I love the end-of-year festivities but with overindulgences and a hectic social agenda our hormones can take a real hit.
I want to let you in on what I will be doing this holiday season using the 5 pillars of Optimal Living Method to avoid getting overwhelmed and losing momentum on my health intentions. With these hacks, you won't be sacrificing your health nor forgoing joining in on the festive fun. Win-win!
Starting the day with protein can make a real difference to our hormone-health and during the holiday season breakfast might be the only meal you have some sort of control over. Think eggs and avocado on grilled sweet potato, veggie-packed frittatas, grain-free pancakes and porridge with added protein or protein smoothies. Protein keeps you satiated for longer, helps curb cravings and helps you stabilise blood sugar. Aim for 15-20 grams of protein at breakfast. Pair with healthy fats and low-glycaemic carbohydrates for a balanced meal.
STRESS & THOUGHT-AWARENESS - build your stress-resilience toolkit
Excess stress hormones put a real strain on our bodies when not flushed. Not only can this exacerbate hormonal symptoms, but unresolved stress can also affect your immune system making you more susceptible to all of those winter bugs. Build a toolkit of practices that help regulate your stress response. Box breathing, physiological sigh, legs up the wall, walking or movement of any kind, laughing out loud and a hug can all help complete the stress response. Remember, stress is supposed to have a beginning, middle and an end. Whilst you cannot control the stressors, with your toolkit you will be able to minimise the effects of stress on your body.
MOVEMENT - just move for 10 minutes after meals, that's all!
With mounting social engagements, our usual movement routine might go out the window. But fret not. All you need to focus on during the holidays (and beyond) is moving for 10 minutes, within 60-90 minutes of eating, to help balance your blood sugar. The reason for this is simple - your leg muscles are the biggest depot for blood sugar and when you activate them by moving after eating, they will soak up the sugar from your bloodstream instead of leaving it to wreak havoc, leading to inflammation and excess adipose storage -aka holiday weight.
REST & REGENERATION
If managing to keep to a predictable sleep schedule is tricky, focus on regeneration instead. Epsom Salt baths are a powerhouse when it comes to regeneration at the cellular level. They detoxify and supercharge the body with magnesium - a mineral most of us are deficient in particularly after menopause. Try this three times a week to help relieve sore muscles, improve digestion and reduce stress. It is a also a great sleep primer.
CONNECTION & PURPOSE
The holiday season can really trigger perfectionism, comparisons and feelings of not being, having or doing enough. When you are feeling like this, I invite you to treat yourself with the same kindness you would treat a friend. This practice is known as self-compassion and it can really help our physical and mental health. Self-compassion helps to quiet our minds and avoids us buying into our inner critic's narrative.
Let's get rid of the all or nothing mentality by using these science-backed hacks to support our health during this busy time of the year and beyond.
Let's do 2023 together! If you are ready for more bespoke support for your hormones and overall health, I am now onboarding for all my programmes commencing 2023. Book your free Health Review here to start your health optimisation journey.