For those who have made a commitment to a healthy lifestyle, the holiday season can feel like temptations are waiting around every corner. Staying healthy between Thanksgiving and the New Year is as simple as changing the way you think about the season. Rather than feeling like you have to say no to dessert or a glass of wine, try asking yourself: How will this impact my health? And note that sometimes, a slice of pie is good for your mental well-being!
Here are five more tips for maintaining your health throughout the holiday season:
- Prepare for cold and flu season.
A flu or a cold can take the holiday spirit out of anyone, and preventing illness is much easier than fighting it off. Get your flu shot, wash your hands often, and eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables to support your immune system.
Our naturopathic doctor, Dr. May, explains that stress and diet can affect your ability to fight off colds and flus: “If you’re on any kind of supplementation, stay on that during the holidays. Make sure you get plenty of sleep, stay hydrated, and get a little bit of exercise – even going for a walk after you eat.”
- Truly enjoy the food.
The key to better holiday nutrition isn’t depriving yourself of tasty treats, it’s enjoying them in moderation. Start each meal by filling half your plate with fruits and veggies – then add the other things you like.
Don’t forget to eat mindfully. Savour the flavours and stop eating when you’re no longer hungry.
- Learn to say no.
It’s easy to get caught up agreeing to attend every holiday even you’re invited to. Don’t be afraid to decline an invitation or two in efforts to ensure you aren’t spreading yourself too thin.
“I know a lot of people who go all over the place during the holidays,” says our RMT Kate Weening. “The holidays are a busy, stressful time, so it’s important to cut some time out for yourself and your immediate family.”
- Take time for yourself.
Set aside a certain amount of time each day to do the things you enjoy. Take a walk, read by the fireplace, or treat yourself to a warm, relaxing bath. Remember that when you take care of yourself, you’re also taking care of others.
- Maintain your routines.
People often drop their regular routines around the holidays because the season can be so hectic. That won’t help with maintaining your health.
“Make sure you’re stretching. If yoga or meditation helps you, that’s something to keep up, too,” says Kate. “If you’re dropping your workout or meditation routines, you’ll feel that difference in your overall health.”
Make the holiday season a time to enjoy, not one to stress about. Book your next appointment online and learn how we can help you stay physically and mentally healthy during the holidays: https://alignyourhealth.ca/book-appointment/.