TUMMY TROUBLES

Most women get the January bloat when waistbands are too tight and you end up with the dreaded muffin top. In fact, in a recent poll, sixty two per cent of women said the body part they are most self conscious about is their belly. Unfortunately, as we age and our metabolism slows down, stomach fat gets harder to shift.  But you can make over your midriff with the right nutrition, exercise and treatment..

LIFESTYLE TIPS

You need to take a three fold approach against a tubby tum – burning fat with cardio exercise like fast walking, dancing, swimming, diet (see below) and then toning the core muscles with strengthening exercises like crunches and sit-ups.

*A great exercise for the stomach- and the back – is the plank. Lie face down on the floor then come up a little to lean on your elbows, shoulder width apart. Raise your body off the floor, holding in your tum, and then hold it in a straight line for a count of 10, then longer as you improve. Do these every day to see a difference.

*Try adding light weights to your exercise routine as they will help increase muscle mass and burn more calories.

*A really easy way to get a flatter stomach is to repeatedly hold your tummy in. Simply pull your belly button in towards your spine and hold for a few seconds.

*Too much stress can increase levels of the hormone cortisol, which can also lead to excess stomach fat. If you’re feeling frazzled, try to de- stress through deep breathing inhale through your nose, count to four, then exhale from your mouth for a count of eight. Repeat until you feel refreshed. Yoga or Pilates will also strengthen and tone stomach muscles and help you to relax.

Beat the Bloat Foods

A great four-day anti bloat diet will help flatten your stomach  – simply avoid all carbohydrates, sugar, fizzy drinks, fried and gassy goods and eat plenty of protein fruit and vegetables as well as the foods below…

1. Nuts/Olives/Avocado – contain healthy fats and research shows that dieters who ate foods containing monounsatured fats (like nuts) lost more belly fat than those who ate the same number of calories with less of the fats. But watch portions – stick to a handful of nuts or less per day.

2. Fat free Yogurt/ Non fat Greek Yogurt –contains calcium and protein as well as good bacteria (probiotics) that may help reduce bad bacteria in the intestines that can cause belly bloating.

3.Mushrooms –the only natural plant source of Vitamin D. Insufficient levels of vitamin D have also been lined to higher levels of belly fat.

4. Beans – low in calories, high in fibre and a great flat belly food – don’t eat too many and drink with water to avoid excess gas

5. Oily fish – such as salmon can help combat middle-aged spread as they contain the protein leptin, which acts like a hormone, reducing fat stored around the middle and controlling your appetite so you don’t overeat.

AT THE CLINIC

If your tummy problem is more about crepey or just a little loose skin then you will benefit from one of the new non-invasive treatments to tighten and firm the stomach.

* Viora Reaction is a quick, safe procedure which uses both vacuum massage and radiofrequency (RF). The massage improves blood circulation and lymphatic draining, while the heat produced by RF stimulates new collagen growth for better skin thickness and texture. You’ll need four to six 20 minute treatments for maximum effect and results should last for at least two to three years as long as you maintain a healthy lifestyle. The cost is around £200 per treatment Contact 0207 436 4441 for more info.

* BodyTite can target stubborn fat pockets which are resistant to diet and exercise. It is a form of energy-assisted liposuction that that works by applying radiofrequency energy at the time of fat removal. The radiofrequency energy heats the tissues, which helps to break down fat, while also creating a significant tightening effect on the skin. This makes the process of fat removal less aggressive when liposuction is used to remove the ‘melted’ fat cells. The treatment takes slightly longer than standard liposuction, but creates less swelling and bruising and can be done under local anesthetic. . After the treatment, a garment is applied and needs to be worn for at least four weeks Studies also show that BodyTite tightens the skin up to 60 per cent more than traditional liposuction From £2500 depending on the size of the treatment area Contact 0207 436 4441

DREAM CREAMS

Every time you bathe or shower apply a nourishing body cream to hydrate the skin on your tummy Try

*Etat Pur Pure Active A90 Caffeine £11.30 to help stimulate circulation www.etatpur.co,uk

*Dr. Ceuticals Tummy Tone  £19.99 formulated with brown seaweed to target fat pockets.  from Boots

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BANISH THE BAGS!

