Letter: Some healthy tips for the holidays

The holiday season can be very stressful for many. Stress can take many forms. The toll that it takes can show up after the holiday season in the form of colds and flu.

A powerful step is to be mindful. This means that you want to be aware of the choices you are making and not get caught up in all of commotion. It is OK to say “no.” Be aware of what you are doing, eating and even thinking.

Temptation is greater during the holidays. Sugar is everywhere. Make sure that you have plenty of good healthy foods available. When you fill up on good food, there is not as much room or desire to eat the bad foods.

Eat as best as you can. If you have a lapse, don’t beat yourself up. Just try to do better the next time.

Make sure that you are taking Vitamin D. With the days being so short, we do not get nearly enough sunshine. This can be helpful if you are suffering from SAD. One of the best things to do is to take a good Vitamin D3. Your mood can be improved when you take this vitamin.

With poor eating, low blood sugar happens. When this occurs, the body will crave sugar to meet its needs. Balance snacks and meals with protein. Good snacks can help to maintain balanced blood sugar.

Toxins can cause fatigue and discomfort. A key to coping with this is to detoxify whenever possible (yes, even during the holidays).

Be aware of toxic feelings. These can contribute to overeating because the body can seek comfort foods to try to improve a sense of well-being.

Weight gain can be triggered by the body’s perceived lack of nutrients. You can reduce your appetite by eating complete whole foods, which tend to satisfy the body. Soups are good to eat. They provide a fuller feeling and reduce the feeling of being hungry more than the same food in solid form with the same amount of calories. You also can drink protein shakes to support your needs. Protein shakes can be helpful to round out a meal or snack. This will help to balance your weight.

The gut is very important to support during stressful periods. Digestive enzymes will ensure that your foods are digested and will help with the foods that we are not accustomed to eating. Additional flora for the gut also is helpful during stressful times.

Make sure that you are drinking plenty of clean water. This can go a long way to detoxifying as well as supporting your body.

If you do find yourself eating too much sugar, make sure you brush your teeth with a non-fluoridated tooth paste. You certainly don’t to be adding additional toxins to your body.

Hopefully, these tips will help you to enjoy your holidays, reduce your stress, and improve your health for the new year.

Happy holidays.

Tom Lankering, DC