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  • Remember, remember the month of Movember

    Fancy some grog mate? It’s Australia 2003 and two friends are enjoying a beer together as they often do. On this occasion though Travis Malone and Luke Slattery get talking about moustaches. The once popular in the 70’s trend had all but disappeared and the two guys from Melbourne joke that they should bring the Moustache back. Inspired by a friend’s mother who was raising money for breast cancer they decide to grow a moustache to raise awareness of one of the biggest threats to men’s health, that of prostate cancer. By persuading 30 friends to ‘grow a mo.’ by sending out an email with the title ‘are you man enough to be my man?’ the beginning of a new level of awareness around men’s health began. The Movember movement has gained momentum year on year and now boasts a staggering 6 million Mo bros and Mo Sisters supporting the cause and raising funds to be channelled back into men’s health, facilitating better conversations, awareness, research and help for our brothers who might not ordinarily have the dialogue or the support to embrace and get help for health problems, mental or physical. These days it’s not only prostate and testicular cancer but also men’s mental health that is in the spotlight during this month of Movember. With the knowledge that suicide is one of the biggest killers of men under the age of 45 this is important and without movements like Movember our men would struggle to get the support they so desperately need. It gets me thinking about the men in my life. My father, my uncle, my brother-in-law, my friend’s sons, my nephew, and my male friends. Looking around me it is easy to see how men came to struggle with the idea of open dialogue around their health and how admitting to a problem can often be felt as a weakness. One of my best buddies is a guy who I’ve known for 12 years and whose been an absolute rock for the last two. There is no romantic connection between us, more a sister, brother friendship which developed into a strong alliance in the aftermath of my own mental health crisis. I was coming to terms with the effects of a severe depression, and he it turned out, was still reeling from the breakup of a relationship with the love of his life. The woman he planned to marry and have children with, was, only 8 months after their separation, doing both with another man. What I noticed was that whilst my friend was able to be a rock and a power of strength for me, he was finding it hard to deal with his own pain. He wanted to cry. I could hear it in his voice. It was years of being raised to believe that ‘big boys don’t cry’ and that he had to ‘be a man’ about things that stopped him from even knowing how to start the conversation about much he was suffering mentally and emotionally. It took a lot of gentle persuasion and reassurance from me that it was ok to be feeling the way he did, that he was a great friend and able to support everyone around him, but he was also allowed to break down and for his hopes and dreams to shatter in no particular order, all over the floor. I told him he would only start to heal once he’d acknowledged to himself that he was in an emotional black hole and that it was ok to be vulnerable. It was ok to admit to the world that he was struggling. He, like me just wanted some love and understanding. He, like me is a mere mortal. A human. Men and woman are not so different in the very human need to feel, and to admit to being scared and fearful but history and expectations about how a man should behave have led to a crisis in men’s ability to open themselves up. The fear of being vulnerable and the fear of being diagnosed with a life-threatening illness are real and the need to admit those things and be able to get help is crucial. Education and being given the ability to talk openly is quite literally saving men’s life through movements like Movember. In the UK we have made a few waves when it comes to how society feels about men’s roles and the importance they play within the family for example. These days men can change nappies, take paternity leave (although only for a week or two) and some choose to leave their jobs to look after the children. This is a well needed change from the traditional expectations of what a man ‘should ‘be but there is still a general idea that men are the stronger of the species. That men are indestructible. That men are stoic and showing emotion is weak. As woman we say ‘men get it easy’ because they don’t have to contend with fluctuating hormones in the way we do and will never know the pain of childbirth. However, men are expected to be tough through whatever life throws at them and even within their own sex they battle with what they can say to each other and how they are perceived by their fellow brothers. Men are more likely to get into physical fights and these days with knife crime at an all-time high are just as vulnerable as woman, just in different ways. Men are expected to be brave and strong always. I don’t think it’s that easy. As a woman or a Mo Sister, I recognise men in all their suffering and admire a man when he is honest and open. It's what I look for in a relationship and a friendship with the men I meet. I love men. There are bad ones but there are bad woman too. So, if you have an important man or men in your life, ask them how they are, persuade them to get a medical check and encourage a bit of top lip hair growth during this month of Movember. There’s still time. Let’s keep raising awareness around men’s health. Mo Bros and Mo Sisters unite and together we can help save our precious men.

