Between mulled wine, celebratory champers and the plethora of other treats that tempt us in at this time of year, the festive season can take its toll on the body. And while it’s unlikely there will be any office parties or big nights out for Christmas 2020, we’re still set to be doing our fair share of socialising from the comfort of our sofas this party season.
We called on Clarissa Lenherr, a nutritional therapist working closely with MEDA - a brand whose CBD infused wellness drinks are formulated to bring balance to an active lifestyle and help restore you to your optimal state - for some practical tips to see us through the pandemic party season.
Fuel Your Body
Whilst it might seem easier to pick up a quick sandwich, chocolate bar or order a takeaway, this can exacerbate our body’s stress levels. Eating foods that are high in sugars and/or refined carbohydrates can cause our blood sugar to yo-yo and drop, leaving us feeling more tired, stressed, emotional and even lead to increased food cravings.
If we can opt for balanced plates filled with protein, complex carbohydrates, good fats and vegetables we are setting ourselves up for sustained energy, balanced mood and potentially less stress. If you are time short, batch cooking can help to ensure you have options in the fridge, or you can try to find healthy delivery options and organise what to have at the beginning of the week.
Aim for lots of dark green leafy vegetables that provide you with the vitamins and minerals required for energy production and support our adrenal glands, which produce many of our stress hormones. Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, brussels sprouts and cauliflower support the function of our livers, the site where we break down and eliminate alcohol, so consume these regularly. Complex carbohydrates such as quinoa, rye breads, starchy veg and oats, as these are filled with fibre which support your digestive system, keep you full and provide a steady source of energy.
We’re not going to get all preachy and tell you not to drink over the party season, but there’s a lot to be said for making smart choices when it comes to alcohol. With a wide range of classic tipples now available in lower alcohol or reduced sugar versions, it’s easier than ever to opt for a drink that’s a little less harsh on the body.
MEDA’s Espresso Medatini
, for example, is pre-mixed with premium vodka, but at 12.5% it’s a lot less strong than the original version of the iconic cocktail. What’s more, it contains 50% less sugar & calories and is infused with a shot of Liposomal Broad Spectrum Organic CBD. Simply pour the little black bottle of Espresso Medatini into an ice-filled cocktail shaker and shake it like you really mean it, before pouring into your (preferably pre-chilled) glasses. Voila!
Alternatively, avoiding alcohol altogether is more doable when you’re socialising from a distance – simply pop your favourite mixer and your alcohol-free beverage of choice into a glass, garnish with a slice of lemon, and no one will ever know the difference!
Don’t Skip Exercise
It can be easy to let our exercise routine slip to the side over the holiday months. However, exercise is a crucial practice, not just for the non-holiday months, and ensuring you get some movement everyday can help with stress levels, excess holiday weight gain, mood, and overall health.
Plus, it helps the body’s natural detoxification by sweating out last night’s mulled wine. Going for a brisk walk and getting some oxygen or a sweaty yoga practice can help get the blood moving and the ethanol out!
If you do choose to exercise, make sure you hydrate yourself sufficiently as you don’t want to cause yourself to be more dehydrated.
But Also Prioritise Recovery
That said, it’s important to note that recovery is just as important as the exercise itself. When we exercise, particularly with intense exercise, we can trigger an inflammatory response in the body – this might feel like swelling, soreness, stiffnesses. Not only will taking a break help your body to heal, but you’ll also come back feeling better next time.
To help bring down inflammation, MEDA Recover
contains anti-inflammatory ingredients such as turmeric (1) and ginger. You will also see Piperine, a compound found in black pepper, that has been shown to aid the absorption of curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric (2). Vitamin C has been added into Recovery, thanks to its ability to improve muscle recovery. A study from 2006, revealed that those taking vitamin C for two weeks prior to heavy exercise, then for four days after, found their muscle soreness was notably reduced compared to those that took a placebo (3).
Get Your Zzzzs
Let’s face it: we all know that not getting enough sleep will make us feel rubbish, but with so many Zoom parties to attend to, furious monopoly games to be had and late nights spent catching up with friends, it’s easy to get to the stage where you look up and it’s suddenly 2am already. Yet, between all the alcohol and stodgy food, it’s as important as ever, even if you don’t have to go to work the next morning.
has been designed to aid sleep through a combination of compounds, herbs and extracts have been blended to help promote calm and get your body ready for a visit to the land of nod. Morello Cherry is a natural source of melatonin, which is the hormone responsible for drowsiness and promotion of sleep, whilst Valerian root extract and Schisandra Berry has been added to help promote calm and reduce cortisol (our stress hormone).
1 - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12676044/
2 - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9619120/
3 - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16948483.