4 Supplements That Support Immunity

4 Supplements That Support Immunity

Research shows that certain supplements may reduce your risk of infection and the severity of your symptoms. In this article, we recommend scientifically-proven supplements that may safely support your immune system. As always, you should consult your medical doctor before taking any nutritional supplement. If you have or suspect a medical condition, or are taking any medications, please consult a doctor before acting on any of our recommendations to prevent any side effects.

Vitamin D

The relationship between vitamin D and good health is indisputable. This seemingly super nutrient is linked to everything from bone health to enhanced immunity. Research shows that people with optimal vitamin D concentrations are less likely to experience the common cold and other respiratory tract infections than those with low vitamin D. What’s more, respiratory tract infections were found to be inversely associated with levels of vitamin D in blood – that is, as your vitamin D levels go down, your chance of infection goes up! 

Our bodies are absolutely capable of making vitamin D from the sun, but most of us who live in very cold or very hot climates and have to stay inside much of the time will end up with insufficient levels. Statistics from the UAE show that nearly 90% of the population are deficient in this critical vitamin. It also happens that getting enough vitamin D from food alone is difficult, as very few foods naturally contain it. Also, if you have a darker skin, your risk for a vitamin D deficiency is generally higher due to melanin – the skin pigment which acts as a shade from sunlight.

For many people, vitamin D supplementation is an effective and safe way to restore a vitamin D deficiency and make sure that they don’t lack this crucial vitamin.

 

Zinc

Zinc plays an important role in immunity. Low or deficient levels of zinc have been shown to greatly affect the number of  immune cells that are available to fight an invader. After examining 13 placebo-controlled studies between zinc and the common cold, researchers found that taking zinc within 24 hours of the first signs of cold could shorten its duration and make the symptoms less severe. Zinc can be found primarily in red meats and seafoods, especially oysters and mollusks. Zinc is also found in plant sources like tofu, whole grains, nuts, and legumes, but in much lower quantities and with lower absorption than that from animal products. That’s why vegetarians and older people may be at particularly higher risk for insufficient zinc intake from diet alone and may need to support their diets with supplements.

 

Garlic complex 

For centuries, our ancestors have touted the beneficial properties of garlic. In addition to repelling blood-sucking vampires, garlic has long been used as a folkloric cure to treat infections. Incorporating garlic or garlic extracts into your diet may actually activate immunity genes and reduce the severity and incidence of a cold. In a double-blind randomized control trial (the gold standard of scientific studies), subjects were given a garlic supplement or a placebo over 12 weeks between November and February (peak cold and flu season). The treatment group presented with fewer colds and recovered quicker compared to the placebo group. In a similar study design, after 45 days of supplementing with garlic, participants presented with significant improvement in the function of 2 types of immune cells (NK and T-cells) compared to the placebo group. After 90 days, the garlic group also had fewer cold symptoms, sick days, and incidences of colds compared to the placebo group.

Garlic’s health benefits are rooted in its heavy concentration of a sulfur-containing compound called allicin which is released when garlic is chopped or crushed and is responsible for its pungent smell. Allicin and the antioxidants inside garlic are known to exert antimicrobial activities in the body which help fight off infections and support the immune system’s function.

You may also consider adding raw garlic to your diet! Not only is garlic beneficial to health, but it is also full of flavor and an easy vegetable to work into your diet that can be added to anything. If you crush your garlic and let it stand for ten minutes before cooking with it, this helps protect the allicin content. Also, adding the garlic towards the end of cooking will help retain more of the medicinal properties of the plant, as allicin is destroyed by cooking.

 

Probiotics

Microbes in the lower intestinal tract help you fight harmful bacteria and regulate the immune system, acting as your body’s first defense against infection. They also digest nutrients that you otherwise couldn’t (like fiber and other carbohydrates) in a process called fermentation, which results in byproducts that play many important roles in the body from protecting the colon to improving insulin sensitivity. When the gut becomes unbalanced with unhealthy levels of certain bacteria, probiotics can help restore the balance. Research has found that having a healthy microbiome is a key component of a healthy immune system and your body’s ability to fight off viral and bacterial infections. Both probiotic supplements and fermented foods (like live yogurt and kimchi) – which are sources of live microbes – can significantly reduce your risk of infection by fighting pathogens in the gut and contributing to anti-inflammatory pathways around the body.

