Seed solutions: powerful plant foods

Good Health magazine
Friday, February 3, 2012
Give your diet a nutritional boost with these powerful plant foods, says Angela Donaldson

Research proves women are more health aware than men.

Examples? We’re 38 per cent more likely to investigate the ingredients in food and are significantly more conscientious about visiting our GPs for regular check-ups. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t learn something from the opposite sex.

From the way they sit behind the wheel to how they regard what they see in the mirror and how much – or little – they do on the way to work, here are eight lessons we should learn from the men in our lives.

Lean back when you’re driving

Research says: men have better posture than women when they’re driving a car.

It matters because: a University of Virginia study discovered how incorrect posture in the driver’s seat is one reason why women are 47 per cent more likely than men to sustain severe injuries in a car accident.

Adopt it by: using the car seat as it was intended. The researchers agree you can’t change the fact that women are typically shorter than men and have to sit closer to the steering wheel. However, they advise against leaning forward. Instead make sure your back and neck stay firmly against the seat and headrest at all times.

Don’t eat because you’re sad

Research says: men see food as fuel while women are more likely to link food and emotions, with a University of Texas study finding that 70 per cent of emotional eaters are women.

It matters because: people who eat to treat emotions choose high-fat, high-sugar foods. It’s one reason why emotional eaters lose the least amount of weight on weight-loss programs, reveals research at the US’s Brown University.

Adopt it by: finding other ways to deal with your emotions. Recognise which emotions are triggering your cravings using a food diary, then add some other coping mechanisms so you’ve got things to turn to other than food, suggests psychologist Dr Leah Brennan. A simple but effective mechanism? A 15-minute walk, which UK scientists found helped to reduce chocolate cravings.

Wear flat shoes

Research says: the plain fact is men drew the long straw by not having high heels in their wardrobes.

It matters because: in 2010 US researchers added weight to the argument that high heels aren’t healthy, saying regular use significantly increases women’s risk of joint degeneration and knee osteoarthritis. At the same time, a European study confirmed that women who usually wear high heels have shorter calf muscles and stiffer tendons, which makes wearing flat shoes painful.

Adopt it: by making stilettos a sometimes-only fashion statement, say the US scientists, who also suggest choosing lower heels wherever possible.

Good Health magazine

For more health tips pick up the February issue of Good Health magazine at

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