5 ways to help boost your kids’ health

New research has found that encouraging youngsters to complete a mile of activity every day can help boost fitness levels, improve concentration and combat early signs of obesity. So with the knowledge that just a mile, or 15 minutes, a day can make a big difference, we’ve rounded up five other simple tips from the experts that can help boost your little one’s health.

  1. Give little tummies some TLC

Healthy gut, happy body. Our gut is often referred to as the body’s second brain as it is teaming with billions of bacteria that help influence immunity, mood, digestion and even brainpower. To support your little one’s gut health, incorporate plenty of oats into their diet. Nutritionist Cassandra Barns explains, “unlike most other carbohydrates, oats reach the large intestine. When they get there they’re fermented by the friendly gut bacteria that live there and encourage their growth, acting as a prebiotic.” Try Nairn’s Fine Milled Oatcakes [RRP £1, Sainsbury’s] topped with banana and nut butter for a tasty prebiotic snack!

  1. Exercise their imagination

A key point to remember when it comes to motivating your kids is that they often prefer ‘activities’ over conventional exercise, especially if it involves their friends or other kids of similar age. There are sporting clubs and community centres throughout the UK that keep kids active and having fun afterschool and during weekends with exciting activities including rock climbing, horse riding and trampolining.

  1. Magnesium is magic

As little ones continue to grow and develop, magnesium is a key mineral to help support the development of strong and healthy teeth, muscles and bones as well as all round healthy development. “Think pumpkin seeds and almonds, leafy greens and oily fish. Or try a child friendly chewable supplement such as Natures Plus Animal Parade MagKids to help children get their daily does,” says Cassandra.

  1. Go colourful

If green veggies cause tears and tantrums, mix up the vegetables you have a dinnertime. Try spiralising, roasting and grating a range of colourful vegetables to make them more enticing for little ones. “Eating a range of colourful vegetables ensures you’re getting a whole range of essential nutrients and vitamins in your meal,” adds Dr. Marilyn Glenville, Nutritionist and author of Natural Alternatives to Sugar.

  1. Try yoga

If you regularly do yoga at home why not get the kids involved, or both start it together? Yoga can be great for getting kids active, increasing flexibility as their muscles develop and preparing them for bed. Maija Kivelä, yoga instructor at holistic wellness boutique, Maître of Thyme explains: “Yoga works on strength, flexibility, balance, agility, endurance, core and overall strength. Yoga also calms the nervous system, reveals the body’s habits and brings you back into your body, into yourself.”


Chia – the go-to superfood for busy brides

Whether you’re a Royalist, anglophile or just love a good wedding, there’s no escaping the buzz surrounding Prince Harry’s impending marriage to Meghan Markle.

But while the Royal pair prepare to walk down the aisle on Saturday, 19 May, marketers of the superfood Chia have been busier than ever after the bride-to-be revealed homemade Chia Pudding is one of her favourite snacks.

That’s also why The Chia Co have teamed up with London nutritionist Lily Soutter, who explains why chia seeds continue to reign supreme:

 “Not only do they make a great addition to tasty smoothies, energy bars, soups and salads, their versatile nature means that they can be incorporated into almost any meal of the day.

 Chia provide a rich source of plant-based omega 3 fats, these fats line every cell membrane within the body are important for soft and supple skin. Just one tablespoon of chia seeds also provides a whopping 6g of fibre, which can help to keep appetite in check, balance blood sugar and support healthy digestion.

 These nifty seeds also provide a source of plant-based protein, an essential macronutrient needed for healthy hair, skin and nails – helping get the glow for the big day

 Lastly, they pack in a decent amount of calcium, magnesium, B vitamins and zinc which are involved with energy production and immune function.”

How to eat it…

According to The Chia Co, Chia seeds have a very mild taste and will not affect the flavour of what you are eating. They are also easy to include in your everyday diet:

o Sprinkle raw on your food
o Make a gel as a base for smoothies or as an egg replacer
o Add to breakfast cereals, salads and soups.

If you were one of Holistic Scotland Magazine’s first 100 subscribers, you may have received a Chia Shot from The Chia Co in your goodie box.

Check out The Chia Co’s recipes for more ways to use them




Will minimum unit pricing for alcohol really save hundreds of lives in Scotland?

Scotland has become the first country in the world to implement minimum unit pricing for alcohol.

New legislation brought into force sets a minimum 50 pence per unit price to tackle the damage caused by cheap, high strength alcohol.

The government says research shows that the move is expected to save 392 lives in the first five years of implementation.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “I am extremely proud that the eyes of the world will once again be on Scotland with the introduction of this legislation.

“Our action is bold and it is brave, and shows once again that we are leading the way in introducing innovative solutions to public health challenges.

“It’s no secret that Scotland has a troubled relationship with alcohol. There are, on average, 22 alcohol-specific deaths every week in Scotland, and 697 hospital admissions and behind every one of these statistics is a person, a family, and a community badly affected by alcohol misuse.

“Given the clear and proven link between consumption and harm, minimum unit pricing is the most effective and efficient way to tackle the cheap, high strength alcohol that causes so much damage to so many families.”

