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Is Your Sugar & Fat Intake Out Of Balance?

fat and sugar intake

IS YOUR SUGAR & FAT INTAKE OUT OF BALANCE?

Can you See the Signs?

There are a lot of confusing ideas out there. Don’t eat sugar. Eat some fats, but not others. Don’t eat fat if you’re trying to lose weight. Don’t eat sugar, but fruit is good… Amidst all this conflicting advice, it can be hard to determine what exactly is right when it comes to eating fats and sugars. It’s not surprising that a lot of us are getting the balance wrong.

So, we thought we would do some research and see if we can’t pick from the clutter of advice some of the rights and wrongs and maybe even clear up some of the confusion.

First of all, fats and sugars are a necessary part of our diets. Cutting either out entirely is a bad idea. However, like most things moderation is key.

Some of the Common mistakes people make

Low-fat products

If you normally make a beeline for the low-fat section in the supermarket you may want to just pause. Often when manufacturers remove the fat they also end up removing lots of the nutritional value. And to supplement the lost flavours they often add in sugars or sweeteners.

So check the nutritional values and ingredients. Especially when it comes to the sugar content in things like natural yoghurt, you may be surprised.

Low sugar products

When manufacturers remove the sugar, they replace it with artificial sweeteners. It has been suggested that the use of artificial sweeteners may have a stimulating effect on appetite and therefore may play a role in weight gain and obesity. But research is inconsistent on this front. We suggest erring on the side of caution. Instead of buying low sugar products try cutting down on the amount of sweet foods you eat.

A lover of fruit

Fruits are a great source of vitamins and natural sugars. However, things like dried fruit, smoothies, and fruit juices are highly concentrated in sugar. The NHS advise you limit the amount of fruit juice or smoothies you drink to only 150ml a day as ‘crushing fruit and vegetables into juice and smoothies releases the sugars…which can cause damage to teeth.’

You’re Nuts

On the flip side you may be a nutty enthusiast and find yourself grazing on nuts and seeds throughout the day. Nuts are high in unsaturated fats which are considered one of the good fats. However, they aren’t particularly filling meaning you can end up consuming far more fat than your body needs.

Both nuts and fruits are healthy food choices. But we recommend mixing it up a little. Eat fresh fruits with a tasty selection of nuts to compliment the nutritional values of the fruit. But be aware and try and keep a good balance of both.

Your breakfast choices

Eating a nutritional breakfast with plenty of energy is important to getting a good start to the day.

Unfortunately there are a lot of cereals out there that aren’t all they crack up to be. Be wary of sugar content in cereals. Whilst they may be low in fats, they are often high in sugar content.

You love your red meat

Steaks are delicious. Red meat is rich in iron, zinc and B vitamins, but it’s also rich in saturated fats, which should be eaten in moderation. Choose organic and for red meat opt for grass-fed, which has a better nutrient profile and is higher in omega-3 fats.

Try eating more white meat and fish. Fish is high in omega-3 fats, protein, vitamins A and D and other key nutrients. There is a reason you always see gym junkies eating chicken and rice or fish

Conclusion

Moderation is key. As long as you are aware that some of the habits and foods you are eating are throwing your sugar and fat balance out of whack you can balance it out again by adjusting your diet.

We recommend you do some research of your own along these lines before making any major changes.

Our key points though are be careful of low fat foods that sneak more sugar into your diet. Similarly, be wary of low sugar foods that substitute artificial sweeteners.

 

Sources

https://www.healthy-magazine.co.uk/too-much-sugar-or-too-much-fat-7-signs-your-diet-is-off-balance/

https://www.healthy-magazine.co.uk/superfoods-that-wont-break-the-bank/

https://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/5ADAY/Pages/Whatcounts.aspx

https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-truth-about-fats-bad-and-good

https://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Goodfood/Pages/the-truth-about-artificial-sweeteners.aspx

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What Is Intermittent fasting?

INTERMITTENT FASTING

What is Intermittent Fasting?