  • The Food Insecurity Crisis

    For many years I have been bothered by the subject of food poverty or more recently the food insecurity so many of us are experiencing. The very fact that there are people who can’t afford to put a decent meal on the table, parents going without so that their children can eat and the reality of having to choose between bills and a basic need is unfortunately as relevant today as in the last few decades. With an already fragile economy we’ve navigated Brexit, a global pandemic, and an unstable political party whose motto turned out to be ‘do as I say, not as I do’. Two years ago, we learnt a new word - Furlow. This year we have learnt a new phrase – The cost-of-living crisis. Yet again the subject of food and affordability has raised its unwanted head. Growing up I was protected from the harsh realities of food insecurity. We always had enough, and the subject wasn’t part of our everyday existence. That is until images of starvation started to appear on our TV screens. Being a teenager in the 1980’s saw me suddenly exposed to news reports from Ethiopia. Due to years of Civil war, drought, and an inability of the government to control the grain market, Ethiopia was hurtling towards Famine. Harrowing and difficult scenes of emaciated children and babies filled every news report. It was nothing short of heart-breaking. In 1985 the front man for the band The Boomtown Rats, Bob Geldof, had had enough. He was as incensed by what he was seeing as the rest of us and used his creativity and passion to find a solution to ease and support the deadly famine that was playing out in Africa. Together with his friend Midge Ure (from the band Ultravox), he pulled together the biggest names in Rock and Pop and staged the once in a lifetime concert, Live Aid. Queen, Wham, The Who and many more were just some of the acts who took part in the marathon 16-hour concert that spanned both the UK and the US and was broadcast to 160 countries. Geldof wrote the song ‘do they know it’s Christmas? Under the charity Band Aid which featured similarly familiar artists. Live aid raised $127 million, and Band Aid raised $24 million. Fast forward 30 years and the spotlight is now on our own communities, our neighbours, family and friends. Individually we may be struggling to feed ourselves. We’re not experiencing famine and there is no lack of availability of food, but we are in a crisis. In 1967 the US opened its first food bank, and the Trussell Trust opened its first UK food bank in 2000. Foodbanks have served as a lifeline for people on low incomes and the number of food banks in the UK are increasing year on year. There once was a stigma felt by those using such services, as if they’d failed somehow, having to rely on handouts. But there is no shame in wanting to eat and I for one would not hesitate to get help where it is available. In fact, I can write with confidence about one food initiative that is close to my heart. In October 2021 I signed up to volunteer for a food initiative based in Kidlington, Oxfordshire called the Cherwell Larder The brain child of American born Emily Connelly which started from her garage and now runs 3 days a week in the local community centre. Surplus food is collected from the main food hub in Oxford, independent businesses, and donations. In the UK we throw away 9.5 million tons of food waste in a single year. 8.4 million people in the UK are in food poverty. The Cherwell larder is part of a movement that prevents useable food going to land fill and in turn goes directly to the people who visit the larder. You don’t need to apply to come. Simply fill in a form to register and then turn up. The larder runs a café alongside the food hall using surplus food to serve some of the tastiest meals I’ve ever had. We ask for a donation but if you are struggling, we’ll never turn you away. The recent rise in food prices (currently food inflation has risen to over 14%) has seen the number of users grow and across the county the amount of food initiatives like the larder has risen from 100 to 200 in a couple of years. Because of this our current challenge is not getting enough or the variety of food that we were getting a couple of months ago. Surplus is now being spread thin. Supermarkets are better at redistributing surplus food, food arriving in wrong packaging, food past its sell by date (but still safe to eat) or foods that have been discontinued, but there is still so much more that can be done.’ It’s estimated that UK supermarkets donate over 7,800 tonnes. Sainsburys leads the way with 7.6% of its food donated. Tesco’s who pledged to end edible food waste by the end of 2018 ended 2019 with 81% of all surplus food going to humans or animals. According to Eco and Beyond ‘Retailers in Spain and France are doing better. They donate 118,000 and 100,000 of food respectively. France has even banned supermarkets from throwing out edible food’ It is my hope and the aim of many that as the cost-of-living crisis tightens its belt we can find creative ways to work with what we already have sitting in the warehouses of the UK’s grocery supply chain. Food is a basic need. If you are struggling to buy food look for your local foodbank or one of the many larders, fridges and pantries that now operate across the country. Louisa x

