6 Reasons Why You Should Eat Dark Chocolate

6 Reasons Why You Should Eat Dark Chocolate

“Your favorite bar of chocolates just gifted you with several health benefits”

 

How does that sound? Great isn’t it?  Dark chocolate has lately been receiving a lot of attention for being a healthy food choice. Let’s find out why.

Improves Heart Health

 

Cocoa, the main ingredient of dark chocolate, contains flavenoids and antioxidants that have been shown to lower cholesterol. Dark chocolate is also associated with improved blood flow and may help prevent the formation of blood clots. Therefore, a growing number of studies suggest that dark chocolate can be a heart-healthy choice.

Fights Stress

 

Studies report that eating dark chocolate can reduce the levels of the stress hormone cortisol in highly stressed people. So, your craving for chocolate in stressful situation is totally justified.

 

Protects Your Skin

 

Frequent exposure to sun and pollution results in damage to the skin. The flavonols present in the cocoa have the capability to protect against sun-induced damage, improve blood flow to the skin and increase skin density and hydration. The body scrubs or polishes with dark chocolates not only exfoliate your dead skin cells but also open up the pores that allow the skin to breathe smoothly.

 

Improves Brain Function

 

Dark chocolate improves the blood flow throughout the body, including your brain. Since dark chocolate contains some amount of caffeine, it stimulates the brain and helps you perform better.

 

Helps to Control Blood Sugar

 

The flavonoids in dark chocolate help reduce insulin resistance thus reducing the risk of diabetes.

 

Provides Essential Nutrition

 

Apart from flavonoids and caffeine, dark chocolate is also enriched with essential vitamins and micronutrients such as potassium, magnesium and iron.

Dark chocolate is loaded with nutrients that can positively affect your health. However, it  is important to consume it in moderation as with too much intake of chocolate, you may  consume extra calories that may lead to weight gain.

Did you know that massage therapy can also reduce the levels of stress hormone cortisol? Fill out a simple form and request for an appointment for a massage 

Thai Massage Improves Physical Fitness in Soccer Players, Reports New Study

Thai Massage Improves Physical Fitness in Soccer Players, Reports New Study

A recent study reveals that whole body Thai Massage applied for 30 minutes shows significant improvement in physical fitness in players compared to simply taking rest to recover from fatigue.

 

Vigorous physical activities occurring during sports can increase muscle tension in the body tissues. Overexertion of muscles can also lead to severe muscle pain, tissue injuries and lesions that can directly affect the performance of an athlete. Post exercise stretching, light exercise, rest, or topical pain killer creams are some of the strategies proposed to alleviate muscle pain. However, none of these treatments can completely reduce the pain and soreness caused due to excessive physical activity.

Massage is frequently used as warm-up and recovery techniques during sports competitions for athletes. Since soccer is one of the sports that require a variety of physical fitness in players for competitions, a team of scientist from Thailand decided to determine the effects of Thai Massage in soccer players.

For their study, the researchers selected 34 soccer players who were randomly divided in two groups to either receive Thai Massage or take rest to recover from body soreness and pain after the performance. Players in Thai Massage group received 30 minutes of massage on their shoulder (5 minutes), back (5 minutes), arms (10 minutes), and legs (10 minutes), where as the other group was instructed to rest for the same period of time.

Following the massage or rest, the researchers determined the physical fitness in players through tests such as sit and reach (flexibility), handgrip (strength), 40 yards technical (agility),50-meter sprint (speed), sit-ups, push-ups (muscles endurance). It was found that players who underwent Thai Massage showed significant improvement in all of the physical fitness test where as resting only improved flexibility.

This study showed that a single session of Thai Massage could likely provide improvements in physical fitness and flexibility in soccer players. This could be because Thai Massage involves a large variety of stretching movements that increase flexibility, release muscle tension, and help the body’s natural energy to flow more freely. Most importantly, it enhances the circulatory system. It is believed that Thai Massage produces similar effects as stretching exercises in yoga. Read benefits of Thai Massage 

You can avail the health benefits of Thai Massage in Mumbai at a renowned spa like Four Fountains De-Stress Spa where massage is given by professional therapist who undergo rigorous training.

