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Healthy Eating

The Women’s centre is strongly supported by The Public Health Agency and delivers a range of healthy eating and cookery based programmes  alongside the SETRUST. For more information please visit : where you’ll find information on weight management, recipes and tips on how to get active.

The Pantry is our most recent health initiative and thanks to funding from The Public Health Agency we are in the process of establishing the first pantry in Northern Ireland. Your Local Pantry is a network of community food stores, creating a sustainable and long-term solution to food poverty and helping the UK save money on their food bills. Pantries go beyond the food bank model, creating a sustainable and long-term solution to food poverty. Members pay a small weekly fee, typically £3.50, for which they can choose at least ten items of food each week, along with additional opportunities of volunteering and training.

Members have reported improved financial positions, improved health and well-being and reduced isolation. The 2018 Social Impact Report also found that for every £1 invested that Pantries have generated a £6 return in social value

We look forward to the launch of ‘Your Local Pantry Bangor’ soon. 

Healthy Eating Tips

We were all brought up to finish the food on our plates, but sometimes it’s more than we really need. These days larger portion sizes are also more readily available, which does mean that it’s very easy to eat too much..

Top tips for healthy eating

Love your label: Food labels are the best way of checking what you’re eating as they can tell you what’s hidden inside the food. Once you know what how to use them, you’ll soon be able to make healthier choices when you’re shopping.

Be calorie smart: Counting calories doesn’t have to mean you’re on a diet! They are a really handy way of helping you choose balanced meals each day, and not eating more than your body needs.

The Eatwell Guide: The Eatwell Guide is a brilliant idea – it helps you eat a healthy, balanced diet by showing you the different types of foods and drinks we should consume, and how much. Simple! You can use the Eatwell Guide to help you make healthier choices whenever you’re:

  • deciding what to eat
  • at home cooking
  • out shopping for groceries
  • eating out at a restaurant, café or canteen
  • choosing food on the run

Aim to fill your trolley with a healthy balance of different types of food.

Share packaged foods Many foods and drinks are packaged for two adults sharing, so if you’re eating by yourself avoid temptation and save some for later.

Eat a little slower It takes time for our brains to register we’re full, so try to eat more slowly. If you’re eating with friends or family try pacing yourself to the slowest eater.

Focus on your food Eating distractedly, such as in front of the TV, means we eat more without noticing or even enjoying it. Swap the TV for the table.

Aim to feel satisfied, not stuffed Try eating just one plate of food and don’t go back for seconds.

Super start your day Don’t be tempted to skip breakfast, even if you’re trying to lose weight. If you have a healthy breakfast in the morning you’re less likely to want to snack before lunch.

Mix and match If you know you’ll be having a proper dinner later, keep an eye on the calories by having a lighter lunch.

Pack it in Plan ahead and try to take a packed lunch to work or when you are out and about. It can work out cheaper.

Spot the difference Swap a big dinner plate for a smaller one and you’ll have a smaller portion. It will also look as if you have more food on your plate too.

Max your pocket, not your drink! Extra-large whole milk lattes or cappuccinos may seem like value for money, but they also contain more calories. Try swapping for a regular size coffee made with lower fat milk – less calories (and it’ll save you money).

Some special tips to help keep the kids’ portions under control

Me-size bowls Plates and bowls are bigger these days – a child-size portion may not look like enough. So try getting child-sized ones for the kids; it’ll make it easier to tell if they’re getting the right amount.

Snack time Set a regular healthy snack time for mid-morning and afternoon when the kids are home. It helps train their bodies to think regular food is coming, making them less likely to overeat at meal times.

Get the kids involved let the kids watch you serve the meals. This way they’re more likely to understand the different portion sizes for different ages.

Start small Give them less to start with – they can always ask for seconds. You’ll have less waste and they won’t eat too much.

Just a mouthful If you’re worried about picky eaters not getting a balanced diet, encourage them to try a mouthful of everything on the plate, rather than all of it. You might find they try more things that way.

Clear plate conundrums don’t worry if they don’t clear their plate. If they say they’re full, the chances are, they are full!

Water regularly if the kids say they’re hungry while you’re cooking, try giving them a glass of water or juice to fill the gap rather than a snack that could ruin their appetite.

Taken from change4life

Physical Activity

Alongside a heathly diet, building activity into your day keeps your heart healthy, reduces your risk of serious illness and strengthens muscles and bones. It can also be a great way of reducing your stress levels and lifting your mood if you’re feeling down.  Physical activity is especially important for children if they are to grow into healthy adults. Getting active now will benefit them throughout their lives

That means:

  • Adults needs to be active for at least 150 minutes each week
  • Kids aged five to 16 need to be active for at least 60 minutes each day
  • Kids under five need three hours of activity a day

Evidence has shown that physical activity:

  • Improves self-esteem, confidence and purpose
  • Exercise is a good way of managing stress and improving mood
  • Reduces symptoms of depression and anxiety

It can also help with the management of heath conditions all of which can have an impact on mental health and emotional wellbeing:

  • Reduces risk of a range of (lifestyle) diseases, eg Coronary Heart Disease, Stroke, Type 2 Diabetes.
  • Management of diabetes
  • Reduction in falls
  • Minimise the effects of arthritis
  • Prevention of osteoporosis
  • Helps maintain a healthy weight helping to combat obesity
  • Helps maintain ability to perform everyday tasks with ease