The festive season is upon us! There are many challenges to our health and wellbeing at this time of year. Our bodies' needs tend to get put aside as we push through until Christmas, sometimes leaving us very drained by the time the holidays come around.
But don't worry, there are a few simple steps to making sure pre-christmas stress doesn't overwhelm us!
My recommendations are;
1. Keep healthy snacks at hand throughout the day. Ideally snacks should have a combination of protein, carbs and healthy fats.
Try and eat a good snack around 10 am and again between 2-3pm. This helps to keep cortisol (stress hormone) levels balanced throughout the day, reducing the cravings for sugar and caffeine and helping us to sleep better at night.
Ideas are; Mixed nuts with a little piece of dark chocolate; natural yoghurt with manuka honey, cacao powder & blueberries mixed in; fresh dates with feta (but avoid dates if your adrenal glands are out of balance, i.e. you have been stressed long term); cottage cheese or tahini with avocado on rice or corn thins; protein smoothies with milk or nut milks & greens. Grab a lunch bag with a freezer pack to keep cool if you're out and about.
2. Drink lots of water to keep those stress hormones flushed out of your system.
3. Avoid too much caffeine. Your body will tell you how much is too much for you.
4. Keep active, even if your eating habits suffer due to the lack of time you have to spend in the kitchen. In my opinion, it's better not to worry about a couple weeks eating processed or bought meals (and all that party food!), and to keep moving and exercising whenever possible. Exercise will help neutralise stress levels in the body and therefore help you to sleep better. Having a good deep sleep helps us think better and make better food decisions during the day, and we are less hungry the less tired we are (due to those good old cortisol levels again!).
For more tips on coping with stress and exhaustion check out
Some more information for food choices during the silly season can be found here; http://www.nutritionfoundation.org.nz/…/Surviving-the-Festi…
Please feel free to contact me for more information if you are feeling stressed out and exhausted; firstname.lastname@example.org or see www.waiukucranio.co.nz