Have a Stress-Free Labor Day

September 3, 2010
Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Award-winning nutritionist and New York Times bestselling author.

dv1050051Enjoy some of my favorite easy recipes for summer’s last holiday weekend.

Whether you’re vacationing over Labor Day or fleeing hurricane Earl, make sure your last summer getaway is as free of stress as possible.

Stormy seas aren’t the only concern for beach goers. Poor water quality—in our ocean, rivers, and lakes—can lead to GI distress, as well as ear and respiratory infections. West Coast beaches have had shark alerts, parasites often infest fresh water, and flying Asian carp can put a damper on Great Lakes swimming.

No matter where you’re spending the weekend, Labor Day should be a time to relax. That’s not always easy, though, when one in four of us describe our jobs as stressful. Only half of us feel satisfied at work, according to a new Gallup poll. And, of course, those stats describe stress of Americans lucky enough to have jobs—being out of work creates even greater emotional strain!

Job stress is linked to everything from anxiety and cardiovascular disease to depression and insomnia, a study in Biopsychosocial Medicine shows. As more women break through the glass ceiling, Danish research finds that they’re 50% more likely to develop heart disease.

Chronic job stress combined with a lack of physical activity also leads to being overweight and obese, impacting 68% of American adults today. In a recent issue of Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, epidemiologist Diana Fernandez, MD, MPH, PhD, links high-pressure jobs with fatigue and metabolic syndrome, as well as weight gain.

Dr. Ann Louise’s Take:

Although it may seem ironic, Labor Day (more than any other holiday) represents the last “official” weekend of summer. Whether you’re overworked or looking for work, please take time this weekend to unwind.

Treat yourself to a massage or go for a walk in the country. Take some calming “Whisper Breaths,” inhaling slowly and deeply through the nose and down your throat, exhaling with an “ahhh” sound against the back of your throat. Keep your breath even and regulated for the best effect.

Relax with friends, but go easy with alcohol. For stress-free Labor Day gatherings, try some of my favorite recipes. Not only are they easy to prepare, but the first recipe uses ingredients you’re likely to find on your pantry shelves—just in case hurricane-force winds knock out your power.

Artichoke and Hearts of Palm Salad
A yummy detox treat—serves 4

1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
1 (14- ounce) can hearts of palm, rinsed and drained
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ cup Flaxseed Oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup minced fresh parsley
Cayenne to taste

In a medium-sized bowl, toss all the ingredients, allowing the flavors to blend before serving. (If you have power, refrigerate for 1 hour.)

Quick ‘n’ E-Z Spicy Shrimp
This sassy shrimp complements a medley of summer veggies or can top tossed greens—serves 4

Juice of 2 limes
2 cloves garlic, chopped
½ teaspoon ground cumin
Seaweed Gomasio to taste

1¼ pounds medium raw shrimp, peeled with tails left on
Olive oil spray

Combine all the marinade ingredients in a large baking dish. Add the shrimp; toss to coat. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Lightly coat a broiler pan with a few spritzes of olive oil spray. Broil the shrimp for approximately 3 minutes or until just pink, occasionally basting with the marinade. Do not overcook. Discard any leftover marinade.

Whether you’re vacationing over Labor Day or looking for healthy foods to pack in your storm kit/”to go bag,” stock up on seasonal fresh fruits—apples, cherries, grapes, pears, and plums.

Fat Flush for Life

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Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS, is an award-winning New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty books including The Fat Flush Plan series and her latest book, Radical Metabolism. She’s been rewriting the rules of nutrition for more than 40 years and is internationally recognized as a pioneer in the field of diet, detox and women’s health issues. 

For a FREE daily dose of tips and strategies for maintaining healthy weight, conquering insomnia, and much more…check out my Radical Health Tips.

I’d like to meet and greet you on my Facebook groups, so won’t you check us out at the Radical Metabolism RevolutionFat Flush Nation, or my Inner Circle!


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