Holiday Health Tips

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The holiday season can be a busy and stressful time. The Minnesota Chiropractic Association and Dr. Scott Bautch,  past president of the American Chiropractic Association's Council on Occupational Health, encourages you to consider the following tips to help keep you and your loved ones stay healthy, happy and safe this season.

Stay hydrated!  Drink at least one half your body weight of water in ounces each day.  (i.e. a 200 pound person needs at least 100 ounces per/day)  Coffee, tea, soft drinks and alcohol are dehydrators. Don't substitute them for water. On shopping days, you may need to drink even more water.

A calorie is not a calorie.  Empty calories coming from sugar, artificial sweeteners and processed foods have no nutritional value and can increase your appetite for 90 minutes after consumption.  On average, people gain five to six pounds during the holidays.  Make choices that include organic fruits, vegetables and lean proteins.

Minimize or avoid sugar. The equivalent of two cans of soda, which equal 100 g. or 8 Tbsp.  decreases the ability of white blood cells to kill "germs" by 40 percent.

Stretch, Stretch and Stretch again. Be sure to stretch before and after a long day of shopping. When you are stressed-out, your muscles are less flexible than usual.

Leave your purse at home. Carry a smaller purse or clutch and consider wearing a light fanny pack, or if necessary, a light backpack instead. Pack only those items that are absolutely essential (driver's license, credit card, etc.).

Wrapping Gifts.  Since there is no "ideal" position for wrapping gifts, the most important thing to remember is to vary your positions. For example, try standing at a table or countertop for one package, sitting on a bed for another, sitting in a comfortable chair for another, etc.

Don't forget to rest.  Sleep is vital. Your body literally rejuvenates and heals while you are sleeping.

During this busy holiday season, make sure to take the time to see your chiropractor. Subluxations in your spine cause stress to your nervous system and decrease immune function.  Getting adjusted is also key to preventing pain and injury. To find a doctor in Minnesota, visit www.mnchiro.com.