The holidays are a busy time for most people. We’re rushing around doing our Christmas shopping, procuring special grocery items for meals with family & friends, bouncing from party to party and keeping children happy and busy while they are home from school.
While I feel it is important not to take any of these situations for granted; I feel grateful that I have family to buy for, enough food that I never need to go hungry and friends to attend parties with, I also think it’s important to take some time to step back and find some peace within ourselves away from the hustle and bustle.
So you may be wondering...what does this have to digestive health?
Well, for one – stress! As I’ve talked about before, situations that we find stressful can be very hard on the digestive system. If you are an introvert like me, I find that large crowds of people very overwhelming and draining to my energy stores. This is not to say that I don’t enjoy them – I just need to plan my time before and after these situations to allow for some rest and recuperation.
Secondly, these situations usually involve food – most of which would not be considered ‘supportive’ to digestion if you get my drift. While there are definitely some great tips we can follow to avoid over indulging, attending multiple parties throughout the month can really add up when it comes to all the extra rich, sweet foods and possibly alcohol we consume.
Third, our exercise routine may be affected as our schedule changes to accommodate preparing for and attending the multiple holiday gatherings. As I’ve discussed previously, our exercise routines can be very supportive to our digestion – keeping our gut motility (the movement within our intestines) consistent and regular, as well as helping to support a balance of beneficial gut bacteria.
And the fourth and final reason – sleep. Our sleep routines can be negatively impacted over the holidays as we stay up later to enjoy the parties, wrap gifts after the kids have gone to bed, or we get up earlier to try and pack in as much as we can into the day.
Therefore I encourage you to keep this in mind and make a promise to yourself to set aside at least one day between now and the end of the month to spend a relaxing day where you take care of all of these key components of health.
For this day;
Have a very Merry Christmas (if that’s your jam!) – we’ll chat again on December 26th!