Friday, July 4, 2014

Fun times at Kids Health Day!

By Lena Khoury
Field Development Coordinator
USANA Australia

Let the fun begin!
USANA’s Castle Hill office really was the place to be on Wednesday as we played host to a fab and successful Kids’ Health Day Carnival! This super-fun event was a great way to help parents and kids learn more about healthy eating and healthy lifestyles, and to show that these can be achieved with a lot of fun, too!

Kids of all ages jumped right into a whole host of child-friendly activities including aerobics, jump-ropes and hula-hoop classes. There was so much to do and it certainly got everyone’s heart rates up!

Outdoor fun for all!

It was great to see children enjoy outdoor fun – and by this I mean I saw some amazing cartwheels, double-Dutch with skipping ropes and jumping sky-high on the jumping castle (OK, I admit it, I had to try it out before the kids came!). It really was a perfect day to gather family, friends and guests for a fabulous reminder of just how much fun you can have moving it outdoors. And, it brought back some memories of childhood fun in the great outdoors for the parents, too!

Fresh fruit kept us going!
Our kids were sustained with some healthy nibbles and the parents listened to a number of health presentations (kids exercise, healthy eating and food, fitness and fun for mums!)

So, getting down to the nitty gritty, this time I’ve chosen to highlight some of the awesome features from Wednesday’s epic event – but I am going to let the photos do the talking!

Fruit and shakes

These gals are here to help!

This stand was on-the-go non-stop! It was a chance to try our Nutrimeal™ Free shake samples in delicious banana and mixed berry flavours. We also gave away assorted fresh fruit, chilled bottled water and samples of our tasty Go Nuts ‘n’ Berries™ bars.

Aerobics with Elisha

Here’s the wonderful Elisha Renton (USANA Silver Director, Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor) who conducted an aerobics class that got the kids’, parents and USANA staff dancing to the beats!

Moving the crowd

 The energy was incredible! The non-stop fun on our huge jumping castle and triple sports shoot-out got the kids to bring out their competitive side (or maybe it was just me?).

Our face painters and balloon artists produced some pretty amazing artwork! The colours, designs, sparkles, glitter and detail were awesome!  

Fun in the winter sun

Running with Roy

Parachute games, hula-hoop and skipping classes were hosted by Roy Marks (USANA Independent Associate and Personal Trainer).

Jumping rope with Roy
 At one time, six of our lively kids synchronised their jumping skills, in an epic skipping rope challenge! The little ones put their artistic skills to the test, too!

We had plenty of stencils to choose from our Usanimalsanimals selection and the results were colourful creations to be proud of! There were loads of cool prizes to be won at the prize-wheel!
Later, yoga got very interesting! Parents and kids gave me a bit of a fright when they all got into position and got in touch with their inner lions. Roar!

Health talks by USANA’s Ravinder Lilly, David Zhu and USANA Independent Associate, Elisha Renton, were a hit throughout the day. Having the talks spread out over the three-hour event allowed Associates and their guests to unwind and listen to some great tips to boosting kids' and women's health and how USANA can help!

Great fun for everyone!
We had over 500 attendees to this beautiful sunny winter’s day! I thank Mother Nature for this! And, Associates and guests were as generous as always, donating funds for this in need at our True Health Foundation stand.

We also had information about USANA with plenty of flyers and brochures to hand.

So finally (of course), here's a photo of me with one of our amazing Associates, Bianca Giubega.
Here’s what Bianca had to say about the event! “It was amazing to see so many mums and dads with their children at UKD! It was an amazing experience for all ages with jumping castles, face painting and awesome Nutrimeal™ Free shakes (yummy).

Thank you to our USANA Staff for organising such a FUN, HEALTHY and HAPPY DAY! P.S loved the tunes!”
Bianca Giubega

So, like I said, the photos give you a pretty good summary of what a fantastic day we had at the USANA HQ. This is just going to get bigger and better – look forward to seeing you at our next fun-filled event!

Thank you to everyone who came and participated in our 2014 Kids’ Health Day Carnival - see you next year. By the way, you totally rock!

See you next year!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

We really experienced the vision!