 

Wait…what about Vitamin C?

 

We can’t talk about immunity without addressing vitamin C. Like zinc, vitamin C is an essential micronutrient that we must obtain from our diets. It plays an important role in immunity by acting as an antioxidant, enhancing immune cell function and supporting anti-inflammatory pathways in the body. However, research shows that while vitamin C supplementation might help with decreasing the length of colds, it is unlikely to prevent us from getting the cold in the first place. What’s more, the absorption of vitamin C decreases with increased intake. For example, up to 98% of vitamin C is absorbed at low intakes (<20mg), but only 16%is absorbed at high intakes (~1,200mg) while the rest is just excreted in the urine! Keep in mind that a typical vitamin C packet or supplement has around 1,000mg of the vitamin! 

Vitamin C is also easy to come by from foods –  having just one cup of chopped red bell peppers provides about 211% of your daily value of vitamin C. 

 

It’s important to remember that supplementation should be personalized and tailored to your bloodwork and medical history. Get tested with our Vitamins & Minerals at-home blood test package or request a free supplement consultation by a Valeo Health Coach to get the best out of your immunity supplements. In today’s world, it’s safe to say that all supplements aren’t created equal, nutrients come in different forms with different absorption properties and are manufactured in different ways. If a supplement has a long list of unidentifiable ingredients, please question using it, as you should be informed of what you are taking. Bottom line, support your immunity with supplements if needed but make sure of what you’re putting inside your body. 


Stressed to Feeling Your Best

From Stressed to Feeling Your Best

Stress is what you feel when life’s demands exceeds your ability to meet them. At the most basic level, stress is our body’s response to pressures from a situation or life event. Stress can be positive, keeping you alert, motivated, and ready to avoid danger. Stress becomes negative when you face continuous challenges without relief or relaxation between stressors. As a result, you become overworked, and stress-related tension builds.

Stress and its causes

We evolved the ability to develop stress to help us to react to danger. In stressful situations we have fantastic responses that help us to react quickly and defend ourselves. I refer to that as resolved stress. Resolved stress is described as reacting to a problem and resolving it. Once it’s resolved, we can move on with life.

The issue we’re facing today appears to be unresolved stress. The stress for which there appears to be no solution. I’ve lost count of the amount of people that have financial issues that take over their lives. They are naturally reluctant to confront those issues. So, for example, they become nervous when the postman arrives because it might be a letter from the bank. Whenever they eventually discuss those issues, they inevitably begin the process of resolution. It lifts a weight from their mind and the stress response calms down. That’s just one example but we’re surrounded by them these days. That’s not to mention the stress of the COVID pandemic which can further isolate us, leading to yet greater unresolved stress.

Physical & Emotional Signs of Stress

While your body is hard-wired to react to stress, the longer the feeling of being overwhelmed or unable to cope with mental or emotional pressure the more harm it causes to your body and mind. Look out for these signs of stress:   

 

Physical 

  1. Feelings of numbness, disbelief, anxiety, or fear 
  2. Changes in appetite, energy, and activity levels 
  3. Difficulty concentrating 
  4. Difficulty sleeping or nightmares and upsetting thoughts and images 
  5. Physical reactions, such as headaches, body pains, stomach problems, and skin rashes
  6. Worsening of chronic health problems 
  7. Anger or short temper 
  8. Increased use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs 

Emotional 

  1. Being anxious or fearful 
  2. Depressed 
  3. Guilty 
  4. Angry 
  5. Not caring about anything 
  6. Overwhelmed by sadness 

If you experience these feelings or behaviors for several days in a row and are unable to carry out normal responsibilities because of them, seek professional help. 

Stress is Relative

People experience stress differently. As an experiment, hold a glass of water in your hand. The absolute weight of the glass does not matter, it all depends on how long you hold it. If you hold it for a minute or two, it is light. If you hold it for an hour straight, its weight might make your arm ache a little. If you hold it for a day straight, your arm will likely cramp up and feel completely numb and paralyzed, forcing you to drop the glass to the floor. In each case, the weight of the glass does not change, but the longer you hold it, the heavier it feels to you.

