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Nutrition

For many coffee lovers, Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year. Our high street chains festive drinks menus are often a hotly anticipated part of the Christmas season. But which of these festive favourites are the highest in sugar content?

Expert dietitians at The Hospital Group have warned consumers to be mindful of the extra calories they could be consuming in their festive beverages this winter.

The Hospital Group studied all the high street festive hot drink offerings from Starbucks, Costa Coffee, Caffe Nero, Pret a Manger, McDonalds and Greggs and found that Pret a Manger’s Mint Hot Chocolate and Hazelnut Hot Chocolate contained a WHOPPING 47.9g sugar (that’s the equivalent of 3.2 Mince Pies!) in a regular serving.

TOP TEN MOST SUGAR FILLED DRINKS:

  • Mint Hot Chocolate – Pret a Manger – 47.9g sugar
  • Hazelnut Hot Chocolate – Pret a Manger – 47.9 sugar
  • Mint Mocha – Greggs – 46g sugar
  • Mint Hot Chocolate – Greggs – 46g sugar
  • Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate – Caffé Nero – 38.8g sugar
  • Hazelnut Hot Chocolate – Caffé Nero – 38.2g sugar
  • Toasted Marshmallow Hot Chocolate – Starbucks – 36.7g sugar
  • Ginger Hot Chocolate – Caffé Nero – 35.8g sugar
  • Egg Nog Latte – Starbucks – 33.8g sugar
  • Hazelnut Praline & Cream Frostino – Costa Coffee – 33.2g sugar

Of the UK’s three coffee giants: Starbucks, Costa and Caffé Nero – their hot chocolate offerings had the highest sugar content. All three offered a ginger or gingerbread syrup festive drink; Caffe Nero’s Ginger Latte contains 14.7g of sugar (the lowest of all) but Starbucks’ Gingerbread offering contains almost double that at 28.8g.

Nutritionist Holly Gabriel, from Action on Sugar, said the findings were "shocking". "Coffee shops and cafes need to take much greater steps to reduce the levels of sugar and portion sizes, promote lower sugar alternatives and stop pushing indulgent extras at the till."

A spokeswoman for Starbucks said that customers could customise the size of their drink, as well as asking for reduced fat milk and less or no cream."We are committed to reducing sugar in all our beverages and since 2015 we've delivered a 9% reduction in the sugar content of our gingerbread and core syrup range of vanilla, caramel and hazelnut," the spokeswoman added.

Costa offered the lowest calorie drink, their Hot Spiced Apple drink contained only 75 calories, yet still contained a hefty 16.3g of sugar.

Research found that the average mince pie contained around 14-16g of sugar per pie, meaning some of our Christmas cuppas are triple the sugar content of the classic Christmas snack.

George Hamlyn-Williams, Principal Dietitian at The Hospital Group states that for many “drinking our calories is often a ‘blind spot’ that many of us are naïve to, or ignore.”

The NHS recommended daily intake of sugar for adults is 30g a day.  

Whilst Christmas is a time for relaxation and indulgence, he also advises the best ways to keep your sugar intake sensible over the festive season:

“A Grande Toffee Nut latte from Starbucks made with semi-skimmed milk contains a whopping 345kcal (the same as a Pain au Chocolat) and four teaspoons of added sugar! Whilst swapping to skimmed milk may seem an angelic move, it will actually only save you 50kcals.  Similarly, a Medio semi-skimmed latte from Costa will only set you back 146kcal whereas treating yourself to a semi-skimmed Irish Velvet & Cream Latte will mean your calories soar to 360kcal – the same as their Ham & Emmenthal Croissant!  We like to treat ourselves occasionally, but maybe think about asking them to hold the cream or maybe ask for a sugar-free syrup as well as opting for skimmed milk?”

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So we all love brunch, it's become a bit of a Sunday institution.

There is nothing better than tucking into a perfect plate of Insta-worthy poached eggs.

Now, we don't even have to justify our Sunday foodie splurging, because brunch is good for your health, as discovered by Real Simple

5. Brunch foods often include healthy ingredients.

Eggs, avocados, salmon and whole meal toast make up some of the most popular brunch dishes.

All of these fresh ingredients are chock-a-block full of protein, nutrients and healthy fats, so get that perfect avocado toast picture and bask in your smug healthy glow.