Lena Khoury, Field Development Coordinator,
USANA Australia


By Lena Khoury

You may have seen some of my posts about our ‘Experience the Vision’ June Roadshow with Tony and Tammy - they're all over Facebook! And it turns out I’m not the only one whose excited to see the brilliant Tony and Tammy Daum back on our shores! 

Our amiable guests Tony and Tammy Daum 2-star Diamond directors from Miami, Florida absolutely rocked last night’s Sydney Guest event with a crowd of 370 attendees hungry to share their motivation, knowledge and wise words of wisdom!

Mega motivation

Geoff Watt, General Manager of USANA Australia welcomed our guests with an opening speech to start the night off right. With masses of excitement in his voice, Geoff spoke about what was to come during the evening and brought the lovely couple up on stage to present their personal stories on why they chose USANA and how it has helped them grow and flourish.

Personally – I believe it takes great courage to be open with people and present to a large crowd. After all, personal life situations (which not everyone likes to talk about) can be a pretty private matter. But Tony was happy to share his experiences! For example, his diagnosis of diabetes and financial struggles (it literally came to the we-are-broke point) only lead him to his now super successful mission. The determination to change his life and that of his young family’s not just for the short-term, but forever!

Health and fitness

The motivation flowed as we welcomed our NSW state RESET™ Challenge participant and successful weight-loser, Pete Turnbull! Showing off his wonderful achievement (Pete dropped a whopping 22kg!), Pete looked fantastic and it was wonderful to share his uplifting story. A big congratulations Pete – very impressive!

Meredith Quinlan, our USANA Sponsored Athlete and Ultra-runner shared an update on what she has been up to in her ultra-running world. She spoke about how using USANA products has helped manage her keep her up to speed as part of a healthy and active lifestyle. Wonderful insights from an amazing athlete!

Huge recognition

Our recognition segment was huge! We had a staggering 12 new Gold Directors, two new Ruby Directors and four new Diamond Directors to recognise and applaud! The stage was filled with wide smiles, amazing (and I mean AMAZING) bouquets of flowers, perfect pins and plaques on stage. Each person onstage had a sparkle in their eyes and a soul filled with joy – they created an ambiance like no other. The stage was truly packed with loads of energy and excitement.

And talking of energy, almost half of the audience compised Gen-Ys - it was impossible not to be affected by their huge support and encouragement as they cheered and applauded their team members and leaders – I could definitely see where this was going, our USANA future Gen-Y diamonds were unquestionably in the room last night!

As I logged onto Facebook during the night, my feed was flooded with posts, comments and photos even as the event was in motion! It was great to see how interactive and ‘social’ our Associates have become and how they utilise social media resources to support their growing businesses. OK, I confess to uploading a few Facebook posts too…

Moving moments

Continuing from the lively energy in the room, Geoff returned onstage to introduce another major highlight to this spectacular evening. Geoff was holding a huge cheque for $25,000.00 (yes you read right!) from our USANA True Health Foundation to The Smith Family! Seeing everyone’s faces light-up with delight as he presented the cheque to The Smith Family Corporate Partnership Manager, Michelle Hillman, was something I won’t ever forget! Plus, there was living proof that the Smith Family can lift young people out of the cycle of poverty and offer opportunity - in the form of another member of the Smith Family corporte team, Mya. Having been nurtured by the Smith Family system throughout her educational life, once she had completed her university education, Mya wanted to give back. So, she gained employment with the marvellous organisation that is the Smith Family. What a wonderful story!

By donating to the True Health Foundation, whether as a one off, or through auto-order (which I highly encourage everyone to do!), it was clear to see what an amazing difference we are making to people’s lives and the education of our future generations! A huge thank you on behalf of USANA for making this possible! As we all continue to donate, we are able to help the community and families to make a positive change and give hope.

Sharing is caring!

So, as we wrapped up for the Sydney Experience the Vision event! Tony and Tammy were looking forward to wowing more audiences and looking forward to returning to New Zealand once more.

Thank you to Tony and Tammy Daum for spending the time and spreading your love for USANA with your wonderful insights - I wouldnt have missed it!
I’m really looking forward to seeing more Facebook posts as our events continue to bring the power of our USANA family and our amazing invited guests together for more incredible events. What do you love about your USANA business? As always, keep us posted!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Education, celebration & relaxation @ Leadership Summit

By the Field Development and events team, USANA Australia and New Zealand

Some of our USANA Australia and New Zealand team have just returned from a super successful Leadership Summit held at the Sheraton Mirage Resort and Spa in the Gold Coast Queensland.

