We’ve all been there: The kids are out of school, you’re running around town trying to find that last-minute gift, you need to make a dessert for the work potluck, and then it hits you - You forgot to defrost the turkey. Oh, and on top of it all, you’re starting to feel that familiar tickle in your throat.
The holidays can be the most wonderful time of the year, but they can also be prime time for illness, overeating, stress and generally not feeling like yourself. However, you can make your holiday season happy and healthy with a few simple tips.
Spread Cheer – Not Germs
Cold and flu season goes hand in hand with the holiday season, but you can protect yourself by simply… washing your hands! You should wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds to prevent the spread of germs. You can also protect yourself and your loved ones by getting a flu shot.
Back Away from the Buffet Line
Holiday parties can often mean overindulging. To avoid feeling bloated and sluggish afterward, try the following tips:
- While you want to avoid some temptation don’t deprive yourself of your favorite holiday foods. Treat yourself to your favorites, but don’t feel obligated to try every cookie.
- If your holiday party seems to revolve around the buffet, try moving your conversation away from the kitchen in order to avoid grazing.
- If you do overindulge, just focus on getting back on track as soon as possible. Don’t let yourself slip into the “healthy eating is blown” mindset or tell yourself that you need to wait until the new year to eat mindfully again.
Create Some New, Healthy Holiday Traditions
Challenge yourself to come up with some new, healthy holiday traditions for your whole family to enjoy.
- Plan a fun game of touch football in the yard after Thanksgiving lunch instead of binge watching every game on TV.
- Try out a healthy swap for your favorite festive foods
- Take a walk around the neighborhood to check out holiday decorations.
It’s easy to let your exercise routine slide during the holidays, but it’s important to keep moving. Regular exercise can improve mood, boost energy and promote better sleep, all of which can help you make more of the most magical time of the year.
Make Time for Self-Care
Don’t let seasonal stress overwhelm you! Make sure you carve out some time to recharge your batteries. This includes making time for the things you enjoy, getting plenty of rest and using time off from work or school to catch up on health exams or doctors’ appointment.
Stay happy and healthy this holiday season by scheduling your yearly visit with a primary care doctor at Ochsner.