That being said, we'll still be opting for fluffy pancakes and Belgian waffles occasionally. 

4. You get your beauty sleep. 

Making sure your body gets all the sleep it needs is important, so rather than getting up for breakfast, sleeping in for brunch could actually be good for you. 

Sleep is involved in the healing and repair processes of the body, including of the heart and blood vessels.

Sleep deficiency is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and stroke, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. 

3. Socialising is good for the mental health.

Humans are social creatures, and brunch brings people together. 

"Interacting with others boosts feelings of well-being and decreases feelings of depression. Research has shown that one sure way of improving your mood is to work on building social connections," according to Psychology Today

2. Getting out of the house is full of health benefits. 

It's good to actually leave the house during the weekend to do something other than party.

Strolling to your local bistro for brunch is a good way to incorporate a few extra minutes of exercise, and getting some sunlight on that Irish pallor is necessary for a well needed vitamin D boost. 

 

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1. Brunch is well balanced

Most brunch meals have a good mix of carbs, proteins and healthy fats.

A multi-faceted brunch meal is often much healthier and provides you with better nutrients all round than grabbing something quick for breakfast and lunch. 

 

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We're all eating avocados like the good, diligent millennials that we are, but have you ever wondered why avos are now hailed as such a superfood.

Sure, we know that they're packed with heart-healthy fats and that they taste sublime when paired with some poached eggs and crusty bread, but there is much more to the humble savoury fruit than that. 

They are chock-a-block full of disease-fighting vitamins, and half of one avo counts as one of your five-a-day. 

According to Healthline, the green toast-toppers have a whopping 26pc of your recommended daily allowance of Vitamin K.

They also contain 17pc of your RDA od Vitamin C, along with lots of Vitamin B, Vitamin E and Vitamin B5 and B6.

Thanks to that Vitamin E, avocados are hailed as being excellent for skin, hair and nails as well as being nutritious. 

Some natural beauty bloggers have created their own face masks out of the fruit, as well as applying them to hair for a moisture boost.

Try a classic mix of avocado, a tablespoon of honey and two tablespoons of warm water as a means to hydrate tired skin.

They also have 20pc of your daily dose of folate, an essential compound which assists in the DNA function, the production of new cells, and supporting nerve and immune functions

Avocados also contain even more heartbeat-regulating potassium than bananas. 

They are low in saturated fat, low in sugar and have zero sodium, while being high in protein. 

Excuse us while we tuck in…

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The Food Safety Authority of Ireland have recalled four Miss Fit Skinny tea and coffee products over 'misleading labelling'.

Miss Fit Skinny Tea 14 Day Skinny Tea, Miss Fit Skinny Tea Max, Miss Fit Slimming Coffee 14 Day Fat Burning Instant Coffee and Miss Fit Skinny Coffee Max are the products which will be recalled.

The FSAI released a statement on the matter, saying; "All batches of the above four Miss Fit products are being recalled due to incorrect, misleading and ambiguous labelling."

"Amongst the labelling breaches are health claims which are not authorised and are therefore misleading to the consumer."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Products from the brand have been asked to be removed from the market. Shops have been ordered to remove the detox products from the shelves and display point-of-sale notices to correctly inform customers.

There has been a huge amount of backlash in recent months to 'quick fix' weight loss brands such as these, with the head doctor of the NHS condemning weight-loss advertisements and Jameela Jamil fronting a campaign against them.

After rapper Cardi B endorsed the teas, which contain ingredients akin to laxatives, Jamil wrote on Twitter: "If you want to “curb your appetite” eat some damn green vegetables or have some nutritious natural vegetable soup."

"Don’t drink these “detox” teas. You need fibre! Not something that honestly just makes you have diarrhoea the day you take it and constipates you in the long run…"

They were recalled due to the misinformed labelling, and it can't be a negative thing for young women and their mental health that action is finally being taken against them.

Hazel Wallace, better known as The Food Medic, claims that;

"Some of these detoxes are really dangerous and not healthy at all, especially some of the skinny teas," said Hazel, who is a junior doctor and a certified personal trainer. and therefore has healthcare and nutrition experience.

