Win a Celtic Herbal Exotic Wood & Ylang Ylang bathtime bundle

Celtic Herbal has been on a mission this Autumn to revive good, old-fashioned bath night. The natural soap and skincare specialist even launched the Great British Bath Night campaign (28 October – 6 November) to help remind people what they were missing – and, in the process, unearthed some little-known facts about bathing.

Did you know, for example?

  • Most people believe a shower saves more water than a bath, but with more powerful, longer-lasting showers this is not always the case. An average bath uses 80 litres of water, while an eight-minute power shower uses 136 litres.
  • Research conducted by Loughborough University found that lying in a 40 degree bath also effectively reduces blood sugar levels.  The study suggested an hour spent in the tub can also burn around 126 calories – that’s as many calories as 30 minutes out walking.
  • Whole-body immersion bathing in warm water (~40°C) is common in Japan and exerts sufficient hyperthermic action to induce vasodilatation and increase blood flow, supplying more oxygen and nutrients to the periphery. Cross-sectional studies report better subjective health status with an immersion bathing habit.
  • Visual analog scale scores were significantly better for fatigue, stress, pain, and smile and tended to be better for self-reported heath and skin condition after bathing intervention than after showering intervention. The SF-8 Health Survey showed significantly better general health, mental health, role emotional, and social functioning scores.
  • Profile of Mood State scores were lower for stress, tension-anxiety, anger-hostility, and depression-dejection. Immersion bathing, but not shower bathing, exerts hyperthermic action that induces increased blood flow and metabolic waste elimination, which may afford physical refreshment. Immersion bathing should improve both physical and emotional aspects of quality of life.
  • Habitual hot water bathing protects cardiovascular function in the middle-aged to elderly.
  • We spend a total of more than six months of our lives in the bath or shower.

Win a Celtic Herbal bathtime bundle

Holistic Scotland Magazine has a Celtic Herbal Exotic Wood & Ylang Ylang bathing bundle from the brand’s Wellness range to give away to one lucky winner to help their bathtime become more relaxing and therapeutic.

The prize includes:

  • 1 x Exotic Wood & Ylang Ylang Soap 100g
  • 1 x Exotic Wood & Ylang Ylang Bath Oil 100ml
  • 1 x Exotic Wood Bath Salts with Ylang Ylang 350g

To be in with a chance of winning, just fill out your details below and we’ll enter you into the prize draw. The closing date for entries is 12 noon on 31 December 2018. Good luck!


For great herbs to use in the bath, pick up a copy of the December/January issue of Holistic Scotland Magazine. Or, to find out more about Great British Bath Night and why bathing is so good for us, head to the Celtic Herbal blog.


How to cope with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Online bed and sleep specialist Time 4 Sleep shares some winter self-care tips for coping with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) 

First of all, what is SAD?

SAD is a depressive illness that’s often triggered by the lack of sunlight in winter. This can affect the hormone levels in the part of the brain which controls sleep, mood and appetite.

How can you overcome SAD when it hits you?

  1. Adjust your routine

Shorter days can play havoc with your daily routine which, in turn, can affect your sleep pattern and your mood. Getting up in the morning can be difficult when it’s pitch black, so to help you get motivated why not: make a ‘to-do’ list for the day or go outside for a walk? A hot drink with your favourite breakfast can also get your day off to a great start.

Try to adjust your routine accordingly to keep yourself happy and healthy throughout the autumn and winter months. If possible, allow yourself a little more time in the evenings to enjoy relaxing and unwinding before the sun goes down. Perhaps have your meal a little earlier so you have more time to enjoy the evening or treat yourself to an extra hour in bed on a Saturday morning so you’re waking up to the sunlight.

2. Get more light in your day

Whether it’s a walk in the morning or on your lunch break, every extra minute of vitamin D can make a huge difference. Light therapy is a popular treatment for those who suffer with SAD, with an effectiveness rate of 85%*, and can work with only 30 minutes use per day for two weeks. Regular exercise and a balanced diet with foods rich in serotonin-boosting nutrients, such as dark chocolate, salmon and mushrooms, will also help you to feel your best.

3. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep

Getting a good night’s sleep is vital in allowing you to function properly throughout the day and increases your overall mood. Try sticking to the same bedtimes and keep the same sleep routine for the autumn and winter months. Eight hours a night is the recommended amount and will leave you feeling the most refreshed and productive the next day.

Making sure you’re sleeping on the right mattress is important for sleeping through the night. Time 4 Sleep director Jonathan Warren says: “Mattresses have a big part to play in the quality of your sleep. Make sure you try and test a few varieties, as everyone’s needs are different depending on their preferences and health needs. It’s definitely one of those products that’s worth investing in.”


Brits spend 8 months of their adult life sitting on the loo but do you know what’s normal?

New research has revealed that Brits spend the equivalent of eight months of their adult life sitting on the toilet.

Researchers who carried out a detailed study into the time we spend ‘on the throne’ discovered we head to the loo twice a day for a ‘number two’ – and six times for a wee.

This amounts to just over 15 minutes every day or almost two hours a week on the loo.

One in three Brits said sitting on the toilet was one of the only occasions they get some time to themselves.

It also emerged women are more likely to strike up a conversation in a public loo with a stranger than men are.


But there are some no-nos when it comes to toilet behaviour with 65% of men saying they would find it unacceptable if another man used the urinal right next to them if there were others free.

