Smoothie for Smooth Skin

This week we are having a bit of a skin moment here at the Hip and Healthy headquarters. I made this amazing smoothie that is fantastic for keeping skin clear and glowing. It is super easy and makes a great breakfast or mid morning snack and is packed full of antioxidant-rich berries. But my secret ingredient is the Viridian Clear Skin Oil. It not only makes the smoothie taste slightly nutty (which I love) but it keeps skin fresh and blemish free. This is due to its amazing list of ingredients that read like a dissertation in healthy oils; avocado oil, flax seed oil, pumpkin seed oil, argan oil, rose hip seed oil – the list goes on. I know I have harked on about this oil before – but it really is pretty great – and for someone that has struggled with their skin since their teens this could be the missing part to their diet. I also included MyProtein’s Spirulina powder which is a powerful ingredient with plenty of health benefits. Spirulina is a rich source of proteins, vitamins and minerals as well as essential fatty acids and antioxidants. If all that is not enough its high content of B Vitamins makes it a fantastic spot fighting product, and it also has detoxifying properties too.





Apple Juice (organic and no added sugar)

MyProtein Spirulina Powder

Viridian Clear Skin Oil

Eat for Clear Skin

We talk to Dale Pinnock, author of The Clear Skin Cookbook, about how you can eat yourself beautiful and his own journey to beautifully, clear skin…

I met Dale (also known as the medicinal chef) in his clinic at London’s Nutri Centre just opposite Regent’s Park. Having just written and released his Clear Skin Cookbook, Dale has created a bit of a stir in the UK. His skill is tailoring food, and recipes, to suit you and your specific health problems and he has become the go to guy for all things medicinal in the kitchen, in other words he is the Trinny and Susannah of the nutrition world. He is also one of the nicest guys I have ever met. Approachable, kind and honest he is there to help, and help he does. I was there to discuss his latest venture, The Clear Skin Cookbook, and one of the things I found most interesting was his skin story that opens the book. Dale first experienced spots when he was just 10 years old and by the time he had reached 15 years old he was all consumed with thoughts of self-loathing due to his acne. After visiting a series of doctors and specialists, which didn’t amount to much, he was then given a book on nutrition by one of his mum’s friends. He read the book in a weekend and completely overhauled his entire diet – he cut out red meat, dairy and introduced fruit, veg, and whole grains supplementing it all with zinc, omega 3 and B vitamins. The changes were remarkable and eventually his acne completely disappeared not even leaving a slight mark, leaving Dale with the glowing, healthy skin he has today (he doesn’t even have wrinkles!) Here are just some of the lessons we learnt from him and his cookbook, and we have even included a recipe to boot!

The Top Four Acne-Fighting Foods
Pumpkin Seeds – for their source of zinc and fatty acid
Prawns – rich in zinc and selenium
Red Bell Peppers – for their anti-inflammatory properties
Sweet Potatoes – as they support the immune system

Vital Vitamins 
Dale says that B Vitamins are some of the most important with regards to skin health. No other group of vitamins support the skin in such a diverse range of ways as the B Vitamins do.

Skin Boosting Recipe for Tomato and Fennel Soup:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 large red onion, finely chopped,

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

1 small fennel bulb, finely chopped

1 teaspoon crushed fennel seed

2 x 400g/14oz cans of chopped tomatoes

3 tablespoons

orange juice vegetable stock (organic is best)

1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

freshly ground black pepper

Method: 1. Add the olive oil, onion, garlic, and fennel, along with a generous pinch of sea salt to a saucepan, and sauté until the onion and fennel have softened. 2. Add the fennel seed, tomatoes and orange juice. Then add enough stock just to cover. 3. Simmer for ten minutes then blend into a soup.

Health Speak with Christine Bleakley

Hip and Healthy talks to Reebok CrossFit ambassador Christine Bleakley about keeping fit, running with Frank and what inspires her to stay healthy

How long have you been doing CrossFit for?
I’m quite new to CrossFit and it was Reebok’s collaboration with CrossFit that first caught my attention. CrossFit is unlike any other form of exercise I have done before. I like to mix up my exercise regime as it helps me to stay focused and that’s why I like CrossFit.  You’ll never do the same workout more than once.  Not only is that great for me because it helps me to stay motivated but also because it constantly works all your muscles, so you really feel the benefit.

