5 Tips to enjoy your holiday celebrations and not feel exhausted
As we all know, Christmas can be a very stressful time of year, especially if you are exhausted, anxious or feeling stressed out and haven't had a chance to seek help for health related conditions that you have been putting off over the past 12 months.
Our summer weather is perfect for catching up with family and friends over the festive season whether it involves a family picnic, bbq outdoors, trips to the beach or a swim in the pool. The last thing I want my clients to feel is that they can't take part in any festivities due to being on a certain diet or due to their health concerns. It is important for both their physical and mental health that they are able to live their best lives whilst being on their healing journey. I also like my clients to focus on their end goal and if they over indulge it is still okay as we can get back on track tomorrow.
Tip 1 – Bring a dish or two that you can eat to contribute to the meal
Any diet can be stressful not just for yourself but also your hosts. I don’t always recommend bringing your own food and eat that when everyone else is enjoying the food provided. I have some really delicious and easy to make/bake recipes that I provide for my clients as this allows everyone to relax and look forward to catching up.
When working with my clients they will be on one of the following diets:-
- SIBO Bi-Phasic Diet
- Anti-inflammatory Diet
- Vegetarian or Vegan Dietary Support
- Stress and Anxiety Support Program
- Three month Gut Health Matters Program
- Six month program based on your Food and Product Compatibility Test results
Tip 2 – Don’t be afraid of the pre-dinner nibbles
The danger areas for everyone over the Christmas period is usually found with the pre-lunch or pre-dinner nibbles - dips, cheeses, crackers, chips, bowls of lollies and the fruit punches. There are many healthy options that you can contribute to the table and no-one will be able to tell the difference! Adding veggie sticks or fresh sliced summer fruit or fresh berries along with homemade dips and cashew based cheese are easy to incorporate onto a platter.
Tip 3 – Should I drink alcohol on the day?
Alcoholic beverages are also a dangerous area due to most of them being high in sugar but also causing intoxication before most people have eaten. Alcohol can cause depression, anxiety, intensify negative emotions and inhibit sleep.
- Clear spirits such as vodka and gin are allowed on most of my dietary programs (after at least a four week period of not having any alcohol)
- Red wine is lower in sugar than white wine and sparkling wine. Wine and beer are allowed based on your test results on the Food and Product Compatibility Test.
There are many non-alcoholic drinks on the market that you can bring with you so that you don’t feel like you’re not ‘drinking’ or ‘being social’. Some of these are:-
- Zero alcohol beer
- Zero alcohol wine
- Zero alcohol gin and other spirits
- Mocktails are a great option – just make sure they don’t contain too much sugar
Tip 4 – Don’t forget to exercise
Exercise is essential to continue with over the Christmas season. Light exercise is great to begin with as it causes less inflammation than the heavier exercise. When we are working on healing your gut or balancing your hormones – we look at incorporating a more anti-inflammatory exercise program into your daily schedule.
- A daily walk – a minimum of 30 minutes is important to reduce stress
- Yoga or pilates – you can do these at home if there aren’t any classes over the holiday period
- Most gyms are open 24/7 so a workout can be incorporated into your daily or weekly schedule
- Bikes are popular gifts for not only the children but for the adults as well – there’s lots of safe places to bike ride in South East Queensland
- Backyard cricket - this can include most of your family and friends.
- Swimming either in the pool or at the beach is another way to exercise (please don’t drink alcohol prior to this). Please make sure children are supervised as well.
Tip 5 – Sleep is so important for all parts of our bodies
Getting a good night’s sleep can have you springing out of bed ready to take on the day ahead. Having a bad sleep can leave you feeling tired, exhausted and struggling to concentrate. A good night’s sleep is just as important as regular exercise and a healthy diet and getting at least eight hours of sleep is an essential part of looking after your physical and mental health.
Sleep is also essential for our immune system – whilst we are sleeping our body is fighting off any bugs or viruses that we may have picked up during the day.
Having a good nights sleep will assist in making healthy food choices. If you’ve had broken sleep most people are looking for the extra caffeine hit during the day or sugar hit in the afternoon. If broken sleep continues these choices become daily habits and eating quick, easy to prepare processed foods for dinner will continue to contribute to poor sleep that night. Sleep also assists in maintaining a healthy weight.
However you may be celebrating this year, have fun and enjoy yourself. By including these 5 tips into your holiday festivities you can have your cake and eat it too! Enjoy being with family and/or friends.
If you would like some recipes please let me know and I can email them through to you.
My clinic is closed from the 22nd December 2021 and reopens on the 12th January 2022. I'm going to have a beautiful three week break and catch up with family and friends along with having a few days at the beach and getting ready for a big 2022 in clinic.
Merry Christmas xxx
Yours in health and wellness,