Some things never change
Even though Christmas is looking pretty different this year—our collective need to celebrate is still very much there. So, although we won’t be squished together at sweaty office parties—the season of twinkly lights, pressure, to-do lists, family arguments, and festive overindulgence is most definitely upon us.
Here’s how to take care of your brain over the next few weeks:
1. Feeling the effects of a late night watching Home Alone or raving on Zoom? A cheeky 10-minute nap can do wonders for your mood and memory.
2. One of our better known customers, Alain de Botton suggests thinking of your family as friends instead—and we can’t help but think it sounds like a pretty great energy to descend on your loved ones with.
(In friendships), “we are patient, encouraging, tolerant, funny and most of all, kind. We expect a little less and therefore, by extension, forgive an infinite amount more.”
3. With festive pressures on top of the extra dollop of anxiety we’re all feeling at the minute—it’s extra-important to make sure you make time for a moment of calm during the day in December, (before you hit the sherry).
This sneaky little hack from meditation expert Natalia Bojanic can be completed in less than 5 minutes. (Even if you’re on the loo.)
Breathe IN and silently say to yourself: I
Breathe OUT and silently say to yourself: AM
Breathe IN and silently say to yourself: HERE
Breathe OUT and silently say to yourself: NOW
Repeat for four rounds.
4. An upswing in booze, mince pies, and significantly fewer people to share the Quality Street with can all take a toll on your digestive health—and, due to the gut-brain axis, that in turn can impact your behaviour and brain function.
To keep on top of your gut health, Dr Megan Rossi suggests we consume at least 30 different plant-based foods per week (including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds). It sounds like loads, but it’s easier than you think, promise—especially when you consider a morning smoothie normally has at least five varieties, and the amount of toppings you can pile on your porridge.
5. Did you know that high stress levels—like those involved with trying to finish everything you need to accomplish at work before switching off for the holidays, or frantically tracking down very specific gifts without resorting to amazon—can rinse your nutrient levels? According to our Head of Nutritional Research Sophie Medlin, constantly high levels of stress use up our vitamin stores more quickly than usual, resulting in symptoms like lethargy, low mood and brain fog. (Or, of course, the Smart Supplement has everything you need in 2 capsules a day.)