Surviving the silly season

Here we are again, another year hurtling quickly into the pages of history.

A stroll through any store will reveal that the festive season is nearly upon us. The Christmas decorations are up, the carols are playing and finding a parking spot in the local shopping centre is likened to playing a game of "Where's Wally"

It is often a time spent reminiscing about our successes, dreams, highs and lows of the past year. A time that plays host to an array of social engagements with a focus upon eating, drinking, relaxing and merry making. But amidst all the cheer, something sinister is lurking...

"Enter the Silly Season"

A time when diets and health regimes go out the window, a time when gorging becomes a socially acceptable norm for the month of December, a time to let your hair down, drink cocktails and sing bad karaoke at the office Christmas party until 2am". The aftermath of the Silly season or Silly Season Syndrome (SSS) can often be felt well into the next day and for the some even into the next year.

Symptoms of excess may include:

  • Pounding headaches
  • Dry mouth
  • Dizziness
  • Mysterious expanding waistline or weight gain.
  • Irritability or teariness.
  • Nausea, vomiting, bloating and flatulence.
  • Inappropriate food cravings such as for McDonalds, Baskin robbins or the dreaded Seven Eleven hot dog.
  • Short term memory loss.
  • Fatigue.
  • Dwindled bank account balance.
  • Post alcohol remorse.
First consider the following....
  • A standard 120ml wine = 380KJ
  • A stubbie of full strength beer = 590KJ
  • A 30ML shot of spirits = 280KJ
  • A vodka UDL can = 1045KJ [1]

But never fear, there are ways in which you can avoid SSS, look after your health and still enjoy this years Christmas season.

  1. Embrace alcohol alternatives. Well, this is sometimes easier said than done but is the sure fire way to avoid a hangover. Consider sparkling apple or grape juice as an alternative.
  2. Never drink on an empty stomach. Always make a point of eating a small meal before going out.
  3. Make the first drink at a social function or party a non-alcoholic drink, e.g. sparkling apple juice or soda water. This helps to quench your thirst thus discouraging you from over doing it with the champers and beer.
  4. Water down your drinks. Especially in these hotter months a wine spritzer or beer shandy helps ensure you stay hydrated whilst consuming less alcohol.
  5. Dress up your drinks. Throw a small handful of blueberries into your glass of champers or white white. These berries are bursting with antioxidants that help negate metabolic stress and hangovers.
  6. Take a comprehensive B vitamin and antioxidant formula. This is best taken with the small meal before a drinking session and before going to bed. B vitamins help metabolise alcohol.
  7. Drink a glass of water between drinks and before going to bed. The body considers alcohol a poison and requires adequate amounts of water and certain nutrients to metabolise alcohol properly [2]
  8. Aim to be in bed before 12am. Going to bed after this time may interfere with the circadian rhythm or body clock. Going to bed after this time will inevitably leaving you feeling tired no matter how much you sleep in.
  9. Wipe the cob webs off your joggers and exercise equipment. Even 30 minutes of gentle exercise each day such as walking can help boost your mood and burn some of those extra Kilojoules.
  10. Seek the aid of a naturopath or other health professional for advice upon how to manage this years silly season. You'll be amazed at the simple yet effective lifestyle strategies that can help you be at your best this Christmas.

From the team at Health & Wellness Australia we would like to wish all our loyal clients a very safe and merry Christmas and happy new year!

References: [1] [2]
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