DEC 23, 2018 05:30 PM PST

Happy holidays?

It's great to get into the holiday spirit, but there's no way around it: some things about the holidays are just not healthy - for us or for the planet. 

Did you know that between Thanksgiving and New Year's, people in the US throw away 25% more trash than during the rest of the year? And in the UK, people use enough wrapping paper to go around the circumference of the Earth nine whole times! Not to mention all of the consumerism that the holidays bring - I mean, do the kids really need all those toys (or do you really need all those new sweaters?)?

But the holidays can be hard on our bodies as well as on the planet. Heart specialists call this happy time of year the Merry Christmas Coronary or Happy New Year Heart Attack because there are consistently one third more coronary deaths recorded in December and January than throughout the rest of the year. The reasons for these fatalities are likely related to unhealthy eating, excessive alcohol intake and high levels of stress. (Now, that doesn't sound like a family gathering at all, does it?) In fact, weight gain and DUIs also increase during the holly jolly season. High expectations to enjoy one's self as well as a heightened sense of loss from missing loved ones, not to mention the few hours of sunlight that the Northern hemisphere receives, can all put excessive pressure on the holiday season too, making it a somewhat stressful time. 

So, bottom line? Don't stress about the holidays - just remember it's all about spreading kindness and gratitude in whatever ways you can. 

About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
You May Also Like
FEB 08, 2019
Videos
FEB 08, 2019
Chronic Inflammation Permanently Alters Gut Cells
Gluten-free food may seem like just a fad, but it's essential for people with celiac disease....
FEB 12, 2019
Plants & Animals
FEB 12, 2019
Some Animals Reproduce in Stranger Ways Than Most Can Imagine
Reproduction is a normal part of life, and while sex might seem like a quick and straightforward process for humans, that’s not always the case in th...
FEB 14, 2019
Cannabis Sciences
FEB 14, 2019
More Evidence That Teen Marijuana Use Leads to Depression
There is a growing consensus among scientists that adolescents who use marijuana are at risk for developing mood disorders when they are older....
FEB 17, 2019
Videos
FEB 17, 2019
How did you celebrate World Pangolin Day?
World Pangolin Day is celebrated the third Saturday of February every year in order to bring awareness to the world of this lovely little scaly anteater - ...
MAR 11, 2019
Chemistry & Physics
MAR 11, 2019
When Will We Have Truly Wireless Charging?
If you’re familiar with smartphones and smartwatches, then you probably also know about Qi wireless charging; it’s mostly a form of inductive c...
MAR 11, 2019
Plants & Animals
MAR 11, 2019
Meet The Singing Mice Of The Cloud Forests
    Alston's brown mice, also called Alston's singing mice are capable of singing an operatic duet that scientists believe may offer clue...
Loading Comments...