High cholesterol: Two natural ways to lower levels and slash risk of serious complications

Cholesterol is a sneaky condition because it discreetly raises a person’s risk of heart disease, an umbrella term for conditions that narrow or block blood vessels. Specifically, LDL – also known as the “bad” cholesterol – performs this deadly function. It does this by causing the build-up of fatty deposits within your arteries, thereby reducing or blocking the flow of blood and oxygen your heart needs. If your arteries become fully blocked, you could have a heart attack. Fortunately, there are ways to naturally lower your cholesterol. By consuming more omega-3 fatty acids and whey protein, your cholesterol could return to a healthy number. How?

Whey protein, which is found in dairy products, may account for many of the health benefits attributed to dairy.

Studies have shown that whey protein given as a supplement lowers both LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol as well as blood pressure.

This effect has been attributed to a family of bioactive peptides in dairy, so-called “angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors” (ACE-inhibitors).

In whey proteins, the ACE-inhibitors are called lactokins with several studies indicating its beneficial effects on blood pressure.

In a study published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, alpha-lactorphin (whey protein) and its ability to lower blood pressure in hypertensive rats was investigated.

The study noted: “Cardiovascular effects of subcutaneous administration of synthetic alpha-lactorphin, a tetrapeptide originally derived from milk alpha-lactalbumin, were studied in conscious spontaneously hypertensive rats.

“Naloxone, a specific opioid receptor antagonist, abolished the alpha-lactorphin-induced reduction in blood pressure reversed it into a pressor response, which provides evidence for an involvement of opioid receptors in the depressor action of the tetrapeptide.”

Dietician Helen Bond added: “Cholesterol can change quite quickly, which is why exercise and eating healthy should be embedded into your everyday routine.

“But we’re talking a few weeks, rather than days – the odd meal or day where you eat a bit more than usual (including too much saturated fat) won’t make a difference to your cholesterol levels in the long run, but if your healthy eating and exercise habits have totally gone out the window during the lockdown, this could have a big impact on your cholesterol levels and your weight.

“Therefore, if your habits have changed over lockdown, now’s the time to reinstate healthy eating habits and get daily exercise (within UK Government guidelines to stay active and stay safe) before those new overindulgences become a habit that’s hard to break.” 



Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms: Watch out for ‘strange’ sensations here

Vitamin B12 performs a number of essential roles, such as aiding the production of red blood cells and DNA. It also supports the functioning of your nervous system – a complex collection of nerves and specialised cells that relay messages back and forth from the brain to different parts of the body. It is little wonder, then, that becoming B12 deficient can have a devastating impact on the body.

These sensations may take the form of numbness or tingling, says the health body.

Other signs include:

  • Difficulty walking (staggering, balance problems)
  • anemia
  • A swollen, inflamed tongue
  • Difficulty thinking and reasoning (cognitive difficulties), or memory Loss
  • Weakness
  • Fatigue.

According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), other symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency involve the digestive tract.

“These symptoms include nausea (feeling sick to your stomach) and vomiting, heartburn, abdominal bloating and gas, constipation or diarrhoea, loss of appetite, and weight loss. An enlarged liver is another symptom,” says the NHLBI.

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What causes B12 deficiency?

There are two primary causes of B12 deficiency – not getting enough of it in your diet and pernicious anaemia.

Take diet first. Vitamin B12 is found naturally in a wide variety of animal foods so people following a vegetarian or vegan diet are at a higher risk of becoming deficient.

However, the main cause of B12 deficiency in the UK is not dietary related.

Pernicious anaemia is an autoimmune disease that prevents the body from making intrinsic factor – a protein made by the stomach and needed to absorb vitamin B12 in the intestine.

According to the NHS, if your vitamin B12 deficiency is caused by a lack of the vitamin in your diet, you may be prescribed vitamin B12 tablets to take every day between meals.

“People who find it difficult to get enough vitamin B12 in their diets, such as those following a vegan diet, may need vitamin B12 tablets for life,” says the health body.