There has been a lot of interest in the health world around intermittent fasting.

This is the practice of not eating for a certain number of hours a day, or not eating for two or three days out of the week.

The obvious result of this is limiting your calorie intake over the fasting period. If you look across a whole week intermittent fasting generally causes people to consume less calories than they otherwise would. The inherent result of this is going to be weight loss, which means without dramatically changing what you eat you can lose weight. This has made the idea of intermittent fasting very popular.

In the office both Niamh and Bobby have tried it. Niamh doesn’t eat anything before 2pm and claims her energy levels have never been higher.

Bobby tried fasting for 24hours and said he felt a little bit lightheaded and dizzy on the day but after doing it, he felt lighter, refreshed and less bloated.

This is not a particularly new concept. In fact there were several studies in the 30s and 40s that came to the conclusion that restricting calorie intake of certain animals led to those animals leading a comparatively longer life span.

How Does Intermittent Fasting Work?

To understand how fasting works we need to understand how the body behaves when you eat food and when you don’t.

When you eat food your body spends typicaly 3 to 5 hours digesting and absorbing food. During this period it is typically hard for your body to burn fat because of the increased insulin levels.

After about around 8- 12 hours your body is no longer absorbing or digesting food which means your insulin levels are low and this makes it easier for you to  burn fat.

Because we don’t stop absorbing energy and food into our system 12 hours after eating, it is rare that our bodies are in this fat burning state.

By intermittent fasting you choose to force your body into this state which allows you to burn more fat than you otherwise would, without dramatically changing what you eat and how much you exercise.

The Effects of Intermittent fasting

1. Losing Belly Fat

The main argument for intermittent fasting is there is evidence that skipping the first meal of the day and not eating late at night, not only helps you lose weight, but helps you retain muscle mass and increases your energy levels.

2. Increased Energy

This is the main thing Niamh has noticed from her own intermittent fasting. She has more energy in the mornings, and to quote her, ‘no longer falls asleep at work.’

3.  Increased metabolism

Other purported physical benefits of fasting include:

1. Improved mental clarity and concentration.

2. Lowered blood insulin and sugar levels which may help with type 2 diabetes.

3. Increased growth hormone.

4. Lowered blood cholesterol.

5. You might even live longer

The Not so Good

As with any form of dramatic change for your body, there can be side-effects, especially if you don’t plan and structure your fasting properly.

1. Running low on nutrients

By altering your eating habits like this, you may find your body begins to get less of the good stuff that it needs because you aren’t eating properly.

2. Junk food becomes more tempting

Especially when you start, your food cravings may lead you to over indulge in junk food.

3. Not being able to exercise

Exercising without eating properly can lead to alarming fatigue, light-headedness and nausea.

Exercise requires you to massively increase your energy output. Burning body fat is an inefficient way to create energy; the potential energy in fatty tissue is stored as long molecules that are harder to break down than sugars.

However, Niamh, after daily intermittent fasting for nearly a month argues that she now has more energy than ever before!

3. Constipation

Less going in means less going out. You don’t need medications unless you experience discomfort.

4. Headaches

These tend to disappear after the first few times on fasts. Make sure you are drinking lots of water to help with this.

Other possible side effects include dizziness, heartburn and muscle cramps.

Eight tips for successful Intermittent Fasting:

1. Drink lots of water.

2. Stay busy and exercise.

3. Drink coffee or tea.

4. Hunger comes in waves, if you can ride them out you’ll find they quickly dissipate.

5. Don’t tell anybody who is not supportive that you are fasting. It can be mentally challenging to fast.

6. Give yourself one month. It won’t feel great to begin with. But stick with it and let the results speak to you.

7. Follow a low-carb diet between fasting periods. This reduces hunger and makes fasting much easier. It may also increase the effect on weight loss and type 2 diabetes reversal, etc.

8. Don’t binge after fasting!

Getting Started

The first thing you need to do is decide what kind of fasting you are going to do choose something that will fit into your lifestyle.

Second, you then need to decide on the length of time you are going to fast.