Health Secretary Shona Robison said: “We know we need to act now to change people’s attitudes towards alcohol and I am confident that, with the introduction of minimum unit pricing, we are moving in the right direction. Alcohol misuse costs Scotland £3.6 billion each year – that’s £900 for every adult in the country.

“Scotland has the highest rate of alcohol-related deaths in the UK –  from today, I hope we will see that change.”female-alcoholism-2847443_1920

Chief Medical Officer Dr Catherine Calderwood said: “As a nation we drink 40 per cent more than the low risk drinking guidelines of 14 units per week for men and women. Prior to the implementation of minimum unit pricing, those 14 units could be bought for just £2.52. This is absolutely unacceptable.

“That is where this new legislation comes in, and I am confident that over the first five years of its operation, minimum unit pricing will reduce the number of alcohol-specific deaths by hundreds, and hospital admissions by thousands.”

Holistic Scotland Magazine would love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Do you agree with the new legislation, or have an experience to share? Have your say in the comments below, or get in touch with our editor at 


New Calm on Canning Street yoga studio opens in Edinburgh’s West End

A new yoga studio is set to open in Edinburgh’s West End this week after an extensive two-week refurbishment.

Calm on Canning Street is the newest of Edinburgh’s wellbeing spaces and has been founded by yoga practitioner Katy Lomas.

Katy says Calm will be more than just a ‘functional’ yoga studio and offer a sanctuary where people can relax and connect after classes. The studio also has three wellbeing rooms, which will offer massage, life coaching, counselling and other therapies. IMG_1069 2

The timetable will include Over 50s Yoga, Kids & Teen Yoga, Pregnancy and Parent & Baby Yoga, as well as donation-based ‘Karma’ classes. Katy says the studio will also launch lunchtime mindfulness sessions to help city workers manage their stressful lives.

Katy says the studio has a strong community focus and Wednesday afternoons will be reserved for charities and not-for-profit organisations to use free of charge. The first community partnership is with Four Square, which will be running an eight-week series of mindfulness sessions for clients at risk of homelessness.

The studio is even offering concession passes for doctors, nurses and social workers.

“Calm on Canning Street is the culmination of everything I have learnt over the last 10 years,” says Katy.

“Our core values are community, connection and consciousness and we’re truly committed to ensuring we bring yoga to the people who need it most. My aim with this space is to help people feel calmer and more grounded, support local businesses and to provide a beautiful sanctuary in the heart of the Edinburgh.”

Processed with VSCO with a1 preset

Katy says she has been on quite a journey since launching her marketing career in London on a Graduate Scheme with Barclays 10 years ago. After relocating to Sydney in 2010 and working in banking for nearly five years, she decided to give up corporate life altogether and explore off-grid living and an alternative, more simplistic way of life.

She relocated to Portugal and lived in her camper van in an off-grid community for eight months before travelling to India to become a yoga teacher. Motivated by the desire to spread the benefits of yoga to more people, she decided to move back to the UK and set up her own yoga business, Katy and The Calm. She moved to Edinburgh to be with her partner, Ross, and together Ross and Katy have created Calm on Canning Street as a combination of their passions.


Edinburgh’s One Spa embarks on £2m refurb to reveal new Thermal Suite

Edinburgh’s award-winning One Spa at the luxury Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa has embarked on a project to transform its ‘Escape At One’ experience.

It already offers a range of holistic treatments, a 19m swimming pool, iconic rooftop hydropool, beauty salon and fully-equipped gym with studios, but the refurb will add two new experiences to its thermal suite, including a dry salt room and relax room for guests to unwind and recharge. This will bring the total number of treatment rooms to 15.One Spa Final_sans logo

The work is due to start in April and is earmarked for completion by summer 2018 as part of a £2m investment programme in One Spa. The hotel says all work will be carried out overnight and the spa will be open as usual during the day.

Mark Perkins, Spa Director, said: “We are very excited to be embarking on a programme of works that will transform the experience we offer at One Spa.

“Following the launch of NOW by One Spa last year and the introduction of upgraded treatment experiences with our Made For Life Organics treatment range, this latest investment will bring a contemporary offering to our guests, and ensure that we maintain our position as one of the most luxurious leisure destinations in Scotland.”

The new dry salt room will offer heated, reclining seats and a feature salt brick wall with colour therapy backlighting.

Guests will be invited to experience dry salt therapy or halotherapy, a holistic therapy using micro particles of salt to promote better breathing, healthier skin, sounder sleep, improved physical fitness and endurance and overall wellness.

Dry salt therapy is also said to help alleviate symptoms of many respiratory and skin conditions, such as asthma and bronchitis.

The new relax room will offer a darker, quiet space for guests to switch off and even snooze. They will be invited to put their feet up, lie down on the luxurious loungers, and relax in the feature chairs in front of a beautiful log fire. The decor with dimly-lit twinkling starry sky and dancing flames of the feature fire have been designed to soothe the senses and stimulate the mind.

Tristan Nesbitt, General Manager at Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, said: “We have heavily invested in our product and this last episode of our renovation plan for One Spa will help us to reinforce the Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa as one of the leading five-star hotels in the city and position our hotel as the perfect place to stay for a luxurious spa break in Scotland.”