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Health

60-Second Cures for Common Holiday Stressors

Stay healthy this holiday season.

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Experiencing soreness, fatigue, and stress as the holidays are approaching? If so, you know that not feeling healthy during this time of the year makes tasks like wrapping gifts and planning family gatherings difficult. The good news is, there are simple ways to restore your health so you can get back into the festive spirit. Plus, many natural remedies for wellness can be done in as little as one minute. To sail through the holiday season feeling calm, upbeat, and energized, tap into the healing powers of these four quick health tips. 

Fuzzy socks help deepen sleep.

Cooler weather makes this a perfect time of year to don warm, snuggly socks. And if you slip on a pair at bedtime, you’ll enjoy deeper sleep. Researchers reporting in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology found that just keeping toes toasty helped folks drift off faster, sleep 32 minutes longer and reduce their risk of restless sleep by up to 50 percent. The sensation of cozy feet switches on brain nerves called warm-sensitive neurons that usher in deep, sound sleep.

A holiday nibble stops sniffles.

Setting out a pretty bowl of nuts is a wonderful holiday tradition — and a delicious way to stay healthy too! Turns out nibbling on a handful of any type of nuts daily cuts your risk of winter illness in half. And if you do catch a bug, it reduces your odds of experiencing severe symptoms (even if you develop COVID-19) by as much as 68 percent, suggests a study published in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition. Credit nuts’ rich stores of magnesium, a potent mineral that strengthens airways, energizes virus-killing T cells and tamps down the immune system’s release of pain-triggering proteins known as inflammatory cytokines.

Giving thanks eliminates stress.

Simply pausing to take a few seconds before each meal to think about someone or something that you’re grateful for can cut edginess, irritability and blah moods by as much as 80 percent. That’s the word from researchers at the University of California, Davis, who say even quick gratitude breaks or prayers relax tense muscles, lower blood pressure and dial down stress-hormone release.

A lavender rub eases soreness.

If extra time spent on your feet has left you stiff and achy, help is here. Massaging tender spots with a few drops of lavender essential oil mixed into lotion can provide relief in as little as one minute. And if you make it a daily habit, you’ll quash soreness as effectively as a painkiller, a study out of Brazil reveals. Lavender’s linalool acts as a natural anti-inflammatory and painkiller.

This content is not a substitute for professional medical advice or diagnosis. Always consult your physician before pursuing any treatment plan.

A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, Woman’s World.

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