Thirdly, plan! The key to a successful fast lies in the planning. What are you going to eat, and when? When are you going to exercise and for how long? Which days are going to be feast days? When are you likely going to be in social situations that require you to eat or drink? For example, is your friend having a bottomless brunch party for their birthday? You need to incorporate that into your plan so that you can still go about enjoying life as normal but still stick to your fasting schedule.

When you’re ready, start fasting. If for any reason this makes you feel unwell or if you have any concerns, stop and seek help.

Continue all your usual activities outside of eating. Stay busy and live normally. Imagine you’re “eating” a full meal of your own fat.

Finally, when you break your fast, do it slowly and gently.

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Travel Ready with HBB

Travel with HBB

TRAVEL READY WITH HBB

Travel with peace of mind

It’s Summer, the time of country walks and longer days. A time for travel on foreign continents in search of sun, exploring hidden trails in far off lands and tasting foods you’ve never tried before.

But don’t get so distracted by taking in all the sights! One must always be safe and protected against pickpockets and thieves.

Our HBBs are designed with peace of mind in mind. Not only are they comfortable, good for your back, practical, and stunningly stylish, our bags offer a great secure alternative to a traditional backpack or handbag.

On a backpack, your zip is on the front of the bag making it easy to access to people behind you. Our bags position the zip pressed against your body.

A perfect design for security conscious people.

Accessible

With the zip always pressed against your body, it’s almost impossible for anyone to access the main compartment of the bag whilst you are wearing it without your knowing.

Not only are our bags more secure though, this design makes them more accessible to the wearer.

You are able to swing the bag round without ever taking it off and access the contents that way.

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Double Zips

The final touch is the double zip design which makes the bags easier for the wearer to access as they can position the zips wherever they want. Bottom, top, middle or anywhere in between.

HOW ARE WE HEALTHY?

Still DON’T BELIEVE US?

Here’s what one HBBer had to say:

“I have bags of various sizes and colours and my partner also has an Earth bag he uses on holidays as his ‘man bag’. I love them all as I feel, especially abroad, they are very secure with thick straps and the ability to have them in front as well as on your back. They are superbly comfortable and with all the pockets can hold many bits securely. I recommend them to all my friends and family.”

– Ellie Wilson, HBB customer.

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11 Excellent Alternative Exercise Ideas

11 EXCELLENT EXERCISE ALTERNATIVES

EXERCISE IS GOOD FOR YOU

You know this, but it can be hard to motivate yourself. Even with the knowledge that it’ll make you happier and it improves you brain function. It’s been a long day in the office and all you want to do is relax, enjoy a nice dinner and watch the newest show on Netflix. Going to the gym is boring, there isn’t much way round that and it can be hard to feel like you’re achieving anything so you gradually phase out that part of your life.

We understand, so we’ve come up with these 11 Alternative exercise options to help you find your exercise passion.

#1 POLE DANCING

More commonly associated with strippers in American blockbusters this is one of the best exercise classes out there. It requires a huge amount of fitness, strength and core muscles to do those moves.

#2 PADDLE BOARD YOGA

Yoga is about balance, what better way to advance your balancing skills than by decreasing the stability of the surface you are on? This is a seasonal class that you can even find out on the river Thames. Buoyancy aids and wetsuits are available. It would certainly give you plenty of motivation to improve your form.

#3 TRAPEZE SCHOOL

Unless you’re scared of heights this sounds like great fun. Soar through the air, flip and twist. It requires good upper body strength and will quickly develop your stamina.

#4 HULA HOOPING

Take your childhood passion and turn it into some seriously impressive skills. Hulafit runs sessions across the city. Soundtracked with bangers from Britney and Beyoncé, they’re suitable for beginners, but will soon have newbies doing hoop tricks like pros – while toning up abs, legs and arms.

#5 BARRE CLASS

This one is a favourite of Nancy’s. It is all about control and strength. These classes involve techniques from dance, yoga and fitness. The specific sequences will encourage muscles to stretch and strengthen, leaving you calm and relaxed. Be prepared to entangle yourself in strangely long and twisty positions.

