We have all endured a rather challenging year. No one really could anticipate just how long the COVID Pandemic would last. Now that the holiday season is officially upon us, there are so many additional activities going on such as family visits, travel, shopping, decorating and so on. Although we look forward to this time of year, all the extra demands can cause extra stress to the body. With this in mind, here are some helpful tips that you can consider.
#1. Plan ahead. This is something that can minimize so much stress! It is so easy to get all caught up in activities. If you reach out to your friends and family and browse events on FB you can balance your schedule by carefully choosing a healthy amount of activities that you can handle. Talk with your family and your kids about what they’re favorites are and make sure you have time for those and you know in advance when they are. It is hard to do things on a whim and then other things start falling behind. It is impossible to do it all, so thinking about what is really special and making those a priority will help keep you from getting overly stressed. As my Mom would tell me, sit down and make a list!
#2. Food you can eat: Make sure there are foods you can eat during your gatherings and celebrations. A lot of people are on special diets and that can be extra stressful when everyone else around you is eating a regular diet. I have been in this boat for a long time and I have gotten used to not being able to eat what everyone else is but if you reach out to who is coordinating the meals, you can offer to make some of your favorite dishes and make them according to your food allergy or sensitivity. Also, if you are at a Christmas celebration such as a parade or a light show and everyone is going to likely be eating there, stop somewhere along the way and treat yourself to something like Panera or Chipotle so you don’t end up hangry and forced to buy something you shouldn’t be eating.
#3. Mouthwash: I know you must be wondering what I am talking about!? Well, we all know those certain foods that don’t make us feel well, or just the temptation to overindulge and sabotage our healthy lifestyle and or weight goals. I have used this trick for many years. Bring a small bottle of mouthwash and before you want to keep eating or even pre snacking before the meals begin, you can swish with mouthwash in your care before you get in or even in the bathroom at your event. You can bring your toothbrush as well but once you have rinsed with mouthwash, we can all remember how nasty food and drink can taste!
#4. Desserts: Venture into the world of baking for your allergens, sensitivities and or diet. For those of you who are GF, King Arthur GF flour is a cup for cup replacement that I use and get an amazing deal on at BJ’s. It works wonderfully for all of my baking! Some of the best cookies I have ever tasted! If you are doing Paleo, Keto, Low Glycemic, Grain Free and so on, there are ingredients to help make you something yummy. Pinterest is a great way to keep your recipes organized and then head over to amazon for some of the shelf ingredients that are difficult to get in the grocery store. Also, the health food stores will be a good resource for you. I bring my favorite candy cane Hershey Kisses so I have a little something while everyone else is having treats. I just want a little taste of sweet that I know won’t make me sick!
#5. Supplements: Stay on your supplement regimen and if you aren’t on one I recommend meeting with a Chiropractor or a Naturopath Doctor that can set you up with a basic immune strengthening protocol. In the past, I ran out of supplements and was so busy I thought I would be ok without some of them and it is just not worth letting your immunity dip and then you end up not feeling well. I have a basic immune protocol for children as well. We can help you by sitting down and having a chat about your health and we can do that over the phone or in the office. Just give us a call!
#6. Amazon: I am so guilty of going into Kohls, Target or Big Lots etc. and going there for a few things and buying much more. It is really overwhelming sometimes during the holidays to go shopping. It is harder to focus with all the increased demands on your schedule. It is so easy to get tempted to go into the stores because of the sales and coupons for in store. If you really look at the prices and see there is not more than a few dollars difference in savings compared to amazon, then just buy it on amazon, you will likely spend less altogether. They make it so incredibly easy to return Amazon products at Kohls. There is no packaging required and you can just drop off the item for whatever reason you need to return it!
#7. Holiday Bank Account: I have been wanting to do this every year but still haven’t. Putting money into an account each month for the holidays would definitely be a stress reliever in my opinion. It is late in the game for this year but we are right around the corner for a brand new year and we can start off by putting money aside in that account for gifts. This also helps you to keep in mind what you actually want to spend in total. I LOVE buying gifts for people so it is easy to get carried away!
#8. Wish List: Get your children’s lists to Santa, or wish list for other religious celebrations way ahead of time. I tell my girls that they need to submit their lists to Santa by the end of the Thanksgiving week. I also share that list with the grandparents otherwise people have to come up with more stuff to buy and then we just have WAY too much! I create a list on amazon that can be shared and that is extremely convenient!
#9. Document what you have wrapped and bought: Keep a note on your phone or on paper somewhere as you wrap each present. I will end up forgetting how much one kid has over the other or just forgetting in general what I got them. If I got a Toy Story bathing suit and forgot then I will miss out on pairing other great gifts to go with that if I end up seeing a great deal somewhere that goes along with the other gifts. It really helps! This was my first year doing this and it has been super helpful!
#10. Get Adjusted: The best for last! Chiropractic assists your body to function as it was designed to. The nervous system and immune system correlate with one another and Chiropractic can boost our innate immunity. It will also help you to feel great inside your body due to joint pain and fixations that are pinching off nerves and causing decreased function that can present as digestive problems, headaches, allergies, thyroid dysfunction, digestion, respiration, heart health and so on.
What Chiropractic does is help to remove that interference and allow the body to heal by getting rid of the underlying problem. If your body has dysfunction or symptoms, that is a sign that something is wrong. Our traditional mindset in the medical world would be to take something to mask that symptom still untouching the actual reason it is happening in the first place. I like to explain to patients by explaining, if your house was on fire, would you just turn off the alarm while everything is getting damaged, or would you call the fire department and put out that fire! That is what we love to do most. Help people restore their bodies normal responses and functions without the use of drugs or surgery and help you to not just live, but to thrive and feel your best!
I hope you all have a safe, healthy and wonderful holiday filled with love and peace!
-Patricia Cox, D.C.