The winter holidays are such an amazing time of the year: Christmas trees, the countdown to Christmas, a unique time to connect with friends and family, winter activities, good food and vacation time. Unfortunately, amazing as it is, Christmas also comes with its fair share of stress: financial pressures, excesses, overcrowded malls, and the cold and flu season.
Here are some tips to make the best of this holiday season:
1- Make the most of it. Connect with friends and family, enjoy yourself and have fun. Having close friends and family has far-reaching benefits for your health. With strong social ties comes feelings of security which significantly reduces stress.
2- As for any other time of the year, try to plan around the Holidays. If you typically get overwhelmed during this time of the year, make an effort to be more organized. The stress of last minute shopping for example can easily be avoided.
3- Maintain a routine, especially when it comes to exercise, diet and sleep. It is always surprising to see how many people stop exercising and eat poorly as soon as there is a disruption in their day to day routine. Maintaining a regular schedule will help you retain healthy habits. Continue to schedule time for exercise and meal preparation for example.
4- Use immune boosting supplements such as vitamin D, probiotics, ginseng and zinc which have all been shown to improve immune function in clinical research. Immune supplements will help to prevent cold and flu infections. Also wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face. You will be around many people, in confined spaces in the middle of the cold and flu season. Taking step to stay healthy can bring significant rewards and prevent illness allow you to get the most out of the festive season.
5- If you overindulge especially if you drink too much alcohol, consider supplements to support your liver such as milk thistle – a plant extract known to promote detoxification and prevent liver damage from toxins such as alcohol. You should also think of using methyl donors such as folate, B vitamins, SAMe and trimethylglycine. Alcohol consumption can increase homocysteine levels, a protein that leads to the inflammation of blood vessels. Using methyl donors can present this rise in homocysteine from occurring.
Above all, enjoy your Holidays and think of all of those who are special and dear.
Dr. Ludovic Brunel ND
Ludo is an exceptional physician with strong clinical skills grounded in scientific knowledge. He has helped design and formulated several dietary supplements for some of the most advanced nutraceutical companies in Canada. Dr. Ludo has also helped develop and implement wellness strategies for corporations and businesses looking to improve the health and happiness of their employees.