#6 BOXING (OR ANY MARTIAL ART REALLY)

Not only could this come in useful one day (although hopefully not) martial arts require feats of strength, balance, skill and fitness. There are classes for all skill levels and ages, you can take up contact or non-contact.

#7 JOIN THE CIRCUS

Become a clown… okay, we joke. But you can find yourself one of the many ‘Cirque du Soleil’ style workouts which involve dangling for long periods of time as you try to regain some interpretation of up.

#8 TRAMPOLINING

This may seem like fun and games, and that’s the point, but this is a really serious question of your leg strength and overall stamina.

#9 TAKE THE DOG FOR MORE WALKS, LONGER WALKS – DON’T HAVE A DOG? GET A DOG AND TAKE IT FOR A WALK.

This isn’t so much about the dog as giving yourself a purpose and cute furry companion to go out for a long walk or run. Try and wear your dog out. It will likely never happen, you’ll just get it more excited. Let it run behind you as you cycle or jog along with you. Plan out a long walk at least once a week.

#10 TAKE UP A SPORT

What’s your favourite sport?

Sports are great ways to exercise and it doesn’t have to be some high intensity game like rugby to count. Try tennis or golf perhaps. Great excuses to enjoy some of the outside world and stretch your legs a bit.

#11 HOT YOGA

Get ready to get sweaty. They crank up the heat and put you through a series of vigorous yoga poses. You’ll need a shower after this one there’s no doubt about it. After a few classes though it’ll begin getting easier and you won’t be nearly as stiff. (I don’t think we need an image of sweaty yoga people…)

WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE FITNESS CLASS? LET US KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.
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Catherine Tough

Based in East London, Catherine Tough designs and makes cosy knitted accessories for you & your home.  Made from the softest lambswool and finest cotton yarns, in a beautiful range of colour combinations and exciting patterns, Catherine’s collection will keep you in comfort and style all year round.  Products include expertly knitted socks, cosy gloves, hats & scarves, stylish home accessories and charming lavender filled creature creations for all the family.

Catherine Tough: ORIGINS

Catherine Tough graduated from the Royal College of Art in 1999.
Inspired by nature, travel and colour, she and her team continue to make products to cherish.

Now they are one of the UK’s leading designer-makers; their products are found in many of the finest stores around the UK and the rest of the World. Their lovely patterned socks, woollen hats and scarves, lavender door stops, cushions and throws are widely coveted, and they’re expanding their range all the time.

Catherine’s passion for textiles began when she was still at school, inspired by her mum’s knitting skills (there was often a fleece in the lounge, a spinning wheel and lots of projects on the go) and, as a child of the 80’s, religiously watching The Clothes Show.  She went on to study textiles at the Royal College of Art where she developed her signature style of bold, playful designs using beautiful materials.

Catherine and her dedicated team handcraft beautiful quality products for you and your home from the finest natural materials. By fusing traditional craft practices with contemporary, elegant design, they lovingly create pieces that you’ll treasure.

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Enekes in Cheltenham

Enekes in Cheltenham

Enekes is one of the leading retailers for luggage and leather goods in the UK and so we are very excited that they recently started stocking Healthy Back Bags.

They have a vast range of products and brands which we slip seamlessly alongside, including the likes of Samsonite and Ted Baker.

Their team is incredibly dedicated, knowledgeable and passionate about what they do ensuring their product range is only of the highest standards.

Their store is based in the Regent Arcade in Cheltenham, where their full range can be viewed.

But they also have a comprehensive online store that’s well worth a peruse for all your luggage needs.

New Retailer

It’s always exciting to welcome a retailer into the HBB fold.

Our bags sell extremely well in a range of different stores, and its unsurprising that they do well in luggage stores. The unique shape and burst of colour that our product supplies helps them stand out whilst at the same time offering a great opportunity for retailers to do some interesting merchandising displays to draw in footfall and increase sales across their store.

