Holiday Wellness Tips and Tricks

The holidays are here and so are many delicious treats. Here are a few tips and tricks for getting through the season as well as some links to articles by Paul Taylor about Superfoods and nutrition.

Healthy Eating and Wellness:

Superfoods for Super Health by Paul Taylor.   Fitness First Magazine – Jan/Feb 2009

Apple vs Doughnut by Paul Taylor. UltraFit Magazine – Issue 110, Page 66

How to stay well this holiday season:

  1. Love and forgive yourself – even when you let yourself down.  Eating high calorie foods and drinking eggnog for a month won’t kill you.  You may gain weight and that’s never fun, but it doesn’t have to be a life sentence.  Work towards being healthy and managing stress through the holidays instead of maintaining a specific number on the scale.  Enjoy the holidays, friends, family, and your community.  Enjoy the foods that bring back memories and treats loved ones make for you.  Give, share, laugh, forgive and be merry!
  2. Manage you cortisol.  Cortisol is hormone your body releases in response to stress and has been linked to causing insatiable hunger, midsection weight gain and high blood glucose.  Sleep and meditation have been proven to lower cortisol levels, so rest up!  Vitamin C has also been shown to lower cortisol levels in the body — try to get your Vitamin C from natural sources first.  If you are struggling with temporary high-stress situation, consider supplements to get through it.  Doing more than 30 minutes of cardo exercise will also increases your cortisol levels.  Studies show that people have a cortisol spike that starts 2 hours after a 30-minute cardio work out that lasts for 48 hours!  This 48 hour cortisol spike can be avoided by eating adequate protein within the two hours after your workout.  However, eating before a cardio workout will have little to no affect on cortisol levels.
  3. Make your own food.  By making your own delicious foods, you  choose how much sugar or butter to add to a dish.  Making small pivots to recipes can improve the nutrition of your dishes without affecting the taste and texture.  Try using butter from grass fed cows, which contains Omega 3 and 6.  Or experiment with using natural local honey to sweeten deserts.
  4. Keep moving.  You may have overeaten or have a eggnog hang over, but keeping up with your 10,000 steps/day routine will minimize the amount of extra weight and inflammation holiday binge eating may induce.
  5. Load up on sleep, water, and veggies.  Before you dig into the holiday cookies and cakes, make sure you’re well hydrated, well rested, and have had some vegetables.  The water and fiber from the veggies will make you feel fuller and help you digest the sweets more easily.  Studies also show that people are able to make healthier choices when they are well rested.
  6. Choose the foods that only make appearances during the holidays, and pick only the ones that result in ‘a party for your taste buds.’ Really ENJOY your choices, and when you’re satisfied – stop eating. If it doesn’t taste absolutely awesome, then it’s not worth it anymore. (from Robb Wolf)