legs as if you are riding a bicycle. Do this about 5-6 times and then repeat the movements at a fast speed for another 5-6 times. Repeat the whole routine 5-6 times, including the slow and fast movements.

12) An area that is not toned habitually is the inner thigh, which can otherwise blight the outline of a strong pair of legs. Try doing some inner thigh exercises like the one below every other day:

  • Lie on your right side with your back straight, hips square and feet together. Keep your head, shoulder, knees and ankles aligned. Pull your abdominals in. Place your left leg on the floor at right angles to your body. Keep your right leg straight and flex your foot so that your toes are towards you. Rest your head on your right hand. Place your left hand on the floor in front of you for support and breathe in. Breathe out as you slowly raise your right leg as high as is comfortable. Keep your leg straight and foot parallel to the floor. Hold briefly, then breathe in as you lower your leg so that your foot is about two inches from the floor and still parallel to it. Complete a set, then turn to your left side and repeat using your left leg.

13) The most beautiful legs can look ugly if toenails and feet aren’t well cared for. Treat yourself to a pedicure now and again.


14) In addition to cycling and swimming, a great way to get toned thighs is to try karate or kickboxing. Performing a karate kick slowly and with control will tone and strengthen the thighs and bottom. Most gyms now run kickboxing classes or you could try working out at home with a dvd.


15) Take a few tips from the women who have some of the most beautiful legs in the world: dancers. For really defined, shapely legs, you have to work your lower body muscles (the hips, buttocks, and thighs) from every angle with strong, concentrated moves. So why not go out dancing or sign up for a regular dance class?