#29 How To Keep Healthy During the Silly Season
The Holistic Nutritionists Podcast
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In Episode 29 of The Holistic Nutritionists Podcast, Natalie Douglas and Kate Callaghan discuss how to stay healthy during the silly season and how to not miss out on something you really enjoy.
- Tips on hosting and attending parties/social gatherings
- Best ways to enjoy alcohol and minimise its detrimental side effects using smart choices, strategies and specific supplements
- Dealing with anxiety around social gatherings
- Maintaining gut health through the party season
Natalie K. Douglas 0:00
Hello and welcome to the holistic nutritionist podcast. My name is Natalie Burke, holistic dietitian and nutritionist from health by Whole Foods calm today you and with me as always, I have Kate Callahan, the holistic nutritionist from the holistic nutritionist calm, Kate, how are you going?
Kate Callaghan 0:17
I’m good. Thanks, Matt. How are you?
Natalie K. Douglas 0:18
I’m pretty good.
Kate Callaghan 0:20
How’s little Ed? He’s good. He’s right here. You might hear him grunting away. He may fall again. We’re lucky.
Natalie K. Douglas 0:27
Yeah, we like a bit of face to the podcast.
Kate Callaghan 0:33
How funny. All right. Well,
Natalie K. Douglas 0:35
I think we might jump straight into your before we do. Sorry, do you have any updates or anything you want to let people know?
Kate Callaghan 0:42
Oh, I am coming back to work in two weeks.
Natalie K. Douglas 0:46
Oh, exciting. So does that mean? Like a coming back just part time and taking new clients on? Are you going to run another course for Ha ha, what’s the plan? A bit
Kate Callaghan 0:57
of everything? Well, I say a bit of everything. But it’s kind of the timing. I will be doing a few hours a couple times a week. Yeah. Um, so I will see maybe a couple of new clients, but also following up old clients and then planning to do another HJ coolest in February.
Natalie K. Douglas 1:15
Kate Callaghan 1:17
I was thinking to do it over Christmas. But Aaron said that was affiliate ID because I thought it would be a good idea because you need to eat all the food when you cut at Christmas, who doesn’t love that?
Natalie K. Douglas 1:28
That’s true. This is pretty easy time to decide. Everyone’s doing it. So you just feel normal.
Kate Callaghan 1:34
That’s what I thought that he said. Okay. Bry
Natalie K. Douglas 1:38
as very sensible at the I feel like everyone else would benefit, but you probably wouldn’t benefit from that. Yeah.
That’s okay. And if people want to actually looking for that is like, can they register yet? Or can they just register the interest on your website?
Kate Callaghan 1:56
Yeah, if they shoot me an email, then I’ll let them know.
Natalie K. Douglas 1:58
Okay, cool. All right. Well, they everybody, what’s new with you? I’m not too much. I’m just wrapping up kind of for the end of the year, just a few more weeks of clients, and then it it quietens down a bit because everyone’s a bit like, oh, come and see you in the new year. And so I’m just kind of frantically getting through that and making sure all my clients are looked after over Christmas. And then in the new year, I’ve definitely got some plans to roll out some more meal planning packages have been quite popular towards the end of the year, and I expect them to be probably a good option for people going forward into the new year, because everyone kind of feels like they need a bit of a reset. And sometimes it’s good to have someone there to help you set realistic goals and find your way. So that’s my kind of plan. So I’ll let everyone know when they’re available for purchase as well. So I think we will jump into the podcast. So today guys, we’re actually going to be chatting about how to actually survive, season and still maintain your health because I think that it’s a time when definitely there’s increased social occasions, and there’s increased parties and you know, family coming to town or friends coming to town and to people even say town these days anyway, people coming to visit you. And I think it’s a good idea to have a bit of a game plan in the back of your head so that you don’t go into it, feeling unprepared and overwhelmed with all the things that come up. I know for me personally, I often kind of plan ahead in during the Christmas period, so that I know when I’ve got kind of social gatherings coming up. And it helps to kind of set some goals around that in terms of health. But I think that will jump straight into just kind of navigating that time. So first up, my first tip Kate would probably be that when it does start to come to a time when there are a lot have Christmas parties on and people wanting to catch up to celebrate, there are a few things that I always recommend people do. So if it’s if it’s a time where you’re going to someone’s house, for a barbecue or for a gathering in that way, I always recommend people to actually bring a dish themselves. And that way you know that you’ve got a healthy option. And you’re not you don’t have to have that anxiety or worry that there’s going to be nothing that you can eat. So I think that that’s a really good idea. If you’re actually going somewhere else to eat as you’re going to a restaurant or a cafe, then there’s nothing wrong or nothing offensive about being a bit assertive. And suggesting somewhere to eat where you know, you can choose a healthy option, or at least something that you know, is real food. So as you know, instead of going to, you know, a pizza and pasta restaurant where there’s limited choice of things that are quite nutrient dense, you could choose somewhere else where there might still be options for other people who don’t choose to eat as nutrient dense as you or as healthy as you but you’ve still got those options there. And I think that can be a really good strategy because there’s nothing worse than feeling like you’re in a situation where you don’t want to be rude. But you also really don’t want to eat x food because it makes you feel quite unwell. So I think that that’s a good a good plan in that way. Is there any tips or tricks or strategies besides those that you particularly use around that kind of situation, Kate?
