I know i've written about this before (and more than once). The reason? It’s really freakin’ important and relevant and I want to be of service to you this holiday season.
We all joke about stress slowly killing us, but it really really is. It’s making you fat, sick and exhausted every single day, and this time of year it can be 100% WORSE!
The Holidays are stressful times for everyone. Good stresses & bad stresses (our body reacts the same) are coming at us from every direction. Visa bills full of Christmas shopping, RSVP’s for parties we were crazy enough to plan, INSANE parking lots and horrible drivers at every intersection. December is a land mine of stress. And when we’re stressed what do we do? Eat junk food, store fat and get sick.
I’ve written whole blogs devoted to stress eating (read one here) so I’m not going to focus on the reasons right now (do you care WHY or do you just want to stop?).
Here’s what you can do to stop:
- Do a whole food detox for a week or two. When you get the crap out of your system, you stop craving it. Seriously. The more sugar, gluten and dairy you eat, the more you want them. I’m not saying you can’t ever eat these things again, but if you want to avoid the holiday stress weight and immune system crash start the week off this way. You’ll thank yourself on Christmas Eve (and again January 1st).
Don’t keep crappy food in the house. Look-if you’re stressed out, willpower goes out the window and biology takes over (more about that here). But if it’s cold and snowy and you’re warm and cozy odds are you aren’t driving to the supermarket to buy a chocolate bar. Have lots of ready to go snacks that are actually good for you when the cravings hit. Try an apple with almonds, a few pieces of really good cheese, full fat Greek yogurt with a bit of maple syrup and berries, veggies and hummus, etc etc. Don’t try to deny the craving, just give your body something that won’t be immediately stored as fat.
Don’t skip breakfast. If you start the day with balanced blood sugar you are MUCH less likely to give in to junk food cravings later on (seriously studies have shown this to be true). Have a few eggs and ½ and avocado or oatmeal with hemp hearts and berries. Make sure you’re getting some fat and protein with your breakfast (and eat it within 1 hr of waking up).
Drink water all day (and avoid too much caffeine). If you drink coffee all day long you keep those stress hormones hard at work, throw off your blood sugar and crave junk food. Sub water in for every second coffee (or whatever is realistic for you). You’ll feel way better.
Download a free 5 minute meditation app on your smartphone. No matter how busy you are, I guarantee you have 5 minutes to stop and breathe. Studies show that without a doubt, meditation brings down stress levels. Just do it.
That’s it! 5 tips to cut down on stress eating and get you through this crazy time of year without feeling like total crap (and gaining 5 lbs).
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