We all know that the Holidays can be stressful with relatives coming from Guam and you’re brother complaining about how hung over he is and I know I don’t have to mention all the insane food on the table just calling your name. But never fear, there are ways to stayed calm, cool and collected during the holidays.
1. Take Some Time To Be Alone
I know your Uncle Remus wants to talk your ear off about his new and exciting adventure in latex, but maybe take a few minutes to remove yourself from overcrowded rooms and loud chatter. It’s nice to catch up with old relatives but it can get overwhelming, so take some time to yourself (even if the only place you can escape to is the bathroom) and close your eyes, breathe deeply, clear your mind and relax. I’m telling you just a few minutes of this and you’ll feel like a new person. Then you can get back to Grandpa’s story of the time he ate a whole bowl full of raw cranberries.
2. Keep Everyone Out Of The Kitchen
This is for all the chefs out there who are cooking this holiday season. I know the kitchen is generally the place to congregate and hang out while dinner is being prepared. But as a chef myself, I know how frustrating this can be with everyone constantly in the way. A good way to get people out of the kitchen is to keep all the snacks and drinks in another room. Make sure you get this done before people arrive, that way they won’t flock to the kitchen to hang. Or you can go all Gordon Ramsey on everyone and tell them to, “get out of my kitchen!” (In a cute British accent of course).
3. Bring Your Own Food
For those of you with some food allergies or sensitivities and you’re not hosting a holiday dinner this year then you are all too familiar with not being able to eat some of those delicious dishes that your family or friends love to make. Make a suggestion that you can bring a dish to dinner, maybe a side dish, or a dessert, depending on what you like. Or you can let your host know, in a kindly manner, that there are some things that you can’t have, I’m sure they wouldn’t mind trying to be accommodating!
4. Watch Your Alcohol Consumption
I know dealing with relatives is a little more bearable when you throw back a few glasses of eggnog, but just watch yourself and make sure you don’t go overboard. There’s nothing worse than waking up to a raging hangover after your food coma. Make sure you’re drinking water in between alcoholic drinks to balance yourself out. And we all know mixing alcohol can be just as bad, first you have some wine, then two glasses of eggnog, and then some of that punch that Aunt Sarah made and before you know it you’re singing along to the ‘NSYNC holiday CD with your pants off. I’ve seen it a hundred times.
5. Eat Mostly Vegetables
I know it’s hard but eating more vegetables than meat at your holiday dinner can help reduce your food induced coma. If you’re going to a dinner where you know there won’t be many vegetables, make your own and bring it along, I’m sure they won’t mind the extra food. I’m partial to string bean casserole myself. Also since vegetables are low in calories you are able to eat more of them than other foods before feeling full.
6. Don’t Overeat
This may be a very difficult concept for many people since there is usually an over abundance of food at holiday dinners. Just keep yourself in check while your eating, make sure you chew your food thoroughly, eat slowly, and pay attention to what your body is saying. I know this sounds like a childish concept but sometimes when we get lost in the tasty food we lose site of what our body is telling us, like when we should stop eating. By chewing thoroughly, this allows for better digestion and is less work for your body to process. This also could be applied to every day eating as it will help you eat less and be mindful of your body.
7. Walk It Off & Have Some Tea
After you’ve had more than your fill of turkey, pumpkin pie, and mashed potatoes, its always good to take a stroll. I’m not saying go workout, that would be a horrible idea, I’m just saying take a slow walk around the block, this will help with digestion and lets the body know you didn’t fall asleep. You can also have a mug full of ginger or mint tea, this also greatly helps with digestion.
I hope you find these tips helpful during the holiday season and listen to what your body needs. Don’t forget to always be helpful and kind to the people around you, and always be grateful for them. Happy Holidays!