Do you feel it has had a profound effect on your body shape? If so, in what way?
I really like to see the physical benefits of CrossFit and the way in which it helps me to stay toned. CrossFit is a great all over body workout. I’m also able to do things in CrossFit classes that I couldn’t do before when I first started, so it’s great to see that improvement as well.

What is it that you enjoy about CrossFit?
I really enjoy the community feel, which is at the heart of CrossFit. It’s great fun working out with friends and I prefer it to working out on my own, as it adds a spirit of competition. Also, the great thing about CrossFit is that it’s scalable and therefore anyone is able to do it, regardless of their fitness level.

You must be one very busy lady, how often are you able to work out?
It can be difficult fitting exercise into my day but I try to workout twice a week. If I can fit in more sessions then that is a bonus. The great thing about CrossFit is that I can do a WOD (workout of the day) in less than 20 minutes but feel like I’ve done a full body workout by the end of it. It’s a great way to fit in a short burst of exercise into your day.

Do you do anything else to keep fit?
As well as CrossFit I like to go running. I find it not only helps me to stay fit but it’s also a great way to clear my mind and stay focused. Also, I like to make the most of the good weather when we have it and be out in the fresh air.

Do you and Frank ever get the chance to workout together?
Frank has his own training schedule that he has to follow but we do sometimes go running together.

What time of day do you like to exercise?
Sometimes I fit exercise into my day whenever it’s possible but ideally I like to exercise in the morning. It’s just a great way to start the day and really makes you feel awake and ready for the day ahead.

What is your diet like? Do you try to eat healthily?
I always start my day with a healthy breakfast to give me a good start to the day. I love making smoothies, especially with bananas, milk and a hint of vanilla essence. Porridge is also great for breakfast and ensures a healthy start to the day. I also enjoy eating steak, fish and jacket potatoes for either lunch or dinner. If I do snack between meals I try to eat something healthy like fruit, seeds or nuts.

In your business do you feel pressure to stay svelte?
I think it’s important that women try not to get hung up on how they look. There just isn’t much point in doing so. I’m quite a relaxed person anyway so for me as long as I’m fit and healthy, that’s the main thing.

You really have never looked better, is that all down to exercise and healthy eating or where you blessed with great genes?
Well I’m not sure about that but as I said I do try to lead as active a lifestyle as possible. I do make an effort to try and eat healthily but I do also allow myself a treat as I don’t think people should deprive themselves. As long as you get the balance between a healthy diet and exercise that’s the main thing.

What motivates you to exercise?
My mum says, ‘Your health is your wealth’ and I quite agree. When you see the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle I think that’s the biggest motivation.

What is your top exercise track?
Faithless – Insomnia.

Who inspires you in life?
My sister. After reaching a UK size 24 at 18 years-old, she lost an incredible seven stone and maintained her new current weight through regular exercise.

How do you relax?
When I have time to relax I enjoy simple things like a Sunday roast dinner or even going out for dinner with friends.

What three things can you not live without?
My iPad
My mascara
My engagement ring

Visit for further information about CrossFit.

Which Dosha Are You?

Kapha: The Kapha body is prone to fat and finds it difficult to loose weight.

Ayurvedic Advice: Kapha’s should eat hot and spicy food, and avoid cold and raw meals. Snacking is discouraged, instead go for a walk after eating.

Pitta: Pitta bodies are medium build, often athletic and maintain a balanced weight.

Ayurvedic Advice: Drink lots of cool water and eat raw as much as possible. Pittas should avoid stimulants and alcohol, and are advised to stay out of the sun.

Vatta: Vatta’s are slim and often find it hard to put on weight.

Ayurvedic Advice: Vatta’s operate best on warming foods that taste sweet, salty and acidic. Too much activity can just create more stress for Vattas, so yoga is suggested in place of rigorous excersise.

A hip and healthy proposal in Florence by the editor

 words by Sadie Macleod

The view of the Ponte Vecchio from the Lungarno Hotel’s Restaurant Balcony

Florence – my absolute favourite place in the world, and somewhere I have returned to again and again. Needless to say I was exstatic when friends of ours announced that they were getting married there. My boyfriend and I booked our trip just under a year ago, which gave me ample of time to seek out the hippest hotel with the healthiest offerings, but because we were heading to Florence, I also thought a bit of culture would be necessary too. After quite a bit of research I came to the conclusion that Italian royalty Salvatore Ferragamo’s Lungarno Gallery Art Hotel would suit us perfectly. Situated a stones throw away from the touristy but undeniably picturesque Ponte Vechhio, the hotel makes a fantastic base for exploring the city’s must-see areas and shops.