Joining 56 Associates (33 Associateships + three VIP Associateships including Bill & Jenny Huang, Jo & Warren Naseby, Ian & Teresa King), this spectacular four-day event was a mixture of networking, education, celebration and relaxation. Here are just some of the highlights from this special trip.

Tuesday 27th May 2014

The first official day of the event saw Associates arriving from Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Auckland and Wellington. After the meeting and greeting, the team started the with a team-building scavenger hunt in the afternoon. Teams were given $50 and sent to the Australia Fair Shopping Centre tasked with purchasing something beginning with each letter of the alphabet. The most creative and unusual items were rewarded with the most points (including a very dapper moustache which the finder had to war for the entire night – take a look at the Outback Spectaculr group photo, top right!). Later that night, everyone got decked out in our wilderness finest for the Outback Spectacular – a country-themed dinner and show. It was a blast – yee har!

Wednesday 28th May 2014

Onto a day-long business session covering topics
including Understanding Leadership Bonus, Compliance, creating a high energy business and branding.

Our special guests, Dallin Griffeth, Director of Compliance, Eastern Hemisphere and Fiona Hawton, Regional Compliance Manager Australasia, gave the Gold Directors a rundown of essential facts needed to build a thriving business in accordance with the rules that make our business great. It was great to see that these guys are here to help us build the kind of ethical and legal business for a flourishing future.
Other valued guest speakers included:

• Cherry Dionisio, Director of Field Development and Marketing from the Philippines

• Bill and Jenny Huang, 9-STAR Diamond Directors, Presidents Award winners, Million Dollar Club and Fortune 25

• Jo and Warren Naseby 1-STAR Diamond Directors, Fortune 100 and MDC Members.

• Ian & Teresa King, Emerald Directors and MDC who spoke about building an international USANA business (Teresa) and USANA and Athletes (Ian is an International Sports Coach).

In the evening, we dined on the Sheraton Mirage’s famous seafood buffet for dinner just in time to watch State of Origin battle on the big screen.

Thursday 29th May 2014

During this half-day business session, we covered topics such as knowing your numbers and structuring and motivating your team as well as looking a guide on what to do next for success steps. A leisurely afternoon was enjoyed preparing for the Gala Dinner at Skypoint. We arrived in style transported by hummer limos. Skypoint is famous for its breathtaking views of Gold Coast – and we could see why!


Friday 30th May 2014

All too soon, it was time to say goodbye and head home. But we still took the time to get to know what some or our wonderful Associates had to say…

Views form within!

‘Awesome and inspiring group of people - thank you USANA for bringing us all together and thanks to all who participated for making it such a memorable and valuable experience!’
Mostyn Farmer Western Australia
‘I owe it to our great company, its management people for making such a great environment for all of us to work together so well. We have met so many great people from all walks of life and these friendships are going to last for so many, many years to come. I am blessed to be part of this great group of men and women too! It was a beautiful location, perfect weather, great food and wonderful people!’
Claude Everard Fullinfaw, Queensland

‘The Leadership Summit in Gold Coast truly reflects how USANA and all USANA corporate team care about us. They recognise our achievement and even small accomplishments. It was more than a summit; it is also a family party, being full of fun, love, and gratitude. The company and all of us have a clear direction – we are dedicated to sharing Dr Wentz’ vision, helping the others and changing their lives.’ Jun Rong Wu, Auckland.
‘Thank you to the corporate team for such a thoughtful arrangement! The whole Leadership Summit made us feel so special and exclusive. I personally have gained more confidence after spending several days with all the elite leaders. The best lesson that I learnt from the 9-Star Diamond Director, Bill & Jenny Huang is that vision without action is merely day dreaming!’

Christina Wang NSW

Will you get to Leadership Summit next year?

See you then!

Friday, May 30, 2014

Five ways to better eye health - go on, take a peep!

