11171455 happy holidays christmas kwanzaa and hanukkah

It's the holiday season and you want to enjoy it! Time with family and friends, parties, gifts, feasts and drinking - it should be fun, but many people find this time of year stressful. In fact, most of us live fairly stressful lives anyway. Stress is a root cause of almost every disease and ailment. The holidays add another layer of stress to our lives with gift decisions and buying, meals to prepare, eating badly at parties, etc.  We’ve compiled 5 special tips that will help you de-stress during the holidays.

Why is stress a problem? If you see a lion, your body thinks it's going to die and goes into survival mode. All the normal systems taking care of the balance in your body shut down, including digestion.  Your cells release glycogen (sugar) for energy, your blood pressure and heart rate increase, your adrenals produce cortisol, and you RUN! When the lion disappears, everything goes back to normal. A small amount of stress is ok - it's what motivates us to get things done. Unfortunately, a lot of us live the type of lives whereby our bodies are always in survival mode.  The lion is always there and our bodies don't operate in balance. This is chronic stress and can have many effects on our bodies. http://www.healthline.com/health/stress/effects-on-body
 The good news is that stressful times and events don't HAVE to be debilitating. The problem really is how we HANDLE those situations. So you may not be able to change your situations, but you CAN change your management of them and of you. Here are our 5 suggestions for handling the added holiday stress:
  • Let go of guilt when you eat holiday and party food

  • Make gifts

  • Delegate tasks

  • Be a Uni-Tasker

  • Include laughter in your day

First of all, let go of the guilt when eating.  Accept the fact that it’s the holidays and you’re going to enjoy the food offered. Guilt causes stress and stress causes the digestive system to shut down. Double whammy - non-nutritious food and no digestion happening.  If you accept it, your body will accept it and deal with it better.
Short on cash? Make gifts.  I know you’ll say “I don’t have time” but the truth is, if you make something using skills and hobbies you enjoy, you’ll have a de-stressing activity, save money, and you’re not limited to store-open hours. Also, in the long run, searching, shopping and standing in lines may actually take longer and the frustration leads to stress. Additionally, people love gifts from the heart!
Are you the host for a dinner or party? Delegate, delegate, delegate.  Make it pot-luck.  Ask individually instead of emailing groups of colleagues, relatives, or friends.  In mass requests, recipients assume they don’t need to volunteer to help because someone else will do it. In addition, don’t be over-ambitious with fancy recipes.  Prepare tried and true recipes you’ve made and succeeded with already. Keep it simple. Use paper products.  Very nice ones are available, even at the dollar stores. And don’t sweat the small stuff and obsess over everything. No one cares if your house isn’t perfectly clean or the plates don’t match the napkins, etc.  Make it people-focused and it will be a lot more fun and less stressful.
Be a Uni-Tasker.  Really focus on and enjoy each task instead of multi-tasking; get the thoughts of your other tasks out of your head. When you focus on the task at hand, such as decorating your house, doing some cooking, etc., you allow yourself to enjoy it more and you are actually giving yourself a mental re-charge.
*  Be sure to include laughter in your day. Whatever it is that “cracks you up”, don’t neglect it.  Laughing is a form of therapy because it reduces the stress hormones, which, in turn, gives your immune system a boost. There are many websites with research results, how to use laughter as therapy, and the people involved in this as a treatment.
If you’re still having trouble reducing your stress and anxiety, and are having trouble sleeping, Ford’s can help.  https://www.fordrx.com/compounding/adrenal-therapy   https://www.fordrx.com/wellness-products/stress-anxiety-insomnia
It’s best to stop by to pick up and complete a stress questionnaire or call us at (506) 853-0830 to have one mailed or emailed to you. One of our knowledgeable pharmacists can then recommend the appropriate supplements for your unique situation. If you’d prefer a detailed consult with Dr. Peter Ford, Dr. Taylor White, or our nurse, Sharon Rose-Couturier, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on the contact page of our website: http:www.fordrx.com/contact  or call our receptionist Cheryl Downing at 506-384-5236 or toll-free: (888) 644-3673 to schedule an appointment. And, as always, feel free to contact us for more information or references on the above subject matter.

Finally, be sure to make time for just you. This is ALWAYS, NOT just at holiday time. It's a priority. Tell the family you're in time out for half an hour if needed. Now what to do during your time out…

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