Let’s be honest: during the holidays, health is not your first priority. Between office parties, travel plans, and gift-giving, you have a lot more on your plate (pun intended) than usual. But overindulging or neglecting your immune system during the holidays can make it much harder to get back into the swing of things once the “most wonderful time of the year” has passed. Luckily, there are quick and easy actions you can take to boost your immune system, avoid weight gain, and maintain good energy levels—all while enjoying the festivities. This winter, use these 14 tips to give yourself the gift of health.
Travel Safe (and Healthy!):
While the holidays can be a time of celebration, holiday travel is notoriously stressful and draining—especially if you’re flying. Sodium-filled snacks, packed seats, and low humidity in airplane cabins make it easy to arrive at your destination sniffling and dehydrated. Here are a few things to keep in mind while traveling:
1. Pack healthy snacks.
Fruits and vegetables are far healthier options than the peanuts and pretzels that airlines dole out, and are easy to store in your carry-on. For a more filling option, granola bars and raw trail mix are also great alternatives.
2. Keep your water bottle handy.
Cabin pressure and long drives are recipes for dehydration. In some cases, drinking enough water during travel can mean the difference between catching a cold and arriving at your destination healthy and energized.
3. Boost your hydration.
An electrolyte mix like Liquid I.V. can act as an “express lane” for the water you’re consuming—ensuring it gets where it needs to go faster. Pouring a packet into your water bottle adds an easy hydration boost and battles fluid imbalances on-the-go.
4. Consider healthy supplements.
These days, there is a natural supplement for almost everything. Magnesium is known to reduce stress, zinc is a powerful immunity booster, and echinacea can help in a jam when you feel a cold sneaking up on you. Taking supplements (with a meal, to ensure proper absorption) can add a healthy vibrance to your holiday cheer. Pack them in your carry-on so you can load up during your flight.
5. Wash or sanitize your hands.
It’s hard to overstate the importance of hand-washing in crowded public spaces like planes, trains, and automobiles. Germs run rampant in these places, and can spoil your holiday trip with a cold if you’re not careful. Pack some hand sanitizer, or take trips to the bathroom to wash with soap.
Surviving Holiday Parties
Friendsgiving celebrations, office parties, and family festivities are classic holiday staples. While ’tis the season for rich meals, creamy holiday drinks, and sugary desserts, it’s smart to be aware of what you’re eating so you can avoid food comas and nasty hangovers.
6. Choose wisely.
While every dish in the Thanksgiving spread may look like it has your name on it, try taking a smaller sampling of the carbs and dairy. Opt instead for fiber- and protein-rich foods, which can stimulate the feeling of being full. This helps with the overeating done at holiday events. In other words: maybe just one of those buttered bread rolls instead of three.
7. Limit sugar.
We all know that the added sugar found in holiday classics like pie, cookies, and eggnog don’t do your body any good. While it may be difficult to avoid these altogether, try taking smaller portions to avoid an energy crash at the end of the night.
8. Go easy on the alcohol.
You don’t need to turn down the champagne toast, but be mindful of your intake. Alcohol dehydrates you, lowers your immune response, and can lead to weight gain.
9. Hydrate efficiently.
It’s easy to forget to hydrate during holiday celebrations. Luckily, water and Liquid I.V. are the perfect one-two punch to keep you going throughout the festivities. One serving of Liquid I.V. is comparable to drinking 3 glasses of water, so bringing a packet to the party is an easy way to avoid headaches, boost your mood and keep you energized until you’ve danced the night away. It also helps in reducing hangovers: an all-too-common holiday culprit.
Protect Yourself Against the Flu
Inconvenient as it may be, holiday season happens to coincide with flu season. Thanks to the dry air, cold weather, and lack of vitamin D from staying inside more often, your immune system takes a major hit during the winter. Here are a few tips to fight the flu and common cold when it gets chilly:
Looking for more travel tips? We cover everything from international travel considerations to healthy dining alternatives in our Traveler’s Guide to Eating Healthy.
10. Commit to sleep.
Shoot for 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night to recharge your immune system. While this time of the year can be the busiest, allowing yourself enough sleep insures your body has the stamina to protect you from viruses and other illnesses.
11. Keep your common spaces clean.
Countertops, door knobs and light switches are sneaky places viruses and bacteria can show up to ruin your week. Avoid illness by keeping these common spaces clean. Antibacterial sprays generally do the trick, so don’t slack on cleaning house.
12. Bring a water bottle.
Drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day, or adding Liquid I.V. packets to your water to hydrate more conveniently, can help you stay healthy all throughout the dry season. Packing a water bottle can be a great reminder to keep sipping.
13. Wash your hands.
Even when you’re not in overcrowded spaces like airplanes, making a habit of hand-washing can cut down on your chances of getting sick. Influenza can transfer through hand contact, so scrub your hands as often as you can.
What About Holiday Stress?
14. Keep warm, but chill.
As you know, holiday cheer can come with a side of stress, which can greatly weaken your immune system. To keep your mental and physical health in check, make some time for rest and relaxation. Treat yourself to a massage, take 10 minutes to meditate, and stick with your exercise routine to keep anxiety at bay.
Cheers to a Healthy and Happy Holiday Season!
Thanks to the tips above, you’re well equipped to survive and thrive this holiday season. Stay hydrated, keep your hands clean, and eat healthy to keep your holiday cheer on high. Let’s not forget, Liquid I.V. makes a great gift!
Do you have additional questions about how Liquid I.V. can help keep you healthy throughout the holidays? Feel free to reach out directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written by: Samantha Colicchio, Liquid I.V. Brand Storyteller