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Looking Good, Feeling Better in London

February 2014

By Martha Alexander, London

Londoners want to feel better and are now on a permanent hunt for new superfoods to enrich body and mind. Men have traditionally been more into health than fashion, but this has changed in the past three years - as their very own fashion week has launched.

Healthy eating is nothing new for Londoners, but in the past three years there has been a definite mushrooming of products that steer us away from sugar and processed goods and into the arms of more natural, organic fare. The Sunday Times even went so far as to name sugar the new tobacco in an article earlier this year.

Healthy used to be used as a synonym for fat-free. Now it seems that London consumers are no longer solely concerned with fat and calories. Healthy eating isn’t about being thin anymore. Londoners are looking for extra health benefits.

In the last three years, sprouting has taken off amongst London’s nutritionally-conscious, but it’s now filtering down into the mainstream. Sprouts are said to be rich in digestible energy, bioavailable vitamins, minerals and a variety of other substances that are good for our bodies. These are superfoods and coveted by the health-conscious Londoner.

Although sprouts are now sprinkled liberally on salads in Whole Foods and Prêt, sprouting is a simple practice that anyone can master manually at homePackets are also easily bought in dedicated health food supermarkets

While coconut water is a common staple in many countries, Britain’s inclement weather means that we are relatively late to the party when it comes to this tropical drink. Coconut milk, which is fat free and super-hydrating, comes in cartons such as Vita Coco and is found in most supermarkets. But now, whole coconuts with the top sliced off can be bought at farmers’ markets, such as Broadway and Brixton Markets. Harrods also sell fresh coconuts, but they cost a fortune. Coconuts are novel for Londoners: the aesthetic and experience are almost as important as the taste and health benefit.

The last three years have seen Londoners as a whole become more switched on to superfoods and looking after our health, but for the capital's men, it's also been a period where they have begun to take personal aesthetic much more seriously. In terms of fashion, it's been all about the of the Men’s Collections aka Men’s Fashion Week. Men’s fashion is taken seriously now, as London men express themselves more through dress in all but the most corporate of workplaces.

This year at the men’s Topman show, there was dramatic rainfall- both literally created by water, not to mention the waves of cheer from the audience-- on the runway, showing that as much thought goes into the production for menswear shows now as for women’s collections. In men’s clothing boutiques, such as the quintessentially British Paul Smith, more care than ever is taken in displaying the clothes, in line with men actively enjoying their shopping experience, rather than it being a chore.  

Retail & Dining
Health & Fitness
Food & Drink
A young Londoner enjoys a coconut in London's Broadway Market
Lononders embrace the superfood craze with sprouting
Topshop Man corners the London affordable male fashion market

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