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By Deborah Peddle-Hann
The holiday season can be a time for celebration and enjoyment, but it can also be a time when our health and wellness take a back seat, leading to illness, exhaustion and even depression.
With all the gatherings, parties, and indulgences that come with the season, it’s easy to get caught up in the festivities and neglect healthy habits. However, it’s important to remember that taking care of yourself during the holidays is just as important as any other time of year. Here are some tips to help you stay healthy during the holiday season:
- Practice moderation. Yeah, yeah, we’ve heard that before right? Listen, it’s okay to enjoy delicious holiday treats. But when we get the attitude of “I’m taking a break because it’s the holidays”, we tend to let loose a little too much and eat ALL the food as if there is a famine coming. Tell me I’m lying. The holiday season is a perfect time to truly work on moderation and prove to yourself you can enjoy the treats without feeling like crap. Instead of eating large portions, use a smaller plate, try smaller servings and be mindful of your food choices (hint – the turkey isn’t the problem).
- Stay active. The holiday season can be a busy time, but make sure to carve out time for physical activity. Going for a walk or jumping into a fun fitness class can help reduce stress and keep your energy levels up.
- Stay hydrated (with water – I know what you were thinking). With all the indulgences of the holiday season, it’s important to remember to drink plenty of water. Dehydration can lead to fatigue and other negative health effects, so make sure to keep a glass of water handy and drink up.
- Limit Alcohol or Sugary Drinks. Be careful of drinking too many empty calories because I don’t think there is anything worse than waking up with an excited child and a hangover on Christmas morning! My best tip is to drink a full glass of water in between any sugary or alcoholic drinks. Your body and head will thank you.
- Get plenty of rest: It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the season, but make sure to prioritize sleep. I know it’s easier said than done, but it’s important to aim for at least 7 hours of rest. This will keep your energy levels up and boost your immune system, which is vital this time of year.
- Wash your hands frequently. Speaking of immune systems, the holiday season means more social gatherings and increased potential for spreading germs. Make sure to wash your hands frequently, especially before eating, to reduce the risk of getting sick.
- Take breaks. This was a big one for me this year and to protect my mental and physical health, I had to dial back on many of my gatherings I hosted. The holiday season can be stressful, so make sure to take breaks and carve out time for you. Whether it’s taking a few deep breaths, going for a walk, or practicing mindfulness, taking time for yourself can help reduce stress and improve your overall wellbeing.
By following these tips, I hope you’ll be able to enjoy the holiday season while still taking care of yourself. Remember to prioritize your health and make selfcare a priority so you can fully enjoy all the holiday festivities. From my family to yours, happy holidays.
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