By Ravinder Lilly

USANA Australia Writer and Dietitian

Let's look at eye health!
 According to Vision Australia, nearly 300,000 Australians are blind or vision impaired, and this figure is expected to rise as more baby boomers reach retirement say the Australian Bureau of Statistics. The good news is that it’s never too late – or too early to nourish your eyes.

Here are five simple ways to boost your eye health!


1. Shield with shades

Regardless of the time of year, if it’s sunny, protect your eyes from intense sunlight. Choose good quality glasses that filter blue light and have 100 per cent UV protection.


2. Watch your screen time and your downtime

Spending long hours working in front of a computer screen can cause eye strain. Likewise, if leisure time means time in front of the screen. So, make sure to take regular breaks. And, to ease strain, regularly focus on an object in the distance.


3. Don’t smoke

Smoking increases the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts. The noxious mix of chemicals in cigarette smoke robs the blood vessels of oxygen. Smoking also reduces the levels of two key antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin.


4. Nourish, nourish, nourish!

Healthy eating is vital for body and mind and it’s also vital for your eyesight. Antioxidant plant pigments including lutein and zeaxanthin are concentrated in your eyes where they work a bit like sunscreen – absorbing potentially damaging blue light and soaking up free radicals (molecules that can damage cells and slow down the regeneration process). A great source of these vital nutrients is fruit and vegetables. Leafy veg such as kale, cabbage and spinach, as well as yellow and orange capsicums, mango, blueberries, bilberries and citrus fruits like oranges provide lutein and zeaxanthin. Also, oily fish that’s rich in omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon, fresh tuna and sardines can help to support healthy vision – it’s especially good for lubricating dry eyes.

Yet the vast majority of us don’t manage to eat enough. USANA’s excellent ethically-sourced BiOmega™ is a great choice and if you’re after a vegetarian source of these essential fats, snack on the delicious Go Nuts ‘n’ Berries™ which provide 500mg – the same as one capsule of BiOmega – in every yummy snack bar.


5. Suplement your nutrition

For good eye health, you need to eat lutein-rich veggies for months before you see the benefits. And, a healthy diet is and always will be the cornerstone to better body health. But, if you want to protect your eyes fast, think about taking a supplement. This is especially important for people who smoke and older individuals – especially if you don’t manage a healthy, balanced diet. Our wide spectrum nutritional supplements – HealthPak™ and Essentials™ provide a very wide range of protective vitamins, minerals and plant pigments.

According to the UK not-for-profit organisation Sight Support: ‘We need 6-10mg (lutein) a day. It is estimated that the average western diet contains only 2-3mg per daily, which means most of us lack lutein in our food.’
Another study showed that lutein supplementation of 15 mg every three days significantly improved visual sharpness and glare sensitivity in older people. Plus patients given lutein had improved macular function ’.

The Macular Degeneration Foundation Australia agrees, saying, ‘Lutein has been shown to be protective of Macular Degeneration. If your diet is deficient in fresh fruit and vegetables, a lutein supplement should be considered.’
USANA Health Sciences daily eyesight protection formula, Visionex™ has been developed to promote healthy eyes and acute vision. It contains two of the most powerful eye-protective, free-radical fighting antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin plus other antioxidants including vitamin C which is also highly concentrated in the eyes.

Looking for better eye health – the look no further!

* Vitamin supplements should not replace a balanced diet. Use only as directed. Always read the label

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Back from the Cruise of the Stars - join us next year?

The majestic Mariner of the Seas
By Geoff Watt
General Manager, USANA Australia

Wow, what a week! It all started at the Shanghai Marriott, a brand new, ultra-modern hotel where the AP Growth group stayed the night before departing on the incredible Cruise of the Stars. Leaving the hotel after breakfast, we battled Shanghai’s hectic traffic before arriving at the port. And, it was then that we saw our vessel for the first time, the majestic Mariner of the Seas. It was huge! Bigger that any photo could do justice to, it towered over the terminal making another large ocean liner moored nearby look like a rowing boat!


