Holiday Health

Healthy for the Holidays

 

Ahh the holidays…a time when we typically lose track of healthy habits, i.e. crazier schedules, parties with more unhealthy foods, late nights, alcohol and high stress (both positive and negative). Being out of our normal routines can cause many things including stress, a greater tendency for our immune system to break down and sometimes…tummy trouble!

If you find yourself engaging in foods that are processed, sugary and chemically laden on a daily basis over the holidays you may experience digestive issues.  Here are a 10 remedies to help reduce gas and bloating:

 

  1. Take a probiotic regularly and eat fermented foods. Intestinal dysbiosis (lacking the right bacteria in your gut) is one of the causes of bloating and gas as well as a main cause for many autoimmune diseases. Make sure to take a good quality probiotic recommended by your healthcare professional. Eating fermented foods is another great easy way to keep our intestinal flora balanced. You will find fermented veggies in glass jars in the fridge at your health food store .They have to be raw and not pasteurized. Don’t get conventional sauerkraut if you see “pasteurized” on the bag. Pasteurization destroys the good bacteria in this food. Start using this amazing healing food by adding one tablespoon a day with your lunch or dinner.
  2. Take digestive enzymes. These improve food breakdown speeding up and facilitating good digestion and absorption. This way the food spends less time in the gut therefore reducing the possibility of fermentation.
  3. Don’t skip meals!
  4. Eat your fruit first, or on its own. Enjoy your favorite fruit before a meal especially if that meal has animal protein in it. Fruits are made of simple sugars which are digested very easily and fast as opposed to complex sugars from whole foods and proteins. If we eat protein first and then fruit, the fruit will be “stuck behind” the proteins that take longer to digest and will start fermenting in your gut. This fermentation process causes gas and bloating.
  5. Eliminate dairy, processed foods and grains. These foods are inflammatory for most humans.
  6. Use activated charcoal before a heavy meal. This is good if you know you will be eating out or at a party. Charcoal will bind to toxins in your gut and improve their elimination. Don’t use every day as it is shown that every day use can cause magnesium deficiency.
  7. Don’t eat when upset or angry. In these situation stress hormones are released as the body is under stress. These hormones are designed for “fight or flight” response and shut down digestion. If food is introduced in the gut at this time the appropriate digestive processes are not activated therefore you will end up with an indigestion, gas and bloating.
  8. Don’t eat while working, watching TV or when being on your phone. We know that appropriate digestive enzymes are released when our brain is just thinking about food and our eyes and nose are watching/smelling food. If we are not mindful at the time we eat and we distract our brain with other tasks, these processes are delayed or arrested which will result in indigestion.
  9. Chew! Digestion starts in the mouth. By chewing our food into small pieces we expose it to the digestive enzymes and stomach acid to be further processed. The smaller the pieces, the better the digestion. Take your time and chew your food at least 30 times before you swallow!
  10. If you are experiencing bloating here are some techniques to use for relief: drink peppermint tea, ginger tea, or fennel tea. Lay on you back with your knees bent for 5-10 minutes. Use a warm compress on your lower abdomen if available.

Holiday Health

iStock_77567285_XLARG Wishing You a Relaxing HolidayHoliday health – As we enter the cold & flu season, understand that it is more than just a coincidence that this “season” is in and around the holiday season.  A time when we typically lose track of healthy habits, i.e. crazier schedules, parties with more unhealthy foods, late nights, alcohol and high stress (both positive and negative).  Being out of our normal routines can cause stress, and a greater tendency for our immune system to break down and be less able to fight viruses and infections.

Although there are natural remedies to help with the effects of cold and flu, their value is diminished when we are not engaging in lifestyle habits that support and enhance immune function day in and day out over the course of our lives.  Even if you are choosing to get a flu shot, it is still your own immune system that has to utilize the vaccination to help heighten its defenses against that specific strain of virus, ultimately still requiring a healthy functioning natural immune system.

Learn how to not only boost but also optimize your body’s natural defenses.

Nutrition:

  • Feed your body and immune system higher amounts of fibrous produce that is nutrient dense.
  • Hydrate with water to detoxify, filter and help with elimination.
  • Reduce or eliminate processed, sugary and chemically laden foods on a daily basis. (Save those foods for the 1 or 2 meals out per week that many of us engage in during the holiday season.) Stop poisoning your body and overwhelming your immune system!
  • Plan ahead.  If you know you have a holiday event one day, splurge then, but be ‘spot on’ with your nutrition the rest of the week.