Your stresses and worries in life are very much like this glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and you begin to ache a little. Think about them all day long, and you will feel completely numb and paralyzed – incapable of doing anything else until you drop them.

Coping with Stress 

Stressful situations are parts of our lives. You might not be able to change a certain situation, but you can manage its impact on you. The greatest thing you can do, for yourself and your loved ones, is to find resolution. Be honest with yourself if you aren’t coping, share the experience. Managing stress includes:

  1. Eat a healthy diet, get regular exercise and get plenty of sleep. 
  2. Carve time for your favorite activities - such as reading, listening to music, or watching your favorite show or movie
  1. Pace yourself between stressful activities - Organize and prioritize what you need to accomplish at home and work. 
  2. Practicing relaxation techniques - such as yoga, deep breathing, massage or meditation.
  3. Stay connected—Spend time with family, friends and talk often to them. 
  4. Keeping a journal - writing about your thoughts or what you're grateful for in your life.
  5. Positive thinking – Become aware of your thoughts and challenge the negative ones and replace them with positive thoughts. 

Finally, seek the help of a Valeo Wellbeing coach who can help you identify stressors, understand the impact they have on your body and develop long-term healthy habits that will help you feel your best. 

Testing, exclusion diets, and working with a knowledgeable coach may all help to identify the problem and provide long-term, sustainable solutions.

Certainly, enhancing gut health is a great place to start. At Valeo, we don’t want to spend too much time telling you what you can’t do. We’d rather help you to discover what you can do. Our coaches use intolerance testing to learn more about your digestive health, and would rather not restrict your diet, but use the data they have to enhance it.


Food Intolerance: What You Need To Know

Food Intolerance: What You Need To Know

A big part of our well-being depends on what we eat. Food impacts our physical, health, energy levels, mood, and sleep. Having any kind of food intolerance could be a secret culprit in making you feel slightly off to extremely sick. Fortunately, with simple tests, we’re able to detect food intolerances, tackle them, and get you feeling your best at all times.

What is food intolerance?

On the basic level, food intolerances cause a person to have difficulty digesting or breaking down certain foods. During digestion, food is broken down into components that pass harmlessly from the gut into the bloodstream. Sometimes your immune system might detect food particles in the bloodstream as foreign and responds by making antibodies to these foods.
An overloaded immune system might ultimately cause chronic inflammation and symptoms. These can be hard to discover especially as many of the symptoms of an intolerance mimic other conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Intolerance vs allergy

The main difference between an intolerance and an allergy is that food intolerances mostly involve digestive system reactions and allergies involve immune system reactions. Allergies also tend to be very fast reactions, happening within 2 hours. Food intolerance reactions can take up to three days to manifest themselves.
Whilst food allergies remain rather rare, occurring in around 1% of the adult population, food intolerances are very common. Nearly everyone will have experienced an unpleasant reaction to something they ate at some point.
Food allergies can occur when even a relatively small amount of the food is ingested whilst a food intolerance can be dose-dependent. Many people can tolerate a small amount of food but the more they eat the stronger they react.

Some of the common symptoms of food intolerance include:
· Nausea
· Stomach pain
· Gas, cramps, or bloating
· Vomiting
· Heartburn
· Diarrhoea
· Headaches
· Irritability or nervousness

Reasons for food intolerance

There are multiple reasons for developing a food intolerance and it could happen at any age.

Leaky Gut
Top of the list is increased gut permeability (leaky gut). This can lead to undigested foods being able to cross the gut wall where they then cause an inflammatory response as the body is unable to recognize them. Valeo Wellbeing coaches are all trained to improve gut permeability, restore gut function and reduce the chances of developing food intolerances.

Natural lack of enzymes
Some of us simply lack certain enzymes that allow us to digest certain foods, for example, lactose (a sugar found in milk) intolerance (caused by the absence of the lactase enzyme) is thought to affect 65% of the world’s population.