Getting on board

After a chaotic embarkation process, we stepped on board and it really hit home just how huge the Mariner of the Seas really is. To help offset the legendary meals I knew were coming our way, I promised myself that I wouldn’t use the beautiful glass ship elevators on board. Instead, I would only use stairs. When our ship orientation started at level 14 (280 steps later!), I started to question the wisdom of my commitment…
Dinner that evening was in the huge and luxurious Grand Dining Room, three levels of luxury, with food to match. Snails, scallops, steaks, beautiful fish, steamed vegetables, and mouth-watering desserts.
As the giant engines gently vibrated throughout the ship, the small seas rocked us to sleep; we were satisfied and excited for what lay ahead!


Day 2

Our business session started at 9am in the Savoy Theatre. This space was easily big enough to hold the huge USANA group, numbering more than one thousand in total! And, the AP Growth 25 was introduced in style. Later, we were treated to hearing from six of the fastest growing Associates in the region including 9-Star Diamond Bill and Jenny Huang (“action, action, action!” they told us) and 4-Star Diamond Chun-Ming Chang (it’s all about perseverance and being the example of good health). Plus, other top-growing Associates told us their uplifting stories and shared their tips, they also told us about their vision of an exciting future. Pages of notes were taken as everyone scribbled down wise words and captured interesting thoughts. I wonder what success will come abut from just this one valuable session!

For a lucky 80 people crammed into the breakout rooms, the training continued after lunch (featuring none other than the wonderful 2-Star Diamond Director Susan Xu). For others, the afternoon was free to climb rock walls, play basketball, drink coffee, relax by the pool and unwind. Hmmmm, paradise!

Day 3

We arrive early into the beautiful Korean Jeju Island. I was lucky to join the AP Growth 25 and we visited a famous Teddy Bear Museum and a beautiful and ancient Buddhist temple before finishing with a very civilized coffee at a famous hotel.

Historical beauty

We re-joined the boat and glammed up for one of the cruise highlights, dinner with the Captain. Everyone looked great and glamorous in gowns and suits. Then, there was a special moment when the waiters brought a teddy bear for each of the AP25. Bill and Jenny Huang, the winners of the President’s Award for the highest growth, received a huge bear – I really don’t know how they got that home!


Day 4

Overnight we steamed up to Seoul, the capital of South Korea. After an amazingly foggy start, the skies cleared to a beautiful spring day. Everyone left the ship and joined tours into the city to bag bargains and experience this wonderful metropolis.

That was a quite night for some while others hit the nightclub and sang karaoke until the early hours! Others huddled in small groups (and some not so small groups) talking and training, all wanting to hear from the USANA stars on the boat.

Dining in style!

Day 5

It was a day at sea as we steamed back towards Shanghai. And what a day! Loads of coffee, laughter and fun. Some amazing trainings from Associates, including our own Diamond Director May Kuang (who helped us segment people to better communicate with them). Another highlight was a huge group photo with 1300 of our newest friends. What a great memory!

Stars on sea

Day 6

We arrived back at port. Everyone was a little sad to be going home, but excited to get back and start building to make sure we get to do it all again next year.

It’s only 11 months until our chance to enjoy the company of Stars in Bali, or to take a cruise in with the Stars from Shanghai. What a choice! Make sure you’re with us next year; it’s going to be incredible! For more details go to USANA Today.

Thanks fellow travellers, it’s been an incredible experience and a real honour to share the time with so many talented people!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Catch up with Team USANA superstar, Britta Martin!

Team USANA has really been hitting the headlines over the past few weeks and one of our very own New Zealand Sponsored Athletes, Britta Martin is leading the way!
On the 19th of April in Taitung, Taiwan, Britta dug deep to win the Iron distance triathlon known as Challenge Taiwan. The gruelling race consisted of a 3.8km swim, 180km bike ride and finished with a 42km marathon! We caught up with Britta between events – read our exclusive catch up here!  
Britta, bringing it home!

Q. At what age did you start competing?

A. ‘I started doing triathlons recreationally when I was about 24 in 2002. I did smaller events for fun and I absolutely loved it. It all started from there. I was hooked to it. I started doing more and more. In 2009, I did my first Iron distance race (3.8km swim, 180km bike and 42.2km run) as a professional athlete. I had a horrible race, I ended up vomiting the entire run, but I still loved it! I haven’t looked back since then :)’

Q. What was your training regime in the build-up to the Taiwan Challenge?

A. ‘To do a race like that and actually being able to race competitively means having to train a lot. I normally do at least two sessions a day, often involving all three disciplines. I tend to normally train between five-six hours a day. But including eating, sleeping and recovery time, it means being busy all day long six days a week. I normally have one easy or rest day per week which I need to recharge and be ready for another week.’