A suite at the Hotel Gallery Art

Our hotel room, the penthouse suite, was a tranquil haven of cool beige and white furnishings teamed with natural materials and all the mod cons. I was delighted to find that our rooftop terrace (a sunbather’s dream come true) overlooked the pretty Florentine rooftops, the Duomo and the unmistakable Tuscan hills. Everything had been thought of and designed with comfortability, functionality and style in mind, and the brains behind this was no rookie either: Italian born and bred  Michele Bonan was the architect for all four Lungarno hotels in Florence (as well as the effortlessly chic JK Place).

The jogging route suggested by the Ferragamo family

With the hip part of our Florence trip established already, we then embarked upon the healthy bit. Guests at the Lungarno are encouraged to explore the city by running or cycling, and in each of the rooms you can find a small card that has Ferragamo’s suggested running routes. We chose the greener of the two and set off for the exquisite Boboli gardens.

Dotted with typical Italian statues and buildings, the Boboli gardens are built on a hillside and are abundant with beautiful roses, tree lined pathways and romantic fountains. After running for around 40 minutes we found ourselves in a lemon tree grove that overlooked the cityscape beyond. It was here, whilst taking a short rest on the step, that my boyfriend proposed to me. Sweaty, out of breath and shaking with shock, I said yes.

We celebrated with a peach and a bottle of water from the nearby grocery store and went about ringing our families. Then we sat on our rooftop drinking in celebration as the sun went down. For dinner we had sushi and champagne (a meal I will never get bored of) in the hotel’s restaurant, which also positions itself as a hip hangout for Florence’s young and beautiful.

The rest of the week was full of champagne, celebrations and lots of fantastic italian food. And on our last day we were feeling a lot less healthy than when we arrived. It seemed as though the city agreed and we had our first day of cloudy weather. Brilliantly, we were able to retreat to the Lungarno Continentale that had the only spa and relax room of the four hotels. The Spa, which is still in its soft opening stage, had two discreet treatment rooms and a small gym. But we spent all our time in the relax room that acts as a complete haven from the hustle and bustle of the Ponte Vecchio whilst looking on to it, and where guests are encouraged to lie amongst the plush cushions and slick but comfy beds to read, work or just have a snooze… The perfect end to an unforgettable trip.

Five Hip and Healthy things about the Lungarno Florence collection of hotels:

1. The breakfast at the Hotel Lungarno is the perfect way to start the day. Four different types of nuts, three different types of berries, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, dried fruit and muesli as well as soya yogurts and the towns biggest and best soy latte macchiato. Eat outside whilst overlooking the river and famous Ponte Vecchio bridge in the sun. Heaven.

2. The yoga on the roof of the Hotel Continentale offers some of the best possible views of the city.

3. Rent bikes from the Hotel Lungarno and ride around the city taking in the sites.

4. Stop for a green tea (the highest quality I have seen in a long time) on the roof of the Hotel Continental whilst overlooking the Florence skyline.

5. Check out the fantastic art hung around the lobby and dining room at the Gallery Art Hotel. Next up: exhibition of Marilyn Monroe photographs from 20 June – 15 September 2012.

Yoga with a view at the Lungarno Continentale





HEALTH SPEAK with Lululemon’s Danielle Hetherington

Top athletic and yoga clothing brand, Lululemon, is fast becoming a Hip and Healthy favourite. Well established in the US and Australia (especially in Sydney and California where every toned bottom is blessed with a pair of Lululemon leggings), they have just made the move to the UK with their first showroom in London’s Chelsea. We talk to Danielle Hetherington, the Chelsea Showroom Manager, about her favourite london healthy haunts, keeping fit and of course, Yoga.

What is your favourite healthy restaurant in London?
I adore two places that are local to our showroom: The Grocer on Kings & Daylesford Organic. They do deliciously mouthwatering food that is healthy and thoughtful for the body, mind and soul! You can be good but also indulge, if you desire!

