How lack of sleep kills your beauty buzz


Finding you’re not getting enough sleep each night? Here are 4 reasons why you NEED to get your beauty sleep.


Dullness & wrinkles
Skin loses life and luminosity when you don’t sleep for at least six to eight hours per night, says Tracey Beeby, head of training at Ultraceuticals. “With insufficient sleep, cortisol levels can rise, leading to a variety of skin dysfunctions,” she says. Your skin follows a regular schedule in cohesion with your body clock, fighting off damaging trespassers such as UV rays during the day and replenishing itself overnight. This nighttime wind-down allows for DNA repair, cellular energy production and detox, which peak after dark due to an increased blood flow to the skin. (If you often find yourself with rosy cheeks late at night, that’s your body telling you it’s time for bed.) So the less sleep you get, the less time your skin has to bounce back, leaving your face looking dull and lifeless the next day.

Acne & sagging
Severe sleep deprivation encourages the release of cortisol, a stress hormone that breaks down collagen, causing a loss in elasticity. Beeby states that these stress hormones impair the natural maintenance activities of the skin, leading to an increased rate of ageing, and also warns that increased levels of this hormone can stimulate oil production, leading to increased congestion and acne.

Puffy bags
“Lack of sleep can show as an accentuation of the hollows under the eyes, which are often referred to as ‘dark circles’ or tear troughs,” says Dr Gupta. “It can also accentuate any fine crepe-like wrinkles around the area.” So why does this happen? A lack of sleep causes deoxygenated blood vessels to dilate and flow closer to the skin’s surface. As the skin under our eyes is 10 times thinner than others areas of the face, say good morning to bluish-tinged panda eyes.

Puffy eyes
“Puffy eyes are caused by weakening of a membrane that holds fat pads around the eyeballs in our bony orbits. This weakness allows the fat pads to protrude forwards,” says Beeby. Puffy eyes may also be caused by sleeping on your stomach, which allows fluid to pool around your eyes. If you sleep on your side, you may wake to find one eye puffier than the other, so try sleeping on your back.

Read full article by Sara Veneris in the February edition of Women’s Health and Fitness Magazine.

NEXT: How to apply flawless foundation.




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Do vitamins boost your workouts?


If you think that vitamins, particularly antioxidants such as A, C and E help maximise your workouts, think again.

There’s emerging evidence that antioxidant supplements may adversly effect:

Insulin benefits of exercise
“One previous small study found that trained and untrained people who dose up on antioxidant supplements impair important exercise training adaptations such as improved insulin sensitivity and production of special proteins that actually help defend the body against oxidative stress caused by exercise,” says Tim Crowe, Associate Professor in the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences at Deakin University and founder of Thinking Nutrition.

Oxidative stress during and after a workout
“Now researchers have extended this study by looking at the effect of antioxidants in trained female runners,” says Crowe. “The study, which was published in the European Journal of Sports Science, found that when blood was measured, the markers that indicated oxidative stress were found to actually be higher in those taking the vitamin C.” Though it is not clear why, it is yet more proof that we don’t really understand how supplements may work differently to food in our bodies, nor are we really across the many different lifestyle impacts supplements may have on everything from sleep and stress to exercise.

Image: Thinkstock


NEXT: Check out our guide to supplements to discover the scoop.



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7 fitness Instagrams to follow now


Whether you’re after workout inspiration, fit fashion tips and healthy eating ideas, we’ve put together 7 Instagrams you need to follow now.

 7-instagrams-to-follow-now - Women's Health and Fitness


1. Steph Prem @stephieprem
As the founder and head trainer at Studio PP Steph Prem’s feed varies from reformer workout shots, healthy eats and snaps of when she’s out and about, that’s what keeps it exciting and oh so inviting.


A photo posted by Steph Prem (@stephieprem) on Jan 26, 2016 at 11:05pm PST


2. Lily Kunin @cleanfooddirtycity
Hailing from the Big Apple, Lily will show you how to cook up a storm for any day of the week with simplicity and authenticity.


A photo posted by Clean Food Dirty City (@cleanfooddirtycity) on Jan 22, 2016 at 8:58am PST


3. Sally Matterson @sallymatterson
She’s been in the personal training business for over 12 years so rest assured you’re in really good hands. She has a cute staffy and her office is on the water, um need we say more?


A photo posted by Sally Matterson (@sallymatterson) on Jan 24, 2016 at 4:17pm PST


4. Lauren Hannaford @lozhannaford
As a former elite gymnast, you’ll find her doing handstands all day, everyday. Be right back while I go practice my handstand.


