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10 healthy habits to carry into the New Year

Most of us approach the New Year from the disenchanting stance of giving something up. Lots of things. Things that we like. As if the post-Christmas comedown wasn’t hard enough….

Instead, why not focus on the positive sentiment of starting something new? Habits take time to build but lots of small steps in the right direction equate to bigger, more positive changes over time. With that in mind, we’ve pulled together our top 10 healthy habits to carry into the New Year.

The best part? You don’t need to give up a single thing. Amen.

THE PSYCHOLOGY BEHIND GOAL SETTING

Less than 10% of us who set resolutions stick to them. Why? Because we’re unrealistic when it comes to goal setting. They say it takes up to 21 days to form a new habit but in actual fact it’s much longer. Try two months – or 66 days to be precise (according to studies). In other words, we significantly underestimate the time and effort it takes to make (or break) a habit.

The point being, change is slow – and it’s a process. It’s important not to judge ourselves harshly if we do slip up. So embrace the process, enjoy the journey and keep it real all the way.

HEALTHY HABITS TO START RIGHT NOW:

  1. Sign up to something new

 Whether it’s a reading club or Salsa dancing, a fun new activity will broaden your social group and give you the feel-good boost – and is proven to lower blood pressure and levels of depression too. Nourishment for mind, body and soul. 

  1. Move more

You don’t need to join a gym to get fit. Just get out there and get moving. Regular cardio, even low-impact walking, is still exercise. And it’s one of the single best things you can do to impact your physical and mental health for the better. Try to build in 20 minutes of this each day. 

  1. Drink more green tea 

Green tea is more than a caffeine-boost. It’s an antioxidant-rich, metabolic-enhancing elixir that could even protect against diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s and diabetes. Plus, it won’t give you the jittery side effects of one too many coffees. Drink up.

  1. Schedule 10 minutes of meditation or quiet time each day

Clear space to be alone, without distraction, for 10 minutes a day. It’s an opportunity to declutter the mind and destress, which will contribute to a more positive relationship with yourself and others. It’s one of the least selfish things you could do for yourself this year.

  1. Donate your time: volunteer 

Volunteering your time to others improves overall happiness and mental wellbeing. It can also enrich your sense of purpose in life. As little as an hour of your time each week for all that? Priceless.

  1. Surround yourself with positive people

Commit your time to people who lift your spirits and make you laugh – there are plenty of places we can go to find stress without our friends being one of them. It could be one of the most positive things you do for your health this year.

  1. Create a better sleep environment 

The quality of our sleep can affect our physical, emotional and mental health – so create the best sleep environment possible. Make your bedroom a technology free zone after 9pm. Invest in a mattress comforter or cosy throw. Make the bedroom (and sleep) your sanctity.

  1. Make just one healthier food replacement this year 

For example, replacing a sugary soft drink with a naturally sweet coconut water (check out our special offer in Waitrose) or confectionary chocolate for a Rebel Kitchen Mylk. Start small and build in more over time. The changes will soon add up.

  1. Drink water. Lots of it

The best advice never gets old. Make drinking more water the habit that sticks. It flushes out toxins, aids digestion, relieves fatigue and reduces headaches. Make sure you get your 2 litres a day.

  1. Keep it real 

Remember – don’t make your new habits absolute. Because it’s not about perfection. It’s about balance, loving yourself and striving towards a direction that fits in with your life. Here’s to 2017.

 


 

 

 

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Rebel’s Revitalising Ginger, Cucumber & Smoothie

Our guts could probably do with a bit of TLC after the festive overindulgence – this revitalising smoothie will help put the spring back in your step.

Healing properties in ginger help to soothe the digestive system, the fruit and veg are nutrient-dense, and the coconut water is loaded with antioxidants and electrolytes. The perfect combination to help reset your health. 

ingredients:

1 250ml Rebel Kitchen Raw Coconut water

½ cucumber

1 generous chunk of fresh ginger

1 ripe banana

2 large handfuls of fresh spinach

Ice cubes

Serves one.

method:

Add all ingredients to your blender. Blend for 1 minute or until the texture is a smooth consistency and the ice cubes have disintegrated.

Serve immediately and enjoy!

