The winter time can be tough on your health. Stress levels are high. Seasonal germs are circulating rampantly, and extracurriculars seem to steal time for activities like sleep and exercise.
So how do you stay healthy and sane this holiday season so that you remain the joyful wife, mom, and employee that others want to be around? Try these tips:
- Allow for 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Yea, I know it’s probably easier to land a trip to the moon. But it’s a known fact our body just handles “life” better when well rested. We are better able to handle stress, our immune system is stronger, and we are less likely to overeat. Head over to this post on sleep deprivation for why that happens.
- Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, fresh or frozen. This time of year is just not particularly great for finding an abundance of fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables. But there are some and the darker the better because they contain more nutrient-rich antioxidants (which may help ward of certain types of cancer and possibly heart disease). Seasonal vegetables include cabbage, beets, broccoli, kale, winter squash, sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts, and parsnips. Seasonal fruits include tangerines, grapes, kiwi, cranberries, bananas, guava and pears. For those not in season, rest assured knowing that many are picked at peak ripeness and frozen for year round consumption. And because of this, their frozen versions are often more nutrient dense than their fresh grocery store options. This is because they are usually picked way before they are ready as to avoid rot before it hits your dinner table. So believe me when I say, there is NO sugar in your frozen strawberries! They’re just ripe!
- Take time for exercise. You knew this one was coming. With extra stuff to do like holiday shopping, parties, and for some, longer work hours, it can be tough to fit it in, and tempting to skip it to save time. But the fact is, those who prioritize exercise are more productive, meaning they can do more in less time and remain more focused on their responsibilities. Why? Because they have more energy, need less stimulants like caffeine, and are able to handle stress better than their non-exerciser counterparts. They also sleep better, which has it’s own benefits.
- Use essential oils. They come from the immune system part of the plant, which protect them from environmental threats, and do similarly for us. Certain ones like cinnamon, clove, and wild orange, are particularly known for supporting healthy immune systems and warding off seasonal threats, especially during the winter. Essential oils are also an especially effective way to support your emotional health in a quick and safe way simply through inhalation. Our limbic brains affect our emotional health quickly, which are effected by our sense of smell. Inhaling essential oils like wild orange, lavender, or sandalwood can be extremely calming and/or uplifting in times of high stress and/or sadness this time of year.
No matter how you choose to survive this winter season, remember just that, it’s a season. Practice self care as best you can, practice gratitude, and know that spring is just around the corner!
Note: my trusted brand of choice is dōTERRA. For more information, feel free to contact me.
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