  • Weight Loss Hacks

    As we emerge out of the dark wintery months and into the lighter days of spring, we may find our focus is coming back to our diet and how we look and feel being at its optimum. It’s been a slightly challenging last year where many of us have found comfort in the arms of banana bread. We soothed our souls through comforting food and possibly drunk a lot more wine than we would have previously done. Anyone who has been involved in home schooling knows that the time to have a drink has got earlier and never felt more needed. As a weight loss -coach I work with people to achieve their weight loss goals. You’ve likely landed here for the same reasons. Do you have a few pounds or a couple of dress sizes to shift? The diet industry is vast and the type of diet you choose will vary from person to person. From Weight Watchers to the 5:2 fasting diet, each one bringing its own merits. But whichever diet you choose ( I can help you achieve weight loss though eating a balanced diet but more on that later) there are some useful pointers that will help you have a successful weight loss journey. I’ve put together some useful tips to help you along the way: Preparation When I embark on a diet, I like to spend a little time getting into the right mindset and preparing for the beginning of the start date. The week before you start, write a food diary or journal and record everything you eat and drink. It’ll help you identify where you need to make changes and act as a reminder of your habits as you go through your diet. Note the times, where you eat, your mood to highlight what you are eating when you are feeling fed up. Are you having TV dinners? Are you eating late at night? For the record we tend to munch down on high carb comfort food when we’re fed up or feeling low and we tend to eat quicker and snack more if we eat whilst watching TV. Eating late at night can increase your blood sugar levels and affect your sleep which can affect your memory and efficiency the next day. It is a good idea to carry on your food journal as you progress with your diet to help Keep you on track. Make it a mission and it will give you a real sense of achievement. · Get rid of unhealthy foods – It’s time to sort out the cupboards! In the lead up to a diet it’s always good to get rid of temptation. Donate those cakes, biscuits and crisps to willing neighbours or dare I say it, throw it away. Then have your healthy foods at hand so they are easy to get to. When on your diet · Drink more water during your diet to keep you hydrated and to stay healthy. Aim for 8 glasses a day. Water is not only good for hydration it helps you to lose weight too. Water has 0 calories and helps you to feel full. So often when we’re getting hunger pangs it's our body telling us it's thirsty. By drinking a glass of water before a meal, you will feel fuller and eat less too. Drinking water instead of sugary drinks or even sugar free drinks will retrain your body and tastebuds to enjoy less sugar, so you’ll crave fewer sweet treats and empty carbs. If you need help getting started drinking more water, try to drink a glass of water before each drink, each time you have a drink during the day. You could also try adding natural flavours to your water, like lemon juice, mint or fresh fruit slices. · Practice good sleep patterns. Weight loss hacks are not just about food and calories. They are about rest too. Rest and sleep are just as important for how your body functions and what your body craves. When you sleep you have more energy during the day, so your body craves fewer empty carbs and sugar to give you more energy. Have you noticed that all you want is sweets and pastries when you're super tired? Ways to improve your sleeping habits: o Turn off the TV and any electronics at least an hour before going to bed. o Have a relaxing bath, read a book, meditate, do yoga before going to bed to help you get a good night’s sleep o Stop drinking caffeine after 6pm o Start an exercise routine The more regular and good sleep you get, the happier your