As the busy holiday season approaches, take time to consider a few simple steps to keep you and your family healthy.
- Get 7 – 8 hours of sleep each night. The holiday season can disrupt your usual sleep schedule. Do your best not to let it and aim for at least seven hours of restful sleep most nights of the week.
- Make healthy food choices. Special holiday foods tempt you to reach for just one more cookie. Limit portion sizes of special treats and stock up on healthy choices such as fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy dips, nuts and whole grains to go along with the special holiday dishes you are serving. Treat yourself but find a balance. Limit portion sizes and add healthy options such as fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts and whole grains to special holiday menus.
- Find ways to stay active. Catch up with friends and family during a relaxing walk after a meal or on a short hike. Bundle up the kids for outdoor games and activities that get them moving.
- Wash hands often. Keep germs and viruses from spreading by washing your hands the proper way: with soap and water under running water for at least 20 seconds. Keep hand sanitizer on hand for times when it’s not possible to wash with soap and water.
- Get your flu shot. You and your family members should get your annual flu shot before the holiday season starts. This will help prevent the flu from spreading during the busy holiday season when everyone is together.
- Be smart about drinking alcohol. Limit alcohol to one or two drinks and appoint a designated driver. If you’re hosting an event, offer non-alcoholic options such as sparkling water.
- Be safe. Use fireplaces and candles wisely.
- Manage stress. It’s easy to overcommit to events and activities during the holidays. Keep your stress level in check by making sure that you have time to unwind and relax.
- Create a holiday calendar. Post family events and happenings and note prep time needed and who is responsible for what task.
Keeping these healthy tips in mind will help you enjoy this special time of the year.