Image credit: farm1.staticflickr.com
The holiday season brings with it lots of good food, family fun, holiday cheer….and often a nasty cold, a ferocious hangover or two, and a couple of extra pounds. Here are some ways you can enjoy the holidays this year without falling prey to any seasonal bugs or excess flub.
1. Drink water.
Drinking water is the key to enjoying healthy holidays. Drinking lots of water will help alleviate basically any holiday health problem you might have. When your body is hydrated, it stronger and better able to fight off infections. You’re also less likely to overeat if you continue to drink water throughout a meal. That means less chance of putting on those holiday pounds.
Drinking water is also a good idea if you’re planning on drinking anything alcoholic. The experts say you should intersperse each alcoholic drink with a glass of water. This will cause you to drink more slowly, and it will lessen the chance that you’ll have a hangover in the morning.
2. Snack wisely.
When the holidays roll around, it seems like all of the wonderful snacks and goodies you’ve been dreaming about all year round show up all at once. But don’t give in to temptation! Try to limit yourself to only one or two goodies a day, and when you do feel the urge to snack, try to make healthier choices that will leave you feeling full longer (instead of yet another sugar cookie). Baked apples are a great healthy holiday snack, as well as fruit kabobs, and – my favorite – mixed nuts.
3. Make sure you’re insured.
Just in case the worst happens and you do get sick, make sure you have your insurance situation all squared away so that you can get the care you need. Lots of people overlook dental and vision insurance but they’re important, too! After all, what fun are the holidays if you have a toothache and you can’t see anything? It doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg to get insured, either. You can find low vision insurance rates at VSP Direct, and low dental insurance rates at DentalPlans.com.
4. Wash your hands.
The holiday season brings with it lots of opportunities to spend time with a crowd of friends and family, as well as the chance to travel to see loved ones (or maybe to escape from them). With all these crowds of people moving around, someone is bound to be sick. Whether you’re traveling in a plane or just going to a large family event, make sure you are especially careful to wash your hands. This will help keep you from catching whichever bug is going around.
5. Stay active.
When it’s chilly outside, it can be really tempting to spend the whole day snuggled up on the couch. But not only is that not good for your physique, it’s also bad for your mental health. A little bit of exercise will do your body and your mind good. Try making activity part of family gatherings. For instance, instead of sitting around playing board games, take a walk, go snowshoeing, ice skating, skiing, or biking together if the weather permits. The activity will keep everyone in shape, and the good mood that comes from exercise will help keep family feuds to a minimum.
6. Travel safe.
Holiday traffic can be a real bummer, but it can also be dangerous. Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to get where you’re going during the holidays so you won’t be in a rush. Also, DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE no matter what! And make sure your family and friends don’t, either.
The holidays can be a stressful time, with strained finances, lots of social commitments, and tons to get done. Make sure you take some time for yourself to unwind, read a book, or engage in whatever activity makes you feel relaxed. Also make sure you’re getting enough sleep – 8 hours is usually the recommended amount of sleep per night for adults. Sleeping enough will not only keep you in a better mood and more alert, it will make you less susceptible to infection.
Use these tips to stay healthy and happy this holiday season, so you can spend less time coughing and sneezing and more time having fun. Happy holidays!