A photo posted by Lauren Hannaford (@lozhannaford) on Feb 5, 2016 at 1:31am PST


5. Belinda @belinda.n.s
Fit mum alert! A true advocate to the healthy lifestyle, there are go gimmicks here. Full of fresh foodie ideas, outdoor adventures and daily motivational quotes, we’re loving her motto.


A photo posted by ⚫️ b. + blivewear (@belinda.n.s) on Feb 1, 2016 at 11:21pm PST


6. Sarah B @mynewroots
As a self taught cook, Sarah’s feed is filled with plant based dishes, wholesome foods and innovative creations. This might be the feed you need get cooking.


A photo posted by Sarah B (@mynewroots) on Feb 4, 2016 at 10:04am PST


7. Diana & Felicia @basebodybabes
Where fitness, fashion and food come alive. WARNING: may evoke a serious case of workout gear envy. You were warned.


A photo posted by HEALTH+FITNESS EDUCATION/INSPO (@basebodybabes) on Jan 17, 2016 at 1:17am PST


Don’t forget to follow us at @whandfmag for more inspo, wellbeing and fitness love.




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Why you need to bring the fun back into healthy eating



We’re sure you’ve heard it all before, ‘healthy eating doesn’t have to be boring’ and it’s true.



Bianca Cheah is an advocate to leading a healthy lifestyle and making healthier choices, here she shares her insights into becoming more radiant, nourished, happy and energised.

As the founder of leading digital publication Sporteluxe and successful businesswoman she’s one of the most influential minds to when it comes to health and fitness. For Bianca, leading a healthy life wasn’t a one-time thing nor was it a sudden overnight revelation but a lifestyle she’s proud to be living. Although always having an active lifestyle with her dad introducing Taekwondo to Australia and with her mum running a few healthy cafes, her wellness philosophy is one to take note of.



So you’ve gotten this far and you’ve probably done all of the above but you find your food is so bland and downright boring? You’re not alone. “If you eat bland food, you will feel miserable and you’re more likely to abandon your clean eating,” says Cheah.

The key is to “use fresh spices and flavours and ingredients such as lemon juice on salads… eat more vegetables… and allow yourself treats in moderation.”

Be creative in the kitchen, plan and prepare and you won’t even feel like you’re on a diet because it’ll become part of your lifestyle just like Cheah.


Over time she’s found ways to tweak her diet by doing the following – so take note, there’s no prescription to a healthy living, find what works for you. Here are some ideas to start with:

Have very little sugar – use honey instead because it contains more nutrients.
Minimise intake of carbs – they make her feel bloated and lethargic – so if you’re feeling the effects, this is something to consider
Avoid processed foods – they really give her a feeling that is like a hangover – reconsider your choices
Become vigilant about avoiding preservatives, colours and additives.
Eat more lean protein, which is critical when you’re working out because protein makes your muscles grow.
Eat lots of fresh food: The more fresh the meal, the better she feels – feel the difference.
Enjoy a variety of vegetables, which are on high rotation in her diet.


Bianca’s day on a plate

 Green juice of spinach, lemon, cucumber, celery (no apple) and a chia pod
Soy latte
 Tuna or chicken salad: purple onion, lettuce, cucumber, grape tomatoes, boiled eggs
A squeeze of lemon over the top for dressing
 Grilled fish, chicken or steak served with vegetables e.g. broccolini, squash, carrots and snow peas
 A handful of almonds or macadamia nuts

 Green juice of spinach, lemon, cucumber, celery (no apples) and a chia pod
A soy latte
 Homemade soup with lots of vegetables
A lean piece of grilled steak served with broccolini, Brussels sprouts, homemade Napoli sauce
Instead of a sweet snack I enjoy a cup of English breakfast tea with honey

DRINKS: 2 litres of water and a small glass of coconut water daily

Browse our healthy recipes for some ideas and remember spices are your best friend.




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Seafood Gumbo

Seafood Gumbo Recipe
Seafood Gumbo
Gumbo, a hearty stew made with anything from sausage or duck to rabbit or seafood, starts with a roux, a mix of flour and oil that’s cooked until it turns dark and nutty, giving the stew recipe its signature earthy flavor. This crab and shrimp gumbo recipe comes from Eula Mae Doré, who was the cook at the Commissary on Avery Island, home to the Tabasco company. Just as most cooks of her generation did, she learned Cajun cooking by watching, rather than from cookbooks. Serve with brown rice. (Recipe adapted from Eula Mae’s Cajun Kitchen by Eula Mae Doré and Marcelle R. Bienvenu; Harvard Common Press, 2007.)

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