Nothing beats finishing a long, arduous week in the office than a quick, carefree takeaway, eaten in the comfort of your living room sofa, washed down with a bottle of wine whilst enjoying a sedentary evening in front of the TV right? Wrong.

Here at Hip and Healthy, we were disappointed yet unsurprised at the recent findings accumulated by YorkTest laboratories, who provided staggering statistics to name and shame the UK’s love of convenience foods. That’s right hip and healthies, it would seem that we are in the severe minority, with people in the UK spending approximately £29.4 million a year on takeaways and the typical person splurging £109 per month on convenience meals. But, is it really worth it?

The statistics speak for themselves. Between January 2004 and January 2014 searches for ‘IBS Symptoms’ have increased by a jaw-dropping 85%. The causes of such discomfort differ for each individual (excessive consumption of dairy, wheat and gluten are common culprits), yet takeaway consumption is at its highest ever. The obvious irony, is that rather than a means of de-stressing, such actions in fact contribute to severe distress, preventing you from living your life to its fullest potential. With 18% more people searching for a Food intolerance Test on a Monday than any other day, this is key evidence to suggest that the weekend is making us feel anything but refreshed and revived for the following week.

So why does no solution seem to be transpiring? Why does the population continue to use and abuse their bodies, knowing full well that such irritable side effects will occur as a consequence?

In the present working world, long, stressful working hours are a common problem, tempting many of us to reach for that takeaway menu. What’s more, with the arrival of the weekend, people are 43% less likely to search for a solution to a health problem than at the beginning of the week, preferring to indulge and unwind with family and friends.

However, are we not allowed to let our hair down at the weekend? Of course we can! The weekend is a chance to socialise, catch up with family and friends, to mark a birthday, a job promotion, or just celebrate surviving the past week at work. Here at Hip and Healthy, we strongly believe that life is for living, having fun and a time to give and receive feelings of happiness and gratitude for the people and places around us.

This said, making too many unhealthy food choices and allowing portion control to fly out the window will hinder, rather than help you attain any of these goals.

The key? Moderation. Enjoying the odd treat here and there (and not just at the weekend!) whilst maintaining a hip and healthy lifestyle, is the perfect balance for your ultimate wellbeing.

So do you feel lack-lustre after an overly excessive weekend? Perhaps its time to curb the convenience foods, bypass the booze binge, and put portion perception into practice. The effect? A rewarding weekend that replenishes you back to the best version of you.

For the full blog post provided by YorkTest, click here

For the link to the YorkTest IBS symptoms page, click here

words by Olivia Murphy