MY TOP 5 TIPS TO GET THROUGH THE FESTIVE SEASON AND START THE NEW YEAR RIGHT!
1. Stop with the excuses!
This might sound kind of harsh but I happen to think that too many people use the ‘Christmas cheer’ excuse to just eat rubbish, drink too much, stop exercising and gain weight over the holiday period. Sure, I get that you’re super popular and invited to multiple parties every weekend, but a weekend party (or 2) shouldn’t give you the excuse to continue on the unhealthy bandwagon for another 5-6 days following. Have a good time at the party, eat and drink mindfully (see #3), but get back on track for the week.
If you’re having some days off over the Christmas / New Year period, then it’s also the perfect time to get outdoors and enjoy some exercise in the sunshine. Go for a walk with pets or loved ones; or use it as an excuse to get away from crazy Uncle Steve when stuff gets weird!
Think about it….. wouldn’t it be better to start the new year feeling healthy, relaxed and fabulous, rather than sluggish, guilty and carrying all the excess Christmas pudd?!
2. Eat (and drink) mindfully.
Eating mindfully involves being fully present and aware when you are consuming your food, as this prevents over-eating. I know this can be tough with all the festivities, partying and socialising going on around you, but the first step in achieving this is making a conscious effort/decision to do so.
Over-eating is synonymous with Christmas, and while I would argue that it’s not necessary, I would mostly urge you to continue making healthier choices. Most parties these days offer healthy options, too. Fill your plate with salads and protein, and ask yourself if you really, really, REALLY need that second piece of pav?
3. Drink more H2o.
Ahhhh water…. this one is so simple, so effective, and so often over-looked!
Let’s face it, having a hangover just perpetuates the poor food choices people make around Christmas time because inevitably, it’s a juicy burger and big, fat bowl of fries you crave the morning after. So pace yourself with your booze, have a sparkling mineral water between each drink, and my hot tip: drink 500mls of coconut water before you go to bed (or have an electrolyte/tab or sachet with water).
4. Remember what this time of year should be about.
I haven’t even started my Christmas shopping and this is mainly because I fear for my life (and sanity) navigating shopping centre car parks, and dodging strung out shoppers with their weapon-like trolleys!
Take a moment to think about what’s truly important at this time of year, and remember that while you’re potentially fretting about getting a good deal on the latest piece of i-Gadgetry, some people have nothing to eat and no-one to spend Christmas with.
If you find yourself getting frustrated and overwhelmed, take some time out and just breathe. Gain some perspective on what’s happening around you. Is it really worth getting worked up over missing car parking space when all you are hurting is yourself? Move on, find another one – it’s seriously not worth it!
5. When the stress is real and you need the big guns!
If you get to the point where you’re strung out and you think that the visiting mother-in-law might just be the thing that’s going to tip you over the edge, a little supplementation might be in order!
My favourite supplements to support your nervous system and stress response; to reduce anxiety and help you sleep are: B complex vitamins, magnesium and the amazing herb called Piper methysticum (Kava).
B complex vitamins and magnesium are the key nutrients involved in neurotransmitter production and supporting a healthy stress response. If you’re deficient in B’s and magnesium (and drinking alcohol is a particularly good way to deplete these nutrients), you could be feeling more wired, anxious, edgy and even find it difficult to wind down at night. Kava* on the other hand is a wonderful herb that has been clinically trialed in multiple studies and found to be an effective remedy to relieve anxiety.
Taken together, these 3 supplements will ensure that you sleep like a baby and remain as calm and jolly as can be!
I hope this post gives you all a little something to think about and above all, helps you to enjoy a HAPPY, HEALTHY and GUILT-FREE Christmas season.
I wish you all love, health and happiness, and a fantastic start to 2017!!!
*Kava should not be taken with alcohol or other sleeping tablets.