Where is your favourite place to do Yoga in London?
It’s hard to pick just one! However, I do love practicing with Elizabeth Reumont from The Life Centre and Indaba, as she’s insightful, powerful and fun. I also love to get sweaty at an event called, Funk the Buddha, created by Rachel Okimo. This workshop pops up in the quirkiest locations around London and is one to look out for. Beyond the mat, I adore pumping my endorphins at Kari McCreath’s spin classes and I dabble in personal training with Matthew Miller, both from Gymbox.

How else do you keep fit?
“A daily hit of athletic-induced endorphins gives you the power to make better decisions, helps you be a peace with yourself, and offsets stress”. My ideal day includes spinning or a run in the morning, followed by yoga in the afternoon. We have some unbelievable ambassadors that make you love your life when you sweat.

What was the scariest thing about making the move to London?
Moving away from my man who is still living in Montreal, Canada. He’s my better half but has been unbelievably supportive.

And the most exciting?
That I am living my big, hairy, audacious goal (BHAG). It has been my goal for three years to open lululemon athletica’s showroom (a company I whole heartedly believe in) in London (the city I love most). Lululemon allows me to live a great lifestyle and I continue to pinch myself everyday that this is really happening! Bliss.

Favourite place in the whole world?
London, England. Hands down. You can’t get any better than this!

Favourite work-out track?
Oh! It changes so frequently. I can go from Florence and the Machine’s ‘Dog Days Are Over’ to Lady Ga Ga’s ‘Marry the Night’.

Most treasured Lululemon item?
My Run: Inspire Crops. The fabric (luxtreme: lightweight, breathable and inherently moisture wicking) takes me from hot yoga to pounding the pavements to the spin bike to everyday wear. It feels and functions beautifully.

How do you relax?
By either sweating it out on the spin bike, pavement or yoga mat OR treating myself to a massage (yes, please!).

Must-have beauty item?
Hoola Benefits Bronzer. It makes me look sun kissed when cloudy London makes me pasty white. It’s a saviour!

Cant live without…

  • My man. I am so in love.
  • My iphone. I love only being a phone call away from friends and family, plus I am directionally challenged so it helps me find my way.
  • Sweating once a day. It makes my body, mind and soul happy.

If you every fancy joining Danielle for a sweaty date, please feel free to follow the Lululemon facebook page: Lululemon athletica Chelsea and take a peek at our weekly sweaty schedule. Furthermore, they offer complimentary yoga each Wednesday night from 6:45-7:45PM & Sunday morning from 11:00am-12:00opm.

If You Do One Thing This Week… Beat The Bloat

Bloating tummies are never fun and often have you wondering where you’ve gone wrong. If you have ruled out a food intolerance (wheat, dairy, gluten are just some of the culprits) then here are some other things you can try to deflate a bloated stomach:

Eat little and often: This helps to regulate blood sugar levels as well as keep the stress hormone, cortisol, to a minimum. When cortisol is high in the body it tends to slow the metabolism down, which can lead to bloating.

Eat bananas: They are packed full of Vitmain B6 which helps manufacture the happy hormone, serotonin (which in turns combats cortisol).

Avoid beans and nuts: They can be hard for the body to digest and may cause gas – which is both hugely uncomfortable and unattractive! If you must eat nuts, ground them first.

Reduce the stress in your life: It is amazing how much our tummies can be effected by stress – especially if you are prone to storing your emotions there. Anything stressful will instantly aggravate the bowel if you are this way inclined, which lots of us are. Introducing exercise also helps with this as a way of giving your stress another avenue. Or try yoga.

Avoid fizzy drinks, alcohol and coffee: Instead introduce peppermint or fennel tea – especially if you feel the symptoms coming on as they have an instant calming effect. Peppermint tea has never failed me in times of need.

Once you have beaten that bloat – get yourself to Seafolly to buy one of the most beautiful bikinis you will have ever seen (pictured above):

Hone and Tone Your Body

…with these top ten tips from Personal Trainer, Max Willcocks

Getting up on a Saturday at 7am may seem like a chore for most but I relished the opportunity to do just that if it meant a free PT session with fitness expert, Max Willcocks. He certainly knows how to put a girl through her paces – but I always come away feeling toned, fitter and more ready for the day than ever. I decided that his fountain for fitness knowledge and the handy nutrition and lifestyle tips he gives out during sessions are too good not to share, so here are Max’s top ten moves and morsels of information that will get you into tip top shape this summer…

1. Sign up for a race to keep you focused: “Not everyone can be routine about keeping up their fitness or their running, signing up to a race is a great reminder that they have a goal to achieve. It can certainly help you get out the door on days when you might have otherwise not done anything.”