Reduce Stress:

  • Plan ahead and set boundaries for yourself so you are not being spread too thin.
  • Save vacation days to take during the holidays so you have some time to help you get the extra things done.
  • Work on breathing exercises, meditation and relaxation techniques to help temper stress.  They can be done even for just a minute here or there during the course of the day and pay high ‘stress-tempering’ dividends.
  • Schedule exercise into your week.  Look to see where you’ll have a little window of opportunity to fit in some exercise.  If you have already invested the time into being physically fit, it won’t take much time to maintain that during the holidays. Exercise has shown physiologically to be one of the greatest therapies to temper stress hormone output. It’s just too important to neglect!

 Rest:

  • Rest and sleep are critical to optimize the immune responses in the body.  Deep sleep is when the immune system recharges most intensely.  Ignoring the body’s need for sleep combined with the holiday stresses sets you up for a greater risk of being sick and having lowered immune function 

It’s a vicious cycle that has then been created if you become sick,
because then there is less time to get the Holiday check list completed
which creates even more holiday stress!

Optimum immune responses are based on lifestyle choices within the Triad of Health (Nutrition, Mental state and Reconditioning).  For a healthy & happy holiday, think about what you are putting into your body, what is your state of mind, are you getting adequate rest and relaxation and are you making time for physical activity.

Holiday Health

Holiday health – As we enter the cold & flu season, understand that it is more than just a coincidence that this “season” is in and around the holiday season.  A time when we typically lose track of healthy habits, i.e. crazier schedules, parties with more unhealthy foods, late nights, alcohol and high stress (both positive and negative).  Being out of our normal routines can cause stress, and a greater tendency for our immune system to break down and be less able to fight viruses and infections.

Although there are natural remedies to help with the effects of cold and flu, their value is diminished when we are not engaging in lifestyle habits that support and enhance immune function day in and day out over the course of our lives.  Even if you are choosing to get a flu shot, it is still your own immune system that has to utilize the vaccination to help heighten its defenses against that specific strain of virus, ultimately still requiring a healthy functioning natural immune system.

Learn how to not only boost but also optimize your body’s natural defenses.

Nutrition:

  • Feed your body and immune system higher amounts of fibrous produce that is nutrient dense.
  • Hydrate with water to detoxify, filter and help with elimination.
  • Reduce or eliminate processed, sugary and chemically laden foods on a daily basis. (Save those foods for the 1 or 2 meals out per week that many of us engage in during the holiday season.) Stop poisoning your body and overwhelming your immune system!
  • Plan ahead.  If you know you have a holiday event one day, splurge then, but be ‘spot on’ with your nutrition the rest of the week.

Reduce Stress:

  • Plan ahead and set boundaries for yourself so you are not being spread too thin.
  • Save vacation days to take during the holidays so you have some time to help you get the extra things done.
  • Work on breathing exercises, meditation and relaxation techniques to help temper stress.  They can be done even for just a minute here or there during the course of the day and pay high ‘stress-tempering’ dividends.
  • Schedule exercise into your week.  Look to see where you’ll have a little window of opportunity to fit in some exercise.  If you have already invested the time into being physically fit, it won’t take much time to maintain that during the holidays. Exercise has shown physiologically to be one of the greatest therapies to temper stress hormone output. It’s just too important to neglect!

 Rest:

  • Rest and sleep are critical to optimize the immune responses in the body.  Deep sleep is when the immune system recharges most intensely.  Ignoring the body’s need for sleep combined with the holiday stresses sets you up for a greater risk of being sick and having lowered immune function 

It’s a vicious cycle that has then been created if you become sick,
because then there is less time to get the Holiday check list completed
which creates even more holiday stress!

Optimum immune responses are based on lifestyle choices within the Triad of Health (Nutrition, Mental state and Reconditioning).  For a healthy & happy holiday, think about what you are putting into your body, what is your state of mind, are you getting adequate rest and relaxation and are you making time for physical activity.

 

Natural Medicine & Rehabilitation

West End Physical Therapy, 10-12 West End Court, 2nd Floor, Long Branch, NJ 07740 | Phone 732.222.7799

399 Campus Drive, 1st Floor, Somerset, NJ | Phone 908.252.0242| Fax 908.252.0243