Enjoying the holidays without excess
10 key actions for your overall wellbeing and skin
The holiday season often presents us with a series of (more than) lavish meals, where poor food combinations and excesses of all kinds (alcohol, sugar, fat, etc.) take a toll on our bodies.
And our body doesn't take long to let us know: fatigue, headaches, and feeling like we're operating "in slow motion" are often the first signs that its limits have been reached.
Digestion is the activity that requires the most energy from our body, and this energy expenditure is increased during the holidays due to overeating.
Indeed, as our founder Claire Andréewitch regularly reminds us, digestion is directly linked to the health and radiance of our skin.
Poor digestion leads to dysfunctions in the microbiome and inflammatory phenomena that are often the root cause of our skin issues (acne, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea, etc.)
Here are 10 key actions to enjoy the holidays without excess, without impacting your wellbeing and the health of your skin too much!
During family or friend gatherings, enjoy yourself reasonably, but avoid excesses when eating alone.
The end-of-year celebrations are important moments of socialization, sharing, and joy. It is completely legitimate to want to enjoy this festive spirit, and to celebrate with our loved ones around a friendly meal.
Take advantage of the moments when you are alone, or when personal choices are more flexible in terms of plate composition (like breakfast for example) to eat lighter and more balanced.
For example, some low glycemic index fruits, natural nuts, or a green juice will provide a maximum of essential vitamins & minerals, supporting the optimal functioning of your body without overloading digestion.
Think about "night fasting"
The body needs about 12 hours for the cleaning process to take place (this happens mostly at night and continues into the morning).
To let this natural and necessary process follow its course, try to leave at least 12 hours between dinner and breakfast: this simple gesture will greatly relieve the over-solicitation of the digestive system during the holidays and will allow it to have long, beneficial rest periods.
In practice, if you finish dinner around midnight, there's no absolute need to have breakfast at 7 am. Opt instead for a herbal tea that will aid the body in its cleaning work, such as rosemary, savory, or mint.
Start your meals with raw food
Our body is like "programmed" to recognize food in its raw, uncooked state because its matrix is not altered by cooking or transformations. Raw food thus provides the body and cells with "the right information," avoiding the inflammatory phenomena that the consumption of cooked (and even overcooked) food produces in our body, which no longer recognizes it as well.
Starting each meal with raw food (even if you follow with cooked food) shows that inflammation does not spike to the same degree as it does with a meal exclusively of cooked food (or starting with cooked food).
A simple, easy-to-implement tip that will naturally lower the body's overall inflammation and promote better digestion.
Do not consume fruit at the end of the meal
It's often thought to be a good idea to opt for a fruit at the end of the meal, with the idea of not overloading the organism.
However, the opposite actually happens in reality!
Food combinations are also very important to consider when looking after your digestion, energy levels, and overall wellbeing.
Rule number 1 to respect: fruits do not mix with other foods.
Indeed, fruits have a very rapid digestion time compared to other foods, which require more time. Thus, consuming them at the end of the meal means the fruits are blocked by other foods and have time to ferment in the intestine — a phenomenon that is the source of many digestive dysfunctions: intestinal dysbiosis, flatulence, bloating, and other discomforts…
Thus, it's better to enjoy them 30 minutes before the meal or 2-3 hours after.
Drink water 15 minutes before the meal
By this simple act, the digestive tract will be hydrated, digestion facilitated, and metabolism stimulated. Moreover, it's very likely that you will eat less, and/or less sweet!
Indeed, food cravings (especially for sweets) are often the consequence of dehydration.
A large glass of pure water before the meal thus helps to regulate this desire.
Hydrated cells are key to our internal balance, and this small gesture will undoubtedly help you feel better during the holidays.
Target foods that stimulate metabolism
As many meals are "heavy" to digest, try to incorporate as many digestive allies as possible, which will also help in managing excess fats.
Here are some key foods to target: pineapple, aloe vera, cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, mint (these last four also in herbal tea), lemon, green tea, apple cider vinegar.
Try to include some of these in your everyday meals, and you'll find that you feel lighter.
A small spoonful of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water before the meal will greatly help regulate your blood sugar and manage the fats consumed during it.
Use good fats
Sure, butter adds flavor to dishes, but its too regular consumption is not recommended for health: first of all, it contains a lot of saturated fats, and when heated at high temperatures, it becomes totally indigestible and a source of inflammation.
For cooking, prefer olive or coconut oil, which offer very high resistance to heat and do not denature when cooked. Moreover, these oils are full of benefits: olive oil for its balanced supply of essential fatty acids, supporting cardiovascular function, and its high content of polyphenols, ultra-powerful antioxidants; coconut oil for its antiviral, antibacterial action and immune system boosting (which is ideal in this season!)
NB. For those who might not like its taste, it is also available in a "deodorized" format.
For your raw vegetables, think of oils rich in omega 3 (powerful natural anti-inflammatories, essential for our overall health and especially that of our skin) such as linseed, camelina, hemp, or walnut oil: they will bring a delicate taste to your salads, and help your body manage inflammation during these holiday periods better.
Choose organic, cold-pressed oils, reserve them for dressing, and keep them cool to not alter their properties.
Share the dessert
Between us, after the appetizer, the starter, the main course, and the cheese platter, our body really doesn't have much (if any?) hunger left.
The sweet at the end is pure indulgence, and often, one step too many...
If you do partake, as it is part of the sharing moment (especially with the famous Christmas log), be content with a small piece just to join in the festivities and have your sweet touch that pleases you — but a whole portion may not be necessary?
Know that sugar at the end of a meal is a source of indigestion, and doubles the risk of bloating.
If there's ever a time of the year when sharing is the order of the day, it's this one!
So, follow the precept all the way to dessert.
Opt for peppermint at the end of the meal
THE LIFE-SAVING TIP!
After a holiday meal, digestives are often in order to boost management after a hearty meal...
And why not ease your digestion, not with a small glass of alcohol, but with a beneficial peppermint grog?
Delicious, refreshing, and effective, it is ultra simple to make:
- 2 drops of peppermint essential oil
- A teaspoon of organic honey
All in a mini glass of warm water (at a drinkable temperature, not burning, to preserve the active ingredients of honey)
Quick-fix version: in a teaspoon of honey or olive oil: add 2 drops of peppermint essential oils, and consume as is!
To support your body during the holidays, this action is crucial.
Of course, this practice is indispensable for a healthy lifestyle throughout the year, but it makes even more of a difference when we indulge in larger quantities at meals.
The body will be better oxygenated, the blood and lymph stimulated, will circulate better, and the cleaning can thus function better.
It also allows for better digestion: whether it's running, swimming, yoga, or a brisk walk every day, set up a small daily routine now, and don't wait until 2024 to take care of yourself.
No excuses, 10 minutes is always a thousand times better than nothing, so don't skip a session under the pretext that you won't have time to do the full 30 minutes.
These few wellbeing actions, practiced every day, will allow you to enjoy these moments of celebration and conviviality even more.
To go further and learn how to take care of yourself and your skin on a daily basis, find our holistic content in our online journal, and join us in 2024 for unique masterclasses (in French) to go further in your practice of holistic beauty.
Tell us in the comments which actions you will adopt to enjoy your celebrations without excess.
We wish you very happy holidays,
Team Ad CAELIA