Canadian summers are short, causing our great annual migration outdoors. Whether camping, canoeing, or chilling on patios and in parks, Canadians are incredibly active during summer. But there are many hazards to avoid. Luckily, LD takes care of that with solutions to carry you comfortably into September.
When exposing long-covered skin, most Canadians remember sunscreen. But are you wearing it right? The experts insist on broad-spectrum, SPF30 if spending all day in the sun. But also be sure to apply sunscreen 20 minutes before leaving shelter—allowing it time to take effect. And don’t forget to reapply periodically, especially after swimming. READ MORE
You can meet twelve-time UFC welterweight champion and three-time Sportsnet Canadian Athlete of the Year Georges St-Pierre (25-2 MMA) in person this Sunday, July 10. The event takes place inside London Drugs at 710 Granville Street in Vancouver from 3:00pm to 5:00pm. But it will be best to line up early.
“Rush” will be there to promote his GSP Series supplement line, which will soon be available at London Drugs stores. Because it’s from GSP, a longtime proponent of clean athletic performance, you know it will be good.
Don’t we all wish we could have 10 more hours in a day? That’s impossible, of course, but by boosting your brainpower, you can increase your productivity, which will create the illusion of more time. While there exist quick fixes for sharpening your brain (like eating antioxidant-filled blueberries or going for a run to score some endorphins), these three tips work best as habits to develop and maintain over time.
Getting your minimum six hours isn’t even the most important aspect of sleep – what’s really important is getting high quality sleep. Try a sleep-tracking app like Sleepbot or a Fitbit to track your REM cycles. You can also use such apps to set an adjustable alarm that will wake you when your sleep is lightest to increase the quality of your sleep.
You can also unplug before bed to improve your sleep quality. The blue light found on tablets, smartphones, and eReaders actually signals your body to wake up, right before going to bed. Try reading a paper book before bed instead.
Lastly, cutting caffeine (at least in the afternoons, if you can’t live without your morning cuppa) will better the quality of your sleep, among other benefits. Still need a three o’clock pick-me-up? Try an iced herbal tea to give you a boost without the buzz.
Abandon your GPS and calculator in favour of using a map or doing calculations in your head. You can also sign up for a daily-word email to increase your vocabulary. Exercising your brain can also be accomplished by playing Scrabble (or Words with Friends!) instead of just talking or texting. Interestingly, socialization is also hugely beneficial to your brain. By inviting friends over, you reduce your chances of dementia. What better excuse is there to open a bottle of wine?
Another way to stimulate your brain is to do something new. This can be as simple as walking somewhere instead of driving, as intense as trying a new sport. Learning a new language or instrument also positively impacts the brain.
First, kick the habit. Cigarettes have been linked to memory deficits, so the sooner you quit, the better it is for your body and brain.
Exercise regularly, even if it’s just a longer walk to your car. Try parking further from work, or getting off the bus earlier than usual to increase your walking distance. Practicing yoga or meditating also works – just 30 minutes a day contributes greatly to mental capacity.
Eating right also has a big impact. That means loading up on superfoods like blueberries, almonds, dark chocolate, and greens to boost your brain, but also making a habit of staying hydrated and eating clean and balanced meals.
Our bones support us – literally – throughout our lives. It’s especially as we age – and when those bones start to creak a little – that we tend to become more aware of the importance of bone health, and of the risk of osteoporosis, a disease marked by low bone mass and deterioration of bone tissue (which often leads to increased bone fragility and breakage). But keeping our bones strong and healthy should be a priority at any age.
Visit londondrugs.com/osteoclinics to schedule an appointment to learn more about bone health.
We spoke to Tanya Long, Senior Manager of Education for Osteoporosis Canada, about ways that you can boost your bone health at any age. She offers these five tips.
A well-balanced diet, says Long, is one that features foods rich in calcium, adequate protein and plenty of fruits and vegetables. Foods like these not only ‘feed’ the bones, but provide other nutrients that are important for bone health, too.
Food, Long says, is the very best place to get your calcium. But if, for any reason, your food sources are not adequate in terms of providing the calcium your bones need, speak to your doctor. You may then consider taking a calcium supplement, on your doctor’s advice.
Osteoporosis Canada recommends routine daily Vitamin D supplementation all year round for adults. Vitamin D, Long explains, isn’t always easily found in food sources and she says sun is simply not a reliable enough source of Vitamin D. Seek medical supervision, however, if you’re thinking of taking more than 2,000 International Units of Vitamin D per day.
We know that exercise is crucial in building and maintaining strong bones. Long says your exercise routine should include strength training (such as wall push-ups or working with free weights), balance and posture training, as well as weight-bearing activity (weight-bearing means any activity requiring you to be on your feet, like dancing, walking, stair-stepping, etc.)
Over 50? Talk to your doctor about a fracture risk assessment, which will tell you your risk of breaking a bone in the next 10 years. Also, all women and men 65 years or older should have a bone mineral density test. If you are at high risk of fracture, Osteoporosis Canada recommends medication, on advice from your doctor. Find out more about the role of medication in treating osteoporosis here.
To find out more about osteoporosis and bone health in general, please visit the Osteoporosis Canada website.
And find out more about how to identify your osteoporosis risk factors – and how to minimize that risk – at one of London Drugs’ Osteoporosis Screening Clinics.
Sandcastle building! Cabin time! Water parks! Backyard barbequing!
Also: Sunburns! Bed sheets full of sand! Popsicle stains on the floor! And hours of “are we there yet?”
As much as many parents love summer time fun with the kids, as the season winds down and back to school fast approaches, many moms and dads find themselves looking forward to a little less chaos and a little more Me-time.
If you have started guiltily fantasizing about shipping your little angels back to school, here are four self-care suggestion musts for the fall:
Newfound hours of daytime quiet in the home may seem daunting at first, but fill them with those basics of life that are a little less pleasurable (and sometimes nearly impossible!) when the kids are around. Like eating a meal—even while it’s still hot!
Or go further: use the extra time to enjoy a meal that your kids would never go for.
Turn on some mealtime music and bring a magazine…and while you’re at it, why not add a little fancy? For example, throw a bottle of Chablis in the fridge to accompany lunch…or, maybe keep that part a secret!
Taking a long lingering shower, blow drying your hair and putting on mascara may seem like a stretch when your seven-year-old is banging down the bathroom door.
But having the kids out of the house for a few hours means you can take some time for yourself: relax, put on some makeup, get a mani-pedi or perhaps best of all: take a nap—yes, right in the middle of the afternoon. You deserve it! (Pro-tip: set an alarm….just in case!)
Walk by a pile of toys…and do nothing.
Sure, there may be a few things you have to get done around the house to restore order. But running around obsessively scrubbing and organizing will likely have you burn out faster than you can say “Charlie Sheen”.
Instead, cut yourself some slack: start by walking by a pile of toys, pointing and shrugging like you have no idea who left it there or who should pick it up. The kids will be home soon enough; they can put away their mess.
Use the time instead to throw yourself on the couch, turn on the TV, and turn off your compulsion to clean: the grime will wait.
Get a full body (and brain) work out.
Getting back into an exercise routine may be the last thing you feel like doing once fall starts, but it doesn’t have to be hard.
In fact, you could simply take a few minutes to limber up with some stretching every day. Or, a 30-day stretching challenge for the whole family may be just the thing to inspire some more vigorous exercising.
While you’re getting the body going, don’t forget about kickstarting your brain as well; you’re not just a pretty face after all!
Whatever you choose to do, just make sure you take some time for you: it has been a long hot summer, and you need your rest—remember, next summer is only eight months away!