While it’s in my personal belief that it’s way too early to be discussing anything related to Christmas and New Year’s , I realize that most people don’t feel the same way. Holiday parties are in full swing and the shopping has begun. So, before we get any further into the season, here are a few tips to help keep you healthy for the holidays and into the New Year. (Remember to check with your health care practitioner before taking up any new supplement or health regime).
1. Keep your baseline diet nutritious. With all the temptations of the holiday season, it’s easy to veer off track. But, by eating a balanced diet, of veggies, fruit, quality protein and whole grains, you’ll ensure your body is getting a steady supply of the nutrients it needs. That’s not to say you can’t indulge (see here for more) but keep your regular meals nutritious. This is also important to improve mood and keep blood sugar balanced.
2. Get enough sleep. I know, who am I kidding? But rest, relax and aim to get enough sleep to feel restored. And remember, caffeine in moderation is ok, but too much will contribute to feelings of stress as your nervous system is stimulated.
3. Prioritize. If you feel like you’re being pulled in all directions, remember it’s ok to say no. With the holidays, events that should be enjoyable often seem more like obligations to check off a list. Make a few commitments, but make sure to enjoy your time and if you have to, schedule some down time to catch up and rejuvenate.
4. Watch the excesses. Have fun, but resist the urge to have gingerbread for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Further, don’t over-do it with the eggnog, punch or other alcoholic beverages. Moderation is key.
5. Pop a good quality multi-vitamin: This can’t compensate for a poor diet, but it can help to ensure you’re getting the nutrients you need to stay on top of your game. Look for one with good amounts of B-vitamins as they’re important for helping your body combat stress. With all the products on the market, check in with you nutritional consultant to help find one that is right for you.
6. Enjoy the season. Forget about traffic, long shopping lines and everything else that contributes to stress, and remember friends, family and all the other things that matter most.