The holiday season is supposed to be about family and friends, joy, love and happiness; it’s supposed to be about celebrating the season and remembering times gone by. However, too often the holiday season is rife with an increase in crime, marital distress, homicides and suicides. This disturbing fact is also accompanied by the fact that many people gain a large amount of weight from thanksgiving to New Years.
The two cannot be mutually exclusive. There are many studies that have shown a high correlation to obesity and worsening mental health. And what’s worse is that those with serious mental health conditions die on average 25 years earlier than their peers. The combination of these factors should make healthy choices a priority during the holidays. However, that is rarely the case.
People often feel that if they cannot be glutinous during the holidays, they are “missing out.” In fact this couldn’t be further from the truth. Over-eating, and especially the over consumption of surgery and fatty foods not only causes an increase likelihood for cardiovascular diseases and diabetes, but can also lead to worsening of mental health problems such as depression, anxiety and psychosis. This worsening of these mental health conditions is probably one of the major reasons for some of the tragedies that occur during the holiday season.
So, what to do about it? Fortunately, if you have a support structure and a coach that keeps you working toward your health goals, you can prevent not only the typical weight gain that occurs during the holidays, but also the mental health problems that follow. You can be the person that gets healthier before New Year’s Day! You can be the person that loses 20 pounds between now and January while those around you are gaining fat and becoming more and more miserable and unhealthy. “Fat and happy” is temporary, and unfortunately it is too often replaced by fat and sick! Don’t let the holidays be the reason that you gain fat and lose health, let them be the motivation you need to achieve your health goals in the New Year and START TODAY!
If you want to learn how you can lose weight and get healthy and how that weight loss can help your overall mental and physical health, please attend one of our complimentary nutrition lectures that are offered here at Benchmark Medical Group. These classes are held on Saturday morning from 9-10 and Tuesday nights from 6:30-7:30. The classes are always free and we are centrally located between Fort Collins, Loveland, and Greeley. Call to see if we have availability.
Make this the best holiday season ever by making your health your number one priority! Don’t delay, start getting healthy today!
Dr. Jason W. Haas