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Top Tips To Stay Healthy In 2024

try to exercise outdoors

Good intentions

The team at Zen Health Foods in Newbury on how you can make 2024 your healthiest year yet

Christmas done and dusted and tinsel safely stowed for another year? It’s time to make good on those new year’s resolutions. Make 2024 your healthiest and happiest year yet with these five easy, and more importantly, sustainable switches…

One thing at a time

find exercise you love
Find exercise you love

You are much more likely to succeed in your goals if you allow your brain to concentrate on one change at a time; embarking upon a new diet, coupled with daily sessions down the gym (having previously never set foot in one) is unrealistic.

Certain nutrients can also help to boost concentration and support brain health. Boost your B vitamins – they’re important for managing stress, yes, but they’re also important for healthy brain function. Of all the B vitamins, B12 is especially important for red blood cell formation and energy release. Having low levels of vitamin B12 will zap your mental energy, your attention span and your cognitive function.

mussels are rich in vitamin b12
Mussels are rich in vitamin b12

We only need a small amount of vitamin B12, circa 1.5 mcg per day, but because it is mainly found in animal products, vitamin B12 deficiency is one of the most common vegetarian and vegan diet deficiencies. Foods rich in B12 include mussels, mackerel, soya milk and yoghurt, alternatively a supplement can help.

Everything in moderation

green beans are chromium rich
Green beans are chromium rich

If you want to lose a few pounds, do so sensibly. There is no magic weight loss pill. Eat healthily and eat regularly. Your brain uses more energy when it’s being asked to exert willpower, and the hungrier you are the harder it is to resist cravings.

To combat sugary cravings top up on chromium-rich foods, which can include wholegrains, brown rice and green beans.

Stay on top of stress

You’ve probably heard of your ‘fight or flight’ reflexes, but what you might not realise, is that every time you experience stress, these reflexes are triggered. ‘Fight or flight’ is great for fleeing actual danger, but a little excessive when pulled into a meeting with your boss. When stressed your body prioritises where it spends its energies, and nutrients are leached away from less vital areas of the body, such as your skin and hair, and redirected towards key survival organs.

Nutrients that are used up more quickly in times of stress include magnesium, the B vitamins and vitamin C, so look to keep these topped up through diet and if necessary, supplements.

Just staying on top

If you are feeling a little low, St. John’s Wort or Hypericum can help with feelings of sluggishness, low mood and mild anxiety. Scientists believe it works by prolonging the action of serotonin and by increasing levels of melatonin. Hyperiforce tablets can help, but Hypericum can take up to six weeks for best results, and it can interact with other medications and affect the way they work, so isn’t suitable for everyone. Check with your GP first if on prescribed medicines.

Commit to an exercise regime, but keep it real

try to exercise outdoors
Try to exercise outdoors

Finally, moderate, regular exercise is key to a healthy lifestyle; it speeds up the rate at which your body breaks down fat and it’s great for your mental health, better still if you can get outdoors as green space exposure is believed to activate a primitive part of the brain involved with stress regulatory responses. Just 10 minutes a day will help you to feel better and more in control.

Final take-home? Don’t be too hard on yourself. Every journey begins with a first step – well done for wanting to make a positive change in the first place.

For further information, visit 73 Northbrook Street, Newbury RG14 1AE, or online at

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Picture of Mark Kebble

Mark Kebble

Mark's career in journalism started in 2001 when he landed a role on a small lifestyle magazine in Angel, North London. Soon enough, the magazine was purchased by a larger organisation and Mark found himself promoted to editor at the tender age of 23. He later became group editor, working on magazines for Angel, Crouch End, Muswell Hill and Highgate. He was also involved in a launch in Hadley Wood and a major new group website, later becoming Group Hub Editor. In 2021, Mark joined Zest Media Group and oversaw the launch of many Absolutely titles across the UK. To date, Mark has launched in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire, Sussex, Essex, Yorkshire and Cheshire. When he does have some free time, Mark is also the Chairman of an amateur football club in Surrey and is also a fully qualified FA football coach.
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