body will be. Making it Easier to get and stay healthy. · Cook your own meals. A great way to kick start weight loss and healthy eating is to cook your own food. Cooking your food from scratch will give you full control over the quality of ingredients, portions and calories that you put in your body. It’s the first step to taking control of your food. Eating pre -packed foods that are made to be kept on the shelves don’t nourish your body. · Meal Plan. This is hugely important when it comes to successful dieting. Setting out your meals for a week ahead of time not only means you won’t only have loads of tempting foods around, but it’ll also be kind to your pocket. You buy only what you need. It’ll help you stick to your plan and you get to be in control of the recipes and what you eat. · Keep healthy foods close. If you’re going to snack, then make it healthy and have them close to hand. Snacks get a bad name in dieting because we often reach for overly processed, sugar high, salt high and fat high snacks. Lots of flavour but lots of calories too. Go for low sugar alternatives like nuts, dried fruits, fresh fruits, beef jerky, dark chocolate, high protein foods like cottage cheese and boiled eggs and full fat Greek yoghurt. Do be careful of portion size here though as foods like nuts contain fat, its beneficial fat but too much still racks up the calories. · Learn portion control. Portion sizes are getting larger and larger despite the need to eat less. Restaurants and takeaway portions are way too big. One portion can easily exceed your calorie needs for an entire day. It’s all about understanding what you need and eating just that. Do the full test. If you eat slowly and mindfully learn to recognise when you are ‘full’. Although we have been raised to ‘finish your plate’ if we eat more than our body needs, the food will be stored as extra fat. · Spice things up. If you want to make your new healthy lifestyle interesting and wanting you coming back for more then add some spice or flavour to your food. Many people on a diet produce bland and boring food. I know I won’t stick to a diet if my food doesn’t taste interesting. Add spices, homemade sauces and marinades to really spice things up. Add things like sea salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, dried herbs, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, ground ginger and coconut sugar · Learn to spot sugar. Identifying the sugar amount and sources in your food is essential to getting healthy. Contrary to what you may think sugar is not just found in desserts, soft drinks and sweet foods. Sugar is everywhere, in canned food, in junk food in bread and even in many snacks that are advertised as healthy. To identify the sugar, make sure you read the label on everything and stay away from anything that has added sugar. One way to recognise sugar in food labels is by the ‘ose’ suffix. Sucrose, maltose, fructose, galactose, high fructose corn syrup is sugar just under a different name. · To reduce sugar intake: o Drink water instead of sugar filled drinks o Homemade sauces instead of canned sauces with lots of sugar o Identify the names of sugar o Use healthier alternatives for sweeteners like coconut sugars and raw honey o Avoid artificial sweeteners Remember if you see brown sugar, fruit juice, malt syrup or organic cane juice they are still refined sugar no matter how lovely they sound. · Use your blender. One fantastic and simple way to get your vitamins and minerals in is to make juices or smoothies. Simply place your chosen ingredients into the machine and press start. It’s a great way to start the day and to really combine a lot of goodness that are low calorie, natural and tasty. And finally….forgive yourself. If you slip off the diet wagon don’t give yourself a hard time. It’s usually a matter of not if but when. We’re human right. Forgive yourself, dust yourself off and go again. Happy dieting folks Louisa x

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  • Massage Therapist in Woodgreen | Louisa Cox | England