What foods contain B12?

According to the National institutes of Health (NIH), beef, liver and clams are the best sources of vitamin B12.

Fish, meat, poultry, eggs, milk, and other dairy products also contain B12, it adds.



Hair loss treatment: The 'most cost effective’ solution that could also aid hair growth

No hair loss treatment is 100 percent effective, according to the NHS, so rather than stocking up on your favourite lotions and potions, it might be an idea to invest in something more long-term. Wigs can cover thinning hair, receding hairlines and complete baldness, and can come in a variety of styles, colours and textures.

Wigs are not a new phenomenon when it comes to hair loss, but certain wig-related products could promote hair growth.

Aaliyah Abdulsalam is founder of The Wig Fix by The Renatural.

The Wig Fix is a hypoallergenic, breathable and lightweight silicone headband that can secure wigs.

She told Express.co.uk the product can promote natural hair growth in two ways.

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She said: “The Wig Fix is made out of hypoallergenic skin soft silicone which creates a barrier between the scalp and The Wig Fix called occlusion.

“This helps skin and hair retain its natural oils that increases follicle strength and promotes a healthy scalp.”

Occlusion is when the wig is compressed on the scalp, it creates a microclimate between the skin and the silicone.

The closed, healing environment is called occlusion by doctors and scientists.

It’s thought stretching forces during the massage encourage hair growth and thickness in the dermal papilla cells.

While wigs can be intimidating, Abdulsalam said they are the most cost effective, time-saving , quickest, easiest and safest option to choose.

The Wig Fix is suitable for everyone, but will only work for full circumference wigs rather than toupees. 

It can be found at https://therenatural.com/ RRP: £25.



Cleaning tips: Mrs Hinch fans share hack to remove limescale from bathroom taps

Mrs Hinch – also known as Sophie Hinchcliffe – is the Instagram cleaning sensation who rose to fame after she started sharing cleaning hacks on her Instagram. Now with more than three million followers, her fans have created their own cleaning pages to help one another when it comes to cleaning their homes. Posting on the Mrs Hinch Cleaning Tips page, one woman has asked the best method to clean bathroom taps.

To use the coin, the woman explained how you need to slightly wet the money and then gently rub the limescale. 

Other people agreed and said that using this hack was amazing and worked within seconds.

Another woman suggested using white vinegar and scrubbing the tap with an old toothbrush to get the taps clean.

White vinegar is a very powerful cleaning product because it is made from acetic acid.

Fresh lemons should be used in this case and lemon juice from a bottle can actually harm materials including stainless steel and should not be used for cleaning because it has lots of added sugar and preservatives.

One woman shared how she mixed equal parts of lemon juice and white vinegar together and then rubbed it on the taps.

She left it on for a couple of minutes before wiping it off with kitchen roll to reveal sparkling taps. 

Acidic products like lemon and white vinegar should only be left on for a short time otherwise it can cause damage to the surface. 



Aquarius love horoscope 2020: What sign is compatible with Aquarius – the best match

Air signs: Libra and Gemini

Aquarians need to be around like-minded people who value the same concepts as them.

Members of the same element tend to share the same ideals and make great romantic matches.

Francesca said: “There are four elements in western astrology; fire, earth, air and water.

“The fire signs are Aries, Leo and Sagittarius. Earth are Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn. Air are Gemini, Libra and Aquarius. Water are Cancer, Pisces and Scorpio.

“The rule of thumb is that people of the same element work well together and ‘get’ each other.

“Air signs love to talk, think, read and discuss. Fire signs love action, drama and seek to entertain and be entertained.

“Earth signs tend to value security, routine and ownership of quality things.

“Water signs are emotional, sensitive and nurturing.

“While there can be too much of a good thing, we have a sense of kinship towards those who share our element.”

Aquarius is an air sign just like Gemini and Libra.



