The holiday season is a special time of year, but it is not without its dangers. Health issues are common at this time of year, from annual attacks of the flu to stress-related concerns.
If you want to stay healthy during this challenging time, you need to take some proactive steps. Here are 9 ways to stay happier and healthier before, during and after the holidays.
1. Stay active. Whether you use your holiday shopping as an excuse to walk around the mall or just park a bit further away, staying active is good for you, especially during the holiday season.
2. Store holiday leftovers properly. Food poisoning is a real danger during the holidays, so stow those leftovers in the fridge right away. If you are unsure of the safety of your food, err on the side of caution and throw it away.
3. Make yourself a tray of healthy snacks. It is tempting to snack while you cook the big holiday feast, so prepare a tray of healthy snacks so you can graze without the guilt.
4. Keep your medical appointments. Everyone is busy during the holidays, but you should not let holiday duties interfere with your good health. Make sure you keep those doctor appointments and schedule any necessary medical tests.
5. Take time to relax and recharge. No matter how busy you are, schedule time for rest and relaxation. Take a bubble bath, sit and meditate or just take a nap - you will feel better.
6. Limit your alcohol consumption. From the ubiquitous egg nog to the post-feast glass of wine, there are plenty of adult beverages around at this time of year, but overindulging carries consequences. Limit your consumption of alcohol now if you want to avoid health problems later.
7. Wash your hands. Hand washing is a basic line of defense against germs and infections, so lather up and wash those microbes away.
8. Dress appropriately. The weather can be unpredictable during the holiday season, so always dress appropriately. Bundle up when the weather turns chilly, and keep your hands, face and other exposed skin clean and dry.
9. Always fasten your seatbelt. There is lots of driving during the holidays, so make sure you are buckled in before you pull out of the driveway or mall parking lot. If you have the kids with you, make sure they are safely buckled as well.
The holiday season should be a time of fun and frivolity, not illness and doctor visits. If you want to enjoy the holidays more and worry less, the 9 tips listed above can help you stay healthy, no matter what the world throws your way.