I always look forward to the holidays as a transition point into the New Year. I appreciate the change in pace, schedule and the excitement this season brings. With the shorter days and cooler temperatures, it feels natural to slow down a little and take time to reset in all areas. Unfortunately, our society has turned the holidays into a hectic time that often is filled with stress, sugary treats and a lack of sleep!
Here are a few tips to helping yourself reset and stay healthy this holiday season!
- Sleep: Sleep is extremely important, and you may need to adapt your schedule a little during the holiday season. If you are having a great conversation with your aunt you see once a year until 3 in the morning, go for it! Just know how to support yourself the next day. You likely will be on a different schedule, so trying to stick to your normal wake up time as closely as possible will help your body adapt. It would be better to wake up at 7 am (if that’s your normal) and sneak in a 20 minute power nap, rather than sleep in until 10am and feel completely off on your schedule.
- Move: Even if you aren’t going to the gym or doing intense workouts, MOVE! Whether that means stretching, going on a family walk or starting a family game of football in the yard, moving your body will help your energy levels and mood. This also includes Chiropractic adjustments! Make sure your body is moving well and supported as we move in to the winter months where we move less and less and our exercise routines can be limited.
- Supplements/Nutrition: As holiday food and drinks become more readily available, it’s even more important to keep up with your nutritional/supplemental routines you have established throughout the year. Supplementation and nutrition choices are always seen as ways to support our self-healing and self-regulating bodies. My advice would be to keep up with your supplements and maybe consider how else your body needs to be supported if you will be eating differently for a few days. Make sure protein and fat intake is sufficient. Most holiday food is carb based which our bodies burn through quickly, making the feelings of “hunger” return fast. Making sure your blood sugar is stabilized will help those craving from getting out of control.
- Hydration: Water is already harder to keep drinking in the colder months, so be intentional to reach your water intake goals! This is especially important when our body is adapting to traveling, stress, potential late nights/early mornings and different environments during the holidays. Drinking room temperature water and adding lemon can be better than trying to drink ice cold water during the winter. It may make water more appealing when trying to choose between a hot cider, coffee, tea or your water intake.
Set aside time for reflection and journaling. Whether you have 5 minutes or a full hour-avoid spending it doing things like scrolling social media mindlessly. This is an awesome time to decompress and process the year you made it through and/or dream about the year to come. The fun thing is-this can look however you want it to! No parameters.
I pray for a fruitful, happy and restorative time for you these Holidays!
-Dr. Sophie Mills, D.C.