Certain processed food ingredients and additives such as sweeteners, colorants, and flavor enhancers commonly cause many of us to have issues. Gluten (a wheat protein) contained in foods such as bread, breakfast cereals, and pasta can also be an issue for many of us.

Type of food preparation
A lot of your food intolerance could depend on how the food is produced in the first instance. Many who struggle to eat bread in their home country can tolerate it just fine as they holiday in France. People who cannot tolerate shop-bought bread are just fine when eating a home-baked loaf. It can’t be overlooked that food production relies heavily on extending shelf life and improving product stability. Stabilizers can be added and many people are likely reacting to those rather than the food itself.

Detecting and managing food intolerance

Testing, exclusion diets, and working with a knowledgeable coach may all help to identify the problem and provide long-term, sustainable solutions.

Certainly, enhancing gut health is a great place to start. At Valeo, we don’t want to spend too much time telling you what you can’t do. We’d rather help you to discover what you can do. Our coaches use intolerance testing to learn more about your digestive health, and would rather not restrict your diet, but use the data they have to enhance it.


Eight Ways to Add Movement to Your Working Day

Eight Ways to Add Movement to Your Working Day

Are you bound to your desk, sitting in your chair, hunched over your laptop, working away through the day? Little changes in your daily life can have considerable benefits. Movement is one of them.

You might not realise it, but sitting for longer than 3 hours a day has significant long-term impact on your health, some of which are the increased risk for heart attack, stroke, and diabetes, not to mention the accumulation of fat around your abdomen. Needless to say, movement improves your physical and mental health and increases your productivity.

Here are some practical tips and also some fun ones to make sure you keep moving throughout the day, whether you are working from your home or office.

Stand up. Sit down. Stand up.

Reduce long hours of sitting by standing up at least 2 minutes twice an hour. Set an alarm if you have to. Try to accumulate two hours of standing or light activity daily during your working hours and eventually try progressing it to four. You can do that by breaking up seated work with standing work regularly and using accessories such as this one to simplify the transition.

Stand on one leg

Practice one leg balancing at least twice a day. If you find you are good at it, then try it with your eyes closed. It’s not only a fun way to stay active, it is also an indicator of overall health and an actual physical age predictor. Balance declines with age and you can overcome it by practicing one leg standing.

Use the stairs

You’ve heard it often enough: take the stairs! It’s a great cardiovascular exercise, burns more calories than jogging, strengthens your core muscles, and gives you the sense that you are smarter than everyone else. Depending on how many stairs are in your office or home building, you could simply start by getting off the elevator one floor early as you gradually build your fitness.

Move before food

To avoid your afternoon slumps and improve your metabolism and digestion, get moving before you have your lunch and then sit down while having it. Use your lunch time to switch off, with no mobiles and laptops, and enjoy your colleague’s company if you have them around.

Hip hitches

These are simply a combination of standing up and balancing. You can mimic the benefits of walking at pace by practicing hip hitches. Simple to do anywhere (you might get strange looks) but especially good if you are waiting for the kettle to boil.

Here’s a 90 second video to explain. 

Hula Hoops

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s move to the fun stuff that would get you moving. Keep a hula hoop next to your desk. This is one of the things a lot of us did when we were younger, really enjoyed, and then forgot about. A Hula hoop is cheap, doesn’t require a gymnasium, can be done quickly, and improves balance and coordination.

Swing Ball

Another fun one is keeping a swing ball around. It doesn’t need a lot of space and serves as a quick and fun activity. It improves hand-eye coordination, gives you a great upper body workout, and most importantly increases your standing time.

Skipping

While practicing standing on one leg with your eyes closed, you have improved hand-eye coordination and your reaction time is improving. Take it to the next level and start hopping on one leg with a skipping rope. It improves circulation, bone density, and concentration and it’s fun!

In short, the more you move, the less you sit and the less you sit, the more energy you have. So get moving!


Do's and Don'ts of Taking Supplements

The Dos & Don'ts of Taking Supplements

You’ve probably heard and read about the benefits of dietary supplements and taking them might feel like the right thing to do. A pill here and a pill there, surely they must do you good. The truth is far from that.
Supplements are one of the most overly marketed health products out there, with thousands of brands to choose from. Not all supplements have been created equal and if you don’t really need them you might not benefit from taking them. On the contrary, they might prove harmful to your body.

