Tuesday, December 8, 2015

How to Maintain Good Health this Holiday Season

Citrus fruits contain loads of Vitamin C and are especially good to eat during cold and flu season

Enhance joy this holiday season by aligning your mind, body, and spirit. If this seems like too much of a challenge to you, you’re not alone. According to a study from Weight Watchers, the average American gains around 7-10 lbs. between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.

The holiday blues and seasonal affective disorder plague others. Learn what Maude Purcell LCSW, CEAP suggests to help you outsmart the holiday blues at Beat the Holiday Blues

Are you one of the those people who have unrealistic expectations of yourself and others or a preconceived notion of how the holidays should turn out? Has entertaining, party going, gift shopping, and life on the run become a drudge or thrown you off center? There is help for you.

Here are 4 ways you may wander off from a healthy course and 4 remedies to fix them.

Excuse # 1: Everyone strays from their routine, especially since it’s a stressful and “so much happening” season.

Remedy #1: Talk about feelings as they come up, rather than stuff feelings with foods, over-spending, or a frenzy of activity. Limit commitments, holiday events, or preparations to things you really want to do and only add extra things if they won’t tax your sense of well-being. Choose to be with the people who matter the most to you and bow out of situations with people, functions, or customs that have less meaning for you. If you feel bent out of shape or anxious, meditate or do deep breathing exercises to bring you back to your center.

Excuse #2: I have no time or energy for exercise.

Remedy #2: Fit exercise into holiday activities, by parking your car as far away from stores as possible and use the stairs instead of escalator or elevator at the mall. When you can, walk to shops, post office, or food shopping instead of driving. Stretch at your computer, on line at the bank or farmers’ market, or in bed before you get out of it in the morning. Include the playground, park, roller or ice skating ring, biking, skiing, and walking in family fun activities for the holidays. Give exercise gifts like a spa day or gym membership to yourself or others.

Excuse #3: I’m too pooped to cook. This excuse may create a dangerous situation, because you’re likely to grab snack or junk foods instead of real food or overeat in a restaurant. Most foods sold commercially include ingredients like soy oil (unless it’s organic it’s likely to be GMO), artificial sweeteners, high sodium , oil laden sauces, and sugary dressings.

Remedy # 3: Shop for holiday presents throughout the year. That way there's no last minute rush. Cook up batches of food and freeze to use when you’re too tired to whip up something that day. If you go to a restaurant instead of cooking, make sure to eat smart when you eat out. Here’s a link to a blog post that will help you do just that. Eat Out Eat Smart

Excuse # 4: I’ll start to diet in the New Year. In days gone by, I've said this to myself in hopes that it would postpone the pain I'd feel from disciplining myself to push away from the table and stop eating unhealthful foods. I also thought stalling with a start date gave me permission to gobble down that basket of bread right now. But I did feel the pain, as I patted my middle section and felt where all that bread went. That’s not all. The day after a holiday party and three cups of Eggnog, I felt bloated, unattractive, lethargic, and cranky from sugar and simple carb overload.

Remedy # 4: Change your mindset to change your behavior around food. Look at what you eat, when you eat, why you eat, and perhaps you’ll conclude that prevention is more effective than cure. Researchers have found that it’s advantageous to make this a priority the minute you realize you need to clean up your food eating act. You won’t have regrets for maintaining a bad habit or guilt from procrastinating. I have noticed when my awareness level and motivation is at a peak, the momentum keeps me going longer and stronger. Be gentle with yourself if you have a food slip, but start anew to notice what foods you crave or gorge on. Ask yourself when, where, and under what circumstances do you eat unhealthily? Set a health improvement goal rather than just considering weight loss or gain. Using this self care technique makes you a winner over and over again. 

Here are 2 Websites that address emotional eating...

Keep in mind the winter holiday season coincides with cold and flu season. That’s why it's important to ward off illness and energy drain by eating nourishing foods and filling yourself up with the love, peace, brotherhood, and light that Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa holidays convey.

Be well. Live well. Lead a colorful life. Happy Holidays Everyone!

The quotation for today comes from Geneen Roth, Author of Women, Food, and God: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything“Freedom from obsession is not about something you do; it's about knowing who you are. It's about recognizing what sustains you and what exhausts you. What you love and what you think you love because you believe you can't have it.”

Order a copy of Colors of Joy: A Woman's Guide for Self-Discovery, Balance and Bliss. It's packed full of activities to help you start off 2016 on the right foot. Click right now to order an Autographed Copy of Colors of Joy .

This post is a revised version of one that appeared 12/21/14.
This post appears on the Special Holiday Edition of the “Healthy, Happy, Green & Natural Party” Blog Hop! and was the Healthy Feature at the Live-it-Up-at-the-Healthy-Happy-Green-and-Natural-Party-Blog-Hop-93/

Live It Up at the Healthy, Happy, Green and Natural Party Blog Hop #93

This post is part of PIN WORTHY WEDNESDAY #63
This post appears at Friendship Friday Blog Party & Social Media Boost 202
This post appears at Inspire Me Monday #206 – Week Of December 13, 2015


  1. Hi Nancy,
    Very good article. The holidays are certainly a time that is stressful and filled with unhealthy temptations, but I think you did a great job at addressing them and providing solutions. I especially like the idea of shopping for presents throughout the year - I have been doing that for quite a while and it really helps to take away the stress of last minute gift buying plus prices go up around the holidays and if you wait until the last minute or might not get what you are looking for.
    Have a healthy happy blessed Christmas and holiday season. Marla

    1. Thanks Marla. I learned to do these things over the years, and am grateful Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, and New Years Eve are times I can thoroughly enjoy. Wishing you Many Blessings this Holiday Season and Much Joy and HEALTH in the New Year. Nancy A.

  2. 7-10 lbs - holy smokes! That does it, I'm fasting until Christmas!

    1. Hear you Artful Diva. The study is about "the Average American." You are unique, because your art work is so fine. So don't sweat the small stuff. Just watch what you eat. Happy Holidays and Many Blessings in the New Year. Nancy A.


  3. I am delighted that you shared How to Maintain Good Health this Holiday Season with us at the Holiday Edition of the Healthy Happy Green and Natural Party!.Thank you so much for sharing your gems and for your support! Wishing you a Happy Holiday and a Happy New Year! All the best, Deborah

    1. Thanks Deborah. Love to be part of your fun blog party and grateful for your support. Warm Wishes and Many Blessings in the New Year. Nancy A


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Thanks for Visiting

Hope you enjoyed your visit and will return again. Be well. Live well. Lead a colorful life! Warm regards, Nan