2. Run properly to avoid injury (and looking like a douche): Max has been teaching me to run more on the balls of my feet. To try and get me to do this he puts his hand out and asks me to run leaning on it. By putting my weight forward like this it not only helps me run faster but also puts less pressure on my knees.

3. Eat protein after sessions: To help replenish energy stores and build muscle (it will also make you less sore in the morning) reach for a protein snack. I love Bounce Balls:

4. Sign up to a summer bootcamp: Some people find that they won’t workout unless someone is telling them to and motivating them along the way. If you can’t afford a personal trainer – join a group. There will be one not far away from your workplace or home. Max runs fab group sessions near Parsons Green.

5. Add elements of Crossfit into your fitness programme: Crossfit involves a series of different strength and conditioning exercises that improve fitness rather than just focusing on losing or gaining weight. Workouts are typically short and intense which is great for the metabolism.

6. Stretch: Boring but important! Just do it. You’ll body will thank you for it in the long run.

7. Get a dog: Max is the proud owner of a brand new husky pup! Dog’s are great for getting us outside and walking around.

8. Cut out alcohol: Alcohol not only contains tons of hidden sugars and calories but it also makes it very difficult for us to get up in the morning let alone get to the gym. Cut it out and feel instantly better.

9. Sign up for your first race and enjoy it: “Relax, take it at a comfortable pace and enjoy yourself. In the last few days leading up to a race all that can be done is plenty of stretching and hydrating, all the hard work has been done by now. When you’re standing at the start line take a deep breath and don’t set off too quickly, it can be easy to get carried away. Preparation is key, have an idea of how fast you want to run based on how well training has gone, base your race day running pace on this. Always run your own race.”

10. Turn your commute into your daily exercise: Either work out the distance from your office to your home and invest in a good backpack and run or get all the cycling gear and bike ride to and from work. This will shave time off your commute (especially during the Olympics) and you will have done your daily exercise before you even get through the door.

Want to train with Max? Call 07899798352

WIN!… Calling all Londoners: Win a Home Treatment with Wellbeing Escapes and H&H


Win a totally indulgent one-hour ‘Wellbeing at Home’ treatment courtesy of specialist wellness travel company, Wellbeing Escapes, plus a copy of their signature spa and wellness book for three runners up.

The Heavenly Treatment
Wellbeing Escapes, the UK’s leading health, spa and wellbeing travel company, offer a range of authentic and holistic products and services in beautiful, inspiring locations that never compromise on quality. Bringing a little slice of spa paradise to one lucky winner, Wellbeing Escapes will arrange a one-hour treatment by a fully qualified therapist at their home. If you can’t be there in body, then at least allow yourself to transport your mind.

The Wellbeing Bible
Designed to be an ‘at a glance’ guide to holistic wellness practices, the Wellbeing Escapes book is packed with information and tips gathered by the Wellbeing Escapes team over many years; it includes  insights into the latest spa and wellbeing trends; advice from some of the world’s top holistic health practitioners; and inside information on the world’s finest wellness destinations.

How to Enter:
All you have to do is send an email to  [email protected] with your full name and Wellbeing Competition in the Subject box.

Terms and conditions apply. Prize is one 60 minute treatment from a choice offered by Wellbeing Escapes within the M25 area, bookings subject to therapist working hours and availability. Once a treatment is booked, no amendments are permitted. Prize is valid until 31.12.12. By entering this competition you accept that Hip and Healthy and Wellbeing Escapes may contact you about things we think you’ll enjoy using your email address. Should  you wish not to be contacted please say so in your email. Winners will be picked at random and notified by email. Closing date for this competition is Friday 27 July 2012. 

STOP. PAUSE. BREATHE. Products to de-stress


words by TUI MCLEAN

I think we all wish we could sometimes freeze time and have a little break from our ever-so hectic lifestyles, just to regenerate and refresh ourselves. Unfortunately for most, the likelihood of freezing time, or even just finding a spare half hour of ‘me’ time is pretty unlikely. That’s why we need a little helping hand when it comes to de-stressing, and Hip and Healthy is here to show you the best de-stress products on the market at the moment.

