Christmas is a time for celebrating, and what better way to celebrate than with food? Since time began, food has been used as a way of bringing people together and for sharing and celebrating special occasions.
In this episode of the Corporate Wellness Show Kate interviews Michael Smyth from Graham, a construction company based in Northern Ireland – Michael reveals that focusing on the wellbeing of their people took them from the bottom of the BUPA health league, to the top, reducing risk factors such as heart disease. By introducing some consistent measures, all with the wellbeing of their people in mind, Graham might even be making an impact on the safety of their workers too. Far from it being a “nice to have” add, investing in wellness has proved to be a “have to have” strategy, even “up ticking” the bottom line of the company by this innovative approach to the health and happiness of their people.
Many of us have faced a new reality over the last few months, working a lot more from home. Whilst this has allowed many of us to potentially spend more time in bed (no commuting and getting up early), other factors have compounded blocks to getting the sleep we need. First there is worry; worry over our futures and what the so-called “new normal” will entail, and whether this new normal has taken account of us and our lives. Secondly, the lure of films, media and screens tempt us from turning in early, and the blue light from the screens shutting down our ability to switch off.
Kate Cook interviews Tim Mead, early adopter of Organic farming and founder of Yeo Valley Farms, Somerset, famous for their organic milk and yogurts. Kate and Tim explore the importance of sourcing great food, free from chemicals so that not only is it good for the planet, but contributes to your own vibrant health too. How we can support our farmers, supporting the journey from field to fork, and why it matters to us in our shiny offices so far from the countryside.
If we were to look at a little pinch of healthy soil under the microscope, we might be surprised to see that instead of a pinch of inert dirt, we would be looking at a teaming universe of life and activity almost beyond our comprehension. A galaxy of millions of microorganisms, all contributing to an ecological web of life.
Over the last year we have concentrated all our attention towards ill health, but of course the other side of the coin is good health, and strong resilience. As with any illness, we need to keep well (!) and fostering resilience is both a mental and physical game. Mental because our reaction to stressors in the form of chronic stress (long term and relentless) due to production of stress hormones can seriously deplete the immune system (both cellular and humoral immunity, two arms of the immune system). Acute stress (like exams) only suppresses one part of the immune system, the cellular part, as a contrast. Of course, your individual circumstance, like your age can really determine if your immunity/resilience will be Ox like or not!