"Although they claim they are natural many drugs are actually from nature but it doesn’t make them naturally good for you. Your liver does the detoxing for your body you don’t need a green tea to detox,’ she said.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Wallace also commented on senna leaves, a laxative which leads to dehydration;

"Some of these skinny teas have laxatives which we actually use as doctors to prescribe to people who are severely constipated, so clearly you are going to lose weight if you not absorbing any of the nutrients and its just passing through your system."

"This can cause so much damage to your digestive system, you lose water, you lose nutrients and you can damage the gut lining."

A petition from Jamil has been signed 138,000 times already, asking for celebrities to be banned from endorsing weight loss products.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Kylie (@kyliejenner) on

The Kardashians especially have endorsed numerous weight-loss products, gaining huge criticism from Jameela Jamil especially as well as healthcare professionals. Many have even claimed that they encourage body dysmorphia.

Detox teas have previously faced backlash after a string of unplanned pregnancies happened when the effectiveness of the contraceptive pill was reduced due to the laxative effects in the detox teas.

Be extremely wary of what you're consuming in terms of nutrition, weight-loss is about health, exercise and a balanced diet, not running to the loo every ten minutes.

Keep an eye out for valid healthcare professionals' advice on the matter, and make sure your emotional and mental health is also prioritised.

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Body-shaming is still massively prevalent in our society, without question.

Despite the cold, hard fact that it's 2019, people still feel the incessant need to pull others down for their appearance, and their weight.

Loey Lane is a well-known, GORGEOUS, experienced YouTuber who just so happens to be plus-sized. She speaks about it regularly, preaching the value of health above self-hatred and dieting.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

15-25. One is miserable in her own skin, chased the high of seeing a lower number on the scale every time she stepped on. She was overcome by her own demons. One is confident and in love with her own body. She told those demons to fuck off.  Turned off the comments because random people who have no idea who I am don’t know how to act lol. It has nothing to do with weight. It has everything to do with the fact that I hated myself for a long time because of the way I looked, and now everything I do is out of self love. I go to the gym because I love myself, not because I hate my body. I eat healthier because I want to feel good in my own skin. I take better care of myself now than I ever did eating 500 calories a day.

A post shared by(@loeybug) on

The vlogger has now released a shocking video of a diet pill company using footage of her as part of their horrendously shameful advertising campaign.

After returning from a sportswear photoshoot with iconic make-up guru James Charles, the model discovered a video selling diet pills which utilised images of her as their 'before' template, and she's understandably fuming.

CarbonFire 213 Complex makes it ridiculously difficult to find reviews of it online, but the video proclaims the product to be a certified miracle for anyone who wants to lose weight.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Nicole Hoye (@nicole_d_williams) on

Diet pills have entered the media for an assortment of reasons over the last few years, with activists and public figures such as Jameela Jamil slamming weight-loss products which do more harm than good.

The Kardashians are renowned for selling appetite suppressants and weight-loss consumer goods, much to the dismay of many body positivity figures and health experts alike.

There are an array of dangers associated with items such as these, which are essentially glorified laxatives.

The advertising campaigns in the media are arguably as harmful, telling women their weight creates everyday problems such as finding a husband, having failing health and being embarrassed to look in the mirror.

Loey Lane shows the video advert to her following, and it's one of the worst examples of body-shaming we've seen yet. It opens with a beautiful, pale-skinned blonde woman gazing at silk wedding gowns, after her friend asks her to be her maid-of-honour for a wedding.

"How I Fit Into My Wedding Dress" is the video's apparent title, despite the fact that it's NOT HER WEDDING. The problems aren't hard to spot throughout the disgraceful imagery.

gary payton wow GIF by NBA

 The blonde woman looks into the camera lens, and the words; "Believe me, I wasn't always this way. This was me before losing all that weight," flash across the screen.

Lo-and-behold, the woman is now Loey Lane, allegedly the same person as the blonde woman.

Alright then, at this stage we've lost count of the issues within the video, and it's only about ten seconds in.

As if the ad itself isn't traumatising enough to watch, actual graphics for OTHER diet pill companies and body-shaming articles pop up on the side of the screen. An assault is what that is.

"I'm going to share my secret so that it can be easy for you!" the advert claims. Thank God for that.

