Agora Wellness Series: Alternative Advent


 Party season is here, and all those late nights, cocktails and not-so-healthy nibbles can really impact your health, and your productivity. So Agora has come up with its very own ‘Alternative Advent’ – a tip every day to help you survive the struggle that comes after a boozy night, and keep you happy, healthy and productive throughout December! We’ve even thrown in a couple of wellness events so you can balance out the Christmas revelling with something a bit more health-giving. Succeed, Live Well, Have Fun!



1st:  Leave a large glass of water by the bed for when you get home – it’ll help with the morning-after migraine. Dehydration also affects your brain’s ability to function – not good if you’ve got work the next day. So remember to hydrate.


2nd:  Eat bright. Brightly coloured vegetables such as beetroot and carrots contain antioxidants and folic acid which are thought to help the liver to detoxify.


3rd:  Don’t drink on an empty stomach. Having a well-balanced meal before going out – something with a combination of complex carbs, protein and healthy fats – will slow the absorption of alcohol and prevent those ravenous midnight munchies.


4th:  Try Milk Thistle. Some nutritionists advise taking up to 200mg three times a day during party season to help the liver break down alcohol.


5th: Go easy on the coffee. Caffeine has to be broken down by the liver, and it won’t appreciate the extra workload.


6th:  Ditch the holiday guilt. A healthy mind is as important as a healthy body, and berating ourselves for eating or drinking too much can be just as toxic to our health as the things we consume. Instead, take pleasure in everything the season has to offer.


7th:  Remember to alternate each alcoholic drink with a glass of water – you’ll thank yourself in the morning.


8th:  Stick to clear spirits. Drinks like vodka and gin contain fewer congeners – the toxic by-products of fermentation – than red wine, champagne and whiskey.


9th:  Load up on B vitamins. Alcohol depletes the body’s store of B vitamins, which are responsible for many metabolic processes in the body, including the breaking-down of alcohol by the liver. Taking a supplement before you start drinking can work wonders.


10th:  Coconut water. One glass of this liquid contains more electrolytes than your average, sugar-laden sports drink, and more potassium than a banana (great for helping with muscles cramps and weakness).


11th:  Don’t exercise if your hangover is bad. Whilst exercise can help you sweat out some of the toxins and give you an endorphin-boost, if you’re really suffering, your body is at a higher risk of muscle strains and electrolyte imbalance, so take it easy. Try a rejuvenating yoga class instead – triyoga has a great calendar of classes and events throughout December.


12th:  Ginger tea. Ginger is one of the best remedies for settling an upset stomach.


13th:  Building Healthy Workplaces – A Vision For The Future. Get some tips on how to integrate wellness into your business year-round.


14th:  Want a party with a wholesome twist? Why not try the Re:Solutions Health and Wellness Festival Launch Party! There’ll be vegan sweet treats, JARR kombucha (amazing for gut health), and a ‘conscious’ cocktail menu.


15th:  Ditch the sunglasses. Getting some natural light will boost your alertness and reset your circadian rhythms.


16th:  Take a detox bath. Known to draw out waste and toxins, Epsom salt aids the detoxification process, as well as being a great natural muscle relaxer, so add some to your bath after a night of drinking.


17th:  Try some yoga twists. Twisting yoga poses are deeply detoxifying and will help squeeze the alcohol out of the organs.


18th:  Book yourself in for some reflexology. Reflexology can greatly relieve the after-effects of too much alcohol, and help you feel human again.


19th:  Give your liver a break and have a booze-free day.


20th:  Chocolate! Dark chocolate is a rich source of flavanols, and has been shown to fight brain fog (an after-effect of too many late nights), as well as to boost cognitive function. So go ahead and indulge, in the name of productivity!


21st:  Eggs for breakfast. Eggs are rich in the amino acid cysteine, which helps break down acetaldehyde – the toxin that’s thought to cause hangovers.


22nd:  Eat cheese! Foods with a high fat content work well to reduce alcohol absorption…as if you needed an excuse for that Christmas cheese platter.


23rd:  Carols for Christmas by Candlelight. Music is good for the soul. Get into the festive spirit without alcohol with this beautiful, candlelit service.


24th:  Just dance. Nothing dissipates holiday stress like a good boogie.


25th:  Time for family, feasting and fun! Agora wishes you a very merry Christmas, and we look forward to helping you find ways of looking after yourself that feel FUN in the coming New Year!


I am Emma Watkins, the Founder of Agora. My career began at systematic Investment Manager, Winton Capital Management, where I developed and ran the Charity, Sponsorship, Brand and Events Department. After 5 years, I moved on to become Operations Director at Fifty Media, a technology company focused on large scale analysis of social media data to redefine how brands fundamentally understand and engage their customers.