Festive Excess

Whilst Christmas is often a fun and exciting time, it can also be hectic, stressful and encourage actions that may not be best for your mental and physical wellbeing. It can be a season of heightened emotions, expectations and excess making it easy to become overwhelmed and forget about taking care of ourselves. 

Whilst no one wants to be the food police at Christmas (and frankly, no one is really that interested in messages of moderation right about now), it is worth remembering that Christmas and New Year are the highest risk days of the year for heart attacks with many of us eating roughly three to four times more food than we actually need during the festive season. Not only will many of us experience an increase in waist size, our blood pressure can also increase, and so can our blood sugar levels. 

Whereas eating too much will simply harm your own health and waistline, excess alcohol can ruin the lives of others. Assaults – many fuelled by alcohol – and drink driving both rise over Christmas and New Year too. There is also a rise in alcohol poisoning.

Tis the season’

The festive season is meant to be a time of good cheer, relaxation, and celebration, but for many, Christmas is the most stressful time of the year with a number of elements, which can, and probably do, lead to an increase in stress, rather than the opposite. 

Having a Christmas survival guide and preparing yourself for the holiday season can be beneficial.

Here are our 3 top tips to help with the survival of the festive season

  • Christmas Dinner – If you have had a small lapse of judgement and volunteered yourself (or been nominated) to host Christmas dinner, then quickly follow up your kind gesture by delegating different food items to those attending, there’s no shame in sharing the responsibilities, after all, many hands make light work!
  • Christmas Presence – Being present and reaching out to those close to you is far more important than supplying material gifts. Whilst we often enjoy showing others that we care with thoughtful and sometimes expensive presents, it is important to remember that there will never be any greater gift than your time. This is something to consider before raking up the costs this holiday.
  • Christmas Spirit – While most of us enjoy a tipple at Christmas, alcohol should be consumed in moderation. Having too much to drink could fuel already heightened emotions and lead to disputes, relaxed inhibitions and damage relationships. You should also be mindful if you plan to drink alongside colleagues over the festive period, it is very easy to forget and behave inappropriately, which could make returning to work uncomfortable and awkward. 

What are the signs of a heart attack?

  • Chest pain that lasts for at least ten minutes (coming on suddenly or slowly)
  • Chest pain can spread to the neck, throat, jaw, shoulders, back, arms and hands
  • Some do not get any chest pain only discomfort in upper parts of the body
  • Choking feeling in the throat
  • Arms may feel heavy
  • Breathlessness, nausea or vomiting
  • Cold sweat, light headedness

If you experience any of the above symptoms then you should contact your emergency doctor immediately,  or alternatively dial 999 and request  an ambulance.