Do you wake up on a Monday morning.. or any morning for that matter with bags under your eyes? Whether it’s due to weekend partying, or just late nights staring at a computer screen.. dark circles instantly add on years to our age and the panda look isn’t flattering on anyone! Here are a few DIY beauty tips to make them go away!

1- Feed the problem

Thin slices of cold cucumber or raw potato placed over closed eyes work at reducing puffiness from too much partying!

2-Get cold comfort

Wrap an ice cube in a cotton handkerchief and gently press it underneath your eyes to reduce puffiness.

3-Buy more pillows!

When you lie down to sleep, the water in your body levels out and settles underneath your eyes which causes puffiness. If you sleep on your back and raise your head by propping it on a couple of pillows – fluid is drained away and reduces puffiness.

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ANTI-AGEING TIPS

Through running my Harley Street clinic I’ve been lucky to gain an insight into how women think and feel about the ageing process. And lets face it, nobody enjoys the effect growing older has on their looks.

However ageing well isn’t about trying to appear 20-something forever but looking fabulous the way you are and feeling comfortable in your own skin.

Here are 10 top tips to look and feel great at every age;

1-Never go to bed without taking your make-up off. As we age we tend to concentrate on moisturiser and serum but good cleansing is just as important.

2-Say goodbye to black eyeliner and kohl. Try brown or blue instead and use a nude pencil along the inner rim to make eyes look brighter.

3-Long, pointy nails look dated. Modern nails are short and squared off with the sides rounded. Ask your manicurist for a “squoval”

4-Slimming shapewear can transform your figure in a flash. Try Marks & Spencer for effective, comfortable options.

5-Watch your posture. Stand up straight and pull in your stomach and lift your chin.

6-Build more time for exercise into your life. A 30-minute walk every day will help shed pounds, boost circulation and strengthen bones.

7-Wear sunscreen every day. Make sure you buy a broad spectrum cream which protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Use at least SPF30.

8-Have a monthly massage. The positive effects of a good massage last for weeks! It can help pain relief, increase circulation and improve skin tone by increasing blood flow, giving you a healthy glow and positive attitude.

9-Eat curry once a week. Curcuminoids are the active ingredient compounds in the yellow spice tumeric which is found in most curries. It has been used as a healing agent in alternative medicine and there are also studies which back curcumin’s anti-inflammatory and liver-cleansing properties.

10-Go to bed early- It’s not called beauty sleep for nothing. Use a silk pillowcase to keep skin hydrated so you wake up crease free.

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WAKE ME UP

It’s Friday and most of us tend to look a little tired towards the end of the week, which isn’t the greatest of looks if you have to go out and meet friends…

A quick tip to brighten your eyes instantly and make them look wide awake, is to run a white or nude pencil along the eye rim, and dab a little pale eyeshadow on the inner corners of your eyes. This is also much flattering than using a thick black or blue liner.. and you don’t have to worry about it smudging too!

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SKIN SAVERS

If you invest in just one beauty product, make it sun protection- it’s the absolute best (and cheapest) way to ensure your youthful looks last. Wear a really good sunscreen, with an SPF  of at least 15, every day of the year.

If you’re comfortable doing so, go without make-up entirely to let your skin breathe and just slather on a good SPF moisturizer to let your natural glow shine through.

If your skin is greasy, don’t use harsh products containing alcohol, as they will dry out the skin surface, and this will actually make you produce more oil to try to compensate for the dryness.

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MY TOP TIPS FOR YOUTHFUL HANDS


Preventing damage now will mean will mean better skin condition in future:


*Always wear sun protection on the back of the hands to prevent liver spots and wrinkles even when driving in the as those ageing UVA rays can penetrate glass.


*Don’t wash your hands in very hot or cold water, as you will damage the skin. Try and ensure water is lukewarm and use a milder soap that contains nourishing and moisturising oils to cleanse the skin. Always rub in hand cream for at least a few minutes after washing hand and before bedtime.


 *Wear protective gloves when doing housework or in the garden and give yourself a hand facial once a week. Products that you use on your face are just as good for your hands, so exfoliate and then use a plumping mask. If your hands and nails are desperately dry then try an overnight glove treatment such as Body Shop’s hand moisturising gloves.
 