Reference: Hongsuwan C , Eungpinichpong W2, Chatchawan U, et al. Effects of Thai massage on physical fitness in soccer players. J Phys Ther Sci. 2015; 27(2):505-508.

5 Foods that Can Reduce Your Stress

5 Foods that Can Reduce Your Stress

 

Losing appetite during stressful situation is very common for some people, where as some choose food as a means to overcome stress. But, did you know that eating the right healthy food when you are stressed can actually be helpful? A few eatables have the capacity to elevate the mood by increasing hormones like endorphin and dopamine. Here is a list of some healthy foods that reduce stress.

Red Tomatoes

 

Tomatoes are known to improve brain functions. They are a rich source of lycopene. It fights brain-inflammation and is good for overall brain-health.

Dark Chocolate

 

You would love to know that chocolates can be your stress-busters. They tend to reduce trauma and help uplift your low frame of mind and get you back into the enthusiastic zone.

Honey

 

Honey is known to  keep your body toned and healthy. It fights depression and keeps the brain in a healthy condition. So, the next time you are in the negative zone, pour a spoon of honey in your mouth. You might feel better.

Banana

 

Bananas are a source of starchy carbohydrate that helps in maintaining your happy mood. Bananas contain potassium. You can feel energetic when the natural sugars in bananas enter into the blood stream. Having a banana when you are not in your best mood might help you smile a bit.

Asparagus

 

Asparagus is a rich source of folate and tryptophan. Our brain needs tryptophan to regulate our mood and emotions.

There are many other good foods that reduce stress and help you get over the traumatic zone. These are some of the basic and easily available ones. Try them to have a happy and healthy mind.

Have a diet related question? Ask our Spa Doctor

6 Simple Ways to Manage Anxiety

6 Simple Ways to Manage Anxiety

Certain events in everyday life such as rising electricity bills, loan premiums, hiked tuition fees, deadlines at work etc. put many of us to worry. Anxiety is your body’s natural response to stress and danger. We all tend to get extremely worried and feel anxious from time to time as a normal reaction to stressful situations. However, at times we experience extreme fear and worry that does not subside easily. Being extremely worried about everyday issues can impact our day to day activities and may also show effects on mental and physical health. While it’s not possible to completely eliminate stress and anxiety from life, we can surely take some measure to prevent it from taking charge of our life. Here are some simple and easy lifestyle habits that can help to keep anxiety away.

 

Practice Deep Breathing

 

When you get extremely worried, you may have increase heart rate and experience shortness of breath. To avoid further physical consequences, try to calm down and take a deep breath. Practice deep breathing for about 1 minute at a time and repeat this for 10-15 times at situations that make you feel very anxious. E.g. before appearing for an interview, before hearing your test reports etc.

 

 Don’t Hesitate to Laugh Out Loud

 

 

Laughing is a great way to release your tensions. Find a moment to laugh out loud. You may choose to watch funny movies, talk to someone or read comic books when you feel extremely worried about some situations.

 

Limit Alcohol

 

Consuming alcohol seems like an easy option to release your worries. But, alcohol intake is an extremely unhealthy means of stress release, which shows its effect only for a limited period. Therefore, try and limit consumption of alcoholic beverages.

 

Sleep Well

 

Getting enough sleep can improve your mental health and help you to better manage your anxiety. Read why do you need sleep?

 

Eat Right

 

There is no specific diet plan that can help you when you are extremely worried. However, it is important to consume a healthy diet for overall physical and mental health. Make sure you include lot of fresh fruits and vegetables in your meals. Consumption of fish that is rich in omega-3 fatty acids has been reported to improve mental health.

 

 Consider Going for Aromatherapy Massage

 

Aromatherapy massage is performed using essential oils obtained from medicinal herbs. The oils reach the blood circulation during massage and create mental calmness and provide relief from stress and anxiety. Aromatherapy massage with essential oils can stimulate the release of brain chemicals such as serotonin and dopamine which regulate mood and reduce anxiety.

