Our editors share their best health tips.
Breaking news: Soul sister
SoulCycle, the Rolls-Royce of the indoor-cycling world, just wheeled into Toronto with its first Canadian studio. Devotees are addicted to this 45-minute cycling class that's more like a movement than a workout. Expect a heart-pumping, beat-bopping sweaty dance party on two wheels.
Do this now: Prep for allergy season
1. When you need immediate relief from itchy, watery eyes and a scratchy nose, try an extra-strength over-the-counter option that gets to work in just 20 minutes. Reactine Extra Strength, $26, shoppersdrugmart.ca.
2. Take a daily high-potency multistrain probiotic, recommends Sara Celik, a Toronto naturopath. Research shows this supplement can lessen congestion and nasal itching. Renew Life Ultimate Flora, $35, renewlife.ca.
3. So long, sniffles and sneezes. Roll on this 100-percent-natural remedy for relief from allergy symptoms. The travel-friendly three-piece set will help you breathe easier at home, work or the cottage. Saje Sniffle & Allergy Care Kit, $37, saje.com.
Here comes the sun!
Summer's longer days mean we can more easily net our required dose of vitamin D. But it's also a good time to brush up on our sun-care know-how. Toronto dermatologist Dr. Julia Carroll recommends a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects skin from UVA and UVB rays; pick a water-resistant formula with a sun-protection factor of 30 or higher, and reapply every two hours. How much? A full shot glass isn't just for tequila—it's the amount to use for every application. (A good rule: Don't come home from a long weekend with a full bottle.) Pay close attention to often-missed areas, such as the backs of hands and legs, the top of the head and along the hairline. "Precancerous spots often show up along the hairline from perspiration and not applying close enough to the hair's edge," says Dr. Carroll. Melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, is on the rise in Canada.
Coppertone Sport Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30, $10, coppertone.ca.
Good eats: Figs
This healthy snack is low in calories, high in potassium and calcium and full of fibre, which is why you should forgo your fig cookie for the real deal. Not sure you're a fan? There are 1,000 varieties, from mild to intense and sweet to nutty, so there's plenty to choose from. Fresh is great, but we're loving the dried version of this luscious fruit for its convenience.
We tried it: Orangetheory Fitness
The workout: This is a tough one-hour interval class, incorporating cardio and strength-training exercises. Using a heart-rate monitor, you'll aim to work in your "orange zone" (84 percent of your maximum heart rate) for 12 to 20 minutes. Postworkout bonus: It increases your metabolism for 24 to 36 hours.
Best for: High-energy cardio enthusiasts who thrive when challenged and their numbers are on display for the class.
The final word: This group fitness class with a personal-training touch will push you to work at peak performance.