"A few months ago, one of my best friends from high school texted me. She was getting married and she wanted me to be her bridesmaid. I was SO excited, but there was just one thing… I was SO overweight," the video continues. Wow.

"I couldn't go to the wedding like this, I was so pretty in high school and I would be so embarrassed looking like this. I wanted to go to the wedding and look like I did when I was 18. You know- slim, pretty, looking great in some heels." *Sharpens pitchfork*

"I cut out all junk food. I worked out every single day. After four months, I was still embarrassed to look in the mirror…my personal trainer friend said if I wanted to lose weight fast, I had to supercharge my metabolism."

Classic *insert scientific words here to fumble the consumer's brain* tactics. 

"At this point I was desperate…time was running out." This isn't dismantling a bomb, you won't die if you attend your best friend's wedding at ANY weight.

oh my god omg GIF by TV One

"How could I show my face at the wedding looking like this?" Looking like.. a human woman? *Gasp* "I was even considering not showing up." Priorities aren't in order there, love.

"CarbonFire Complex claimed to boost metabolism using only the healthiest ingredients, they looked very professional." Yes, and Donald Trump looks very diplomatic.

"After only a few days, I dropped a dress size. Ten days later, I lost two dress sizes. I felt lighter on my feet." Because your digestive system has just wasted away, perhaps?

oh my god wtf GIF

"After another week, I was down three sizes. By the time the wedding came around, I lost seven dress sizes. I was getting a LOT more attention from guys, I almost felt bad for the bride, because I was getting so many compliments."

Male attention should be the motivational factor for every woman, after all. 

This all comes at the reasonable price of ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS, by the way. You can buy happiness, male sexual attention and confidence all at this lovely sale.

The blonde woman in the video revealed herself as Amanda John, and she also did not consent to be used for the branding.

So they effectively stole imagery from two women without their permission and used it to scam vulnerable, hard-working people online with low self-esteem because of ads exactly like this, shaming their weight. As if a weighing scales can tell you your worth.

We hope Loey Lane and Amanda John take legal action against CarbonFire Complex, Lord knows they deserve it.

A reminder, there is no such thing as a magic pill. Your worth encompasses your hopes, fears, intelligence, beliefs, morals, family values, friends, career and everything in between, not just your appearance alone.

You can't lose weight and discover joy at the end of the scales.

Take a look at Loey Lane's original video below for some fresh morning rage;

Feature image: @loeybug/Instagram

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We all love taking care of our skin with an established morning and evening routine, using great products that we don't mind spending a fortune on. 

Yet, sometimes, we forget that all these serums and lotions can be useless if we don't pay attention to our diet. 

Make sure to consume the food below regularly and you will notice a significant improvement in the look and general health of your skin.

1. Avocado

Avocado contains essential fatty acids which act as a natural moisturiser for your skin. 

If you eat enough healthy fats, your skin will keep a good elasticity and remain soft and supple.

2. Oily fish

Salmon is a great source of Omega-6 and Omega-3 fats, which have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body and can even slow or reverse the signs of premature ageing.

Omega-3 fatty acids are also well-known for their ability to combat and prevent many chronic skin disorders such as acne, psoriasis and eczema.

3. Kiwis…

…or any fruits and vegetables with a high content of Vitamin C, such as oranges, blueberries, red and yellow peppers, broccoli, strawberries and sweet potatoes.

Vitamin C is often a powerful ingredient used in anti-ageing creams because it is a super antioxidant. Essential to produce collagen, it promotes radiant skin and help blemishes heal properly. 

4. Nuts and seeds

Almonds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, walnuts, flax seeds… these delicious nuts and seeds we love in our granola are packed with protein that stimulates collagen production.

They are also full of healthy fats, magnesium, copper, zinc, calcium, Vitamin B and E, reducing inflammation, fine lines and promoting a clear acne-free skin. 

5. Carrots

Carrots and other fruits and vegetables high in beta carotene are your skin's best friends.

This antioxidant is converted to Vitamin A inside the body, helping repair skin tissue and protects against damaging UVA and UVB. 

6. Water

The first step to a beautiful hydrated skin is… an hydrated body!

When you are even mildly dehydrated, your skin already looks dull, dry and greyish, so aim at 8 to 10 glasses a day. 

