Twinkling lights, an inviting scent of essential oils and frosted noses on arriving guests – tis’ the season for holiday celebrations. Ready to indulge? Here are 5 ways to making this your best, and healthiest holidays ever!
1) Laugh It Up
Don’t let the holidays stress you out. Stress leads to the release of an inflammatory compound called IL-6 that has been linked to many diseases, including heart disease. Make this one a holly, jolly holiday season: breathe, take a walk outside or enjoy a good rollicking laugh. Laughing revs up your stress response and then brings it back down. Plus, laughing increases circulation and relaxes muscles.
2) Stuff Your Plate
From cranberries to cinnamon, some of the healthiest foods are stars of holiday cooking. Dig in! Want to avoid feeling sluggish and sleepy at your next holiday event? Avoid carbohydrate-based foods (white breads, crackers, baked goods) as they cause your blood sugar to spike and then crash. Instead, dig into some wholesome holiday treats: such as a broccoli salad with festive cranberries; roasted pear and butternut squash soup; or
Acai Berry Truffles with Navitas Naturals Powders
1½ tbsp Coconut Oil
⅓ cup Navitas Naturals Acai Powder
2 tbsp Navitas Naturals Cacao Powder
2 tbsp Navitas Naturals Cacao Nibs
2 tbsp Navitas Naturals Coconut Palm Sugar
8 large Medjool Dates
1 tbsp Almond Butter
1 pinch Sea Salt
Combine all ingredients in a food processor, except for the cacao nibs, and process until a dense acai dough has formed. Add in the nibs and pulse a couple times to combine.
Using a heaping teaspoon at a time, roll into 1” balls, and place on a plate.* Place plate in the refrigerator for one hour or longer before serving. Makes 16 1” truffles. NOTE: Always serve chilled, or truffles will be too soft.
*Optional: Roll truffles in a plate of acai powder to dust exterior before refrigerating.
3) Eat. Drink. Be Merry!
Be ready for the digestive distress that comes when you indulge in holiday goodies by stocking up on digestive enzymes, prebiotics and probiotics. According to research reported in the British Journal of Nutrition, those probiotics may also help you stay healthy so you don’t miss out on holiday gatherings. The study suggests some probiotics may reduce the number of sick days one needs to take when suffering from a cold.
4) Party into the Night
Shake off winter weariness by drinking more water and being active. As we turn up the thermostat in our homes our indoor environment becomes dry increasing our body’s need of water and making us feel tired. According to a University of Georgia study, you will have more energy and feel less tired if you exercise just 20 minutes (low to moderate exercise), three times per week.
5) Give a Gift of Health
Okay, you can argue that the traditional hostess gift of a bottle of red wine is healthy – it is packed with resveratrol that is great for your heart and keeps wrinkles at bay. However, for your next holiday gathering, consider bringing your hostess the gift of health: natural beauty products, elegant soaps, soothing bath products or enchanting teas. These gifts are also great stocking stuffers along with natural toothpaste, fair trade chocolate and organic candies.
Now that you’re prepared, laughing and feeling energized go and indulge in this holiday season. May this holiday season be your best (and healthiest) one yet!