Four Fountains De-Stress Spa, the best spa in Mumbai offers Aromatherapy Massage that helps you to forget your tensions and overcome anxiety. Try the massage at a spa location nearest to you.

5 Signs Your Body Needs Detoxification

5 Signs Your Body Needs Detoxification

 

According to some recent estimates, nearly 75 percent of Indian population under 40 years suffers from excessive stress. In view of science stress increases build up of harmful chemicals inside the body. Presence of these harmful toxins in the body can result in lack of energy, tiredness and low immunity that can often make you sick.

Reactive oxygen species or the free radicals are a normal part of our body and we do need some of them for our physiological and metabolic functions. Our body is naturally capable of fighting the harmful toxins in the body and preventing the resulting damage. However, when there is too much build up of harmful toxins in the body it loses its ability to detoxify and such stage is known as “Oxidative Stress”.

Given below are some signals body sends to notify you the build of harmful toxins in the body and immediate need to get rid of it.

1. You Have Constant Low Energy and Stamina

 

A number of recent studies have shown that oxidative stress may be involved in development of chronic fatigue syndrome. Free oxygen species (also known as free radicals) can enter body through external sources such as exposure to X-rays, ozone, cigarette smoking, air pollutants, industrial chemicals, etc. Build up of these toxins can lead to tiredness, lethargy, low energy and stamina.

2. Your Skin Shows Signs of Premature Ageing

 

Ageing is inevitable and nothing can prevent this natural process. However, oxidative stress caused by high levels of harmful toxins in the body can speed up the process of skin aging. Oxidative stress is probably considered as the single most harmful contributor to skin aging. Accumulated free radical causes damage to the cell components and leads to signs of skin aging such as fine wrinkles, thin and transparent skin, dry and itchy skin etc.

3. You Suffer From Frequent Headaches

 

Oxidative stress is also believed to play a role in the pathogenesis diseases of the central nervous system. Evidence suggests that oxidative stress can be responsible for conditions such as headache or migraines characterized by severe throbbing pain. Scientists have found that people, who report constant headaches, tend to have low level of total antioxidants and increased oxidative stress index.

4. You Suffer From Acne Problems

 

Acne is the most common skin problems mainly observed in adolescents and youth. Clinical studies have reported that people with acne show presence of oxidative stress.  Oxidative stress along with inflammation plays a critical role in acne pathogenesis.  In fact in acne prone skin, the release of reactive oxygen specials (free radicals) is held responsible for initiating the inflammatory pathway in acne.

5. You Have Developed Problems Related to Fertility

 

Oxidative stress has been identified as a contributing factor for infertility problems in both males and females. Oxidative stress caused due to build up of harmful toxins in the body can affect the sperm quality and functions in men. In women, oxidative stress can cause problems such as endometriosis (a disorder of uterine lining), polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and unexplained infertility. It can also lead to spontaneous abortion, recurrent pregnancy loss and some other pregnancy related complications.

Finding therapies for De-toxification at Spa in Pune is not difficult any more. Visit Four Fountains De-stress Spa at a location convenient to you and avail this beneficial therapy to prevent the health consequences caused by build by of harmful toxins in the body.

Aromatherapy Massage for Better Sleep

Aromatherapy Massage for Better Sleep

 

 

The clock strikes 2 am and you are still staring at the ceiling with your eyes wide open. Your child’s hiked tuition fees, evaluation at work, and the monthly EMI of your home loan just won’t let you sleep. So you reach for the bottle of sleeping pills!

Sleep problems are becoming an important health issue as it affects physical, mental, and emotional health and well-being. Lack of adequate sleep can show both immediate and long-term ill effects. Read how lack of sleep affects our overall health. Many people rely on sleeping pills to get a peaceful sleep at night after a hectic day at work. However, not many are aware of the detrimental side effects these pills can cause. Prolonged use of sleeping pills can cause some serious side effects such as memory problems, hallucinations, suicidal thoughts, etc.

Adhering to healthy sleeping habits may also seem practically challenging at times, especially for those with tight work schedules. So, what should you do to get peaceful sleep without any untoward effects on your health?