Q. What USANA products do you take?

A. ‘My products are: Essentials™, Proflavanol® C100, Coquinone 100™, Active Calcium Plus™ and BiOmega™. Furthermore, I love the USANA Fudge Delite™ Bars as a snack in between sessions or during my rides.’

Q. Which product do you think you get the most benefit from? Why?

A. ‘I love all my products and they all have a purpose. But if I had to choose one, I would probably choose the Essentials. They were the first products I started using and I was absolutely amazed. I am a lot healthier since I started using them. I used to get sick a lot, especially in winter. When you train so much, your immune system can get quite weak and you get sick easily. Since I started using the Essentials, I barely get sick anymore and feel a lot better and healthier. It has made a huge difference. For an athlete, the most important thing is to be healthy, otherwise you can't train properly. Now, I can train consistently and more and that has made a huge difference to my performance in races.’

Britta and some buddies

Q. What made you get into triathlons/iron distance triathlons?

A. ‘I have always been fascinated by the sport, but somehow, I always thought it was for other people and not for me and didn't quite know, where to start. But while I was at university, I started doing a lot of swimming and a bit of running; I just decided to give it a go. I bought myself a bike and started training on it. I had no idea, what to do, but I loved it. One day, I entered a fun triathlon and I was hooked to it after that. I trained more and more and always knew that one day I wanted to do the Iron distance event. But it took another seven or eight years, before I finally made it to the start line of an Iron Distance Race. A long but exciting journey!’

Q. What advice do you have for up and coming triathletes?

A. ‘For beginners, my advice is to just give it a go. You will love it! It is such an awesome sport and with three sports in one, you get a lot of variety. Set yourself a goal and enter an event and then just enjoy the journey. You will never regret it!

For more ambitious triathletes, my advice would be to be patient. Keep working hard and consistently and it will pay off. Hard work will make you achieve your goals and that will be rewarding. There are no short cuts out there though :). It might take time, but enjoy the journey and just keep believing in yourself. It is worth it!’

Enjoying the moment!

Q. Talk us through your thought process during the race. What were the hardest/easiest parts?

A. ‘When starting an Iron distance event, always expect to have a hard day ahead. Swimming is my weakest discipline, so I need to try to stay calm and not panic when everybody else is taking off and leaving me behind. I concentrate on my own race and take it step by step. When I am swimming, I swim and when I am on my bike, I only worry about the bike and don’t look ahead to the run.

In Taiwan, I had a good swim and wasn't too far behind the others. Once I was on the bike, I tried to take it easy for the first 100km. I was in second place at 100km and again, tried to concentrate just on my race. For the last 80km, I tried to push it and make up as much time as possible. I felt pretty good at the end of the bike ride.

It was important to make sure I ate and drank enough on the bike so that I would be able to run a good marathon and not run out of energy. That was one of the most important aspects during the race. It was very hot, so I had to try to cool myself down as well.

I caught the girl in front of me right in transition area and started the run in first place. Again, my goal was to take it easy for the first 20km and then push it towards the end. I felt very good running and extended my lead. But you never know, what is going to happen in a marathon. I wasn't sure, that I could win it until about 1km to go. That’s when I started relaxing and began to really enjoy it. There are lots of ups and downs during an event like this. One minute you feel like you can't continue, but then you come alright again. The last 20km of the marathon is always very hard. I just tried to get to the finish line as fast as possible.'

Q. How did you feel after the race?

A. ‘Winning a race like this made me feel unbelievably happy and relieved and I
had so many emotions and adrenalin floating around my body, that I could barely feel the exhaustion. I was definitely on cloud nine and forgot all the suffering and hard work that went into it. I trained day in and day out for a long time with this goal in my head so it was just great to be able to achieve it.