Petrol and diesel prices remain low as drivers continue to make 6p a litre savings

Petrol costs have remained calm for seven weeks with drivers enjoying up to a 6p per litre fuel saving. Costs were almost identical to a month ago despite previous warnings that the cost of fuel could rise as coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased.

Diesel costs were also similar to levels recorded in mid-August in a major win for cash-strapped road users.

Analysis form the AA has revealed that there is an “astonishing” 6p per litre price gap in favour of the superstores.

Meanwhile, supermarket diesel customers also continued to enjoy up to a 5p per litre saving on fuel as costs stagnated.

In terms of a typical fuel tank, these savings equate to a reduction of between £3.30 and £2.75 in charges depending on the fuel type.

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AA analysis reveals that the average cost of petrol in the UK is 114.54 pence per litre in a slight 0.06p increase compared to last month.

Their analysis revealed that Morrisons had the cheapest petrol on the market with an average value of just 109.38p per litre.

BP was the most expensive with 116.86p per litre average in an identical cost to last month.

Just one firm recorded a slight drop between August and September with JET reducing values by 0.10p.

Luke Bosdet, AA’s fuel spokesman said: “With all the chopping and changing with coronavirus restrictions and the uncertainty that has brought, pump prices on a plateau for nearly two months have given some reassurance to families with cars.

“However, it’s not all fairness and balance on the forecourts: one oil company (Jet) is able to average a £1 a tank less for petrol and diesel than other retailers in its group, and pump prices at the same supermarket can vary by 2p a litre within a few miles.”

AA analysis revealed that costs could vary up to 6p per litre across one area as many firms offered varying prices.

Drivers have previously been urged to research pump prices before filling up their vehicles to make major savings.



Kate Middleton's parenting trick explained by expert – why she touches George like this

Parenting is never easy. Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, does have some help though. She and Prince William have hired the help of nanny Maria Borello.

However, she has expressed her passion for being a hands on mum in the past.

Appearing on the Happy Mum, Happy Baby podcast she told host Giovanna Fletcher: “There’s such a pull, but I am such a hands-on mum, and whatever you’re doing you want to make sure you’re doing the uttermost best job you can for your children.”

Many experts have analysed the Duchess’s royal parenting in the past.

Her parenting has been characterised as “warm”. Parenting expert Sue Atkins described her as a “lighthouse mum”.

READ MORE: Kate Middleton uses ‘hands-off’ parenting trick to encourage ‘independence’

Science has shown Kate’s technique is hugely beneficial for children’s development.

Research published in neuroscience journal Cerebral Cortex found touching a child frequently helps children to be more social.

Children who are touched more by their mothers were found to have used the ‘social’ parts of their brains more two days later.

Another of Kate’s discipline tricks was revealed by a source recently.

“Things are explained and consequences outlined and they never shout at them,” the source told The Sun.

The source went on to comment on William and Kate’s nanny.

They said: “Maria is firm but she never acts unilaterally with the children on discipline.

“Kate and William, along with Maria, are strict with the children but have this magic ability to appear not to be.

“It is a military operation but you would never guess it because they work ferociously hard on their children’s upbringing and making it seem relaxed and happy for the three of them.”



Food recall: Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Iceland and SPAR recall products over health risk fears

Supermarkets have issued a food recall notice on many food items sold in stores and online. The shops affected include Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and SPAR. Among the list of food items that have been recalled includes a product with undeclared egg which could pose a health risk for anyone with an intolerance to egg. If you have any of these particular items in your cupboard or freezer, they should be returned to the store they were purchased from for a full refund.

Tesco

Tesco is recalling a cereal bar after the possible presence of Salmonella was discovered in several batches.

Customers who have bought the Eat Natural Brazil & Sultana with Peanuts and Almonds Bar 50g, should return the product to a Tesco store for a full refund.

The best before dates that are affected include September 2020, October 2020, November 2020, December 2020, January 2021, February 2021, March 2021, April 2021, May 2021 and June 2021.