Kate Callaghan 5:38
And no, I think they are all good tips. net, right, it was just cracking up quite a bit there. So if I sound funny, it’s because I’m bouncing him around. So good, will forgive you. I would say try not to turn up to parties really hungry. big truck in the background and so at eight good quality throughout the day and fill up on lots of protein good quality fats throughout the day. So you know going to these parties starving. And because if you get this darling then you’re going to eat all the patty pies and sausage rolls and cake cake pops up for success and even if you want to if you do have, you know health goals that you want to stay on track with through the silly season, then even eat a small dinner before you go or even a regular sized you know, serving you don’t actually eat any of the food, especially if you know that you don’t feel good. If you eat that kind of food. I think it’s okay to eat in moderation if you feel okay. But if you don’t feel good have any party presence or strolls. Like if you have any autoimmune conditions. Or as I said you do have any specific health goals have a good quality dinner before you go?
Natalie K. Douglas 6:47
Yeah, I agree. And I don’t think that there’s anything wrong with doing that. And you know, you can just explain to people that that’s what you’re doing. And that’s one way around it. So right. Yeah, I think that’s a good tip. So we can how, how long before kind of heading out to dinner or to wherever they going? would you suggest having a meal like before to prevent them being hungry?
Kate Callaghan 7:11
Well, if you weren’t spanks, maybe a couple of days prior to getting getting but not
Natalie K. Douglas 7:21
yet, either. Great. And what about taking? What about taking snacks would you recommend anyone taking some snacks like in their bag, I often kind of recommend people to pop like a couple of like maybe sir mixed nuts or coconut flakes or something that’s easily portable, in their bag in case it comes to that situation where, you know, those kind of food starts to come out or it gets later in the night and you’re still there and you haven’t planned to be there and you are getting a bit hungry. I often tell people that that can be a good idea. And I know that’s that saved me a few times when, you know, the cakes come out. And you know, generally, it hasn’t been something that would make me feel good. And but I’m still kind of I want to be involved in the eating. So I kind of pulled out my little snack. And you know, of course there are always some people that are gonna be like, oh, what are you doing? Like, just ate the cake. But screw those people like don’t worry about it. That’s their prediction and insecurity about what you’re doing. And just, if that’s what you want to do, and that’s truly what you want to do, because that’s what makes you feel best and do it and like nah, forget about you in like 10 minutes. So it’s all good.
Kate Callaghan 8:31
Yes, I think that’s a really good strategy. I think also going into it, we do often need to keep in mind, don’t let the perfect get in the way of the good.