 

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How to microadventure in the UK

Heard of a microadventure? The term was coined by adventure-explorer Alastair Humpreys and refers to an adventure that’s “short, simple, local, cheap” and sometimes as accessible as your own back yard.

As well as being heaps of fun, they tend to require minimal planning. So what’s holding you back? Get out there and explore!

Here are some microadventures for you to consider as early as this weekend…

Camp out and stargaze in your back garden

Remember when you’d set up makeshift dens and forts in the back garden as a kid? Basic, fun, and it always felt like a mini adventure. Why not replicate that feeling again? Pick a dry night. Then go alfresco, bring blankets, wrap up warm and watch the twinkly stars.

Tip: Drink hot chocolate from a thermal flask #childhoodnostalgia. Or sub for wine, depending on what you’re getting up for the next day.


Embrace the 5-9

Humphreys encourages people to embrace ‘out of work hours’ as the time to microadventure, suggesting that we’re only limited by our perception of when this type of stuff can take place. There are all those hours between leaving work at 5pm and getting into the office at 9am where you can indulge in some adventure. You just need to switch your mindset. So Google where the nearest hills are, flee the office promptly and pitch up overnight mid-week. Check out some of his recommendations here.

Tip: Bring a sleeping bag, tent, and toothbrush to work. Keep it fuss-free and simple. Have fun keeping your microadventure schtum to colleagues the next day.


Go Wildswimming

Does what it says on the tin. Discover places where you can go wild swimming in the UK and explore the beautiful pockets of nature nestled right on your doorstep. It may not be the Mediterranean Sea but hey, we’re hardy Brits, we know the drill. Get on the really wild side and go skinny-dipping (if you dare).

Tip: Definitely don’t forget your towel and hoodie.


Sunrise in Richmond Old Deer Park

 If you’re lucky enough to live anywhere close to beautiful Richmond Park then it’s definitely worth sacrificing the lie in one day to experience this. Enjoy the solitude of London at dawn, and the almost ethereal scenes of deer silhouettes grazing on the Park’s lush green. You can guarantee a spectacular sunrise. Good news is that the Park’s open 24 hours for pedestrians until Nov. 

Tip: Leave your phone at home and enjoy a technology free zone. And don’t stand too close to the deer… 


Moonlight hike

Go for a walk at night. Whether it’s through fields or even just exploring your local neighbourhood after hours, appreciate how things come to life in a new way when your senses are tuned into different surroundings. Plan it mid-week or at the weekend. You can even search for groups to do this with, just Google Moonlight walk groups UK.

Tip: Leave your music at home. Listen to nature, rather than what’s on your iPod.


 

 

 

 

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Coffee Mylk Ice Cream

Coffee Mylk Ice Cream

Cashew and Coffee Ice Cream. What dairy free dreams are made of. Made by Caitlin from @thecleandiary. Super simple and we can guarantee it tastes amazing. Get ready for a little party in your mouth!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1 carton coffee mylk
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • Cacao powder for dusting
  • An extra expresso shot, optional for a stronger flavour
  • A handful of chopped walnuts, optional

Method:

  • Put the cashews in a bowl with the coffee mylk and cover, then leave overnight to absorb and soften
  • In the morning, put the mix into a blender or food processor along with the maple syrup and blend until smooth
  • Put the mix into an air tight container and place in the freezer
  • After one hour, stir the mixture, and then again after another hour to help it set evenly
  • Once frozen, remove 10 minutes before serving
  • Serve in scoops, dusted with cacao powder

 

Check out more of Caitlin’s amazing recipe’s here: thecleandiary.com

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If you like Pina Colada…

Pineapple Mint Cooler Smoothie

Tropical fruit, fragrant mint, refreshing coconut and a kick of ginger make this smoothie the ideal accompaniment to a hot summer’s day. Rum optional 😉

Don’t forget your sunnies!

  • 250ml Rebel Kitchen Coconut Water
  • Quarter mango
  • Quarter pineapple
  • Handful of spinach
  • Quarter of a cucumber
  • A handful of mint (stalks can be included too!)
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • A few ice cubes (optional)

Throw it all in a blender, whizz till smooth, enjoy!