The De-stress Body Wash from Aromatherapy Associates is perfect for anyone on the run who is craving something to help them unwind. To fully reap the benefits, just lather skin with this deliciously scented body wash during your morning shower routine and feel the active aromatherapy ingredients working together to leave you feeling calm and refreshed. You’ll be ready to start the day with a clear mind. £21.50 (

ila Bath Salts are perfect for aiding meditation and claim to soothe the nervous system and bring inner peace. Whether you meditate or not, you’ll certainly want to buy these bath salts which will relax your muscles, rid you of tensions, and most important give you a great excuse to spend ages soaking in the bath! £48.00 (

As most of us know, the best way to truly combat stress is to get lots of sleep. The only problem is that sometimes when we are really stressed, falling asleep can become even more difficult. Primavera are here to help us with this beauty catch 22 and have brought out Lavender Sleep Therapy Balm, which is designed to aid you in having a restful night so that you can wake up and start a new day feeling recharged. £13.00 (

Dr. Hauschka is here to the rescue once again with its Lavender Body Oil. Lavender is a key ingredient in relaxation, and to fully feel relaxed all you need to do is gently rub this silky oil into your skin before bed. The scent of the lavender will help you unwind and keep you relaxed throughout the night. The best part is that this suits absolutely all skin types, so everyone can benefit from it. £17.95 (

For a facial stress reliever Ark De-Stress Skin Response Serum has the answer. Stress, for most, is not a good look, which is why the clever people at ARK (Age Aware Skincare) have created a product to combat just that. This anti-irritation (read anti-redness) serum contains boerhavia diffusa root, an Ayurvedic herb and a specially formulated enzyme complex that gives tired or stressed skin a much needed boost. It comes highly recommended from the Hip and Healthy headquarters. £39 (

If you do one thing this week… Take Top Nutritionist Patrick Holford’s advice

We talk to one of the world’s leading nutritionists about skin health, top immune boosting foods, and the ongoing organic debate. 

How long have you been in the health industry for?

My interest in nutrition started in the late 70’s when I was studying psychology and got interested in how the brain works, and what goes wrong in mental illness. That got me thinking about the effect of nutrition on brain function. I researched the effects of vitamins and minerals on IQ and helped run the first study in the world showing that high potency multivitamins increase children’s IQ.

Explain what Optimum Nutrition is?

Optimum nutrition defines the optimal intake of nutrients for the best possible health and function. For example, if you take in 2 grams of vitamin C a day it reduces severity and duration of colds, halves diabetes and cancer risk and lowers high blood pressure by 10 points – that’s as much as any drug. Therefore, since 2 grams a day clearly makes you healthier this would by the optimal amount. The old definition of ‘need’, upon which the RDAs are based, is simply the amount that prevents scurvy. That’s really a minimum, not an ideal intake.

Do you always try and eat organic? If so what benefits do you feel organic food gives you?

I do choose organic as much as possible. It’s somewhatless important if you’re eating an orange or a banana because you discard the skin, which is where the pesticide residues remain. However, many people don’t realise that plants, as well as being rich in antioxidants, make potent anti-cancer agents called salvestrols, but only if they are not sprayed with fungicides. These salvestrosl are part of the plant’s immune defence system. So, non-organic food has much less protection against cancer. Also, many existent pesticides and herbicides promote cancer risk.

How important is nutrition for good skin health? What is your top skin food?

It is totally vital. For every 1 point your blood sugar goes up your skin ages by the equivalent of 5 months. The most powerful nutrients for youthful skin are vitamins A and C. It is worth eating lots of orange coloured foods, such as carrots and butternut squash, as well supplementing extra vitamin A, which is rich in fish. I also use a vitamin based skin cream, called Environ, daily.

What food could you not live without?

It’s a close call between oats and fish. Wheat is best to reduce or avoid but oats are really good for you. I often have oatflakes, cold or hot as in porridge, for breakfast. I also eat oat cakes, oat biscuits and sometimes Nairn’s oat bakes.

What do you eat when you are on a plane?

As little as possible. I order a vegetarian Asian meal, which usually means a bean based curry with rice. I’ll travel with a couple of apples and some nuts, such as almonds, and nibble on these and drink lots of water.

Do you eat to live or live to eat?

I definitely eat to live. The sole purpose of my work is to help people be 100% healthy. It takes 3 weeks a change a habit, 6 weeks to make a habit and 36 weeks to hard-wire a habit. After a while you simply like what’s good for you, so I eat what I want, and what I want are foods that make me feel good.

What are the top immune boosting foods?

