Here we are again! The holidays are here and with them the heavy eating, travel, and social interactions that the season brings. It’s tough to stay healthy this time of year, especially when joint pain and inflammation come into the equation.
We recently ran an article on holiday travel tips and thought we’d take it a step further with an entire outline of how you can stay healthy and pain-free through the New Year. Here’s a health plan for the holidays that even those of us with arthritis can follow.
Keep those meals healthy (as much as possible, anyway)
Socializing so often centers around eating. This is especially true during the holidays, and with all those big meals the calorie count often goes out the window. It’s easy to forget that diet actually has an impact on arthritis pain, meaning it’s super important to make sure you’re watching what you eat.
Prepare dishes that incorporate high amounts of Omega-3 fatty acids. Healthy fats are the key to making a holiday meal both delicious and nutritious, and keeping joint pain and inflammation in check.
Unfortunately, this means keeping the eggnog and Bailey’s in check (but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a little). If you are aware of any trigger foods that have caused joint flare-ups in the past, try to avoid them. In general, do what you can to keep a balanced diet throughout the holidays. Indulge a little here and there, and offset it by choosing the cleaner path at other times.
Another important element in our health plan for the holidays is Vitamin D. This is where you can indulge a bit, particularly when it comes to dairy. Vitamin D is beneficial to arthritis patients and, when compared to foods high in saturated fat and other unhealthy ingredients, can help to prevent really bad flare-ups. No one wants to be in excruciating pain during family time!
Stretch, stretch, stretch!
Those of you traveling over the holidays, or hosting family and friends at your home, may find it difficult to take a few moments to yourself. However, finding time to stretch is imperative. This will help keep your joints flexible and smooth, and keep you feeling loose and fresh during holiday activities.
Another bonus of stretching and other physical activity is that it helps you maintain body weight despite the often increased levels of food consumption that happen this time of year. Even slight increases in weight can accentuate arthritis pain, and part of your health plan for the holidays should be to watch that waistline closely.
Treat yourself (and take a breather!)
The holidays are hard on everyone. The excitement, the relationship maintenance, the constant socializing and busy schedule – it gets to you after a while. When the opportunity presents itself, take a break for a bit. Maybe this means winding down over your favorite TV show or a good book after others have headed home or to bed for the evening. Or perhaps it’s sneaking away from the pack for a quick walk around the park or trip to that shop you’ve been meaning to check out. Don’t feel guilty – it’s important to find some ‘me’ time in the middle of all that ‘family’ time.
Another good idea to keep your mental triggers on high this time of year is to treat YOURSELF to a gift. There’s no harm in a little self-indulgence when shopping for the grandkids or significant (we won’t tell). After all, we’ve made it through another year and are taking charge of joint pain and inflammation. That’s worthy of a reward if we do say so ourselves!
Stay on top of medications
Just because the holidays are here doesn’t mean that the doctor’s orders go flying out the window. Keep on top of any medications, supplements, and other health-related practices even while traveling. You’ll thank yourself later, no matter how much of a pain it is now.
We all know how painful those arthritis flare-ups are. These tips will help you keep joint pain and inflammation to a minimum this holiday season – all it takes is a bit of determination! If you’re looking to add an extra boost of strength to kick that pain away, we encourage you to check out our GLX3 supplement, available here on our website. Made with only the finest New Zealand Green Lipped Mussel Oil, New Zealand Olive Oil, and Vitamin E Oil, GLX3 is designed to provide a high dosage of Omega-3s and offers a number of health benefits beyond reducing joint pain and inflammation.
Spending as much time as possible with friends and family is what the holidays are all about. We wish the best to you and yours, and would love to hear about your holiday and how you managed arthritis pain throughout the daily chaos. Feel free to shoot us an email to [email protected]!
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