We look forward to a long relationship with Enekes.

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Perfect your Morning Routine for a Perfectly Productive Day

Perfect your Morning Routine for a Perfectly Productive Day

SETTING YOURSELF A SOLID MORNING ROUTINE WILL HELP YOU HAVE A PRODUCTIVE DAY.

For example, a standard morning without routine normally involves me hitting the snooze button four or five times, rolling out bed at the last minute, showering, dressing and running out the door because I’m inevitably late again.

First of all this is stressful, secondly, I’m normally still half asleep by the time I get to where I’m going and it’s not until the second coffee at around 10 – 11, that I really start to get into the swing of things.

There will always be nights when sleep eludes us and we wake up late and bleary eyed, wishing for a stopwatch that could control time so we could go back to bed. But just imagine how much more productive your day could be if you added a bit of structure to it.

I know there is certainly room for improvement in my own morning routine.

So, we thought we would put together a blog post to help you create the perfect morning routine so you can get the most out of your day.

EXAMPLE MORNING ROUTINE

  • Wake up 6.30
  • Exercise for 10 minutes, yoga, press-ups, a light jog etc.
  • Shower & get dressed.
  • Sit down with a coffee and eat a light breakfast.
  • Define your tasks and goals for the day.
routine (1)

IDEAS FOR YOUR MORNING ROUTINE

We have outlined a few things you might want to consider in your morning routine which should help set you up to have a great day.

WATER

Our bodies need to stay hydrated and you’ve just gone 8 hours (hopefully) without drinking anything at all. So it makes sense to start your day off with some water.

BREAKFAST

Your breakfast should contain healthy proteins and slow energy releasing carbohydrates. This will help you get nutrients into your system and gain some energy. You want to avoid things with lots of sugar in though as that can lead to you having a sugar crash around the middle of the day.
There are obviously alternative approaches though, like intermittent fasting which suggests you skip breakfast completely.

EXERCISE

Exercise helps get the blood flowing, meaning your muscles become more oxygenated and gain more energy. It also makes your brain release endorphins so will hopefully put a big smile on your face. Just a few minutes in the morning should really help you wake up and become alert and ready to tackle the challenges the days going to throw your way.

READING

I normally get a chance to read on my way to work on the tube. I find a good book stimulates my mind and makes me more receptive to fresh ideas and thoughts that come my way. Another thing to consider is flicking through the news and catching up on current events or events related to your industry. Anything that gets your brain processing new information will help.

WRITING

This should help you organise your thoughts. We aren’t talking about drafting up lengthy blog articles, more of a mind splurge so that you can organise your thoughts and begin to identify and prioritise tasks properly.
For me, the first thing I always do in the morning is draft up a list of thoughts and tasks for the day. Even if they are largely the same as yesterday it helps me give my day a structure.

On top of this, occasionally writing down my strange dreams when I wake up can be quite an amusing process.

MEDITATE

Focus in silence. Meditation in the morning is a great way to start your day stress free and prepare to tackle challenges. There are a number of guides you can use to start a simple meditation practice each morning.

SET YOURSELF GOALS

Nothing sets you up for a productive day than setting yourself something to achieve. Whether it’s something small like remembering to post a letter, getting a haircut or something bigger like closing a trade deal. Knowing what you want to achieve will help you get it done and doing it will then fill you with a sense of accomplishment.

 

WHAT’S IN YOUR MORNING?

Share with fellow HBBers in the comments section below how you get ready for a busy day.

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New Seasonals for AW18 are Here!

AW18 is here!

The Healthy Back Bag – AW18

It is finally time to say goodbye to summer and what a summer it was!

But even though we are sad that the sunniest days have past we can’t help being very very excited about our newest collection of bags, and we are sure you will be too. Say hello to the new AW18 range below!

Themes

As always at HBB, we endeavour to bring new, bold and exciting designs into your world. With this in mind, we develop 3 themes every season to help differentiate ourselves from crowd. The new bags for AW18 centre around three themes, all inspired by contemporary issues and ideals.

