With holidays fast approaching, stress is looming out there in the ethers, soon to become the number one cause of visits to the doctors’ offices.
I have some suggestions to deal with stress this holiday season:
- Exercise. Make sure 15 to 20 min of exercise per day is a priority. It is the BEST way to release stress and promote a good night’s sleep.
- Avoid Sugar. When I receive junk sweets for the holidays at Ommani, they promptly go into the garbage. Neither my staff nor I need to put this in our bodies. The holidays are a stressful time for The Ommani Center as patients are stressed and the volume of calls and office visits increases, so my staff and I take extra special care to eat anti-oxidant-rich foods and avoid sugar.
- Eat LOTs and LOTs of plants. Plant protein helps the body repair damage from carcinogens. It has a profound mechanism to turn off harmful genes. Animal protein does the opposite. With holidays centered around animal-based dishes, the carcinogen load increases during this time of year. In our family, we have been having a vegan Thanksgiving and Christmas for years. I make a vegan lasagna loaded with vegetables which are creamy and very tasty. I will publish the recipe in the next Ommani Jewel. Sign up for it and you will get it in your inbox!
- Drink Smoothies. Add maca powder (1) to your green smoothies this season as well as take ashwagandha (2) for additional adrenal support. The best organic brand I have found is by True Botanica called Recovery Tonic (3). I have used it for years and it works very well.
- Breathe. Take a few minutes every day to breathe deeply (4) from your abdomen. Even 5 minutes a day makes a big difference in your body’s biochemistry and stress response. It neutralizes the effects of stress hormones and calms your mind.
- Remember to pay attention to each moment as best you can. The holidays are about love and community. Revisit the real intent of this season and try to let go of the commercial nightmare they have become. Make your gifts for each other rather than buying things that end up in a landfill or goodwill. An infused oil, vinegar, and organic wholesome dish to share, a plant, or a herbal bundle are some gifts that people truly appreciate. You can also volunteer at a soup kitchen or help a good cause on behalf of your friends and loved ones. A good book is another idea that raises consciousness rather than adds to clutter.
©December 2016 Kalpana (Rose) M. Kumar M.D., CEO and Medical Director of The Ommani Center for Integrative Medicine, Pewaukee, WI. Website: www.ommanicenter.com Author of Becoming Real: Reclaiming Your Health in Midlife. 2011, 2014 Medial Press