I couldn't sleep for a few days! Even though I was exhausted, my body kept going! I was very sore, but that didn’t matter either (although this hit me a few days after the event). Once I was home and had time to come down, I started was exhausted. This feeling can last to up to four weeks after a race like that. It takes a while until the body recovers and rebuilds the muscles and cells destroyed in a race like this. Apparently, it can take up to two months to physically recover completely.

Mentally, it sometimes takes even longer. Being so focussed building up to the race and during it means that it takes a long time until I am able to do another race like this. Some people can do more races a year, but for me two to three full Iron distance races are the absolute maximum. I can do a few more halfs or other races, but being able to push myself to the maximum again in a marathon after a 180km ride and a swim takes a long time!’

What a winner!


Q. What did you do to recover?

A. ‘Nutrition is a very important part of recovery. USANA is very, very helpful for me in that period. It’s important to try to get all the nutrition, minerals and vitamins back into the body. And, the body needs a lot during that time to be able to repair. Protein is very important as well. Protein shakes and fish and eggs are on my daily nutrition plan. Hot baths are very good and easy light training is helpful – mainly swimming and biking. It takes the longest time to start running again. I normally have two weeks off where I just do whatever I feel like. After that, I am starting to get back into my training routine again. Back to reality!’


Q. What's next for you?

‘I will head over to Europe at the end of June to train in warmer weather and do a few races over there. After that, I will go to the United States, to compete in another race in September before come back home to New Zealand. I enjoy travelling overseas, to be in warmer climates and go, wherever the races are, but it is always great to come back home!’

Massive congratulations to you from USANA Britta. We’re all wishing you the best of luck for your next race – we’re cheering for you all the way!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Ladies - we're talking bellies, bloats and bones!

 By Ravinder Lilly
USANA ANZ Writer and Dietitian

There’s no doubt about it – every women is unique. But where it comes to health, us ladies share the odd health challenge. So, this time, we're talking women’s health and bellies, bones and bloating in particular!


If you’re the much-dreaded pear shape (i.e. you carry excess weight around your hips and thighs), you might want to take note. Because while exercising and watching your diet like crazy to prevent getting any bigger and be healthier is important, being a pear may be actually be a healthier option than being apple-shaped.

If you’re apple-shaped – i.e. you carry excess kilos around the middle – health experts believe that you may be at risk a whole set of health problems.

Whilst carrying too much body fat in general is unhealthy, research suggests that too much belly fat AKA central obesity is particularly harmful. This is the kind of fat that sticks around your tummy (visceral fat). It lies deep inside you coating vital organs and producing chemicals which cause inflammation. And its inflammation that’s behind a whole host of health problems – from type 2 diabetes to coronary heart disease.

Short term, inflammation helps your body repair itself. But constant stress is unhealthy. Long-term, it has the opposite effect and triggers chronic conditions. Think of long-term stress as being a bit like your body being damaged by a harsh brush that causes wounding over and over again. The eventual scarring can result in problems with blood flow and reduce the availability of oxygen which all living cells need to survive and thrive.

If you’re in your middle years, it’s especially important to get rid of central obesity – recent research has linked belly fat in middle age with an increased risk of brain problems later on.

Do you need to lose the belly fat?
Are you an apple or a pear?

Measure your middle – if you’re reading over 80cm around your waist, do what you need to do to lose weight until you’re in your healthy weight range.

As you avoid fatty/fried/cheesy/buttery/sugary items, fill half of your plate with simply cooked vegetables, a quarter with wholegrains and a quarter with lean protein.

Following your very own RESET Challenge is an effective way to cut the kilos - great if you want a quick loss jumpstart (if you are pregnant or seeing your doctor for treatment, don’t forget to check first before you embark on a weight or exercising regime).

For five days, replace meals with Nutrimeal™ - a great tasting meal-replacement that's low in calories, high in filling fibre and protein and strictly calorie controlled so you don't need to worry about portion distortion!
Delicious AND nutritious!

The stress-belly fat connection

Have you ever felt butterflies in your stomach? That’s just one sign of the connection between your body and your gut and an indication of your stress hormones at work. The feelings are due to a complex set of neurons (nerve cells) in the gastro intestinal tract. It’s their job to monitor pressure, aid digestion, detect nutrients and work to normalise the acidity and alkalinity in the gut. Your digestive system is closely tuned in to your emotions and state of mind – the neurons in your gut and your brain talk to each other. And. there’s a direct correlation between emotions and physical pain, too.

