The countdown is officially on. With Christmas parties, yummy food and the occasional mulled wine, bring on the celebrations!
However, alongside all of the festive fun, December can be quite a stressful time. We wake up in darkness, finish work in darkness, have deadlines to meet and social events to attend. Not to mention all of the Christmas shopping…it’s easy to feel overwhelmed.
So, how we can move forward prioritising our wellness, alongside welcoming some well deserved seasonal fun?
Tis’ the Season to Slow Down
It’s easy to get caught up in the run up to Christmas rush; picking up the pace until all of the jobs are done. Step back and remember; rushing around with the hope to get to the end of a never ending to do list is an unmanageable task. With Christmas being far from normal last year and many of us unable to mix, embrace that precious time with loved ones this time around, and don’t just focus on buying presents - it’s the being present that counts.
Festive Immune Function
The combination of low temperature and high stress can impact our immune function, leaving us more likely to feel run down.
A healthy gut can contribute to a healthy functioning immune system as around 70% of our immune cells live along our gut lining. Consider ways in which you can add in colourful, fibre rich, gut nourishing foods alongside your festive favourites!
Our body needs rest – without it our immunity defences lower.
Quality sleep helps to battle infection. Evidence suggests getting 5 hours of sleep per night or less makes us 4 times more likely to catch a cold than getting 8 hours.
Although a couple of late nights may be on the cards – be sure to prioritise a restful 8 hours and see if you feel the benefit.
Naughty or nice..?
Whist being mindful of those beneficial, immune supporting fruits and veggies, it’s important to take a balanced approach. Of course our diet and lifestyle choices will alter at this time of year; it’s all part of the festive fun! Before slipping into the mind set of punishment or guilt, remember the change in dietary choices is often down to celebration or a well deserved rest. There are no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ foods. Food should not be associated with guilt or shame but enjoyed in the moment; whether you’re cracking open that box of mince pies or enjoying a Christmas cocktail with loved ones.
A healthy lifestyle is all about balance!
The Gift of Gratitude
After a couple of tough years, practicing gratitude can be a powerful way to acknowledge the good in our lives even at difficult times. However small, be grateful for those special moments with friends and family in the month ahead, whist being mindful of those who don’t have the same luxury.
Wishing you a happy and healthy festive season!
Holistic Health Coach - Anna Whyte