Health Features

Viva! Health unravels the most recent scientific research and makes it easy to understand. Here we update you on the latest findings...

It’s a myth that you need meat to get enough iron – a varied vegan diet contains plenty!                                                                                                                                        
Vitamin B3 was the third B vitamin to be discovered – hence the name! It is also known as niacin and there are two forms: nicotinic acid and nicotinamide and both are found in food.
Whether you’ve just taken up jogging or are a seasoned athlete, your body needs the same set of nutrients as everyone else’s to keep fit – the only difference is in the quantity.
The B vitamins are a collection of eight, water-soluble vitamins essential for a range of important functions in the body. They help release energy from food and are essential for our immune and nervous systems. They are not stored in the body so we need to eat foods that contain them. Why are they so important and which foods contain them?
Getting enough sleep is vital for our overall health. It can reduce the risk of many common diseases, keep the brain and digestive system healthy and boost the immune system. However, around a third of us are falling short – so what can you do to get a better night’s sleep? Can any foods offer help? 
With the growing popularity of veganism, more and more parents are raising their children vegan and many have to constantly defend their decision to do so.
‘I can’t afford to be vegan!’ It’s one of the arguments you hear far too often. I can see why people say it when they’re new to veganism because it’s so easy to be tempted by all the fancy products in attractive packaging with clever slogans that make you feel like you ‘need’ those foods. The truth is, you don’t! Veganism is for everyone and a vegan diet can be as cheap as, well, chips. But the trick is to make your diet not only cheap but healthy, too. Thrive and not just survive!
The first time most people hear about vitamin K is when they’ve just had a baby. In the UK and many other countries, the government recommends all babies should be given vitamin K soon after birth to prevent internal bleeding. So why is vitamin K important, and which foods provide the best source? 
To supplement or not - it’s a contentious issue that pops-up every so often and usually triggers a heated debate amongst both new and veteran vegans. So, it’s time to settle the score. 
Pulses are the edible seeds of plants in the legume family and always grow in pods. Beans, lentils peas and chickpeas are a staple in diets all over the world – for example Indian dal, traditional Chinese and Japanese foods using mung, adzuki and soya (edamame) beans, Mexican bean chilli and burritos, Spanish fried beans, African rice and bean dishes, British mushy peas and a myriad of European lentil and pea recipes.  Apart from being very nutritious and super sustainable, pulses also have some splendid effects on our health. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations declared 2016 as the International Year of Pulses in order to increase public awareness of their nutritional benefits and to highlight how sustainable their production is.

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