(ARA) - As a bride-to-be, you invest huge amounts of time, energy and money to make your big day unforgettable. Unfortunately, all of the stress associated with planning a wedding can take its toll, and you may neglect your own well-being in the chaos. Inadequate sleep, poor diet and high levels of stress can leave you feeling and looking less than fabulous, but with a few healthy and sustainable adjustments, you can look forward to your walk down the aisle.
Pressure to look perfect in your wedding photos may lead you to fad diets that can leave you starving and irritable, not to mention pallid and worn down. Instead of restrictive dieting, celebrity nutritionist and author Kimberly Snyder says eating the right foods will result in weight loss, as well as improve the look of skin, hair and nails. In "The Beauty Detox Solution," Snyder encourages a plant-based diet that draws beautifying nutrients from completely natural sources. Green smoothies are a great way to incorporate more fruits and vegetables on the go, Snyder says, and she encourages all her clients to drink them.
"Green smoothies are absolutely one of the easiest ways to get the nutrition your body needs to be healthy and beautiful," Snyder says. "For my Glowing Green Smoothie, just toss the whole food ingredients into a Vitamix machine - it's the only blender I use - and in seconds you have a nutrient-packed drink that will keep you energized and glowing. Busy brides-to-be will appreciate how quick and easy these are to make, and they'll love how green smoothies make them look and feel."
From venue visits to cake tastings to bridal showers, it might seem like there isn't enough time to get all your wedding planning done. However, skimping on sleep can have serious physical and mental consequences. Getting enough rest so that you can get through your seemingly never-ending list can be difficult, but it's vital to help you look and feel your best. For better, more restful sleep, try to stick to a bedtime routine at the same time every night. Try not to eat or drink within an hour of going to sleep, and avoid electronic screens for 30 minutes before bed. You might enjoy a light activity - such as reading a book - directly before going to sleep to help clear your mind. Lastly, ensure that you continue to make sleep a priority, even as the special day nears.
A wedding is a great motivator when it comes to working out, and perhaps you have already joined a gym or invested in a personal trainer to get in shape for the occasion. Even if you aren't worried about losing weight, exercise can do great things for busy brides-to-be. Snyder, an experienced yogi who has practiced around the world, encourages her clients and readers to explore yoga for better mental and physical health.
"Exercise releases stress-fighting hormones, and yoga in particular can be a rejuvenating escape from the day's hectic happenings, no matter how new you are to the practice," Snyder says. "By combining strength-building poses and attention to inner self, you can both tone your muscles and achieve mental bliss. Yoga is a great way to get fit and stay focused so you can walk down the aisle looking serene and stunning."
Unbridled mental stress can quickly lead to physical consequences, and you don't want to look haggard or tired on your special day. Physical activity, whether it's a long run, exercise class, or short jog around the block, releases hormones that will boost your mood for hours. And don't underestimate the power of the senses: lighting stress-relief aromatherapy candles, soaking in a warm bath, and even treating yourself to a massage can help you relax as the wedding day approaches.
As you plan every detail of your wedding, remember to spend time on your own health and happiness. By paying attention to your physical and mental well-being throughout the planning process, you're sure to be ready and radiant for your big day.