Look after your wellbeing this festive season
In this article Hormone Health Associate and Registered Nutritional Therapist Antonia de Gier explains what steps you can take to improve your wellbeing as the festive season approaches.
December is upon us and all that the ‘silly’ season entails. You may already be overstretched with partners, offspring, elderly parents, careers, and you promise yourself that this year will be different. This year you will take care of yourself first, you will be organised and have a stress-free festive period and won’t eat and drink too much, you won’t get ill, the list goes on. Despite your best laid plans, every year you tend to repeat the same patterns.
Impact on your immune and hormonal systems
On top of the additional stresses your body faces this time of year, winter bugs are everywhere, and you become more susceptible as you travel on public transport to work and school events or simply shopping. It is possible to experience reduced amounts of quality sleep due to partying and elevated stress levels, and generally spend more time out and less time in your usual routine. As a result, your immune system can take a battering at this time of year.
In addition, add to this a cocktail of stress a changing diet that typically involves consuming more sugar and alcohol and less fibre, fruit and veg, your immune, hormonal and stress systems within your body can all be negatively affected.
Menopausal symptoms exacerbated
On top of this, if you then add the hormonal turmoil that can occur to women during the 40s and 50s, you can find yourself in difficult times where your systems and symptoms can feel like they are spiralling out of control.
All the things that you used to manage suddenly feel overwhelming and normal daily tasks can become daunting. You can experience a range of symptoms at the best of times such as headaches, poor sleep, irritability, anxiety, feeling “low”, weight gain, bodily aches and pains, palpitations, digestive difficulties, more frequent infections and a decreased tolerance to certain foods and alcohol, and all these symptoms can be exacerbated in times of busyness or increased stress.
What can you do to reduce the impact?
The festive period carrying into a new year is a good time to think about slow but effective long-term steps you can take to make a change. This includes looking at your dietary intake, lifestyle choices such as gentle exercise together with behavioural change techniques.
Whether you decide to take stock straight away or await the calm of January and beyond (and more overwhelming promises to give up everything “bad” that passes your lips!), here at Hormone Health we can offer practical support with your nutritional health and more.
4 simple but effective tips to help you through the party season:
- Drink more water! Obvious, but easily forgotten in this time of increased consumption of coffee, alcohol and sweetened drinks. Water helps to flush out toxins and keep us hydrated, providing additional energy when needed the most.
- Add a small amount of protein to each snack to help counteract the blood sugar spikes and dips from eating chocolate, mince pies and marzipan snacks. Add a brazil nut or two, a small slice of cheese or substitute nuts for crisps.
- Fruit and veg are even more important at this time of year to help provide a variety of much need vitamins and minerals to keep our immune system operating as best it can, even a fresh fruit smoothie or a piece of fruit on the go is better than nothing.
- Even if sleep patterns are more erratic at this time of year as the to do lists get longer and we are out more, try to find one hour or even 30 mins in the day for quiet reflection and relaxation away from the chaos of constant planning and partying, this can be just as effective as resting.
Find out more about how we can help, right now and beyond:
How can we help?
Our qualified Registered Nutritional Therapist Antonia de Gier and Registered Dietician Nigel Denby can offer practical solutions to help recalibrate each system, help to ease symptoms and provide a tailor-made dietary programme to help implement consistent, small but important, lifelong changes. We can look at daily dietary intake, lifestyle choices such as gentle exercise and help with behavioural change techniques by providing practical support at a time when these tasks may feel insurmountable.