Natalie K. Douglas 8:41
Kate Callaghan 8:42
If you want to have a piece of cake, and it doesn’t make you feel really bad. If it doesn’t make you sick, then eat the cake and be done with it. Enjoy it. But I’m ate it slowly and enjoy the whole experience. Yeah,
Natalie K. Douglas 8:55
yeah, I agree. I mean, I think far too often, we make that decision into indulge in something like that. But we ruin that experience for ourselves by feeling so guilty. And honestly, like we’ve said that we’ve said it on the podcast before, but it’s actually better to kind of eat the wrong food with the right attitude than the right food with the wrong attitude. And I think that’s a good strategy to go with. And, you know, we’re talking to the people here that people who are constantly like not indulging in food, and they feel anxious around that we’re not talking to people who are just having that, like, we don’t want you to go out and eat cake every single time that you go out, because that’s not going to be conducive to health either. But we also don’t want you to miss out on something that you really enjoy. And that isn’t going to set you back too far. Like honestly, one
quote or I don’t want to call it a bad
meal, because it’s not one kind of less nutrient dense meal choice is not going to make or break you. If you don’t have any kind of specific health conditions or concern going on it’s it’s fine. And it’s best to just indulge and enjoy and move on. Because the the enjoyment from that will have a positive effect on your health. So it’s really important to just fully engage in the experience and then just let it go.
Kate Callaghan 10:16
Yes, I think we should put a side point, revisit our last podcast on orthorexia.
Natalie K. Douglas 10:21
Yes, yes, good side point. I’ll link to it in the show notes. But definitely revisit that one. I think probably the next thing that often comes up is around alcohol. And I often get a lot of questions about all well, what should I drink if I want to drink? And can I Are there any strategies that I can implement in order to reduce the negative effects that alcohol has on my body. And for those of you that do enjoy alcohol, and that is something that you want to include over the silly season, then definitely, there are strategies that you can use, and there are better tools places to make when it comes to alcohol. So probably some of my tips would be to try and stick to like spirits, like spirits and soda. But climate soda is obviously a classic one. And try to make sure that you stay hydrated. So for every alcoholic beverage you have, make sure you have a glass of water. The other thing that you can actually do is supplement around the time that you’re drinking and before you go to bed after night of drinking. So things like vitamin C, lap his own will glue to fire and B vitamins, alpha public acid and NSCLC staying can all be really helpful. For a few different reasons, a lot of them are helping support your own liver detoxification pathways and getting rid of that alcohol quickly. Also, a lot of like the vitamin C, the B vitamins, they often get depleted when we do drink alcohol. So replacing those can help. And a lot of those supplements can actually help with decreasing that kind of feeling of the other hangover the next day. And as can drinking water and staying hydrated because essentially, the body needs water in order to turn a toxin like our coal into an explainable byproduct, basically. So do make sure that you stay hydrated. And probably the last supplement that can be helpful is activated charcoal, particularly if you’re drinking kind of things that are a bit higher in a toxic load. So we know that be and dessert wines can be a bit higher in toxins when they are processed. So if that’s what you’re choosing to drink, then definitely including some activated charcoal could help as well. So Kate, did you have any kind of tips that you use around alcohol what or was that pretty much covered them off?
Kate Callaghan 12:59
I wish I knew about supplements when I was a heavy drinker in my college days. Instead of relying on broker and Gatorade, I didn’t know
Natalie K. Douglas 13:07
I had I I totally used to do broker as well.
Kate Callaghan 13:11
Broke again, right in New York. And plus, I was not a healthy person got it was not healthy. But it was it was fun. I don’t regret doing it. I did my life. That was fun. So I would I would agree though, some great tips net. And one of the drinks that I generally recommend and what I used to drink when I thought I was being healthy. It was one of the healthier drinks. It’s one of my friends named at the Jesus drink.
Natalie K. Douglas 13:39
Yes, sounds good to me. What’s it?
Kate Callaghan 13:44
So it’s a vodka, water. And fresh lime or fresh lemon? Yeah, right? It’s not soda water. It’s just fresh water. Okay, nice day, is after you have a few can’t actually remember if it’s vodka or if it’s straight water.
Natalie K. Douglas 14:03
That does pose a bit of a challenge.
Kate Callaghan 14:05
Yeah. So then you might end up drinking too quickly. So just keep in mind what you have maybe six of the photo water. So you know, Bubbles, alcohol, no bubbles, no doubtful.
