The holidays are a wonderful time of year filled with exciting events, holiday parties, gatherings, family, friends, food and fun! So much going on, it can be overwhelming as much as it is enjoyable. What if you could fully enjoy the holidays and stress less?
Here’s a few of my favorite tips to enjoy this time of the year to the fullest and ditch the stress:
The Freedom of No
As women we care for and nurture others around us. Saying Yes to all that is asked of us, can leave us feeling overloaded and stressed. Saying NO to others is a YES to yourself! Give yourself the time to nourish and care for yourself. In order to continue to enjoy life with those you love, you have to learn to make more careful choices to nourish and sustain yourself.
Everything we take in is food for our body, mind, and spirit – relationships can either feed us or deplete us. Finding the right balance for ourselves is the key to good health. Think about relationships that nurture you. Compare to the stress related to toxic relationships. Find ways to crowd out toxic relationships.
Have Fun Move More
Increasing daily movement increases serotonin and feel good endorphins. Taking regular walk breaks at work instead of coffee breaks. Add exercise routine to your week: M/W/F/S. Toning up boosts confidence and makes you feel good = lower stress.
- Zoomba – go to a local class, check out YouTube videos or a DVD
- Vinyasa Yoga – Breath, flow, and move stress out
- Brisk Walking or Running
- Strength Training
- Exercise Ball or Bosu Ball routines
- Exercise with a motivated buddy!
Importance of Hydration
About two-thirds of our body is water. Maintaining adequate levels is important for vital body functions, clear thinking, and energy. First signs of dehydration are lightheadedness, muscle cramping, dry mouth. Reach for filtered water instead of coffee, juices, and soda. Spike your filtered water with fresh squeezed lemon, lime, or cucumber slices or make beauty water….
I love this website for it’s recipes: http://blenditandmendit.com/category/bimi-beauty-water/
Crowd Out Foods That Increase Stress
Processed foods, excess sugar, salt, and saturated fats deplete your body of nutrients because your body uses its nutrient stores to break them down. Aim for a ratio of 80/20 – with 80% nutrient dense foods and 20% other.
Limit intake of (crowd out):
- Processed foods
- Refined grains
- Refined sugars
- Sugar laden beverages: soda, juices, caffeinated beverages
- Fried foods
- Saturated fats
Eat More Foods That Decrease Stress
Whole foods: fruit, vegetables (esp. greens), nuts/seeds, lean proteins, healthy fats. Unprocessed in their most natural state, containing high quality nutrients, fiber, and water. Processed foods lack many beneficial elements. Superfoods have high levels of nutrients: leafy greens, kale, collards, swiss chard. Also sea plants and seaweeds: dulse, kelp, nori, kombu
Stress Less About Food
Clean Eating = Consume mostly whole, unprocessed foods, i.e., food in its most natural state. This includes fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, nuts, seeds, beans, some dairy, unsaturated vegetable oils. Drink plenty of water, this should be your primary beverage of choice. Eat meals at regular intervals – that means eating every 3-4hrs. Increase intake of fruits and veggies.
Less Stress = Less Inflammation!!
Snack on these Stress Busting Snacks
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
- ¼ or half small avocado with crunchy celery sticks
- 1 sliced cucumber with pinch of sea salt and dash of cayenne pepper
- Baby carrots with bell pepper strips dipped in ¼ cup hummus
- Apple with small handful almonds or walnuts
- 1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen) with 1 T. coconut oil
- Small salad drizzled with olive oil and raw apple cider vinegar
- Plain Greek yogurt mixed with salsa. Eat with baked tortilla chips or Triscuits
- Half whole wheat pita topped with peanut butter and sliced banana
- Green smoothie or juice made with leafy greens, fruit, fresh squeezed lemon
Happy Holidays!! Enjoy the season with wonderment and fill up your heart with good times and celebrate