*The quality of skin and pigmentation marks can also be improved by the regular use of a retinoid (vitamin A) cream, which can help boost collagen and thicken the outer layer of the skin. Always use in the evening before bed as daylight can destroy the active retinoid molecules in the cream and gel.

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VITAMINS, VITAMINS, VITAMINS.

I do try to eat properly, and succeed most of the time…however, there are times when I am so busy that I just eat on the run. 

That’s all well and good but it can mean that nutrient stores get depleted so I always take an Omega 3,6 & 9 supplement as these little gems are packed with skin, hair and nail-boosting qualities.  They improve skin from the inside and can also help balance hormone levels.

I always take other vitamins too, but always under the guidance of a doctor because self-medicating is never a good idea.  I suggest you do the same too.

Vitamin C is good to take to help ward off colds but this wonderful antioxidant also works beautifully for your skin too.  I have been using a brilliant Vitamin C Paste by Lixirskin each morning.  You only need a small, pea-sized amount which is massaged in with damp fingers.  Leave for a few minutes if you are rushed for time…but if not let it sit there for up to 15 minutes ….then rinse off with a clean cloth.  Result is a bright, smooth complexion.  It is available from Victoriahealth.com

But my favorite Vitamin C of all time is Jan Marini’s C’Esta Serum…I always go back to it.  www.amazon.co.uk

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ONE OF MY FAVOURITE FACIALS

I have tried many, many facials over the years, but one of my favourites is the HydraFacial.  This award-winning facial uses every trick in the book to deliver an immediate radiance boost.  It combines cleansing, exfoliation, extraction, hydration, light therapy and antioxidant protection all in one session.  After the treatment you notice a dramatic improvement in hydration whilst any oily or congested areas will look clear and radiant.  It costs from £120.   For your nearest clinic visit hydrafacial.co.uk

Young beautiful and relaxed lady taking spa treatment

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THINNER, FIRMER THIGHS

This year the emphasis is on legs and by using a combination of procedures, you can achieve perfect pins. 

Cellutite is a leg-reshaping procedure using Radio Frequency assisted lipolysis to tackle lumpy, bumpy irregularities.   During the procedure a small probe is introduced under the skin, which delivers high-energy radio frequency to destroy fat and soften the fibrous tissues that pull the skin into dimples….. smoothing out the bulges of fat.    

 

At the same time the RF energy warms the skin, making it tighter and smoother. Only one treatment is necessary and results are seen immediately and are permanent. 

Finally a laser procedure and sclerotherapy can zap age spots, smooth knee wrinkles and tackle veins leaving legs looking a decade younger.

The Perfect Pins combo costs from £3000.    020 7436 4441.


 

Tips:

*
Before showering spend five minutes dry brushing your skin to release toxins and reducing the appearance of cellulite.

 *A weekly leg mask can help banish lumps and dry patches, improve circulation and drain puffiness. Try Origins RitualiTea Oolong-LA Purifying Body Cleansing Mask with Oolong Black Tea & Chai Spices (£25 lookfantastic.com).


*Eat more raw foods and exercise regularly. Yoga and Pilates will also help sculpt and improve muscle tone. 

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THICKER, FULLER HAIR

Using your own blood to stimulate dormant hair follicles and encourage them to grow again is one of the hottest new developments. First, around three or four syringes of blood are taken from your arm and then treated in a new superfast machine, called a centrifuge, which extracts more platelets from the blood than before.  

 

These platelets are then injected into the thinning hair areas on the scalp to release growth factors, stimulating cells to regenerate.   The area is then stimulated again with a small derma roller, a barrel-like hand roller with hundreds of very fine needles which activates a wound/heal response to further boost hair follicles.    Best results seen after three months when a top-up treatment may be needed.    From £1800 


 

Tips:

*
The high levels of city pollution and humidity can affect your hair density as water particles enlarge when they are in contact with pollution making the hair flatter. Use a hair serum like John Frieda’s Frizz Ease (£6.99 Superdrug) before styling and avoid too much hairspray, as the damp winter air will make it coagulate.  

 

*Flipping hair to the opposite side achieves more fullness – spray with a root lifting spray first – try Redken Rootful O6 Root Lifting Spray (£13.95 feelunique.com)
 


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