I am all for enjoying the time with family and friends over the holidays without guilt. But the truth is that oftentimes this includes overindulging in foods that aren't quite right for our bodies. The consequences of this show up in many ways from headaches, to digestive problems, to PMS, to the addition of a few pounds.
Now I want to make it clear that I do not believe in doing any punishing diets after such a weekend (or week!). However, I do believe that adding in a few good habits can make all the difference in how our bodies recover.
Step 1- Optimizing Digestion
After a few days of eating all the delicious foods, it is very common to find things moving a little *ahem* slower than usual. This can also lead to those other unpleasant symptoms like indigestion and heartburn.
After the holidays, it is important to add in fiber-rich foods like fresh fruit, and leafy greens. Also a good probiotic is essential, at least 2 billion CFU's but more is better. This will help to restore the balance of good bacteria, that gets thrown off with excessive sugar consumption.
Now this is more of a preventative, but taking a good quality digestive enzyme before meals is an excellent way to help your body process the food you are eating!
Step 2- Restoring Nutrients
Certain foods (hello sugar!) not only are empty of nutrients, but actually cause the body to give up some of its own stores in order to digest them! Going with the sugar example, the body actually has to use magnesium in order to digest sugar. Magnesium is an important mineral, especially for women, as it is required for calcium absorption, and also is important for hormone balance. When you have enough, it even helps with cramping!
We want to make sure that after the holidays, we don't continue in the holiday eating pattern, but instead start adding in nutrient-dense foods like fresh fruits and vegetables, and healthy fats and protein, while also limiting those foods that rob us of our valuable nutrition.
Step 3- Hydration
Travel, alcohol consumption, and dry air- these can all dehydrate us, leading to dry skin, headaches, and fatigue. After the holidays, focus on consuming half your body weight in ounces of water each day. You can easily dress the water up with lemon or lime juice to make it more interesting, if you struggle to get in this amount each day. Also, you can make one of those cups, a nourishing and tasty herbal tea like this one.
Resetting after the holidays really doesn't have to be hard or punishing. What is one of your favorite ways to reset?