Healthy gift ideas

Top 10 tips for surviving the Christmas silly season!

Surviving and Enjoying Christmas

Christmas is a joyful time, a time of anticipation and excitement for the season that follows and it is now less than a month to Christmas and all the celebrations that go with it. However, before you gleefully RSVP to all those festive invitations you need a plan to protect and maximise your health and energy.

  1. Summer in Australia means sun, sun and more sun. Start your worship to the sun gods slowly; short exposure to milder UV rays before 10am and after 4pm early in the season will mean you develop a safe golden tan. Always remember to apply a high factor PABA-free sunscreen before heading outside and wear a hat, but don’t avoid the sun altogether as it is important for our Vitamin D levels which even in Australia our levels can be low if we avoid the sun a lot.
  2. You wouldn’t forget to water your plants more in summer, so don’t forget you too need more water at this time of year. Aim for at least 2 litres of sugar and caffeine free fluids daily. Make this an important health goal and you will see the difference in your skin, your sleep and your energy levels.
  3. Drinking lots of water is even more important in pre-party endurance training! Some of the effects of the dreaded hangover are actually due to dehydration of the body. Aim to drink at least 2 litres of water the day of the big event, and try also to drink a glass of water between each tipple.
  4. Before heading out and also when you return home take a combination of a high quality vitamin B and C supplement, along with herbs such as St Mary’s Thistle, Schisandra, Dandelion and Globe artichoke to protect your liver. Together, these will help your body to eliminate the nasty headache and nausea forming alcohol by-products (metabolites like formaldehyde and acetone) of the night before the morning after! Moderation is always the best idea when it comes to drinking but we can sometimes for get that as the night progresses.
  5. When out drinking and partying make sure you have something to eat besides high sugar high fat party food. Have some protein rich foods as well as good quality fats to help balance your blood sugar levels, it’s a good idea to have a good meal before you go out so you won’t be so tempted with all the snack food.
  6. Avoid People Who Create Stress! There are always people you feel you should visit over Christmas which cause you or your family stress. These are people who are best avoided as it is not worth getting stressed and spoiling Christmas. Visit people because you want to, not because you feel you ought to. Ought to and should basically means you are doing something out of a sense of guilt, not because you want to. Spend the holiday season with people you want to be with.
  7. Kick back and enjoy Christmas. Instead of focusing on weight loss, turn it around to being a weight maintenance phase, this will allow you to get involved with your friends and family and relish the fabulous foods that are available. It only happens once a year so be gentle on yourself and accept that this is not the time to be focusing on losing weight.
  8. Make exercise a priority, during the year it can so frequently get put on the back burner. Now is the time to maximize your free time by treating yourself with the opportunity to get out there are get fitter. We have beautiful long summer days so we can squeeze in an extra 30mins in the morning when we first wake up or of an evening when we get home. This not only helps with the extra calories but also the extra stress.
  9. Sleep, relax and give the mind a break, if you find that you are always busy take time out to be alone and meditate or go for a walk. Christmas can be so busy so it is important to take time to reflect and de-stress.
  10. Don’t forget to have fun! If you do overindulge at Christmas you can always contact me in the New Year and I can organise an appropriate Detox just for you to get you back on track.

About the Author Michael

Michael is head consultant at Planet Naturopath - Functional Medicine and Nutrition Solutions. He is a registered naturopath with the Australian Natural Therapists Association (ANTA) and works with clients from all over the world via video or phone consultations. He is a degree qualified naturopath from the Endeavour College of Natural Medicine in Australia with 18 years of experience. He uses advanced testing methods, nutritional medicine, herbal medicine, and lifestyle advice to help you stay healthy. He is a Kalish Method-trained practitioner that keeps updating his education with Chris Kresser. Michael completed Dr. Terry Wahls practitioner training program, a 12-month program with ongoing training that helps understand the underlying cause and treatment of MS and autoimmune conditions. He keeps up to date with the latest research into health and natural medicine through the Metabolic Fitness Pro course with Dr. Bryan Walsh.

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