If stress hormones are constantly triggered, the powerful anti-inflammatory hormone, cortisol is released. Over time, this can mean that your body is encouraged to lay down fat, particularly around the middle. Controlling stress with time out and stress-relievers like yoga and meditation plus vigorous aerobic exercise and, of course, eating a healthy mixed diet can all help.

Beneficial beings

More and more research is revealing the link between the friendly bacteria that reside in your digestive tract and overall health – emotional and digestive. But healthy micro-flora can be destroyed by stress, diet and alcohol, lifestyle, illness and the use of broad-spectrum antibiotics.

Feeding your beneficial bacteria can help to support your immune system (beneficial bacteria help to prevent the body from being overtaking by potentially disease forming microorganisms called pathogens).

On the other hand, a poor mix of gut bacteria may contribute to emotional health problems. That's because your gut flora affects the natural production of enzymes that assist with the absorption of nutrients. So, just as an imbalance of harmful bacterial by-products can interfere with the production of neurotransmitters, beneficial bacteria can help boost it as well as easing gas, bloating, constipation and diarrhoea, whilst supporting the production of chemicals that are essential to life.


Replenish your good bacteria every day by providing them with the foods they love (wholegrains, legumes, cultured milk products and fermented food like sauerkraut). Also, think about supplementing with USANA’s excellent Probiotic® which is a stable (no fridge required) product that provides billions of beneficial bacteria.


Lots of minerals work together to build and strengthen your bones and teeth. The major bone mineral is calcium – it gives them strength and resilience. According to Osteoporosis Australia, more than over 50 per cent of women don’t get enough calcium yet getting enough is important at every age and stage. Early on, a healthy intake of calcium helps your bones to be as strong as possible. Later on, it helps to prevent too much of this vital mineral from being removed from the bones thus helping to prevent the bone-thinning condition, osteoporosis.

Weight-bearing exercise can help to strengthen your bones and getting enough via your daily diet is important, too. Good food sources include low-fat dairy products, fortified soya products, nuts (especially almonds), seeds (especially sesame and sesame products), canned fish such as salmon and sardines, and leafy green veggies such as broccoli and bok choy.

Calcium works with other minerals including magnesium to build bone strength. It’s also magnesium’s job to ‘hold hands’ with calcium and take it into the bones and teeth where it is needed and to ensure that it isn’t deposited in unwanted places.

In order for your body to be able to absorb calcium, you need vitamin D but almost 60 per cent of women have low levels of vitamin D according to Past-President of the Australian and New Zealand Bone and Mineral Society, Professor Rebecca Mason. Rebecca Mason says: ‘Over 40 per cent of females have low levels in summer-autumn and this figure rises to 58 per cent of females not having enough vitamin D in winter-spring.’ 

The most natural way to boost vitamin D levels is exposure to sunlight – a fatty substance in the skin reacts with UV light triggering the production of vitamin D.

Some experts recommend spending time outside without sunscreen – obviously, though, it’s essential to protect yourself against sunburn. Melatonin acts as a barrier to the skin so people with dark skin don’t produce vitamin D as effectively as people with less melatonin (fairer peole) and your ability to produce the sunshine vitamin declines with age.

This fat-soluble vitamin can be stored in the body. But, if you’re carrying too much body fat, vitamin D gets stuck in the fatty tissue and can’t get into the blood and be used where it’s needed.

Not getting enough vitamin D has been linked with a whole range of health problems including fatigue and joint pain.

Ask your doctor for a blood test to check your vitamin D levels. If a test reveals your D levels could do with a boost, try USANA’s Vitamin D tablets – they contain vitamin D3, a form that’s similar to the kind your body makes naturally and it’s the most easily absorbed form.

Also, Essentials™ and HealthPak™ contain vitamin D as does Active Calcium Plus™ and Calcium Chewable™. It’s best to take your USANA calcium supplement with meals – stomach acid helps to boost absorption.

For more information, read our latest issue of Product Focus on USANAToday!
Here's to the best of health!
Vitamin supplements should not replace a balanced diet.