What we learned in September
Welp, bye September! Is anyone else freezing all of a sudden?! This month we launched our Aussie version of MAN v FAT Football, MAN v FAT Soccer, hit a crazy 125,000lbs lost in total with the British version and mused about back fat. Incredibly, I started running and the crunch of leaves underfoot is immensely satisfying and totally makes up for the sudden cold snap. Here’s what we learned this month:
We’re more anxious than ever before
Increased pressure at work, home and in our social lives means that 40% of us Brits believe we suffer from anxiety. Clinical psychologist Jen Bateman, who worked with the researchers from wellness brand Healthspan, says: “The rise in both social anxiety and anxiety is due to a range of factors. Our lives are becoming busier and can feel overwhelming. Worldwide events are being streamed into the phone in the palm of our hands in our highly-connected digital worlds, and it’s challenging to ‘switch-off’, which our brains need to rest and stay calm.”
So if you’re feeling anxious, put your phone down, go for a walk and take some time to breathe, relax and reconnect with the world. But if your anxiety is overwhelming, it’s time to see your GP.
We didn’t lose much weight this summer
What with the World Cup, the nice weather and quality TV (well, by quality I mean Love Island and Celeb Big Brother), the summer of 2018 was pretty unhealthy for many of us. Gym chain DW Fitness First surveyed 2,000 people and found that 63% thought it was impossible to work out and eat well when they were more interested in going down the pub to watch the football instead.
83% of people also said they want to get fitter, but end up having at least one takeaway a week, fast food twice a week and five pints of beer a week. Oops.
Drink tea to cut your risk of heart disease
A recent study suggests that drinking five cups of tea a day helps to cut your risk of heart disease by lowering your blood pressure. Authors of the latest study found regular consumption of black or green tea not only reduces blood pressure but also lowers cholesterol, improves cardiovascular function and damps down inflammation — which can be a contributing factor in heart disease and other serious health problems.
Martial arts is thought to boost your mental and physical health
Another new study this month has found that sports such as mixed martial arts and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu have been proven to boost brain cognition and improve alertness and attention. The study highlighted the increase in emotional well-being that comes with taking part in martial arts training. MMA as a form of attention state training (AST) has highlighted that there is a clear link between the practice and improved physical and mental alertness. AST is used to guide an individual towards a specific state of mind that encourages improved focus and self-control. If you fancy giving it a go, find your nearest MMA class here.
Weight Watchers has changed its name
Yep, goodbye Weight Watchers, hello WW. WW is Weight Watchers ‘reimagined’, shifting their focus to wellbeing as well as weight loss. They’re hoping that people who want to improve their wellbeing will do so with them through their Instagram-like Connect platform, even if their goal is not to lose weight. The weekly meetings are being rebranded too as ‘Wellness Workshops’ where you will have a ‘wellbeing check-in’ instead of a weigh in.
It’s interesting, but would you really go to Weight Watchers (um, sorry, WW) if you wanted to think more positively, smile more or declutter your home? And if you’re a WW member who is a member because you want to lose weight, will its new focus on ALL THE THINGS distract from what has been its goal for over 50 years – to support people to lose weight? Hmm. It’s encouraging that WW is taking the bigger picture into account, but it remains to be seen how well this will work.