    Bach Foundation Registered Practitioner ​ Nutrition Coach ​ Holistic Therapist BOOK ONLINE HERE To keep the body in good health is a duty... otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear ​ - Buddha England Here you will find a range of therapies that work with your body and your mind and in turn your overall sense of calm and wellbeing. ​ I look forward to working with you. ​ Warm wishes Louisa ABOUT ME My true calling and passion lie in helping people feel better within themselves. Many variants come into play in our daily life that can knock us off balance and play havoc with our emotions. I am genuinely honoured to be able to offer ways that bring peace of mind and facilitate change through healing, that benefit the mind and in turn the body. We evolve very quickly to understand the physical body. We experience physical pains, bumps and bruises as soon as we take our first steps and automatically know to visit the medicine cabinet, doctors or even the hospital. LEARN MORE SERVICES Massage Deep tissue massage for the full body, focuses on the lymphatic drainage system and leaves the client with a sense of well being. BOOK NOW Reiki There are many variations of Reiki, but in essence Reiki treatments can help the body emotionally or spiritually. It is a tradition that is open to any belief system. BOOK NOW Seated Acupressure Chair Massage This is a wonderfully simple and effective therapy to provide within the workplace. Simple in set-up and requirement from staff and company. The client is fully clothed and a quiet space to place the massage chair is all that is needed. BOOK NOW Bach Flower Remedies Working with a Bach Remedy Practitioner, gives you the time and space to talk openly about the issues that are causing you distress. BOOK NOW Nutrition Coaching and Weight Loss Do you believe that you can change your eating habits and patterns for good, lose weight and sustain it rather than fluctuate up and down for the rest of your life? BOOK NOW RELAX REFRESH REVITALISE FEATURED BLOGS Remember, remember the month of Movember 6 0 Post not marked as liked The Food Insecurity Crisis 53 0 Post not marked as liked Weight Loss Hacks 24 0 Post not marked as liked

  • Deep Tissue Massage in Woodgreen with Louisa Cox

    Deep Tissue Massage Are you experiencing painful and stiff ‘trouble spots’ in your body? ​ If so, this is the massage for you. Deep tissue massage makes use of slow, deliberate strokes that focus pressure on layers of muscles, tendons and fascia (the connective tissue surrounding muscles) Deep tissue massage is known to relieve stress, reduces pain, lower blood pressure and the techniques used can break up scar tissue and physically break down ‘knots’ or adhesions ( bands of painful rigid tissue that can disrupt circulation and cause pain, limited range of motion and inflammation) The list of benefits is endless and include rehabilitation of injured muscles and the reduction of arthritis symptoms. If you suffer from any of the following, then deep tissue massage is for you - Low back pain - Limited mobility - Repetitive strain injury ( such as carpal tunnel syndrome) - Postural problems - Sciatica - Fibromyalgia - Upper back and neck pain Deep Tissue Massage 1 hr Book Now

  • Holistic Therapist in Woodgreen | Louisa Cox

    Bach Foundation Registered Practitioner Nutrition Coach Holistic Therapist My true calling and passion lie in helping people feel better within themselves. Many variants come into play in our daily life that can knock us off balance and play havoc with our emotions. I am genuinely honoured to be able to offer ways that bring peace of mind and facilitate change through healing, that benefit the mind and in turn the body. We evolve very quickly to understand the physical body. We experience physical pains, bumps and bruises as soon as we take our first steps and automatically know to visit the medicine cabinet, doctors or even the hospital. Of course, there are many ways that help with the struggling mind and associated emotions. In my experience there were no cures teaching me how to heal or to give proper space to these things but rather a ‘stiff upper lip’ approach of yesteryear. All About Louisa Cox I have experienced big shifts and results using the Bach Flower Remedies for both myself and my clients. As a Registered Practitioner with the Bach Centre I work with you to identify rising emotions and you will experience the benefits that these flower remedies provide. Whilst working with clients who were following my nutrition coaching programmes, I noticed that the biggest obstacles and challenges they faced were linked to their thought processes and beliefs around food. Their ability to stay focused and to achieve set goals are often made harder by a conflicting mix of emotions, doubts and external influences. I integrated the Bach Flowers into these programmes to greater effect. ​ My journey into healing therapies started over 25 years ago with the introduction of Reiki from a friend which provided such beneficial results to my mental and physical wellbeing that I was inspired to train in this healing art. Massage therapy flowed naturally from here and I have been offering this to individuals, groups within the workplace and hotel environments. Call 07500537231 Email Follow

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