In health: Healthy holidays

By December 9, 2011

By Dr. Steven Long

Is it any wonder that the cold and flu season coincides with the holiday season? Are you getting plenty of rest during this time, nourishing your body with well-planned balanced meals? Getting the proper rest? Having only small amounts of sugar or alcohol? Of course not it’s the holidays!

It all starts with Halloween. Yes, you keep the kids away from the candy after you have filtered out your favorites and created a hidden stash for yourself. School and neighborhood parties abound where the temptations are frequent and many.

Then we can look forward to Thanksgiving, with turkey and all the trimmings. It’s funny to me when people talk about the “tryptophan” in the turkey making everyone so sleepy and lethargic. It was probably the starchy bomb going off in your stomach that knocked you into a deep sleep on the couch. Don’t you remember the mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, stuffing and cranberries … finished with a light dessert? No way, bring on the pumpkin pie, apple pie and whip cream!

Did I hear someone say Christmas party? The sugary avalanche culminates with New Year’s. Whew! It is now time for some serious New Year’s resolutions. It is diet and gym time again, at least until Valentine’s Day when the tumbleweeds begin to run through the gym again as everyone has fallen off their New Year’s resolutions.

Here are a few simple tips to get you through the holidays a little healthier.

Eat well

Start your day with a mug of warm lemon water. It hydrates, detoxifies and alkalizes the body. All three of these will increase your energy. Supplement with Vitamin D and fish oil to decrease inflammation and boost your immune system.

Rest well

This is the tough one. We all need 7 to 8 hours of sleep to heal and recuperate. Have the discipline to set a bed time, around 9 or 10 p.m. We all work better, think better and feel better with adequate rest. The late night second wind digs an even deeper sleep deprivation hole; avoid this!

Exercise smart

If you have the chronic cardio habit of 45 minutes to an hour on the treadmill or elliptical trainer I urge you to check out “Peak 8” or “Burst Exercising.” If there was a single way I could show you how to boost your metabolism, lose weight and feel energized this is it. Google it and let me know what you think!

Family time

Why do we go to such lengths at the holidays? Is it to have quality time and experiences with our families? Or do we do it because we love to run around the mall and fight each other for plastic toys from China? Turn off your TV in the evening and sit quietly by your fire as a family. Share stories of holidays past; reflect on the growth of your family over the past year. Have more meals together; share what is possible for the day ahead. Ask what their favorite part of each day was. Be very present and truly listen to each other. We often listen but do we really hear what our kids are telling us when our minds are so full and busy? Slow your pace down deliberately. We have all heard the saying “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift, which is why we call it the present.”

Change the way you live, and you can alter the life path you currently travel. I preach to my patients that chiropractic care is part of a wellness program that includes proper diet, exercise and a healthy mental outlook. There is a reason that clichés become clichés. Treat your body like a temple, and that temple will stand for a long time.

Those seeking additional information regarding this information may contact Dr. Steven Long directly at 4359 Town Center Blvd. Suite 213, in El Dorado Hills, by telephone at (916) 933-4507 or by e-mail [email protected].

Special to Village Life


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