Natalie K. Douglas 14:14
I would actually add on the flip side, if you’re not a drinker, and you prefer not to drink during that time, but you feel a lot of that pressure to drink. And I would probably say that, like I’ve been in this category before, because I don’t really like the taste of alcohol that much. So majority of the time I don’t drink but I definitely have
Kate Callaghan 14:38
felt the pressure of,
Natalie K. Douglas 14:40
of people interesting that you have a drink. And to be honest, like sometimes, telling people that I like I just don’t feel like it or I, you know, don’t like the taste like it just it just gets exhausting. So what I end up doing is getting a glass of like sparkling water and getting them to put a lack of sleep glass of wine or something in it. And people just look and think you’re drinking vodka, lemon sodas, and then they don’t question you. And when you’re a little bit strange and don’t have any filter, nothing really changes in your personality. So it’s fine for me, I can get away with it.
Kate Callaghan 15:13
We do have such a horrible drinking culture that way
Natalie K. Douglas 15:15
we do. And it like I just, it’s funny, because it’s kind of like, it’s the norm to binge drink, basically. And it makes it a lot harder. If you’re outside that, that kind of circles. So you know, we’re probably you and I are probably lucky in that we probably have more friends that have a more, I don’t know healthy relationship with with alcohol or dairy or more accepting of people not drinking, then the average person. So that can be helpful and not feeling as much peer pressure. But definitely, there’s a lot of a lot of kind of a tendency to drink a lot when you go out. And especially when it’s around this kind of still season. Everyone’s in that kind of are relaxed. Don’t worry about any rules or regulations around diet and alcohol and just kind of let go. So I definitely think it’s really important for you to establish what your goals are, what makes you feel good, and what you want to do. And if that’s to drink, then that’s fine. But if it’s not, then make sure you take some time to really set some boundaries in your own mind and have strategies about how you can actually stick to those boundaries. When those comments start rolling in about all just you know, let loose, just have one and if you want to have one, that’s fine, but if you don’t like just remember that that’s okay. And just because it’s common for people to drink a lot doesn’t mean it’s normal. So just be okay with that.
Kate Callaghan 16:47
Yeah, definitely. And on that whole having a glass of soda water with fresh lime. Another option which is really delicious. Makes you feel a bit fancy. is a glass of soda water with a drop of the dough Tara wild orange essential oil. Oh, yeah.
Natalie K. Douglas 17:03
That’s a good idea. And also, if you want you can, you know, take a little bit of kombucha that’s another option that I’ve used in the past, but just like Don’t drink too much, because you will get gassy and no one will want you at the party anyway. So that would be a tip. Yeah, my brother had like, tried computer for the first time a few weeks ago. And he’s like, oh, what sat on my cards computer Do you want some and I gave him like the bottle. And he drank like the whole bottle. And like by the end of the meal, like how sneaking in like he looks really uncomfortable. And I realized I probably didn’t warn him not to drink like the whole 300 mil bottle come through one go when he hasn’t had it before. So protein do not drink more than, you know, kind of like 100 150 meals if you haven’t been drinking it regularly before because you will start to get a bit uncomfortable. One of my friends had a later Oh my gosh. I wouldn’t know what to do with myself. That was be so uncomfortable. I’ve definitely had too much confusion before but I don’t think I’ve ever had a liter. I just can’t imagine how
Kate Callaghan 18:07
that would feel. No, no. Probiotics, kombucha probiotics? I would suggest adding to your supplements. I’m not sure if you mentioned it sorry, is I’m having a maybe double dose on a good quality probiotic around holiday time if you are drinking because alcohol does kind of obliterate gut bacteria.