More than six in 10 adults have also been embarrassed after entering a bathroom where the previous user left a ghastly smell – only to open the door afterwards and find someone else waiting to go in.

One in four adults say they have been greeted by the worrying sight of blood in their stools after using the toilet. But only a quarter of these made an appointment with the doctor straight away – with the majority delaying a medical appointment for as long as possible out of embarrassment.

“We were surprised at how much time some Brits seem to spend sitting on the loo,” says Simon Bayley of bowel cancer self-screening site, which commissioned the research.

“It’s something we all do, but rarely discuss – yet ‘toilet etiquette’ is a huge part of modern life, whether that’s at home, work or out in public.

“A loo break is a pause from whatever else you might be doing, but it can also be a really good opportunity to get a glimpse at your health.

“Your toilet habits can tell you a lot about what’s going on inside your body.”

The study also found one fifth of respondents admit they’d feel weird if they were sitting on the toilet without their phone to fiddle with.

And Brits are now more likely to look through their phone or simply sit there and think than read a newspaper, suggesting the classic habit of reading on the loo may be a thing of the past.

Almost one in 20 even admitted to talking on the phone while in the bathroom.

And the horror scenario of using a public toilet only to discover too late there was no loo roll would see a quarter of Brits ask a stranger to hand them some.

But 24% would wait until they thought the coast was clear, before waddling to the next cubicle with their trousers around their ankles.

More than six in 10 adults have also been left embarrassed after entering a bathroom where the previous user left a ghastly smell – only to open the door afterwards and find someone else waiting to go in.

The research, carried out via OnePoll, also found six in 10 Brits reckon they can get a good measure of their overall health – by the state of their bowel movements.

And one in four admit they always have a peek into the toilet after going for a number two to keep an eye out for any worrying health concerns.

It’s just as well for some though with one in four adults saying they have been greeted by the worrying sight of blood in their stools after using the toilet.

But only a quarter of these made an appointment with the doctor straight away – with the majority delaying a medical appointment for as long as possible out of embarrassment.

Instead, if they felt there was something seriously wrong, Brits would wait an agonising eight days to book an appointment with the doctor.

Using proprietary electrochemical technology, the measure Bowel Health Test allows you to test your bowel health in the privacy of your own home.

It checks for Faecal Occult Blood (FOB), which is low level bleeding invisible to the human eye, which is an early indicator of various gastrointestinal diseases including bowel cancer and stomach ulcers.

GP and author Dr Ellie Cannon said: “We know early diagnosis for bowel cancer increases survival rates, but many believe this is an ‘older’ person’s disease.

“In fact, bowel cancer can affect any adult and new research suggests bowel cancer is on the increase among young people.

“The measure Bowel Health Test offers a discreet and clean test as there’s no messy handling or sample storage.

“You can do this at home and it will pick up potential health issues to be discussed with a GP promptly.”

Symptoms of bowel cancer

• Obvious bleeding from your bottom and/or blood in your poo

• A change in your bowel habit

• Diarrhoea or constipation lasting for more than 7 days

• Unexplained weight loss

• A pain or lump in your tummy

If you have these symptoms, seek advice from your GP


Working with the public? Bee propolis could boost your immunity against common bugs and colds

If you work closely with the public, it could mean you’re exposed to lots of bugs and colds. But library assistant Crystal Crooks has found that taking a daily supplement of bee propolis has helped to build her resistance against them.

“As well as being susceptible to colds and flu, I recently discovered during a routine cervical smear that the HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) has been present in my body for the last three years, despite not having any symptoms,” says Crystal.

Crystal Crooks Bee Propolis

“My body wasn’t able to clear the virus on its own and I ended up needing treatment. Afterwards – and while I waited for my follow-up appointment – I was determined to do everything I could to boost my immunity. Bee propolis

“I started taking Bee Prepared Daily Defence and have never looked back. The HPV has cleared and I haven’t been getting frequent sore throats like I used to.

“I feel like my body is finally getting well again.”

Bee Prepared Daily Defence is designed to strengthen the immune system and allergy response – combining therapeutic amounts of bee propolis, olive leaf, elderberry, acerola cherry and beta glucans.


Health Food and More – your local health store in Kirkcaldy

Health Food and More – also known as The Kirkcaldy Herbal Clinic – is gearing up for a busy winter.

The shop on St. Clair Street is well prepared for all the season has in store. From great deals on Echinacea and advice on Vitamin D, to natural mood-boosters and CBD supplements to relieve aches and pains, Keren Brynes Maclean and the team are armed and ready!


If you need help with a food intolerance, would like to arrange private blood testing, or would benefit from a consultation with a medical herbalist, they can help with that too.

In fact, Health Food and More offers all the above and much more. The shop also stocks Fife’s largest range of quality, brand name supplements, including best-selling LoveCBD in a range of strengths, from 3% to 20%.

In-store medical herbalists have the training, experience and high-strength herbs to address entrenched, chronic and serious health problems and can safely prescribe alongside your prescription medicines.


“There are very few conditions that don’t respond well to a good, listening ear and herbal tonic,” says Keren.

And if you’d like to investigate your health in more detail, Health Food & More’s phlebotomist can arrange private blood tests for you. The detailed Thyroid Screen is particularly popular.


Don’t forget, you can pick up the latest issue of Holistic Scotland Magazine here too, subject to availability.

Pay Keren and the team a visit, or call Health Food and More/The Kirkcaldy Herbal Clinic on 01592 566466.

You can also follow the store on Facebook.