The flood of so-called superfoods from the tropics continues nonstop. Moringa — a tree that grows in hot, arid climates — has leaves that are dried and turned into a powder rich in calcium, vitamin A and protein. Alone the powder is fairly bitter, so it’s best added to smoothies and sauces. At Pondicheri, an Indian restaurant in NoMad, moringa bolsters verdant avocado ice cream. The generous scoops are rolled in chopped pistachios and more of the powder. Ajna Jai, who manages the restaurant for her mother, Anita Jaisinghani, the owner, thought of using moringa because it made a good alternative to the ubiquitous matcha. “In general, moringa works well in Indian food,” Ms. Jai said: Moringa ice cream, $4 a scoop to eat in or take out, $6 in a cone, Pondicheri, 15 West 27th Street, 646-878-4375, pondichericafe.com.
Reducing a fever is one of the first things a doctor tries to do—but a raised body temperature naturally protects us against infection and even tumours, new research has found.
The higher the temperature goes above the 'normal' 37 degrees C (98.6 degrees F), the more the body speeds up its natural defences against tumours, wounds and infections.
Conversely, a low body temperature of around 34 degrees C—which routinely happens when we sleep—can trigger inflammatory processes such as heart disease, which would explain why shift workers or people who suffer from frequent jet lag or insomnia are more prone to inflammatory diseases. Our 24-hour body clock can cope with the natural drop in temperature when we sleep, but the risk of inflammatory disease and cancer rises when it is low for long periods.
The effects of temperature on health could also explain why cold and flu epidemics are more prevalent in the winter months in the northern hemisphere, say researchers at the Universities of Warwick and Manchester.
A raised body temperature kick-starts the release of a protein, A20, that helps protect the body from inflammatory diseases and cancer. Even small rises in body temperature help the body's defence systems, the researchers found.
The research echoes a discovery made some years back that found that people who had had a high fever in the previous five years were less likely to develop cancer.
SUMMER is always a good time to get in shape, so why not try something new? Here we take a look at the latest fitness trends taking the UK by storm. And with research from workout app FIIT revealing that only 18 per cent of us are using our gym memberships, we uncover the best ways to work out at home too.
Outdoor workouts as part of a group are increasingly popular
The latest research from Sport England's Active Lives has revealed that group exercise is now more popular than swimming and running.
Studies from fitness experts EMD UK agree, showing 3.76 million more people are participating in group exercise than in 2016.
And there has been a 1.1million rise in people over the age of 45 taking part weekly.
"Group exercise has become more inclusive and readily available. There is something to suit everyone of differing ages, gender and abilities," says Ross Perriam, CEO of EMD UK.
Working out with others is motivational and sociable. And in summer more classes than ever are taking place outside, allowing participants to get some vitamin D too.
"Working out outside provides a challenge with ever-changing terrain," says Ross.
Try a British Military Fitness class, available nationwide, for a social outdoor bootcamp.
NHS finds a lot of people use cycling to get their weekly exercise
LET'S GET PHYSICAL
"Dating app fatigue means more and more singles are looking for new ways of meeting people," says Keith McNiven, founder of Right Path Fitness.
Step forward Date-ercise, a speed dating-style fitness class made up of moves that you complete as a pair.
"Exercise is a great leveller and classes are at a pace where you can still chat. Working out as a pair is a good way to build intimacy. Research has also shown that when couples do a fun activity together they rate their relationship better," says Keith.
Healthy cocktails follow the class so you can continue getting to know each other.
Date-ercise will be rolled out across the UK and will also be launching LGBT events.
Barre, ballet-inspired fitness, is one of the fastest growing fitness phenomena.
"Barre is inclusive to all levels of fitness and provides a mental escape through a fun, energetic workout that will tone, define and sculpt from head to toe," says Israel Rivera, head of group exercise at Virgin Active.
"The moves challenge the small muscle groups that we neglect within our typical workout."
Barre classes are available at Virgin Active branches nationwide, visit virginactive.co.uk for more information.
Also try Pulse at Third Space, a brand new ballet and Pilates mash-up class set to music with strength training moves designed to tone and define muscles.