Natalie K. Douglas 18:28
Yeah, definitely. I’d agree with that. I didn’t mention that one. So good. Good tip. And I was actually yeah, going to mention that it would be a good idea to kind of around these time, when you know that there are a few more foods that you wouldn’t usually eat sneaking into your diet do focus on increasing your kind of gut nourishing food. So whether that’s through fermented foods, or whether that’s using some bone broth, or some collagen or gelatin powder, just to help maintain that gut lining integrity and the microbiome, that’s always a good idea. Because we know that eating less than ideal food and having a lot of alcohol can have a significant effect on your gut. And then that can obviously impact your health in other ways. So definitely, I think that’s a thing to focus on. One other thing that I wanted to mention around social gatherings and whatnot, is also don’t feel like it always has to be purely around food like to like if you have the opportunity to control what everyone is going to do when they catch up. There’s nothing wrong with suggesting something that’s a bit more active. So going for a walk or picking some kind of like adventure activity to do or going to a park and maybe have a picnic but have a lot of activities that you can do. So here in Australia, there’s a big backyard cricket kind of theme or beach cricket. And that can be a good distraction. Because definitely when we’re just sitting around a table or a picnic crab with food, we tend to graze and mindlessly eat. And I think it’s good to have strategies to break that situation up. So I think suggesting things like that they’re a bit more active can be a really good idea as well. And then Kate, I wanted to also talk about the flip side of this in terms of talking to our listeners out there that are feeling really anxious about the silly season. So I’m talking about people like those of you who maybe have hypothermic Amen, or a under eating already or over exercising, and you’re really worried about all of the social gatherings that are coming up. And you’re kind of in that space where you might be trying to avoid them. So I think definitely going back to our orthorexia podcast is a good place for you guys. But some other things that I would suggest is to, again, try and plan ahead in terms of what your what social situations you’re going to be in. And for every kind of challenging situation that might come up. So for example, you’re going out to somewhere like for somewhere that you haven’t been before to somewhere that you haven’t been before, and you’re going to be exposed to foods that you wouldn’t usually eat, like, implement a strategy that day that makes you feel confident. So like Kate said, if, if you’re going out to, to eat somewhere new, then before you, before you go make sure that throughout the day, you’re you’ve eaten really well. And the other thing I’d say is beforehand, have a bit of a look at the menu and just choose maybe two options that you would like to eat there. And that way, when you get into that social situation, you’ve already kind of made that decision about what you’re going to eat in a calm environment. And you don’t get that rush of anxiety that happens sometimes, in that situation when the menu comes out. And you feel overwhelmed. Because I know, in the past with my eating disorder, if I was taken out to eat somewhere, and I didn’t know what was coming, I would get very, very anxious and one stepping stone in overcoming that was actually looking at the menu beforehand. And so that when I got to that situation, I wasn’t shocked. And it’s not, it’s definitely a bit of a band aid solution, because we want to get to a point where you can actually go out and not feel anxious about not knowing what’s coming. But it is definitely a step in the right direction. Because it’s really not a time to feel anxious or worried around food we really want to be able to indulge and enjoy. You know, these kind of times because social connection and play and these kinds of situations are actually really good for our health. Katie, do you have any tips that you give your HJ girls when it comes to this kind of situation?
Kate Callaghan 22:51
Yeah, you’re spot on VM, they’re not the whole social connection component in the community. I think they’re the factors of our life and our health we are often neglect and we we neglect to acknowledge how much of an impact they can have on our health and our physical, mental, emotional health. And we get so caught up in the food and the movement that we forget about this social connection that is absolutely key. And so it can be worthwhile sitting down and going, you know, you might have this occasion coming up that that you’re a little bit anxious about stressed about it, you think again, money to might not have those foods that I’m 100% comfortable with. And available to me. And so sitting down writing down, having a bit of a journal writing down, why it would be a good idea for you not to go to the social occasion. Yeah. And then also writing down all of the reasons why it would be a good idea for you to go to the social occasion.
Natalie K. Douglas 23:50
Yeah, definitely. That’s a really good strategy.
Kate Callaghan 23:54
And hopefully, there’s more more going. Yeah. I mean, catch family, friends, and it doesn’t have to it’s not just about food, it’s catching up with friends getting out. socializing, it’s Yeah, focus, focus on all those other aspects around it, not just the food, not just the carbs and the calories or the sugar.
