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Stress and food…

This time of year stress is the number one mental health complaint in the United States.  Suicide rates are highest.  Domestic abuse rates are up.  Even hospital admissions, unrelated to attempted suicide, are increased.  Then there is the weight gain issue we’re all familure with during the holidays. 

The usual holiday fare consists of cookies, caked, pies, gravies, potatoes, more cookies, candies, and maybe if there is room, more candies and cookies.  All those simple carbohydrates, that add the additional ten to twenty pounds, contribute an unnoticed physical stressor to the body.  This additional physical stress takes a roll on a person’s mental capacity and they’re ability to handle stress.  Hence me starting this post talking about mental health.

Food plays a major role in the holiday festivities as well as our mental health.  There are ways to combat both the food related stress as well as the additional weight. 

First off, limit the sweets.  I know there are just so many, but try.  While you’re at it cut down on the alcohol.  Drink at least as much water as you do things like, beer, wine, liquor, and soft drinks.  Yes, even soft drinks.  Next go easy on the breads and potatoes.  Even while grain bread turns quickly into simple sugars within the digestive system.  So like candies and cookies, they need to be limited.

Do eat fresh vegies though.  I have yet to be at a holiday party that doesn’t include a lonely veggie tray.  Also lean meat is a good bet.  They will fill you up so you’re less likely to over indulge in the rest.

And yes I’m right there with you all.  I have to work at not eating all those goodies.  I have stress during the holidays.  This year especially.  See my mother is dying.  Largely unresponsive.  It’s only a matter of time.  And it’s the holidays.

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