The three themes for AW18 are Back to the Future, Reflection, and Wanderlust.

BACK TO THE FUTURE

A blend of vintage and modern re-invents the traditional autumnal colour palette. The soft contrasts summon an image of another time whilst also promoting the modern aesthetic.

Deep purples combined with colour pops of aqua give this luxurious range a contemporary twist.

REFLECTION

Rooted in a Japanese-inspired aesthetic, the mood is mindful, meditative and spiritual and offers a balance of unisex neutrals with a zen hit of crimson.

WANDERLUST

Sport and craft meets individuality and difference. Genderless green is combined with natural greys, yellows and blues to create an earthy palette. Perfect for roaming the outdoors or travelling across the globe, these bags will definitely have Wanderlust effect.

There is a a whole collection of gorgeous seasonal’s perfect for almost any occasion. Contact us to find out more about our products and see how you can get hold of our newest range.

What is your favourite seasonal?

At HBB, we’re always trying to improve and bring you the best and brightest designs we possibly can.  Do you have a design or pattern that you love? Tell us what you think on our Facebook page!

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Dark Chocolate May Actually be a Superfood

chocolate could be a superfood

Dark Chocolate the Superfood

Despite ourselves we love chocolate in the HBB office, especially dark chocolate, maybe paired with a dark fruity red wine. And that got us to thinking, we’ve all heard the rumours about dark chocolate having health benefits. But if you ask anyone with they will always attempt to justify their cheeky indulgence.

As a writer I like to tell people that beer makes me more creative for example. It’s not true, but I still like to tell people this.

So, we decided to explore the possibilities, whilst we nibbled upon our Green and Blacks, that maybe, just maybe, dark chocolate truly was is the health food that chocoholics having been claiming all along.

6 Ways Dark Chocolate is Healthy… in moderation.

1. It’s helps you have a healthy heart

That’s right. When you eat dark chocolate it gets eaten by good bacteria in the gut which  “grow and ferment it, producing compounds that are anti-inflammatory.” said John Finley Ph.D., who led a recent study. “When these compounds are absorbed by the body, they lessen the inflammation of cardiovascular tissue,” this lessens arterial stiffness and helps prevent white blood cell adhesion, both of which are common causes of arterial clogging which can lead to strokes. If this doesn’t make it a superfood, we don’t know what will.

2. It’s actually pretty nutritious

A 100-gram bar of dark chocolate with 70–85% cocoa contains for example, on average contains:
11 grams of fiber
67% of the RDI for iron
58% of the RDI for magnesium
89% of the RDI for copper
98% of the RDI for manganese
It also has plenty of potassium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium

However, we should probably point out that you really shouldn’t be eating that much chocolate a day. This 100g bar of chocolate also comes with upwards of 600 calories and a pretty hefty sugar count, the negative effects more than negating those nutritional benefits.

Learn about The Dangers of Sugar here

3. It technically counts as a “super fruit”

The cocoa bean is in fact a berry. And in a recent study it was shown to have higher nutritive value than superfoods like blueberries and acai beans with a high antioxidant level. Which kind of means your dark chocolate bar is a superfruit…

4. It Keeps HDLs up and LDLs Down 

In a controlled study, cocoa powder was found to significantly decrease oxidized LDL cholesterol in men. It also increased HDL and lowered total LDL for those with high cholesterol. Basically what this means is it helps good cholesterol, and helps get rid of bad cholesterol. All of which means a reduced risk of heart disease.

5. It’s good for your skin

There are a couple of bioactive compounds in chocolate that are good for your skin. One of these is flavonols which can help protect against sun damage, improve blood flow to the skin and increase skin density and hydration. Eating dark chocolate isn’t a replacement for sun cream though.

6. It may even help with insulin production

Good news for people with type-2 diabetes.

“The antioxidants in chocolate help the body use its insulin more efficiently to help control blood sugar,” says Anna Simos, CDE. “This in turn helps lower blood sugar levels naturally and actually helps your body use your insulin. As a result, it helps decrease insulin resistance, which we see in type 2 diabetes.”

