Cookies and Candy and Pie, Oh My! Dr. Anna’s 9-Step Healthy Holiday Survival Guide
19 Nov 2014

Cookies and Candy and Pie, Oh My! Dr. Anna’s 9-Step Healthy Holiday Survival Guide

Navigating holiday parties and the Christmas cookie dumping ground in the office break room can feel like walking through a minefield for those of us who have some serious wellness goals we’re working on. It doesn’t have to be this way!

The key to success lies in being conscious of your decisions at every moment and asking yourself if your choices align with whatever you are creating. That’s a simple yes or no, right (if you’re clear on the outcome you want)? It doesn’t mean being perfect, it just means consciously choosing instead of being on autopilot.

Ready to have a different holiday experience this year? Here are 9 steps to get you started:

  1. If you’re experiencing holiday anxiety, consider cutting back on or eliminating caffeine. It only adds to that jittery feeling! Try substituting decaf, water, herbal teas, mineral water with lemon, or coconut water.
  2. Eat before you head out to a party. That way you’ll be less tempted to graze through all the “nervous food” (as my friend Christine calls it).
  3. If you’re drinking alcohol, alternate alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. You’re less likely to become “over-served”. Drinking too much is also likely to lower your resolve to stay away from the nervous food. Not to mention that it contributes greatly to HOT FLASHES!
  4. Keep up with your exercise plan. Make sure it is scheduled on your calendar!
  5. Enjoy a treat or two, but be selective. Most of the foods you’re going to be tempted by are NOT things you’ve never tasted before, right?

So, decide which treats are REALLY worth the calories (like my mom’s sugar cookies) and skip the ones that aren’t your faves.

  1. Wash up. Germs are easily spread in crowds and indoor environments. Keep your hands away from your face (cold germs are often introduced into your body through your eyes, nose and mouth) and wash your hands often.
  2. Drink up. Make sure you’re drinking enough water. Indoor heat is drying and it’s easy to become dehydrated.
  3. Sleep! It’s tempting to say yes to every invitation that arrives. This only leads to exhaustion, higher cortisol levels and weight gain. Make sleep a priority and you’ll reap the benefits of increased energy and enjoyment of the holidays.
  4. Cut yourself some slack. The holidays are stressful enough without adding in a big dose of perfectionism or guilt. Do the best you can, but above all…have FUN!

Dr. Anna Garrett

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