Bonus: what not to eat

You may have already guessed, but processed food should be avoided if you want a beautiful looking skin. 

Deprived of nutrient, high in additives and preservatives, they make your skin age quicker without providing it what it needs.

Biscuits and sugary drinks, for example, lead to the production of insulin which may damage collagen and accelerate wrinkles.

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Our generation often gets branded as lazy and entitled, but this couldn't be further from the truth.

Most of us are constantly working, thanks to the Internet.

Being able to be online or connected to your email means that we rarely just work our 9-5 job.

Often our work spills over into our weekends and evenings.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Now research from VHI has shown that nearly 80 percent of employees believe that mental health issues are of increasing concern.

Additionally, 67 percent of those surveyed said they need to take more care of their mental health.

Even though workers are drawing these conclusions, they're still hesitant to reach out for help. 

A staggering 61 percent have never sought help and half of the people surveyed actually believe that they must hide the stress they feel at work if they are to maintain their career prospects.

Furthermore, 41 percent said they would even hide their mental health from a friend.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Jamie White (@jamiewhite) on

Researches said the report represents worrying levels of unhappiness, dissatisfaction and stress amongst a significant proportion of the working population.

In particular, those under 34 and people working in the tech industries characterise their levels of stress as problematic rather than as part of the normal cut and thrust of life.

Attempting to tackle this problem by giving young professionals the tools to maintain their mental and physical health is Jamie White alongside The Happy Pear.

On January 5 in Dublin Castle, the duo along with Alison Canavan, an award-winning author and wellness coach, and Fiona Brennan will be offering their expert advice.

The Fresh Resolutions Conference will be covering topics such as nutrition and training, wellness and mental health, goal setting and personal motivation, budgeting and financial planning.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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If this sounds like something that would float your boat, you can get tickets here

If you're struggling with your mental health, help is only a click away.

You can find helplines and support services here.

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Hashtags which might be promoting eating disorders on Instagram have now been placed on an 'unsearchables' list following an investigation.

It was discovered that users of the photo-sharing network were bypassing the platform's filters, and health warnings have since been added to several spellings or terms which reference eating disorders.

Many of these terms are popular hashtags on Instagram's platform, but if they are on the 'unsearchables' list then zero results will come up.

Since 2012, the site began making some terms unsearchable in an effort to avoid users being able to locate often upsetting graphic images and posts which encouraged the idea that eating disorders were part of a lifestyle rather than a mental disorder.

However, BBC Trending claim that certain terms are still searchable, include ones which promote bulimia, and that Instagram's search bars suggest different terminology and spellings for terms glamorising eating disorders.

The search box offered a shocking 38 alternative spellings in one such instance for a popular term promoting the disorders.

Instagram has now made several alternative terms unsearchable and have added many to the list of terms triggering the health warning. They also have said they will continue to attempt to restrict such content.

A spokesman on their behalf commented that;

"We do not tolerate content that encourages eating disorders and we use powerful tools and technologies – including in-app reporting and machine learning – to help identify and remove it," 

"However, we recognise this is a complex issue and we want people struggling with their mental health to be able to access support on Instagram when and where they need it."

"We, therefore, go beyond simply removing content and hashtags and take a holistic approach by offering people looking at or posting certain content the option to access tips and support, talk to a friend, or reach out directly" to support groups.

Social networks have begun to censor content which could possibly encourage eating disorders, yet many people online discovered a way to navigate around the filters through deliberately misspelled hashtags.

Instagram and most popular sites don't use moderators to proactively search for dangerous content, and relies on users alone to report violations of its rules.

Algorithms fail to detect the difference between positive and harmful content, and then offer advertising and suggested sites which are promoting an unhealthy mental health disorder.

Eating disorder charities are demanding that ocial media networks take more responsibility for policing their content.

Certain sites online and Instagram pages are supportive for survivors of eating disorders, and there is an argument that removing posts could cease discussions surrounding eating disorders, which is important.

The rules of Instagram prohibit posts which promote or glorify eating disorders, but the company has a long way to go to develop its safety policies.

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The power of protein is everywhere.

Traditionally, the magic amino acid was used by bodybuilders and fitness junkies.

However, in recent times it has become the answer to all our problems – appetite unsatisfiable? – protein. Want to lose weight? – protein. Want to keep your hair, skin, and nails looking on point? – protein…the list goes on.

