The holidays can be a time of great joy and excitement, but for many people, it can also be a time of great stress and poor eating habits that lead to exhaustion and crankiness! Here are some tips to tackle the holidays the natural way and plan ahead so you aren't made into a Grinch or a Scrooge, or some combination of the two!
1.) Plan Ahead. This is particularly true if you are hosting. Anything that can be prepared over the week preceding your big family dinner should be prepared then. If possible, do yourself a favor and take some time off work if you are able to. For the retail and service industry, this may not be possible, but for others, it is well worth it to use a sick day or two to keep yourself sane during this busy time.
2.) Eat well. This might seem like a bit of an oxymoron when most people are stuffing their faces with tarts and treats, and your office and kitchen always seem to have sweets available at hand. Resist the urge to indulge every single one of the twelve days of Xmas and instead opt to treat yourself only on the day of, and only with the best of the best. Sweets aren't the enemy, but they can get out of control so be picky and only go for the most decadent Moderation is key. When you are dishing up for the big family dinner, be sure to try to fill half your plate with vegetables and salads to ensure you are getting adequate nutrients and plenty of fiber to fill you up ! This will prevent you from overindulging once again.
3.) Drink Water (for the most part). Sure, some people can't live without their egg nog, but try having a single glass, rather than heading back to the punch bowl for refills all night. Opt to get your water glass topped up as much as possible. With all of the tempting beverages at your fingertips, it can be hard to remember to stay hydrated. Coffees, teas, and alcoholic drinks are all dehydrating so limit your intake of them and be sure to replenish with some H20 !
4.) Enjoy family time. It's easy to get caught in the kitchen for the entire day and forget to just sit with the family and enjoy what the holiday season is about : sharing time and space with the people you love. Too often nowadays do we get caught up in our own lives and it is a rare occasion when we can sit and practice the lost art of conversation with a loved one. Leave your cellphones in a pile at the door, put a household ban on tablets and laptops, and enjoy a chat with relatives or even a board game or two !
5.) Take your vitamins. Just because you might not take everything in moderation and want to enjoy everything this season has to offer in terms of the culinary palette, doesn't mean you should stop your regular supplement regime ! If anything, you should really be keeping on top of that to ensure all of your basic nutritional requirements are being met and you don't burn out before this special season is over.
6.) Cinnamon on everything ! Having a cup of coffee? Flavour it with cinnamon. Enjoying an apple crisp? Pile on the cinnamon. Baking cookies ? Throw is a decent dose of the brown stuff. Cinnamon is a blood sugar balancer and can help you maintain a continuous state of energy while the highs and lows of blood sugar crashes wreak havoc on everyone around you. A 2012 review of several recent studies concluded that the use of cinnamon had a potentially beneficial effect on glycemic control. One study published in 2009 found that a 500 mg capsule of cinnamon taken twice a day for 90 days improved hemoglobin A1C levels — a reflection of average blood sugar level for the past two to three months — in people with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes (hemoglobin A1C levels greater than 7 percent).
Take care and enjoy the Holiday Season
This article was written by Nakita Valerio, B.A, CSN, BMSA Technician. She has been working for Optimum Health Vitamins since 2007, during which she has gained a deep appreciation and understanding for the complexities of human nutrtition, and has spent hundreds of hours researching the topic. Her current position is online media assistant - a job she currently enjoys from Morocco!
Disclaimer: The above information is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your physician.