Aromatherapy Massage is a natural therapy that has been used to assist in relaxation and promote sleep. It gives you improved health and general feeling of wellness. This holistic massage therapy uses pure essential oils obtained from fragrant plants that are either inhaled or massaged onto the skin. Massage increases the flow of energy, and improves the communication between different systems in the body, thus creating a state of balance. Some scientific evidence obtained through clinical studies suggests that essential oils used in aromatherapy massage have therapeutic benefits. The medicinal principles from aromatic oils reach the blood circulation during massage and provide relief from stress, pain, and many other physical and mental illnesses.

Below we have listed down all the possible ways that promote better sleep. Read it carefully to make an informed decision for yourself.

Advantages
Disadvantages
Sleeping Pill
Will help you fall asleep quickly
Detrimental side effects
Good sleeping Habits
Natural means of promoting good sleep
Practically challenging
Aromatherapy Massage
Scientifically proven to improve sleep quality
Most essential oils are safe and free of adverse side effects
How to Know If You Are Hungry or Stressed?

How to Know If You Are Hungry or Stressed?

 

  • Last-minute deadlines
  • Unexpected job description changes
  • A pile of emails to be answered immediately

What do you so in such situations? Take a deep breath and try to sort things one after the other? Well, that is exactly what you should be doing. However, some people start craving for food and resort to emotional eating in such situations. Many people turn to food to find relief from their emotions such as anger, stress, boredom, etc. The problem is, it’s not about physical hunger at all. In fact, you just reach for food to overcome your stress. Here is a quick guide that can help you understand the difference between emotional hunger and real physical hunger.

 

So, the next time you find yourself reaching out for some food, pause and think about whether you’re really hungry or just going through a bout of emotional eating.

Looking for a healthy way to de-stress yourself? Try relaxing Aromatherapy Massage to overcome your mental tensions.

Fatigue is For Real!

Fatigue is For Real!

 

Suresh, age 28, has a new role as regional marketing manager. Frequent travelling on most days of week does not allow him enough time to relax at home.

Ananya, a 41 year old mother of two children works in a software company. After winding up office-work late in the evening, she finds it really difficult to take charge of all her household responsibilities due to lack of energy.

Suresh and Ananya represent many of those who spent most of their waking time either working, travelling or in other routine household work.  In today’s turbulent and competitive economic conditions health often takes a back seat for many of us. Long work hours, meetings around the clock, frequent phone calls, and never ending work pressures allows very little or no time for relaxing.You may look and act relatively normal, however, suffer from a general sense of unwellness or gray feelings. This feeling of weariness, tiredness, or lack of energy is called fatigue. Some people suffer from another serious form called adrenal fatigue. People who suffer fromadrenal fatigue often have difficulty getting up in the morning, suffer from lack of energy and have to constantly rely on some stimulants like colas or coffee to stay alert and awake.

Fatigue mainly results from some biochemical changes that occur in the body. Unhealthy lifestyle with poor diet, lack of sleep and rest, too much pressure at work, stressful jobs, etc. increases the chance of developing adrenal fatigue. Overall, a very stressful lifestyle that allows no time for mental and physical rest can lead to fatigue. Many people do not realize that they actually are facing a chronic illness until it starts showing some of its complex consequences on body.Irritable mood, poor concentration and attention, reduced hand-eye co-ordination,lack of energy, body pains are some of the health consequences caused by fatigue. Extreme tiredness or fatigue can also put you in a very unsafe condition to do certain activities that require alertness and attention.

One study reveals that nearly 72 percent of people working in IT industry report having mental and visual fatigue due to use of computer. This indicates fatigue is for real and you need to take action to overcome it, before it reaches a serious stage. Relying on stimulants is not a healthy solution. You need to find out a healthier solution that gives long term benefits. Clinical studies suggest that massage therapies can reduce the levels of stress hormones and increase beneficial hormones, thereby energising you.

Four Fountains De-stress spa offers an Anti-Fatigue Programme  that can help you to overcome your tiredness, and fatigue through Thai Massage, Foot Massage and Aromatherapy Massage. So, those of you suffering from lack of energy and low enthusiasm, we are eager to help you!