In fact, we are so obsessed with it, there are 21.6 million posts on Instagram about it – and naturally, businesses have seized the chance to cash-in on this market.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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And we LOVE it, as 43 percent of Brits have confessed to buying some form of  'protein' marketed product in the past.

18 to 24-year-olds are those of us most likely to gorge on the protein-enhanced foods. 

Our supermarkets are now a haven for protein products screaming at us that they contain a ridiculous amount of the holy nutrient, from bagels to bars to bread. 

But you better believe that you'll be paying a pretty penny for these foods.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Pui Pui (@puiandthe4m) on

However, are we being scammed into forking over more money for the added protein, compared to generic forms of the same foods?

Well, the good people from Wren Kitchens went to investigate and their results might surprise you.

In a new Behind the Label study, they analysed how much more protein you’re really getting (if any) for the premium price you’re paying.

Kicking it off, we look at nuts – a popular brand of nuts has a "protein mix" in their range and boasts 20 g of the magic nutrient for 100 grams, but it'll set you back £2.25 for that amount.

Whereas a supermarket equivalent was 63 p for 100 grams of nuts, that had 19.3 g of protein.

Moving to granola, for 100 grams a popular brand slapped some more protein into your brekkie bowl  – 13 grams to be exact, which cost you 63 p.

However, you could have gotten 10.3 grams of protein for the same amount for 20 p by going with a non-protein branded granola.

Not forgetting the yoghurts: the two protein yoghurts which had 10g and 11.1g of protein labelled on their packaging for 100 grams would cost you 55 p or £1.08 respectively.

This is compared to a non-branded protein yoghurt which would set you back 50p per 100g – but it contains 10g protein.

And of course, we can't leave out our carb mates; the bagels. 

When you get your hands on a protein bagel, each one will cost you 35 p and will have a decent 8.5 g of the amino acid.

Nevertheless, the non-protein bagel reigned carb-champ – with 9.8 grams of protein at just 24 p per rounded goodness.

But perhaps we are overdoing the trend, as the latest National Diet and Nutrition Survey found that the average UK adult consumes up to 55 percent more protein than they actually need.

The UK Reference Nutrient Intake (RNI) recommends we consume 0.75g for each kg of weight, which, based on average weights, which roughly translates into 55g for the lads and 45g for the ladies.

Expert nutritionist Charlotte Stirling-Reed explains: "Protein is an essential macronutrient especially important for the growth, development, and maintenance of bones and muscles in the body."

"Most of us get more than enough protein in our everyday diet, and so it's not something that we need to think about supplementing too often. However, for some, such as athletes, those training intensely, or very active individuals they may have extra requirements for protein to support muscle growth and repair."

"To put it simply, unless advised by a medical professional, you don't need to be eating protein-specific products. If you find them to be a convenient way to top up your intake or to help you spread your protein intake across the day, there is no real problem with using them. However, it's important to remember you can get all the protein you need from everyday foods."

So before you reach for the product that promises you heaps of protein – ask yourself two questions.

Do you really need that much protein? And can you find a cheaper alternative that has similar protein levels for a quarter of the price?

And remember – Pop-eye built his muscle on spinach.

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We are a nation of tea drinkers.

In fact, we are mad for the stuff; a Euromonitor study found that Ireland is one of the biggest per capita consumers of tea in the world.

Ranked in at second to consume most of the sweet liquid, we were only pipped to the top spot by Turkey.

However, what if we told you, you can have your tea and reap incredible health benefits? – Sounds too good to be true, right?

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Chi Fit Tea (@chifittea) on

Well, you're mistaken – introducing Chi Fit Tea.

Now before you go saying green tea is too bitter, these Dublin master blenders have tailored this new tea to the taste buds of the Irish.

Spending months in their kitchen, the creators of the Chi Fit Tea only unleashed this beast when they felt the recipe was perfection.  

So, what are the benefits?​​​​​​

Each cup is enriched with energy-boosting, anti-inflammatory, relaxing and antioxidant properties – to name a few.

But what exactly does that mean for your body?

Well it's ideal for gym bunnies who want a boost before hitting a workout, or shift workers who need a bit of a pick-me-up during the day.

