Wellness is more than açai bowls and and overnight oats, we all need more sunlight in our lives and stress really is as bad for our health as we suspect it is. Just some of the lessons we learned when we caught up with Presscription Juice’s in-house nutritional therapist, Grace Kingswell…
What does wellness mean to you?
For me wellness is a really simple concept – a consistent feeling of being well in the simplest way I know. No açai bowls, overpriced cry therapy or overnight oats in sight! Health is really simple when you strip it back: seasonal eating, nutrient dense and organic food, quality sleep, a diverse and abundant diet, and less stress.
What are the highlights of your weekly wellness regime?
At the moment it’s my weekly and bi-weekly trips to see my chiropractor and sports massage therapist. I’ve recently started playing a lot of competitive tennis again and find these lessons so restorative. Having someone constantly put my body back into alignment again too is amazing. It calms stress and reduces inflammation on the nervous system which is a great adjunct to healthy living generally.
Another thing has got to be my sea swims with my girls! Myself and my husband moved to Cornwall during lockdown which is something we’d bene planning for a while. I love the ocean and cold water swimming and started up a cold water swimming group in London called NUDGE @nudge_community.
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Did you find it difficult to stay healthy during lockdown?
I think I was still very healthy but I definitely picked up a few less healthy habits. I never really drank alcohol before lockdown but am quite accustomed to a glass of wine most evenings these days! At the start of lockdown I certainly found myself eating more, but since moving out of London my life has been spent predominantly outdoors, swimming surfing and playing tennis. I prioritise time outside as full spectrum light is one of the simplest health hacks we can all use for improved mental and physical health.
“Full spectrum light is one of the simplest health hacks we can all use for improved mental and physical health.”
What’s your number one piece of advice to help someone stay healthy?
Buy some blue light blocking glasses, the ones with the red lenses. Mine are Swanwick and I couldn’t recommend them more. We are just beginning to understand the truly detrimental impact that unnatural light has on our cells, mitochondria and every aspect of our health. Blue blockers are simple and effective. Aside from that it would be a diet rich in variety, colour and quality sources of protein and fats.
What common myths about health do you wish you could dispel forever?
- That overnight oats and smoothie bowls are the epitome of health.
- That it’s really easy to be vegan and healthy.
- That it’s fine to be over-worked and overtired, our bodies will just catch up
2020 has been a cultural reckoning. What do you think the wellness industry could do better when it comes to anti-racism and inclusivity?
Like so many others I’ve been completely un-woke to the disparity that exists in health and wellness. Some statistics I learned recently really put this into perspective for me:
- UK black mothers are five times more likely to die of pregnancy, birth or postpartum complications than white mothers and they are twice as likely to have a still birth
- Black women in England are also nearly twice as likely to be diagnosed with advanced breast cancer as white women
- POC are disproportionately affected by mental illness and much more likely to be detained, restrained and secluded in mental health hospitals than white people
- BAME groups have less access to key primary care services than white groups
As health and wellness professionals, we have the ability to challenge these injustices and contribute to anti-racism within our field. Personally I have changed the nature of the accounts that I follow on Instagram, and I’m pleased to see brands using people of colour in campaigns and branding and marketing.
In the Nutritional Therapy space @robynpuglia shares a lot of great anti-racism resources for nutritional therapists and for educating our children about race, and in the surf and swim world my bestie @sophiehellyer takes an active part in the anti-racism dialogue via her writing for Surf Girl mag and her feed posts.