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Can Mickey and Minnie Mouse Affect Your Thyroid Health?

We just went on a Disney Cruise, and so I couldn’t resist using the headline above. Although there was plenty of junk food on the Disney Cruise, I did try to eat a good amount of whole foods, and brought some healthy snacks onto the ship. I’d be lying if I told you that I didn’t indulge every now and then, and probably more than I should have, and so I’m sure I can benefit from a prolonged liver detoxification!

Of course this time of the year many people will be ready to follow a detoxification program.  Between Thanksgiving and the holiday season, many people eat way too many “bad foods”.  I won’t go into great detail about this, and I actually discussed this in a previous blog post entitled “The Challenge of Eating a Healthy Thyroid Diet During The Holidays [1]“.  Now that the holiday season is just about over I don’t know how much the information in that blog post will benefit you, but perhaps you can save it for next year.

Going on a vacation can be fun, but at the same time it can take its toll on your thyroid health.  First of all, it is more challenging to control the food you eat.  The key is trying to plan ahead, although it still can be challenging. 

For the last blog post of 2013 I figured I’d list 10 things you need to do in order to have a “healthy” vacation.  Following these tips will make it easier to eat a healthy diet, manage your stress, and minimize your exposure to toxins while traveling.

1. Whatever you do, don’t go on a cruise. Is a cruise relaxing?  Very much so.  But you really do need to have a lot of willpower to avoid all of the “free” junk food.  Of course it’s not free, as it’s part of the fee you pay for the cruise, but for those who have never been on a cruise there is food EVERYWHERE!  With that being said we’re already planning our next cruise.  I will say that while there is plenty of junk food available, there is also plenty of whole foods to choose from.

2. If traveling during the holidays, visit a place that nobody else visits during this time. For example, you can visit Idaho or North Dakota (for those reading this who live in these states, I’m not suggesting that they aren’t nice places to live or visit, but they aren’t places which typically draw large crowds during the holiday season).

3. If you have children, consider sending them on vacation while you stay home. Better yet, drop them off at a friend’s or relative’s house and go on vacation without them.  Don’t get me wrong, as I love my children, and this vacation wouldn’t be the same without them.  But driving eight hours with two young children from Charlotte to Orlando and then back to Charlotte can be very stressful at times.  And of course we’ll be driving another eight hours back to Charlotte in a few days.

4. Camp out instead of staying in a hotel. There are way too many toxins in a hotel room.  Just the toxins in the carpet alone is reason enough not to stay at a hotel.  Another option is to call around and find a hotel that has hardwood floors.  Just make sure they’re natural hardwood floors.

5. If you insist on staying at a hotel, bring along an air purifier.  This of course won’t help completely with the toxins, but having an air purification system will help to minimize your exposure to toxins while you’re in the hotel room.

6. Make sure to bring all of your own food and never eat out. To make things easier, when planning your vacation I would try to make sure you’re within driving distance of a health food store.  This way you can purchase your own food throughout the vacation.  It’s also a good idea to stay at a place where they have an oven so you can cook healthy meals every day.

7. Block out at least one hour each day to meditate. Even though you’re on vacation you ideally want to do more than one hour, as two or three would be even better.  I would recommend meditating one hour in the morning, one hour in the afternoon, and one hour right before going to bed.

8. Don’t forget to exercise while on vacation. I would recommend to exercise every other day.  Do at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise, and some light weightlifting as well.

9. Go to bed every night by 9pm. Most people who go on vacation stay up past their bedtime.  But since you’re trying to have a healthy vacation you want to go to sleep earlier.  I would try to get at least ten hours of sleep each night.

10. Heck…life is short, so forget all of the advice I just gave! Even though I want to encourage you to have a healthy vacation, you also need to enjoy your vacation.  This doesn’t mean you should eat loads of junk food all of the time while on vacation.  Eat well most of the time and indulge every now and then, try to manage your stress, and do what you can to minimize your exposure to toxins.  And make sure you do a thorough liver detoxification once you’re back home.

Okay, so this post wasn’t quite as humorous as David Letterman’s top ten list, but I tried my best.  Either way, I’d like to thank you for reading my articles and blog posts, and I look forward to sharing more valuable information with you in 2014.