Additionally, if your schedule has you going like the clappers and you need some extra fuel – this tea was made for you.

And we can't forget those health gurus among us – this tea will help relax the body and get everything back on track.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Chi Fit Tea (@chifittea) on

The tea stands out from the competition as it is crafted using 10 specialised ingredients. 

The Chi Fit Tea experts selected the ingredients from Yunnan, China. – And they know a thing or two about good tea, as the city is the oldest tea region in the country.

Chi Fit Tea actually use whole and loose leaf tea to pack in that minty, refreshing flavour. 

And as you sip your tea, you'll get beautiful notes of rose petal, hibiscus, and lotus leaf.

If you've ever been interested in giving energy teas a try, this tea is an excellent place to start.

The attention to detail when it comes to ensuring your brew tastes great, means you really can't go wrong. 

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Ah, breakfast.

Our love/hate relationship with the first meal of the day is all too real.

However, this latest study has shown that chowing down in the morning before hitting a workout can "'prime" the body to burn carbs.

The findings also suggest that fuelling your workouts will allow the body to digest your post-workout meal much more efficiently. 

The research was conducted by scientists from at Department for Health, in collaboration with experts from the universities of Birmingham, Newcastle and Stirling.

As many fitness junkies will know, fasting is becoming a hot trend amongst the Insta-fit population.

The scientists have taken note.

The researchers tested the blood glucose levels and muscle glycogen levels of the 12 healthy male volunteers who took part.

Participates were split into two groups, those who ate breakfast and those who were fasting overnight. 

The scientists studied the volunteers before and after an hour’s cycle.

Those who ate brekkie were treated to porridge made with milk two hours before exercise. 

The results were in and it's time to kick fasting to the curb.

Their evidence shows eating breakfast increases the rate at which the body burnt carbohydrates during exercise.

Furthermore, it boosts the rate at which the body digests and metabolises food eaten after exercise too.

Dr Javier Gonzalez, senior lecturer in the Department of Health who co-led the study, said:

“This is the first study to examine the ways in which breakfast before exercise influences our responses to meals after exercise.

"We found that, compared to skipping breakfast, eating breakfast before exercise increases the speed at which we digest, absorb and metabolise carbohydrate that we may eat after exercise.”

Rob Edinburgh, PhD student also in the Department who co-led the study, said:

“We also found that breakfast before exercise increases carbohydrate burning during exercise, and that this carbohydrate wasn't just coming from the breakfast that was just eaten, but also from carbohydrate stored in our muscles as glycogen.

"This increase in the use of muscle glycogen may explain why there was more rapid clearance of blood sugar after ‘lunch’ when breakfast had been consumed before exercise."

If this study is anything to go by, it's time to become well acquainted with breakfast again.

Nevertheless, my fellow fitness fans will know we are constantly bombarded with conflicting evidence.

This study shows that fasting before exercising can lead to burning extra fat during a session.

If you're undecided, it's best to speak to your doctor before embarking on a new diet or exercise plan.

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So, who among you has been been advised to 'eat like a king at breakfast, a prince at lunch and a pauper at dinner'?

While it sounds like the kind of phrase our grandmothers might bandy about, there is a huge amount to be said for the logic behind it.

In fact, a recent study has confirmed that the key to a healthy weight is to follow that particular eating plan as closely as possible.

With data collected from 50,000 participants over the course of a seven-year study, researchers at Loma Lida University in California established that consuming a large breakfast leads to a decrease in an individual's Body Mass Index.

These findings were in contrast to those who opted to consume a large dinner.

"Breakfast eaters experienced a decreased BMI compared with breakfast skippers. Relative to subjects who ate their largest meal at dinner, those who consumed breakfast as the largest meal experienced a significant decrease in BMI," the study read.

Researchers are of the opinion that a hearty breakfast lowers the chance of snacking and increases the possibility that the individual will adhere to a sensible eating plan.

"Our results suggest that in relatively healthy adults, eating less frequently, no snacking, consuming breakfast, and eating the largest meal in the morning may be effective methods for preventing long-term weight gain," read the study.

"Eating breakfast and lunch 5 – 6 hours apart and making the overnight fast last 18 –19 h may be a useful practical strategy," researchers added.

The findings were published in the Journal of Nutrition.

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