About Victoria Hall

Posts by Victoria Hall

Coffee: Is It Good Or Bad For You?

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How many cups of coffee do you need to have in the morning before you feel like a fully functioning human? One or two and then maybe one after lunch to wave off the four o’clock slump? At one time or another we’ve all tried to fend off tiredness with an extra cup of the black stuff only to end up feeling anxious and shaky.

According to the majority of advice, four cups is the maximum we should be relying on. Yet, it’s hard to ignore the constant influx of differing advice. Over the past two weeks alone we’ve been told that around three cups of coffee a day could help ward off heart disease by lowering your risk of palpitations, but if you’re pregnant drinking two daily coffees could increase your unborn child’s risk of obesity. Both claims were the result of studies and paint a confusing picture of coffee and its potential benefits.

Part of the issue is that coffee is one of the most studied ingredients and over the years there has been constant stream of conflicting information. So, how should we approach the dietary staple? Here’s what we know so far…

What are the known health benefits of coffee?

Studies have indicated that regularly drinking coffee could help reduce the risk of several health conditions, including type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s and gout. A study in 2015 found that it could reduce your risk of premature death by up to 15 percent.  

Coffee is a good source of antioxidants. According to a study by the University of Scranton in the US, a cup or two of joe every day is most Americans highest source of antioxidants.

What are the known risks of coffee?

Coffee is a stimulant that helps to boost your energy, however this means it can also affect your sleep pattern, which in turn can impact your mood and ability to concentrate.

Previous studies have also concluded that regular consumption of coffee can raise the risk of cardiovascular problems and earlier this year a judge in California ruled that coffee had to come with a health warning as it contains trace amounts of acrylamide, which can damage DNA. Interestingly, two years ago the World Health Organisation took coffee off of its list of possible carcinogens.

Should we be drinking coffee and if so, how much?

First and foremost, regardless of the positive conclusions some of these studies came to, experts don’t recommend those who don’t already drink coffee start purely to reap the health benefits.

If you are a coffee drinker though, the general consensus is that three-to-four cups a day is the maximum. However, this varies person-to-person as for some just one cup is enough to give you the boost and focus you need, but any more can tip you over the edge.

And in terms of what you should be ordering, a regular black coffee without milk or sugar is deemed healthiest. That said, this could very well have changed by next week…

How To Combat Stressed Out Skin

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A whopping 82 percent of Brits feel stressed out at least once during a typical week. While a new study by the University of Queensland might recommend taking a five day break from social media, a lot of us believe most of our stress is  work-related rather than Facebook-induced. According to AXA, three in five Brits take business calls outside of working hours, while more than half check their emails. This ‘always on’ culture is pushing more and more of us to the limit. Read More…

Takeaway Tips From Shabir And Trinny’s Facebook Live On Acne

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If you missed Shabir in the bathroom with Trinny talking all things acne, then you can catch up on the key points and watch the full video right now. Acne is one of the most common skincare concerns and over 85 percent of people between 12 and 25 years suffer with it and one in five women will battle breakouts. While there is not set fast rule in terms of what causes acne, hormonal imbalance, stress and dietary choices, such as gluten and refined sugar, are all thought to be key drivers. When it comes to getting rid of acne, there are plenty of options.  Read More…

How To Find The Perfect Cleanser

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Cleansing is one of those twice-a-day mundane tasks that few of us give much thought to. However, it is a fundamental part of your skincare routine and finding the right formula and using it correctly can make a huge difference to the quality of your skin.

A good cleanser removes dirt, grime, make-up and excess oil that could potentially block your pores and cause irritation and breakouts. What you don’t want is a formula that is too harsh and strips your skin of all its natural oils, which initially causes dryness but it can lead to excessive oil as your skin tries to overcompensate.

Read More…

How To Improve Your Focus

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If you had to guess, how long do you think you can focus on one task without getting distracted? With emails and Facebook notifications popping up on your screen, not to mention the temptation of checking What’s App messages or news alerts on your phone, it’s much harder than you think to stay focused.

Most of us check our phone at least 28 times a day and spend well over 60 minutes on it. Don’t believe me? Download Moment, a phone app that tracks your daily phone usage and highlights just how much you use it. Aside from avoiding your phone though, how else can we stay focused and boost our productivity levels? Read More…

Victoria Meets Jo Fairley

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You might have read one of the many features she’s written for VH over the years, including Getting Your Yoga Mojo Back or the Apps That Make You Happier, but there is more to Jo Fairley than simply being a journalist and over the years she has added many strings to her bow…

Can you tell us a bit about your background?

I left school at 16 with 6 ‘O’ Levels – and a lot to prove, having been told by my careers teacher that I would never amount to anything. I trained as a secretary and worked my way up through magazines, becoming the youngest-ever editor of a magazine – Look Now (a title for nice teenage girls) – at 23, then going on to edit the fashion title Honey, where over the three years of my editorship I worked with amazing photographers at the start of their careers, such as Mario Testino and Ellen von Unwerth, and had Mary Greenwell and Sam McKnight as my ‘resident’ hair and make-up team. Read More…