Here’s Valeo’s list of dos and don’ts in finding your way in the world of supplements:

Do your research first

With such an overwhelming number of nutritional supplements on display, how do you decide what to use and when to use it? Often people buy generic high street supplements, not understanding why they are using them and not feeling the least benefit from them.

There is a much darker part where people simply don’t know how those supplements are produced and what is in them exactly. What are the production standards, what is the quality of ingredients, what is the quality of research for their use? Many are safe and likely somewhat effective, but others aren’t what they appear to be. It’s a really good idea to work with a professional that knows and understands the supplement market. Someone whose job it is to do the research and check for you.

This is exactly what many of the Valeo Wellbeing coaches can do for you, starting with whether you need supplements in the first place. With Valeo’s blood testing program, you can monitor if a supplement is needed, has worked and had the desired effect on your overall health. This is especially important to avoid over-supplementation by blindly continuing to take something without understanding its long-term consequences.

If you want to go through the process without professional advice, try to buy independently verified supplements or contact the manufacturer and get more information before opting for their product. Manufacturers should be completely transparent with their production process and evidence base.

Don’t fall into the trap of supplement gurus

The ‘it helped me, so it must help you’ approach to supplementation is what I refer to as the ‘Guru market’. This is where something is successful for one individual so therefore it must be great for everyone. Nothing could be further from the truth. Lifestyle, nutrition, wellbeing, and health can and should be individual. This isn’t a one size fits all life, it’s your life with your issues, aims, and goals. Your supplements should be personal to your needs too.

Don't take herbal supplements so lightly

Although they are marketed to be natural, with no side effects, herbal supplements can be highly reactive.. Herbs can be  potent substances and even vast amounts of common pharmaceutical medicine are derived from plants and herbs.

A 2015 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine estimated approximately 23,000 emergency room visits in the USA are due to adverse supplement reactions. The most common herbal supplements causing reactions are those marketed for:
– weight loss
– sexual enhancement
– sleep
– laxatives
– bodybuilding

And the most common vitamin/mineral supplements causing reactions are:
– multi-vitamins
– minerals
– Iron
– Calcium
– Potassium

Adding to the confusion, recent research shows that a third of tested herbal supplements contained no evidence that the labeled herb was detected in them. Understanding herbal remedies takes huge skill, training, and research. This is why in my opinion, herbal supplementation is better done under the supervision of a trained individual or herbal practitioner who knows and understands exactly what they are advising.

Keep these 7 pointers in mind when taking supplements

1. Understand why you are taking a supplement.
2. Understand how effective it is and how it is manufactured.
3. If you are taking a supplement for nutritional deficiencies make sure you retest to see if it has worked and to avoid over-supplementation.
4. Take a look at your diet to see if it is contributing to your nutritional deficiencies
5. Only take one new supplement at a time. This can help you understand if you feel better, worse, or no different.
6. Only take the recommended dose unless specifically advised by a professional
7. Stop taking supplements if you experience any adverse effects.

Seek professional medical advice

Anyone under medical supervision for a specific medical condition or those using prescription medication should always seek professional advice before using nutritional supplements. Different physicians have different opinions about supplements, make sure to back up any advice you follow with your own research.

Valeo also recommends that the following individuals should seek professional advice before using supplements:
• Anyone undergoing cancer treatment
• Anyone taking immuno-suppressing medication. Those that have had organ transplants for example.
• Anyone who has experienced or is likely to experience an anaphylactic reaction
• Anyone pregnant or breastfeeding
• Anyone being treated for liver or kidney disease
• Children

Don't miss out on the best supplements

I’ve developed deep trust and understanding by working with several nutritional supplement manufacturers over the years. I have no financial interest in that relationship other than they share their research and in doing so, improve my understanding of supplements and give proper advice on the subject.

Still, my advice for the best supplementation.
- Multivitamin and mineral supplement is eating wholesome, fresh food.
- The best protein and iron supplements are pasture-fed steaks.
- The best hydration supplement is drinking a mix of real salt, lemon juice, and water.
- The best sleep supplement is getting morning sunlight and evening darkness.