Natalie K. Douglas 24:14
Yeah, exactly. And I think that’s it’s so important, because there is, as Kate said, its health and getting to your optimal health isn’t just about food, it is about all these other things, sleep, play, connection, exercise, you know, all these different things contribute to making you the healthiest version of you. And so don’t go into it with the mindset of going out to eat somewhere where there may be less than ideal food is like a net cost to your overall health, it’s actually a net benefit, you’re socializing, you’re engaging in connection. And, you know, there’s often a lot of laughter, you allow yourself to kind of be fully present. And there’s a lot of benefits from that, that I get to, you know, totally outweigh the tiny bit of extra sugar that you’ve had at that meal. So don’t, don’t view it as black and white. And just try and go into it with a really positive mindset and look for all the good things in what you’re about to engage in as opposed to all the negative things because that can make a huge difference. And if it helps telling a friend about how you’re feeling, then definitely do that. So someone else is aware of what you’re feeling and what you’re thinking and can really be a bit of a voice of reason, if you start to feel a bit anxious in those situations. So I think that that’s another really good idea is don’t don’t feel like you have to hide how you how you’re feeling. Because often, sometimes just a conversation with a good friend to bring you out of your own headspace is all you need in order to get over that hump of anxiety. And I think that can be helpful.
Kate Callaghan 26:00
I think it may be doing a bit of reflection as well after it. So if you do go to the social situations that in you, you do eat a food that’s not completely in your comfort zone. And journal about it often write down how it made you feel and also write down how you found that overall experience. And, you know, if, if you did feel better as a result of going or, or not? And why not? And why. So write it all out. So then you can actually look back and go, yep, I made the right decision. I actually had a really good time with my friends.
Natalie K. Douglas 26:31
Yeah, exactly. So hopefully, we’ve given you guys a lot of tips that you can go away. So we were trying to cover kind of both sides of the situation. So those of you who find it hard to pull back in this kind of silly season when all this extra food and socializing and drinking is around. but also those of you that are going into it feeling quite anxious about about that because it’s not something you want to do. So feel free. If you guys have any extra tips that we haven’t mentioned, when we post it when we post the episode on social media media, feel free to add your tips below so that you guys can help each other out as well. Whether you’re whatever side of the fence you’re on in that situation, because we’re all going through the same thing. Whether you know, you are on either side, it doesn’t matter. We’d like to hear what you guys have and what strategies you’ve used in the past as well because it’s it’s all helpful. Now, Kate, did you have anything else that you wanted to add or mentioned before we wrap up?
Kate Callaghan 27:34
I think that’s it. I think just focus on enjoyment of the holidays. Christmas is about spending time with loved ones. Not so much about just all the food and the alcohol. It’s quality time. Yes, yes. Recovery.
Natalie K. Douglas 27:47
Kate Callaghan 27:49
community. I love Christmas.
Natalie K. Douglas 27:52
And I love Christmas carols and Christmas lights and Christmas decorations. Anyway,
that’s just me. Some people like
get really grumpy when there’s Christmas carols on do you like Christmas carols?
Kate Callaghan 28:03
I love to see carols I’ve been on them. Mariah Carey’s Christmas carols oh my gosh yes
Natalie K. Douglas 28:09
god how many times I have like absolutely nailed All I want for Christmas is you
Kate Callaghan 28:16
want your brain
Natalie K. Douglas 28:19
will seriously recorded. It’s so good. Yes, we are still recording. I’m actually going to link to that song in the show notes because if anyone has not heard of which I can’t imagine anyone who has not heard that song you need to it’s
Kate Callaghan 28:34
Christmas carols you need to get it on your Spotify as well not quite as energetic but like a bit less pretty good. Yeah, it’s a
Natalie K. Douglas 28:44
good like warm like comforting playlist but the Mariah Carey one is all just like, I find it empowering. And I don’t even know why because it’s not like she’s singing about anything particularly empowering. I just really like the vibe. Anyway, we’ll start talking we’ve got Mariah Carey now
Kate Callaghan 29:02
I’m gonna put her on WeChat actually Me too.
Natalie K. Douglas 29:05
Well, I’m that we’re good on that. Alright. Alright, so guys,
we will post the episode up. Obviously, you guys will hear it Nevermind. Feel free to add comments below when we post as I said about any tips that you guys have. Also feel free to contact either of us to suggest a topic or ask a question that you want us to cover on the podcast. We’re more than happy to do that. And we will speak to you guys soon. Kate Have a lovely day.
Kate Callaghan 29:31
Thanks that oh and no need to comment on my thing. Quality.
Natalie K. Douglas 29:35
Yes, true. Very true. All right. Bye bye.
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