Though filled with fun and family, the holiday season can also be a time of stress and sickness. Being around so many people, traveling, eating things you normally would not (not to mention larger servings!) and the added stress of the season can take a toll on your health. Give yourself the gift of health this holiday season by following our top tips for a stress and germ-free celebration.

  1. Get Outside

    Between parades, football games, and basketball games, many family gatherings involve gathering around the TV for most of the day. Take a break from all that sitting to fit in some fitness! Go outside for a brisk walk or short run. The fresh air and opportunity to spend some time with just your thoughts will feel refreshing before a day of food, family, and TV.

  2. Stick To Your Routine As Much As Possible

    Every morning, I eat the same oatmeal and head to the gym or outside for a short but effective workout. Keeping your typical routine around the holidays is helpful in preventing you from getting off track. Keep up your same healthy habits so you can indulge in the holiday cheer without any guilt.

  3. Avoid “Saving” Calories Or Your Appetite For The Main Event

    Many people skip breakfast or lunch to save room for holiday dinners. Skipping out on earlier meals leaves you likely to binge later in the day.

  4. Drink up!

    Drink water throughout the day to stay hydrated and avoid mindless eating. Be mindful that liquids have calories, too. It’s okay to indulge in some egg nog or other adult beverages during festive parties, but don’t overdo it. For every drink you have, drink a glass of water.

  5. Stick To The Salad Plate

    Piling your holiday meal onto a smaller plate will help prevent overeating. Plus, most party plates are oversized, anyways!

  6. Wait

    As much as you want to refill your plate with seconds, wait 20 minutes to decide if your body is telling you its full or not. Don’t worry, you can always save some food to eat as leftovers!

  7. Sleep!

    A lack of sleep compromises your immune system. Log enough Z’s during the week leading up to the holiday gathering, especially the night before. A lack of sleep the night before can lead to major overeating.

  8. Keep It Clean

    Bring a pocket-sized hand sanitizer with you. Colder weather and large groups of people means lots of opportunity for germ-spreading. Periodically de-germ your hands with hand sanitizer. You’d be surprised, others will likely pick up on your healthy habit and ask to use it themselves, too!

  9. Relax

    The holidays are a time to gather with loved ones, but save some time to enjoy downtime away from work and day-to-day responsibilities. Take time to do whatever it is that helps you recharge – read a new book, get a massage, etc. You deserve it!

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