6 Habits that Can Help You to Sleep Better

6 Habits that Can Help You to Sleep Better

 

Did you know that almost 20 percent of all serious car accidents are caused due to driver sleepiness?

According to the researchers people who do not get adequate sleep are at 70 percent higher risk for accidents at work than people who get enough sleep. In our high demanding busy life we often tend to sacrifice sleep to fit in our personal and professional commitments. Most of us are aware of role of physical activity and balanced diet in achieving good health. However, adequate and satisfactory sleep is another important factor that is essential in order to achieve both mental and physical health. Sleep is vital for our well-being. Read health benefits of sleep.

Healthy sleep habits can make a huge difference in your quality of life. Following are some healthy tips that may help you sleep better.

 

1. Make a Sleeping Schedule

 

Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time everyday so as to regulate your body’s clock.

 

2.Reduce Intake of Caffeine

 

Try to avoid intake of products containing caffeine three to four hours before bedtime.

 

3. Keep Your Dinner Light

 

Try to have your dinner at least 2-3 hours before bedtime. Eating heavy or spicy meals before bed may make you uncomfortable due to indigestion.

 

4. Have Pleasant Room Ambiance

 

Try to create a peaceful and pleasant environment in your bed room.

 

5. Avoid Blue Light

 

Most of the modern computers, laptops and smartphones emit blue light. The blue-toned light suppresses the hormone melatonin, which induces sleep. Therefore, avoid use of electronic gadgets before bed time.

 

6. Aromatherapy Massage

 

The tips mentioned above are helpful and work with most people. However, it may be difficult to adhere to some of the lifestyle changes due to long working hours, too much work pressure, frequent travelling in different time zones, etc. Aromatherapy Massage is a natural alternative treatment that has been associated with improved sleep quality. Read how Aromatherapy Massage works?  

6 Simple but Effective Tips for Glowing Skin

6 Simple but Effective Tips for Glowing Skin

 

Skin is an important organ that protects the internal tissues from exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, temperature extremes, toxins, and bacteria. Skin problems like brown spots, or dull looking skin can impact your overall confidence. Here we present some great skin care tips that can help you to reduce skin damage and have a glowing skin to boost your confidence.

Add a Splash of Water

 

What better than a splash of cold water on your face especially when the temperatures are rising outside? Make it your daily regimen to wash your face 3 to 4 times. It not only washes away the dirt, but also has a cooling effect. You may opt for a face wash with a mild soap. People who have acne problems can go for medicated soaps after consultation from your skin care professional.

Include Greens in Your Diet

 

Fresh fruits and vegetables are great for eliminating toxins and lifting up the quality of your skin. Opt for green vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, and asparagus, which are rich in vitamin A, iron, and vitamin K. Fruits such as orange, grapes and grapefruit are rich in vitamin C that is very important for a healthy glow on skin. Vitamin C also maintains bowel movements and reduces acne on the face.

Stay Moisturized

 

It is always good to keep you skin moisturized in all seasons. Skin has to face outside environment throughout the day. Furthermore, as we start to age, our skin loses its moisture and start to appear dry. Moisturizing the skin should therefore be an essential part of your daily routine, which can help you to reduce skin damage.

Wear a Sunscreen

 

Prolonged sun exposure can result in darkening of skin. However, day sunlight can also cause some photo damage skin to.It is better to wear a good quality sunscreen with a high SPF to reduce skin damage.

Sleep Well

Sweet dreams

 

Sleep deprivation can make your skin look older and tired. Make sure you get enough sleep to keep your skin looking healthy. It is also important to remove all the traces of make-up before going to bed to avoid risk of infections.

Facial Massage

 Facial Massage is the most common therapy used for beautification. It is thought to rejuvenate the skin making it look healthy, young and supple. Massaging the face using oil is believed to increase the collagen production which can repair and reduce skin damage and darkening caused due to sun exposure and helps the skin regain its elasticity.

Fighting skin wrinkles? Here are some natural remedies you may find in your kitchen cabinet.