According to an animal study published in the November 2017 issue of the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, it’s the compounds found in cocoa called cocoa flavanols that appear to enhance certain cells’ ability to secrete insulin, the hormone that manages blood glucose. Another point for the superfood case.

chocolate could be a superfood

Conclusion

I suppose we should finish this article with a word of warning. Chocolate is high in sugar, so all consumption, even of the rich dark superfood that is dark chocolate should be consumed only in moderation. If you eat dark chocolate regularly, make changes to your diet by cutting out other sugary foods and calories to make sure you maintain a healthy balanced diet.

Want to learn more about balancing sugar in your diet?

That being said we are more than happy to inform you that yes, dark chocolate is healthy so i guess we have to prove that red wine is as well next…

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10 Things You Need When You Travel

10 things for travel

TEN Things you NEED TO GET BEFORE YOU TRAVEL

When you travel, whether it’s backpacking around Asia or jetting off to the Canary Islands for a couple of weeks, there are a few mainstays that should be on everyone’s checklist: Suncream, bug spray, an adaptor.

This though is not that list. We have put together a list of 10 things you may never realised you needed, but will definitely make your travel life a whole lot easier.

1. Solar Powered Portable Charger

At some point in time you aren’t going to be near a plug and you will need to charge your phone or your tablet. Getting a solar powered one means you’ll never be out of juice, at least for as long as the sun is shining.

2. The Bungee Clothesline

This is a pretty underrated item. Whilst out travelling in the world it’s rare you’ll have the luxury of a dryer but you’re still probably going to want to wash clothes. The bungee clothesline lets you dry clothes anywhere, anytime.

3. A Multi-port USB Charger

It means you don’t have to carry around a whole load of plug adaptors and wall chargers for every single item.

4. Speaker

A speaker is always a good idea (along with a pack of cards). Get yourself a small compact little speaker with great sound. You can find good ones from £15+.

5. Tupperware

You weren’t expecting this one… But a good tupperware is certainly worth the space it takes up in your bag. Going to the beach and want to take some pasta salad? Going on a hike and want to take lunch with you? Never underestimate the practicality of the humble tupperware.

6. Sewing Kit – Safety Pins – Gaffa Tape

Okay… so this is really three items. But they all serve the same sort of purpose.

In the likely instance that something big (or small) breaks on your trip, such as a zip, a seam or a strap, there are very few things you can’t fix with some gaffa tape, a needle and thread or a safety pin. The safety pins are also great for getting your sim card out if you’re putting a local sim card in your phone.

A useful tip is to pack it into old tic tac boxes. They are the perfect size to compartmentalise your sewing kit and safety pins!

7. Pen Knife

A good swiss pen knife is probably one of the most versatile tools on the planet. I have a Leatherman that I never travel anywhere without. If nothing else, it’s great for cutting food up at a picnic. But also the pliers, screwdrivers, scissors (and of course the bottle opener) all come in handy at unexpected times.

8. Wacaco Hand Espresso Machine

Espresso on on the go. We’re coffeeholics in the HBB office, so going without coffee is really not an option we would dare to consider. This is a handheld espresso device, compact and easy to use. All you need is hot water.

9. Kindle Paperwhite

A good book is an absolute travel essential. Though for those of you on long trips, a stack of novels may not be the most convenient thing to carry around. Kindles give you access to a whole library that fits right in your bag, allowing you to read whatever you please, as and when you like.

10 things for travel

10. Noise Cancelling Headphones

For the plane, or the hostel. Wherever loud people are, a pair of good noise cancelling headphones are a must.

Bonus: AN HBB

And of course we would be terribly remiss if we didn’t at least mention our bags.

Designed to make your load feel lighter so you can comfortably carry it around all day. The practical pocketing means you will never lose your things inside your bag and to top it off, they are designed with security in mind, with the zip always pressed against your body.

What can’t you travel without? Let us know in the comments section below.

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