No receipt is required and no other Eat Natural products are known to be affected. Customers who have recently bought this product are urged to check the best before date immediately.

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Sainsbury’s

Supermarket giant Sainsbury’s are recalling their UHT milk because of a possible microbiological contamination.

They are recalling the semi-skimmed less than two percent one litre UHT milk because the product may be unsafe for customers to drink.

The best before dates are December 28, 2020 and December 29, 2020. Anyone who has this in their cupboard should return it to the supermarket for a full refund.

Iceland

Frozen food supermarket Iceland has several food recalls in place.

The retailer has recalled two of its own-brand chicken products after testing found the presence of salmonella in certain batches.

It’s also issued a recall on Greggs frozen steak bakes because they may contain small pieces of plastic.

The best before dates affected include December 20, 2020, December 22, 2020 and December 23, 2020. 

Customers have been asked to return the specified Greggs bakes, Chip Shop Curry Chicken Breast Toppers and Southern Fried Chicken Popsters to stores for a refund.

The Southern Fried Chicken Popsters affected were sold in 220g packs with a best before date of April 4, 2021.

The affected Curry Chicken Breast Toppers had the best before dates of February 27, 2021, March 17, 2021 and April 8, 2021 and were sold in 400g packets.

SPAR

Food store SPAR has recalled its own-brand Chicken and Prawn Paella over concerns it may contain fish, molluscs, milk and wheat, all of which are not mentioned on the label.

The best before date affected is October 2021 and the meals come in a 600g pack.

Anyone who has this meal should return it to their local store for a full refund.

Waitrose

Waitrose & Partners is recalling their Chocolate Mini Cupcakes because of undeclared walnuts.

The product pack was mis-packed and contains Coffee and Walnut Mini Cupcakes instead.

This poses a possible health risk for anyone with an allergy to walnuts.

The recall affects products sold in a pack of nine with the best before date of October 6, 2020.



Laura Hamilton weight loss: A Place in the Sun star used this diet plan to shed 5st

Laura Hamilton’s weight loss hasn’t gone unnoticed by viewers after she lost a whopping five stone after having her two children. The 38-year-old has since spoken out about what method she used to lose weight and how she now maintains her slim physique.

The presenter explained how she also used online workouts to stay fit which helped her lose weight.

She continued: “If you don’t have access to a gym you can find some great workout ideas online…A thirty minute workout at home when the children are in bed is something I might do if I haven’t managed to work out during the day.”

Laura also shared how she carries resistance bands in her handbag because they are lightweight and compact which means if you have spare time when you’re out and about, you can still exercise.

She released her own fitness app in 2016 called Laura Hamilton’s Total Body Workout which includes lots of high intensity interval training to get the heart pumping.

A couple of months ago, Laura revealed how she was working with a swimwear brand called Curvy Kate and fans were quick to comment on her slender frame and weight loss.

She often posts home workouts on her feed too, and encouraged her followers to workout at home when the UK was in strict lockdown.

From one TV star to another, Coronation Street’s Colson Smith who plays Craig Tinker has recently revealed his whopping 10 stone weight loss transformation.

Colson’s body transformation is tied in with his storyline on Coronation Street, as Craig battles with his weight on the show.

His on-screen character is a policeman who has taken up running after finding out that he was out of breath whilst chasing criminals.

Throughout lockdown, Colson was exercising at home and encouraging people to take up running and weight lifting and revealed that he lost nearly 10 stone from running and eating healthy food.



Best supplements for high blood pressure: A pill that could notably lower your reading

Foods that are rich in potassium are also important in managing high blood pressure because potassium lessens the effects of sodium.

The more potassium you eat, the more sodium you lose through urine. Potassium also helps to ease tension in your blood vessel walls, which helps further lower blood pressure.

Increasing potassium through diet is recommended in adults with blood pressure above 120/80 who are otherwise healthy. 

Foods rich in potassium include bananas, cooked spinach, cooked broccoli and mushrooms.