Jamie Richards – Valeo Chief Wellbeing Officer


High Intensity Interval Training

High Intensity Interval Training

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a broad term for short periods of intense movement followed by short recovery periods. 

 

It’s completely relevant to how fit you are. If you haven’t exercised for a long time, then simply standing up and sitting down a few times can be defined as HIIT training. For others, it might be a 30-second full sprint up a steep hill before walking back down and repeating. 

One of the big advantages of HIIT training is getting the maximum benefit from minimal time.

Five minutes before breakfast can set you up for the day. Many HIIT benefits include:

  • Can easily be done from home with little or no equipment
  • Burns more calories than traditional exercise
  • Those calories can continue to burn for hours after the session
  • Targets fat burning systems in the body like traditional exercise but in a much shorter time
  • Improves lean muscle mass
  • Improves oxygen consumption
  • Improves heart rate and blood pressure
  • Improves blood sugar regulation

 

HIIT training is an extremely efficient way to exercise, especially suited to our busy lives. Valeo Wellbeing coaches can help you to smoothly implement HIIT into your daily routine and start reaping its health benefits. 


Is Celery Juice Good For You?

Is Celery Juice Good for You?

Multiple health benefits are advertised for juicing the simple vegetable, celery. However, most are lacking any sufficient evidence that they exist. When we start new health regimes, most of us experience benefits. This is where the line gets blurred because it’s hard to say if the new thing you started is beneficial or the old things you stopped have made you feel better. The health bounce attributed to juicing could come from the foods and habits you stopped when juicing. 

Celery juice is hydrating, which isn’t surprising as it’s roughly 95% water. We often struggle to maintain hydration, so anything that improves that situation is a good thing. In the modern world, it’s safe to say that most of us could benefit from eating more vegetables, and juicing also helps us reach that goal. 

These are the benefits that could be contributed to celery juice. Yet, the most important part of starting something like celery juicing, or any juicing for that matter, is that you’ve simply made a positive decision about your wellbeing however misguided that decision might be.

“There’s a blurred line between the benefits of starting new things and stopping old ones.”

Negative interactions with certain drugs

The most compelling evidence indicates that if you are taking any pharmaceutical drugs, especially blood thinners or sedatives then you need to rethink using celery juice. Negative interactions have been reported and further research is needed. If in doubt, consult with your prescribing Doctor.

Diuretic

Celery is high in Mannitol, a type of sugar alcohol. It can pull water into your digestive system and loosen your bowels, leading to diarrhea. This may be further exacerbated by existing conditions like Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).

Just because it’s antibacterial doesn’t make it good

We have more bacterial organisms in our bodies than we have cells. It influences multiple factors in our lives and wellbeing. The biggest antibacterial substances we have are antibiotics. There are of course antibiotic-like substances in nature that are often found to have beneficial properties when ingested. When we juice vegetables like celery then the anti-bacterial element is amplified significantly and far more than nature intended. The more is not necessarily the better.

Celery is goitrogenic

Goitrogens are substances that disrupt the production of thyroid hormones by interfering with iodine uptake in the thyroid gland. Goitrogenic substances are reduced by cooking and are well tolerated at low levels. Raw juicing may mean consuming far more goitrogenic substances than nature intended.

Low nutrient content

Just because it contains certain nutrients, doesn’t make it a good source of those nutrients. In reality, celery doesn’t have mega amounts of anything other than vitamin K.

High sodium content

For those with existing blood pressure issues, celery juice has relatively high levels of sodium and relatively low levels of potassium. This may further elevate blood pressure, especially in salt-sensitive individuals.

Low in fiber, increased hunger

Most juicing machines extract the fiber that exists in vegetables. It’s the fiber that contributes to satiety so it’s common to feel hungry when relying on juices. This can lead to the temptation to reach for that quick and easy snack.

High pesticide food

Celery is in the top 10 on the environmental watchlist as one of the most contaminated vegetables. So be extremely careful if you want to reduce your toxic exposure.

