Food for Mood 6: Sauerkraut

For our final Food for Mood recipe, Caroline from Every Good Thing showed us how to make Sauerkraut.  This is a German dish that literally translates as “sour cabbage” but don’t let that put you off. Sauerkraut is made by the process of lacto-fermentation, where we’ll be using helpful bacteria present on the veggies and a little salt to make a delicious live pickle that will be packed with nutrients, lactic acid bacteria and fibre  – all fantastic for your gut health. Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the last few years, you’ll know something about how important looking after your gut health is! This is a very simple recipe. (more…)

Food for Mood 5: Adding spice to your life with Dahl and rice

This week’s recipe is a quick and easy dhal and brown rice recipe to add in herbs and spices. The dish included in-tact wholegrains (brown rice) with bags of fresh herbs + peas plus the easy to cook red lentils that are great prebiotics and a good source of protein with orange and green vegetables.

Eating a diverse rainbow of colourful foods with added herbs and spices everyday gives our bodies a range of antioxidants, polyphenols and fibre to keep our gut health in tip top shape supporting our mood and giving us energy. Spices, such as garlic, ginger, turmeric and chilli contain potent medicinal properties that offer a range of health benefits. They support our immune system (you’ll get less colds and seasonal bugs and reduce your cancer risk) keep our vascular system healthy (helping our brains and heart work effectively), support our brain function and detoxification (to help cognition, focus, memory and vitality) plus they taste great (we feel good when we eat tasty food!). (more…)

Food for Mood 4: Three very easy suppers

Our next Food for Mood recipes make a very easy supper (and lunch for the next day) with cheap ingredients that are nutrient dense. This is the fourth of six cook-a-long sessions looking at how we can support our mood with food.

You’re busy with your studies and you don’t have time to prep food or even think about your mood. How about making a three-dish meal in 45 minutes that will feed you twice, plus help keep your energy and motivation topped up. (more…)

My top five things to do in Bristol 

by Yunyan Li, Senior Resident 

1. A Morning Run

Having a morning run in Bristol is absolutely a fantastic thing. I will strongly recommend two areas: Harbourside and Clifton village (extending to the Ashton Court). In Clifton area, you could enjoy a sunrise with suspension bridge and river as background. You could also enjoy the natural and clean air near the Ashton court. If you want to treat yourself after exercises, there are a wide range of breakfast restaurants nearby. In Harbourside area, you could enjoy the special scene: a row of colourful houses.  You could also enjoy the peace of harbour and different kinds of boats parking on the side.  

2. Have a Rest in Brandon Hill 

If you are tired of shopping at Park Street, then Brandon Hill should be a place for you. If you are tired of studying in the library, Brandon Hill is also your best choice for relaxation. It is near the Education and Wills library. You can have a nice walk around the hill. You could also climb the Colston Tower to enjoy Bristol from the top.  

3. Ashton Court Deer ‘Hunt’

There are different deer under protection in Ashton court. If you are lucky, you might find them hanging around the in the park peacefully. It was so amazing to take a picture with these lovely deer during Christmas break (in a safe and friendly distance). In summertime, this park is great for a walk with nice scenery.  

4. Look for the footprint of Banksy  

Bristol is famous for the unexpected painting at different street corners. There are guided tour to show you these graffiti wall. Of course, you can look for these surprises with your friends. There are always some unexpected scenes at some corners.  

5. Take a boat trip 

Having a boat trip provides different perspectives for you to explore Bristol. A boat trip from the Suspension Bridge to the city centre can show you most famous scenes of Bristol. It is better to take a boat trip during summertime. With a blue sky, you could enjoy a more attractive Bristol. 


Community living: Moving from University Halls to private rented accommodation

by Juntao He, Giulia Giani and Carlos Munoz Neira, Senior Residents

Moving out from University Halls sets a new challenge in your student experience. Unfortunately, COVID-19 pandemic contingency seems to be posing an additional load to this new episode of your life. Although moving to private rented accommodations may seem to be slightly overwhelming, it can also turn into an amazing experience. Community living will provide you with loads of skills useful for your adult life. It will also give you the opportunity to meet new neighbours from different ages and backgrounds. In this post we outline 7 tips that will make this process much easier, so we invite you to bear them in mind while you are moving from your beloved University Hall to your new accommodation.  (more…)

Food for Mood 3: How to make healthier snacks

Saba James, the Nutrition for Wellbeing Lead from the National Centre for Integrative Medicine, shares three easy sweeter treats to avoid packaged cereal, chocolate bars and ice creams. This is the third of six cook-a-long sessions looking at how we can support our mood with food.

These healthy snacks include dark chocolate – full of magnesium and antioxidants. Dates, which offer a mellow, caramel sweetness with added fibre and minerals. Nuts, which help maintain stable blood-glucose levels with added protein and healthy unsaturated fats. Bananas, which are dense in fibre, prebiotics plus potassium, folate, vitamin C and lots of antioxidants plus they taste delicious.

Balancing our blood glucose helps stabilise our mood and energy which supports our stamina and focus during periods of revision and intense study. It is also essential to enjoy the sweeter things in life sometimes. (more…)

Food for Mood 2: How to make a healthy grain bowl

In our second Food for Mood cookalong we learnt to make a simple recipe to include more wholegrains into our diet. In-tact whole grains, rather than flour-based and processed grains which dominate the western diet, are brimming with prebiotics that support a healthy microbiome which supports our mood and mental health.

Did you know that our gut microbes also produce some of our happy-hormone serotonin and our calming communicator GABA? Our gut (well, our lower intestines to be more specific) is made up of trillions of microbes that can help or hinder us by the species that dominate and how we feed them. The fibre and prebiotics in in-tact wholegrains feed healthier microbial strains which in-turn feed us with the hormones and neurotransmitters we need for a calmer mood and focused motivation. In-tact wholegrains are not the only feeders we can give our guts, a range of colourful beans, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruit can also do the job – alongside healthy proteins and fats to balance. (more…)

Know your stress signs and ease your exam stress

by Jeongeun Park, Senior Resident

COVID 19 crisis, lockdown, being stuck at home, no parties, social distancing… I know you are already stressed out by the current government’s dos and don’ts. On top, a revision period is coming up and perhaps this makes you even more frustrated. First, it is NORMAL to feel anxious when having exams or essay deadlines to meet. Ok then, you may wonder how to cope with exam-related stress. 

Here are some tips suggested by the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) that I find useful to effectively manage my stress level. I know you are a busy person, so I sum up a few important points made.   (more…)

Find your wellbeing and support

by Beth Robinson, Senior Resident

Whilst mental health awareness week has now passed, both mental health and wellbeing should and can continue to be a priority. As a student who also works for the University, I have often scrolled through different University websites in order to see what support is available. At ResiLife, we understand that stress at University can be due to multiple factors and so have devised a ‘go to’ list of excellent support services available depending on your own needs, including what the support is, a description of what it could offer, and how to get in contact if you think this could benefit you and/or someone you know – having a friend reach out can be incredibly valuable.

The areas covered here are:

  • Direct and general mental health and wellbeing support
  • Support for those who have encountered unacceptable behaviour
  • Support for disabled students
  • Financial, housing and careers support
  • Faith and cultural networks
  • University studies-related help
  • Support from the Students’ Union
  • Other resources, contacts and apps