Anything with vitamin C. Strawberries have more than oranges or kiwi. Zinc, found in seeds, is a big immune booster. Ginger is anti-inflammatory and reduces cold symptoms. Black elderberry, and blue and black berries, are strongly anti-viral.

Do you take supplements?

Yes, I take a strip of supplements in the morning and lunchtime. It’s called the 100% Health Pack. The morning strip has a high strength multivitamin, vitamin C complex, and essential omegas – both 3 and 6. There’s also an antioxidant formula. The lunchtime strip is the same, except, instead of the antioxidant there’s a supplement of phospholipids, which are essential brain food. They cost £1.70 a day, a bit more than half a Starbucks. That gives me everything I need for optimal health.

What do you eat for breakfast?

I have three favourite breakfasts. The first is oats, hot or cold, with oat milk, berries and chia seeds, which are high in omega 3. The second is scrambled eggs, with smoked salmon, on either rye bread or oatcakes. The third is Get Up and Go, a powder you mix up with milk and berries. It’s low GL, packed with nutrients and makes you feel very good. Occasionally I have a kipper, and sometimes I make oat pancakes by grinding oat flakes to make oat flour, with an egg, milk and cinnamon, served with berries and a blob of yoghurt.

What is your top healthy dinner party dish?

I make a mean kedgeree with brown rice, chopped up egg and smoked mackerel with red onions, garlic, cumin, turmeric, hot smoked paprika, black pepper, chopped coriander, peas and broccoli florets, with a blob of tahini added at the end, then served with a tomato salad. It’s very high in antioxidants, natural pain killers, omega 3s and low GL. My new “Ten Secrets” cookbook shows you how to make recipes that include all the benefits of optimum nutrition, available from

On Patrick’s website you can also fill in a BioAge Check and find out your biological age versus your chronological age. Patrick’s is 43 versus 54. It also helps you find out what you need to do to add years to your life and life to your years. Well worth doing then…

Bokwa – the new fitness trend?

 Samantha Whitaker investigates the latest exercise class to hit the UK

Bokwa has arrived. A sweat-inducing, high-energy combo of ‘BO’ (from light BOxing) and ‘KWA’ (from the traditional South African dance KWAito), this intense cardiovascular workout helps to build muscle strength and endurance, and maintain flexibility.

I was expecting something like Zumba – only more tribal, with drums – but no. ‘People are saying it’s the new Zumba, but it’s not,’ says instructor Lauren Thompson, ‘there’s nothing like it at the moment.’ So in a light, spacious studio at the Nuffield Fitness & Wellbeing Centre in Covent Garden, I gave Bokwa a go.

First we learnt the ‘basic’ – a simple combination of forward and backward steps with a couple of jumps, signalled by a two-fingered drumroll. Then, over the next 45 minutes, we added several other combinations of steps that create, in a roundabout way, the outline of a letter, cued by the instructor with a hand signal based on American sign language. ‘I created the Bokwa sign language to make it simple for people to follow routines,’ says South African street dancer Paul Mavi, who devised Bokwa and launched it in the US. ‘People learn the moves quickly and easily understand the hand signals, which gives them time to put the most into their workout.’

However, as we were all newbies, Lauren relied heavily on the microphone to explain what we were doing. We didn’t really stop: the music rolled from one commercial track to the next and, once we were comfortable with the steps, Lauren began to move around us so we were forced to listen out for the letter and remember what to do. The idea is a good one: if you go regularly you’ll build up a vocabulary of movement based on the hand signals and there are four levels, so once you’ve learnt one alphabet you can progress to a more complicated one.

Although some might find Bokwa a bit repetitive, the morning after my thighs were grateful for the burn. Music-wise, there was a distinct lack of drums. I was a bit disappointed and asked Lauren about it at the end. She agreed. The music and steps are set by Mavi, and at the moment there’s little room to play. In time, she hopes, they’ll relax a bit and allow instructors to incorporate their own choreography and music. So watch this space.

Keen to keep their classes up to date and inspire members, Nuffield Health is the first to offer Bokwa in the UK (it has already been very successful in the US) – but I imagine it will only be a matter of time before it starts to appear on other gym’s timetables. There are also independent instructors running classes from non-gym-based studios.

If you fancy trying something new – which is always a good idea when it comes to keeping fit – go to to find out more, and to find a class at a Fitness & Wellbeing Centre near you.