Recommendations

Too much of a good thing can easily become a bad thing. If you intend to undertake celery juicing, I’d recommend only doing it over a 7-to-14-day period before taking an extended break from juicing. I’d also recommend blending your fruits to maintain the fiber content of the food, keeping you satiated for longer, rather than using a juicer that removes over 95% of the pulp. 

That being said, you can reach the promised benefits of juicing celery in other ways. Drinking water, deep breathing, and a sauna can help your body detox from accumulated toxins. Limiting snacking and sticking to a healthy meal plan can help you lose weight. Stopping the things you are substituting celery juice with, like cereals, breakfast biscuits, baked goods, and seed oils can improve your digestion.   

 

Finally, seeking out a wellbeing coach can help you make lasting changes in your lifestyle, nutrition, and movement, saving you the time and effort of chasing health fads. Wellbeing coaches empower you to take control of your health and make more informed decisions about it in the future. 

Valeo lets you connect to a pool of the most qualified wellbeing coaches around the world. 


The Kettle Boil Workout

The Kettle Boil Workout

Every time the kettle goes on or there is a break in television programs your challenge is to do some form of movement for the time it takes to boil or for the adverts to finish.

For families this is an ideal time to turn down the TV, turn up the iPod and DANCE! Others can skip, hula hoop, star jump, climb the stairs, run on the spot, walk on the spot, stand up and sit down as many times as you can or you can DANCE too if you like.

Do it for 21 days and feel the difference. You can do it, your kids can do it, your grandkids can do it, and so can your grandparents, parents, friends and neighbors. No gym equipment, no changing into exercise kit, no preparation.

It’s highly effective because it’s spontaneous and spontaneous movement is the very best kind. Best of all, after 21 days you’ll have a brand new and very healthy habit.


Sauna

Sauna

We have a long history or saunas or sweat houses as they may have been referred to. Ancient Mayan cultures used sweat houses 3’000 years ago. Many cultures around the world have long held traditions of sweat houses. As we study ancient cultures, we realise that simply using an extremely hot and humid room wasn’t for just for pleasure. There were, and are, clear health benefits to sauna bathing. Especially today when we live in a thermostatically controlled environment. From our houses, to our cars, to the supermarkets and to the office the temperature remains artificially constant. This constant temperature reduces the need for our body to thermoregulate. It’s the old adage ‘use it or lose it’. All our body systems benefit from challenge and this is just one of the ways to do that.

  • For beginners, start slowly and build up gradually
  • Take advice and learn the rules from your sauna location
  • Aim for 15 to 20 minutes a day, 3 x a week sauna reduces all causes of mortality by 63%
  • Experienced users will use a sauna, take a cold shower or plunge, then revisit the sauna and repeat.
  • The main health benefits are cardiovascular however – regular saunas also protect against disease and infection through several different pathways
  • Shown to protect against dementia
  • Shown to protect against stroke

https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/2130724 https://academic.oup.com/ageing/article/46/2/245/2654230 https://n.neurology.org/content/90/22/e1937


It’s time to stand up for the future of your health.

It’s time to stand up for the future of your health.

We are experiencing a sedentary epidemic. Across the developed World we spend increasingly more time sitting and less time standing, walking and moving. Even when we do stand there is less reason to stay standing for longer. Every modern convenience is close to hand. We no longer need to travel long distances for food, water, shelter or company.

Almost half of women and more than 40 per cent of men are not getting enough exercise in the UAE, figures have shown. Data compiled by the World Health Organization (WHO) found the Emirates ranked alongside the UK and the US as having some of the most inactive populations in the world. Simply standing up and spending more time on your feet may go a long way to resolving this issue.

  • Sitting for longer than 3 hours a day = causes 4% of all mortality in 54 countries
  • The longer you sit, the more your abdominal fat storage increases
  • Abdominal fat = higher risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Be aware that physical activity only produces benefits when accompanied by improved diet and less sedentary time
  • Europeans are currently spending 54% of waking time sedentary – 10% would be an optimum target
  • The minimum requirement is 2 x 2-minute breaks from sitting each hour. They should be spent walking, ideally up stairs
  • More exercise (going to the gym 3 x a week) does not protect against sitting time. Sitting breaks protect against sitting time.

Valeo aims to get you on your feet. You could start with our Kettle Boil Workout.