three important ingredients in the formula of a quality life
It is the time of year when we are gathering with friends and family for different festivities intended to be full of fun, however they sometimes lead us to stress simultaneously. Stress is different for each person, but for everyone it can wreak havoc on your body, perceivable or not. It is difficult to define for this reason.  Cortisol is a stress hormone secreted by your adrenal glands that sit on top of your kidneys and is responsible for a myriad of functions in your body. This can work for you or also against you, if not properly regulated. The effects of stress can be vast, 50 common signs and symptoms have been attributed to it and listed on http://www.stress.org/topic-effects.htm .
Here are 3 things to take into account as you frolic:
1. You become who you are around: Are you spending time with people who are in good or poor health? Do they take care of themselves, such as eat healthy and exercise? There is a saying out there that you become the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. Take a few minutes to ponder this and write down what you want to become and who in your circle of influence has those attributes that you can emulate.
2. Family Fitness: Turn the flab into firm with family or friends by doing a jog before a big feast. Or, get a glow going in any form of fitness that the group enjoys, perhaps even dancing to holiday music. Have you heard that saying that a family that plays together stays together? Now more than ever is this important as obesity rates are on the rise and having a greater impact in children and adolescents with 17% of the U.S. being in this category. 
3. Charm and Chuckle: Being charming, is not just for princes! When we compliment or give other gifts in emotional or material form, like doing a “good deed”, we in turn receive in countless ways in our mind, body, and spirit.  Tell your mom, sister, cousin or wife that she is beautiful, or conversely for the males that they are handsome. Being light hearted (less stress) can lead to better heart health, and heart disease is still the number one killer in the U.S., so we all need to protect our hearts.  Last, but not least, put in a good movie, or tell some jokes for some laughter, as it is still referred to as the best medicine. 
 h ttp://www.stress.org/Definition_of_stress.htm
 ht tp://www.cdc.gov/obesity/childhood/data.html
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