Classes are available in Third Space branches across London, visit thirdspace.london for more information.
Trampolining is becoming a very popular way to exercise
THREE NEW WAYS TO WORK OUT IN THE COMFORT OF YOUR OWN HOME
PT IN YOUR POCKET
Working with a personal trainer can fast-track your fitness goals. However the high cost plus the time needed to schedule sessions can be off-putting.
Now a new app is promising you all the benefits of a bespoke workout but at a fraction of the price.
Freeletics Training Coach offers week-by-week programmes that are designed to work with your own fitness levels and goals.
The app analyses your performance and keeps an eye on your progress, adapting future workouts accordingly to make sure you are always challenged.
No equipment is required and the high-intensity exercises can be done at home, with workouts starting at just 10 minutes.
Freeletics Training Coach costs £32.99 for three months. See freeletics.com for more information.
HIGH-TECH SUPER BIKE
If you love indoor cycling but are fed up of trekking to the gym for classes, Bkool's new Smart Bike could be the perfect solution.
Packed with high-tech features, it takes indoor cycling to a new level.
It's designed to be used with the Bkool simulator, which you can download on to a tablet or phone to give you access to hundreds of virtual rides, from the latest indoor cycling classes to famous real-life cycling routes worldwide. You can even go for a spin round a virtual velodrome.
The resistance automatically adapts to whichever workout you are doing, meaning no more fiddling with a dial when riding and guaranteeing a smooth, stress-free workout.
Follow these hot fitness trends to shape up this season
BRING THE GYM TO YOU
If you've ever been a member of a gym, chances are you'll have come across a Les Mills class. From the weights-based BodyPump to martial arts-inspired BodyCombat, workouts are known for their motivating instructors and upbeat soundtracks.
Now you can do your favourite class in the comfort of your own home with Les Mills On Demand.
For a monthly subscription fee you can watch or download 11 types of class.
For some workouts you will need equipment, such as weights or a step.
For hayfever sufferers, enjoying sunny spring and summer days is often a longed-for luxury, with the season spent sniffling and sneezing instead. And if missing out on outdoor events to avoid puffy eyes and a runny nose wasn’t bad enough, some may also suffer from drowsiness caused by over the counter remedies.
Health Plus provides a range of immune system boosting natural supplements to help cope with the symptoms of hayfever. Bee Propolis, collected from tree buds and botanical sources by honey bees, is thought to help allergy sufferers, whilst offering a rich source of nutrients, flavonoids, amino acids, vitamins and minerals. It can also increase energy levels, so has the added bonus of helping you get the most out of action-packed outdoor activities.
Simon Bandy, Health Plus’ health and nutrition expert says: “Hayfever is a common allergy that can be extremely limiting for sufferers during a time of the year when we should all be able to enjoy the outdoors. Many people prefer not to take conventional medication to deal with allergies, but there are lots of natural ways to help cope with hayfever.”
Simon’s top 10 tips for coping with hayfever season:
Wear wraparound sunglasses whilst outdoors or in the car to protect your eyes from pollen.
Hoover your home regularly – pollen spores can collect on fabrics so it’s important to keep your home as allergen-free as possible.
Pollen counts are highest in the early morning and late afternoon, so scheduling your outdoor activity between these times can help reduce symptoms.
Boost your vitamin intake throughout the year with a multivitamin supplement, to ensure your immune system is at its optimum level for coping with hayfever. Health Plus’ Mega Multivitamin contains 30 vitamins, minerals and nutrients, and is several times the strength of regular supermarket multivitamins.
Keep an eye on the pollen count and keep windows and doors closed on high count days.
Using a petroleum jelly or beeswax on your nostrils can act as a barrier to pollen.
Dry laundry indoors or in a dryer; hanging them on an outside washing line can lead to pollen spores being collected on clothing.
Avoid keeping fresh flowers in your home.
Taking trips to the beach can be beneficial, as the pollen count is usually lower nearer to the coast.
Pets can bring in pollen from outside on their coats, so try and avoid close contact with them when your symptoms are bad, and give them regular baths.